Preparing and protecting your lawn during fall may not be as intensive as winter or summer, but it’s still an absolutely necessary step. If you don’t adjust the way you are maintaining your grass it won’t be as strong as it can be for the winter months to come. In areas with snowfall or drastic temperature changes this is an imperative step every year, but even in more temperate climates just a few days of a drop in temperature can drastically affect your lawn.
Check for Summer Damage
The first step in lawn preparation for fall is to check what damage has occurred over the summer. Kids and pets playing on the grass can take a real toll on the greenery; compounded by the weather, and you may have a lawn with bald spots and dead grass. Taking a survey of the lawn and determining how to proceed next will get you off on the right track.
Reseed and Overseed
If you have some damaged grass, reseeding those areas is a good idea so that your lawn looks nice and even. For lawns with hot temperature resistant grasses, it’s a good idea to overseed the lawn to make sure it doesn’t die over the winter, giving the lawn a thicker layer of grass and more resilience. Aerating the lawn before you seed will ensure new growth and help the plants establish deep roots, making for better water absorption and resistance to damage and death.
Clean Up the Yard
A simple step that can easily be overlooked for larger details is cleaning up the yard. Removing any lawn furniture, toys, or temporary pools can save you some major headache in the future. These objects block sunlight and can provide homes for invading insects. If you live in an area with a more moderate climate where you are going to continue using the outdoor area, you might want to consider moving the furniture occasionally so one spot doesn’t suffer.
Another part of cleaning the yard is raking up leaves. While some people might tell you that leaving the leaves on your lawn is a good idea as it’s insulating your lawn from the colder weather, that’s not the best advice. Leaves can block sunlight from reaching your grass, preventing food production and ultimately killing the lawn.
What is a good idea is using your leaves in a compost to create mulch, but cleaning them up is the first and most necessary step. Certain fungal invasions can easily start from an unkempt pile of leaves as they decay and become prime targets for a variety of unwelcome fungi.
While the growth of your lawn is going to slow down in the cold weather, it’s still a good idea to mow the lawn, but less frequently. Don’t over mow as this can weaken your grass as it is unable to collect as much sunlight.
Feed the Lawn
Fertilization is key during the fall to strengthen your lawn for the winter. In summer, fertilizer can kill your grass as the increased nitrates can be too much, but for fall it’s just what’s needed. Aeration is again a useful step to take before fertilizing so that it penetrates the soil and reaches the roots of the grass.
Weeding Never Stops
Take care of the weeds that spring up during cooler weather. If weeds go unnoticed in the fall they can do some real damage as your grass isn’t growing as quickly and can easily be out-competed for the water, nutrition, and sunlight that it needs to thrive. Make sure to routinely check your grass and to remove the offending plants.
Use an Expert
Every lawn is different and every region’s weather varies, so the needs of each lawn are going to be different. Using a professional lawn care service provider is a great way to ensure that your lawn will survive fall. Lawnscape is a professional lawn care company that can make sure your lawn thrives through the whole year. Contact Lawnscape today.