19 Simple Lawn Care Tips That’ll Make Your Grass Greener & Brighter

Gardeners often make the mistake of overlooking their lawn, instead choosing to invest time and energy into flowers and bedding plants. Whilst this is certainly still a worthwhile pastime, even the most striking display of blossoming perennials will be let down if the surrounding grass is lacklustre and dull.

As the main canvas of your garden, your lawn should be given a decent amount of TLC. Fewer things shout ‘healthy, well-maintained garden’ like bright, green grass.

In most cases, it’s simply a matter of making adjustments to what you are already doing, whilst keeping in mind any specific requirements for your grass. So, here are 19 helpful lawn care tips to help your grass thrive!

It’s All in The Cut

1) One of the smallest but most effective changes you can make relates to the way you cut your grass. Check your lawn mower blade regularly and sharpen when necessary. A dull blade will split and hack your grass, making the tips yellowed and more vulnerable to disease.

2) Varying your mowing pattern will stop the grass from ‘leaning’ as it grows. It will also help avoid ruts developing in the lawn. Try and mow in a different direction each time to ensure an upright, even lawn surface.

3) Only cut when the grass is dry. Mowing wet grass gives an uneven finish. It can also damage the blades of grass, as well as clog your lawn mower with wet cuttings. If you have no other choice but to cut your grass when wet, always remove the clumps of clippings from your lawn afterwards.

4) Different types of grass have different needs. Cool season grasses need more mowing in spring and autumn, whereas warm season grasses need more mowing in summer.

5) Get the height right! Believe it or not, cutting your grass to the correct height makes all the difference to its growth. Keep the blade of your mower low for the first and last cuts of the season. Raise the blade during the summer to let the grass grow longer. This will create shade, preventing weed growth. If your lawn mower doesn’t have a very diverse cutting height range, be sure to take a look at our guide to the UK’s best lawn mowers. Most of the mowers we’ve reviewed there have a cutting height range from around 20 – 75 mm.

6) Shaded areas benefit from a higher mowing height.

7) Warm season grasses benefit from a shorter cut. There are guides online which outline the best cutting heights for each species of grass.

Grasscycling

grasscycling

8) To put it simply, grasscycling is a great excuse for being lazy! This process is also known as ‘mulching’. It involves leaving the grass clippings on your lawn after mowing. This is something that not only saves time and effort, but also acts as an excellent natural fertiliser, nourishing and feeding your lawn. Check out our article on the benefits of mulching for more details.

For optimal results, invest in a mower with a proper mulching blade. This will shred the clippings smaller, making them easier to break down.

9) Grasscycling only works when the grass is dry. Leaving clumps of wet clippings on your lawn can cause a lot of damage; in fact, this might be one of the reasons why your grass is turning yellow. One other thing – mulching is only suitable for regularly mown lawns where the clippings will be small. Leaving deposits of longer clippings can stunt the growth of your grass and result in brown or yellow patches.

Using Fertilisers and Weed Killers Correctly

1killing weeds0) The best defence against weeds is keeping a dense, lush lawn at the correct height. This will create enough shade to prevent weeds germinating and growing. However, if you find you do need to use weed killer, it should be done as part of your spring lawn care, before the weed has a chance to develop strong roots and germinate. You might like to check out our top recommended weed killers.

11) Certain weeds need specific treatments. The first step is to correctly identify the type of weed you are dealing with. Once you have done this, you can research the best plan of attack. Some species need a one-off spot treatment, whereas other hardier classes require a prolonged and concentrated dosing.

12) Early spring and autumn are the best times for fertilising. Light feeding in between sustains the growth; however, heavy fertilising should be avoided mid-summer as it encourages weed development.

13) If you must choose one time for fertilising, it should be during your autumn lawn care routine. Using a quality lawn fertiliser in autumn will help to repair damage caused by the summer heat, ensuring your lawn survives the winter. Choose the correct type of fertiliser for your grass type and climate.

14) When it comes to using chemicals on your lawn, whether for fertilising or eradicating weeds, it is best to do your homework beforehand. Always follow the instructions on the lawn care products you are using and take special safety precautions when applying the chemicals to your lawn. You should also take into consideration any children or animals that may be affected by the products you are using.

Watering Your Lawn

watering lawn

15) The amount of watering required by your lawn will depend on the climate you live in and the type of soil you have. Obviously, drier climates require more watering than wetter climates. Sandy soils drain quicker, so they benefit from more regular irrigation than clay soils, which can easily become waterlogged if watered excessively.

16) As a rule of thumb, your lawn needs 2.5 – 5 cm of water per week. If the rain doesn’t oblige, try to water twice weekly rather than daily. The best time to irrigate your grass is early morning when the air is cooler. In the afternoon heat, the water will evaporate quicker and in the evening, the water will cling to the grass, making it vulnerable to mould and fungal diseases.

Give Your Grass a Breath of Fresh Air

grass-aerator17) Aerating can help water, oxygen and fertiliser enter the soil easier. If the soil is very compact, or there is a lot of thatched grass, this is a sign that it needs aerating. Aerating will help the roots of your grass grow stronger, meaning your lawn will be thicker and more fertile. We’ve written a whole article on aerating the lawn, which goes into a lot more detail!

18) There are two main types of aerator available, spike aerators and plug aerators. Spike aerators simply puncture a hole in the soil, whereas plug aerators remove a plug of grass and earth from the lawn. Plug aerators tend to yield better results than spike aerators because they physically reduce soil compaction.  

19) Growing season is the best time to aerate your lawn because it will have a chance to heal itself after soil plugs are removed. Cool season grass is best aerated in early spring or autumn, and warm season grass is best aerated in late spring or early summer. Once you have aerated, you should apply a layer of weed killer to discourage weeds from infiltrating the holes.

As you can see, keeping your lawn in tip-top condition is mostly about making small routine changes, and being aware of your grass and soil type, rather than any drastic measures. Apart from a good lawn mower, some fertiliser, and possibly an aerator, a lush green lawn doesn’t require any other special equipment.

For a breakdown of how to treat your lawn month by month, take a look at our monthly lawn care calendar.

Photo Credits

http://www.acwastewatcher.org

 

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