Colder temperatures and fewer hours of sunlight over the winter can put a lot of stress on your lawn. That’s why it’s essential to take the opportunity to prepare your grass and garden beds for the warmer season. A yard clean up and completely outdoor projects now can help you get a head start. Without care and attention, your yard could suffer from common problems during the summer, like brown spots and bare patches.
To avoid spending more time and money repairing your lawn later this year, follow these steps to ready your grass for hotter months.
Complete Outdoor Projects
Renovations like building a new deck, adding hardscaping, or constructing a fire pit are great ways to increase your outdoor living space while improving your home’s curb appeal. Small changes like new patio furniture can revitalize your yard by creating a comfortable place to enjoy the outdoors. With warmer weather right around the corner, you may even want to set up your backyard to host parties. Homeowners can use their equity to pay for these improvements without taking out racking up credit card debt. Plus, if you’re selling your home in the near future, you can pay off the balance once your house is sold.
If you plan to do any outdoor home renovations, make sure you perform a yard clean up and your project is finished before the warmer weather begins to give your grass and flowers plenty of time to recover from any damage. Spring is also an excellent time to lay down new sod or reseed your yard if you still have a lot of bare patches. Frequent rain showers and increased daylight help the seedlings establish strong, healthy roots in preparation for summer. Plus, a new lawn can save water as a new variety of grass could be healthier and more water-efficient, especially in hotter climates.
Yard Clean Up For Loose Debris
After making any changes to your landscaping, you’ll need to remove the leftover detritus. Leaves, fallen sticks, and dead plants will only hinder the next steps of the spring cleaning process and lead to further damage caused by blocked sunlight. As soon as you finish your renovations, take time to perform a yard clean up and pick up any loose debris left on your lawn. You can also use this opportunity to clear away dead plants from your flower beds and rake mulch back into place.
For yards with a significant amount of dead grass, dethatching may be required. Thatch is the mix of organic plant material that builds up around the roots of your grass. Most of the time, this debris breaks down and creates nutrients, but occasionally it needs to be removed to help provide more room for new growth in the spring. To dethatch your lawn, you will need to use a sharp-tined rake to extract the accumulated debris. Going section by section, rake your grass as if you are raking leaves. You may need to use more pressure to get as much thatch pulled up as possible. Once you have done your whole yard, you can collect the extracted material for disposal or composting.
Aerate Your Yard
Over time, your lawn will become compacted even if you are careful not to drive over it in a heavy vehicle. Foot traffic from adults, children, and pets is enough to create hard spots and make it difficult for your grass to absorb moisture and nutrients. To offset this, you should make a point to aerate your yard. Annual aeration can create a more drought-resistant lawn as it allows for deeper root growth and better water efficiency.
When you should aerate your lawn will depend on the type of grass and soil you have. If you live in a cold-season climate, you should only aerate your yard in the early spring or late fall. However, warm-season grasses shouldn’t be touched until the late spring or early summer. You may need to aerate more than once a year for high clay-content dirt since this type of soil is more susceptible to becoming compacted. The easiest way to accomplish this chore is with a lawn aerator. There are many varieties, and you can typically find both manual and motorized options at a wide range of prices, or you can hire a professional service to take care of your yard each year.
Use Organic Fertilizers and Natural Weed Control
Once your yard has been thoroughly cleaned and aerated, it’s time to feed it the nutrients it needs to start growing. Using organic fertilizers and soil builders in early spring helps your grass get a head start for the warmer season without harming the environment. Some fertilizing products contain harsh chemicals that can be damaging to your family’s health and local wildlife. Thankfully, there are safe options available when it comes to organic lawn care products.
The beginning of spring is also an excellent time to start your natural weed control efforts. Since it’s early in the season, most weeds haven’t had time to establish strong roots, so you will have a better chance of preventing any unwanted growth. Mowing high, vertical edging, and organic weed control products are safe and environmentally-friendly ways to prevent weeds from taking over your lawn. Like fertilizers, some weed killers can have toxic ingredients that can hurt your pets and insect life. That’s why natural weed control is the better option since it won’t pose a threat to your animals, children, or helpful pollinators.
Taking care of your grass may seem labor-intensive, but if you take time to prepare it before the growing season, you can make lawn care more manageable throughout the summer months.
To find a professional near you, use our franchise locator to find your local Clean Air Lawn Care service provider.