Sustainable lawn maintenance tips that you should know
Keeping your grass healthy and green requires continuous attention and a lot of patience. Don't worry if yours is looking a little worn out after the winter because we've compiled a comprehensive list of the best sustainable lawn care tips available.
10 sustainable tips for a healthy lawn
Here are 10 sustainable tips for a healthy lawn:
- Grasscycle your lawn?
- Use fertilizer?
- Utilize stepping stones?
- Adjust the cutting height of your lawnmower ?
- Compost ?
- Improve drainage?
- Repair and dress your grass?
- Water, water, water?
- Improve the soil?
- Control thatch?
1. Grasscycle your lawn
Leaving grass clippings on the lawn serves as an excellent natural fertilizer. This is known as grasscycling and it provides additional nutrients to your lawn. It does not produce thatch, contrary to popular belief. The mulching mode on some lawnmowers performs this for you.
2. Use fertilizer
Plants require nutrients so it’s important to provide them with the appropriate nourishment each season. A lawn feed schedule is simple to create and implement, and it has a significant impact on the health of your lawn, regardless of how often you mow. When applying fertilizer, it's easy to miss patches of lawn. Working in two directions or going over the grass twice with half the quantity on each run will help you avoid this.
Does my lawn need to be fertilized each year?
3. Utilize stepping stones
You probably walk on some parts of the lawn more than on other parts, and these routes can quickly become worn. Consider placing stepping stones to safeguard the areas where you frequently walk. To avoid worn areas on your grass, pave the path to your decking, washing line, or summer house.
4. Adjust the cutting height of your lawnmower
Don’t worry if you've left the garden to its own devices throughout the winter months and your lawn has become unkempt. To get the ideal grass length, gradually lower the mowing height of your lawnmower. Scalping is the practice of cutting the grass too short too soon, which can lead to disease and weed infestation. It’s important to avoid cutting off more than a third of the grass blade in one go to avoid stressing the grass.
What is the ideal mowing height?
Debris, moss, and dead thatch must all be removed from your grass. You can use a spring-tine rake and these natural debris can be added to your compost to then become part of your fertilizer.
What can you compost and what can you not?
6. Improve drainage
Use a lawn aerator to loosen up compacted soils that aren't draining well. It's a simple gadget with hollow prongs that you drive into the lawn like a fork. This will remove small soil plugs, which can then be brushed with grass sand. This will aid in the drainage of the lawn.
Alternatively, a garden fork can be used. Wiggle it about in the lawn to help break up the soil and decrease compaction. Going as deep as feasible every 30 cm or so can aid drainage and increase grass root growth, resulting in a healthier lawn. Aeration is important to allow water, air, and nutrients to reach the root layer. Over time, the soil particles that make up the earth beneath your lawn can compress, preventing grass from growing and causing poor drainage or even waterlogging.
7. Repair and dress your grass
Sow new grass seeds to replace barren patches. Rake the soil until it's crumbly, then sow seeds as directed on the packet. Water the area thoroughly and avoid walking on it for a few weeks. Start sowing new lawns or repairing barren sections in April if the weather allows it. If you're installing new turf, leave it alone for a few weeks to allow the new roots to grow.
Once in spring and once in autumn, brush top-dressing over the lawn surface to remove lumps and bumps. Top-dressing is a mixture of soil, sand, and compost, but pre-mixed bags are also available. Allow a few days between each application to allow the mixture to settle into any gaps or dips. This will stimulate the grass to grow thicker and develop deeper roots.
8. Water, Water, Water
Summers can scorch grass, causing it to become dry and brown. Keeping your lawn hydrated is an important element of lawn care. To water your lawn, you can use garden sprinklers or even collect rainwater for that purpose.
The type of grass you choose will have an impact on how well it withstands the climate. Native grass lawns fare better than any other type. They also retain water better. During hot spells, the grass uses less water in the evening, making this the optimal time to water your lawn.
9. Improve the soil
To improve the soil you first have to determine the pH of the soil. It should be in the range of 6.5 to 7.0, which is slightly acidic. Lime should be sprinkled on soil that is too acidic, while sulfur can be applied to soil that is not acidic enough. You can get a pH test kit or get your soil professionally tested for better results.
Lawns thrive in loamy soils with a combination of clay, silt, and sand. Heavy use or too much clay in the soil mix can compact the soil, preventing air and nutrient flow. Aeration is a method that involves lifting small plugs of turf to create air holes in compacted soil. Organic matter, such as compost and grass clippings, can improve any type of soil. Mulching attachments are also available for some lawnmowers, which break up and scatter grass clippings while you mow.
10. Control thatch
On healthy grass, the thatch layer should be around 1/2′′ (1.25 cm) thick and kept in check by natural decomposition, earthworms, and microbes. Water and nutrients cannot reach the grass roots if there is too much thatch. Before renting a dethatcher, make an effort to increase aeration to control thatch build-up.
Microorganisms that devour thatch are brought to the surface by aeration. If you don't aerate your lawn, the roots will remain close to the surface, contributing to thatch build-up. Once a year, aeration breaks down the thatch, allowing the roots to penetrate deeper into the soil. This results in thicker grass, which kills weeds as well.
While a dethatcher reduces thatch build-up, it also strips and thins the grass, making it easier for weeds to sprout. Make sure you don't use your dethatcher too much. A steel rake can also be used to remove thatch.
Lawn maintenance services
Forever Green offers lawn care services throughout Quebec. Our team can administer fertilizers, biostimulants, and calcium, as well as perform weed and pest control. If problems persist, we also provide service calls and routine check-ups. Our most popular lawn package includes 5 visits, 19 grass services, and 1 lawn aeration.
Our lawn care services include:
Feel free to contact us for more information!