|Keeping your lawn healthy during the summer months depends on four essential tasks: watering, mowing, fertilizing and pest control.|
Summer is the time we most enjoy our lawns and it's also the time of year when lawns require the most care. With increased heat and light lawn grows more quickly, but long summer days also seem to awaken fleas, ants and other unwanted visitors. Keeping your lawn lush, green and pest-free during the summer months depends on four essential tasks: watering, mowing, fertilizing and pest control.
Most types of lawn need approximately one inch of water each week. If you're uncertain how long to water, mark a few plastic containers with a "one-inch" line and leave them in various places around the yard on watering day. See how long it takes to reach the one-inch mark and water that length of time going forward. If your automatic sprinkling system isn't delivering water evenly use a portable system to supplement in dry locations. If you're forced to cut back on watering due to city-wide water restrictions, don't give into the temptation to water "just a little." A light sprinkling can encourage weed growth without actually helping the lawn. It's better to wait until your designated watering day and give the lawn a deep drink.
If mushrooms, moss or algae are popping up in your lawn you may be overwatering or need to improve lawn drainage.
Improper mowing methods can do more damage to your lawn than anything else. Many homeowners cut their lawns too short, perhaps in an effort to lengthen the time between mowing. But scalping the lawn can increase insect damage, restrict root growth, cause shallow roots and allow weeds more room to move in. Exactly how long the lawn should be depends largely on the type of grass that's planted. St. Augustine can be left very short, just .5 inches while Tall Fescue should be kept around 3 to 4 inches.
Other tips for proper mowing include keeping the mower blade sharp, allow the clippings to remain on the lawn, they provide nitrogen and other nutrients as they decompose, and not worrying about which direction to mow in. If you prefer a specific mowing pattern use it, but for lawn health it doesn't matter which way you push the mower.
|Most types of lawn need approximately one inch of water each week.|
Underfeeding is one of the biggest mistakes you can make when it comes to lawn care. As the lawn-care experts at Scotts say, lawns wake up hungry after a long winter and should be fertilized once in early spring and again in late spring. Fertilizing in the summer helps ease the stress of heat and foot traffic and if you use a combination feed/insect control product, you can take care of pests at the same time. The cool nights of fall provide nearly perfect conditions for lawn growth, and fall feeding strengthens roots and increases the nitrogen storage for a healthier lawn next spring.
Bugs belong outside, but some of them can affect the health of your pets or family. Fleas, ticks and spiders are just a few of the insects that may require control in your lawn and around the home. Adding perimeter pest control to lawn pest control will ensure that potentially dangerous crawlies aren't just leaving the grass and finding a way into your house. Products that combine fertilizer with pest control are ideal for the lawn if both are required; however, insecticides that target specific pests are easy to apply and readily available at your home store.
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