GET A BEAUTIFUL LAWN THIS YEAR!
A Great Looking Lawn Requires Good Soil and Proper Maintenance.
1. SOIL: Visual Examination.
A great lawn requires good soil. A visual examination is a start. Are there areas that are compacted and tight? Are there areas that are too loose and sandy?
Is the soil rich and dark? A rich dark color indicates it’s alive and rich with organic nutrients. If it is sandy and tan, it’s basically dead dirt. Loose, silty, sandy soil isn’t good either as it won’t allow the roots to develop, and it doesn’t hold water.
Does your lawn have good, rich, organic soil? Call The Yard Guys for an expert evaluation to find out.
2. Compacted Lawns: TILLING
Roto-tilling a compacted lawn is required to loosen up compacted soil, improve drainage, create better aeration, and allow proper growth of roots.
First we start by tilling the compacted areas. The lawn will not look pretty during this process. Next, we grade the loosened soil, add fresh soil or loam (to enrich the soil), and pre-fertilize.
After grading, seeding, fertilizing and watering can begin. It takes up to 3 weeks for new grass to begin growing.
Rolling out sod is a quick way to a beautiful lawn. But installing sod is labor intensive and more expensive. Sod is typically used on new construction sites because it’s faster than waiting for seeds to sprout. Seeding is definitely cheaper than sodding.
A common mistake with sodding is that the base is not properly prepped and leveled. Unscrupulous companies are known to throw sod on top of an existing lawn w/o preparation. At first, it might look good, but over time the sod becomes uneven and lumpy due to an unprepared base.
Watering once a week is the general rule of thumb. A weekly soaking helps roots extend deeper into the soil. Over-watering tends to cause a buildup of thatch and dead grass just above the soil.
How much water your lawn needs varies on the type of soil you have, and the location of the lawn. Shady lawns require less water. Whereas exposed sunny lawns might require a little more water. Sandy soils dry out faster, while clay soils hold moisture longer and don’t require watering as often.
5. Newly Seeded Lawns.
A newly seeded lawn needs to be watered every day for 10 to 15 minutes usually once in the morning, and then once in the evening until growth starts. The goal is to wet the seeds enough without causing runoff that might wash them away. After the seeds sprout, then reduce watering to once per day for 10/15 minutes until the grass reaches 2 inches. Don’t start mowing until the grass reaches 3.5 inches.
Your lawn needs to be fertilized twice per year at best: once in the spring, and a second application in the late summer or early fall. Any more is over-kill.
Some lawns need a little more nutrients like copper, sulfer and iron. Makers usually carry different varieties of fertilizer for different purposes.
Over time watering and fertilizer cause the soil to become acidic. Adding lime w/dolomite every couple of years restores the pH balance; and adds calcium and magnesium back into the soil. But this isn’t needed annually.
Mow to the proper height (3″-3.5″). TOO many homeowners cut the lawn too short! Why? Because they’re trying to save money. A lawn should be mowed when it needs to be mowed, or every ten days… Mowing once per week is often over-kill, unless you live near a wet environment or as someone I knew let her dogs go in the lawn causing the grass to grow fast every week.
We get it: homeowners are trying to save money, but short cutting stresses the grass and can ultimately kill it.