April 18, 2012

Getting Ready for the Mowing Season

Winter can take a toll on your lawn and perenials with fluctuating temperatures and dry winter winds continuing into late April and with a record season highs already this year . These harsh conditions have caused many dead spots to form in yards and has damaged much of the early growth.
So now that spring has arrived, your lawn can use a little extra care to ensure it recovers well from any damage winter may have caused. Here are some tips to help get your grass off to a strong start for the upcoming growing season.
Clean up the yard before mowing. Remove
leaves, sticks, papers and any other debris that has accumulated.Keep on the lookout for rocks and Remove any dead spots and dead grass visible in your lawn by vigorous raking.
Once everything has been cleaned up and debris removed, follow with a lower than normal mowing. This should be short enough to remove the dead tips of the grass.
This shorter mowing will help encourage the roots to waken up and start growing. Dont cut it down to the dirt though!
Next choice is .....To bag or mulch?

Grass clippings when left to lay do not contribute to buildup or an increase the chances of disease and insects. (Weeds and tall grass Do though!)
If you mow your lawn at the right height, without removing any more than 1/3 of it's total height in any single mowing, then the clippings will quickly breakdown without a trace and not look bad.
These clippings will also contribute additional nitrogen and other nutrients to the soil and supply it with additional organic materials. Clippings from a 1000 sq. ft. lawn can add as much as 1 - 2 pounds of nitrogen back into the soil the same key compound found in the expensive fertalizers .
If you did have several dead spots like I did, the time to re-seed is now .After you have raked the area thoroughly to roughen up the top soil saturate lightly and then spread an appropriate ammount seed to cover the area and tamp it into the dirt.

How muchwater do plants and yard need?
About 1 inch per week is a standard rule of thumb. A single weekly soaking is
much better than daily sprinklings, because shallow watering encourages the
roots to stay in the top 4 inches of soil. Shallow roots make plants more
susceptible to water stress and weed competition. Wet the soil to at least 1
foot deep (that's 1 foot down from the soil surface, not the mulch layer).
More great tips can on yard care can be found
here : http://www.organicgardening.com/learn-and-grow/watering-smart

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