Do you have a lawn that you take great pride in? Anyone who owns a home knows that it is important to keep it looking nice. When a lawn looks nice it makes the house look nice. The big problem some people have though is that their lawn seems to look much better during certain times of the year.
Now for people who live in areas of the country where the weather is warm year round they know how much work it takes to keep a lawn looking top notch. People who move to such places from areas of the country where the weather is not warm year-round end up struggling. These people often feel their only options are as follows:
- Pay a professional who is going to come in and do all the work needed on a regular basis in order to make sure a lawn looks the right way year round. The only issue with this is not everyone is going to have the money to do this. What happens when you are able to pay and your lawn starts looking bad?
- Try to pay to get artificial grass put in with the hopes that it is going to look nice. The only problem with this is that artificial grass is not going to be allowed in all areas. Plus, even though it might not look bad, it can still look out of place with all the other lawns in the neighborhood. And if this happens you can be sure neighbors are going to say something about it.
- Try to replace a lawn or grass with some other type of surface that would not require much work. Like maybe they might try to get some sort of rock design put in. While these might work in some places, you run the risk of experiencing the same problems as mentioned above. Plus these types of designs are not cheap to have put in.
The number one thing you need to focus on to keep a lawn looking good year round
Think about the things you have to do to a lawn in order to ensure it stays looking a certain way no matter what time of the year it is. What do you believe is the most important? One of the most important things for grass is making sure you are feeding it the right way.
You would be surprised at how many people do not use any kind of fertilizer at all. The figure as long as they are watering it the way they should be they are not going to have any problems, but it does not work this way at all.
Not feeding the grass during the right times of the year can cause problems
Even if you are feeding your grass the way you are supposed to, in order for it to look good year round it has to be done at the right time. If you do it during the wrong time the effects can be bad and it will not be easy to fix this. Understand that lawns grow in an assortment of ways during different times of the year.
In order for you to produce a top quality lawn, it is going to be important for you to feed twice a year. This is going to be in the Spring or early Summer and autumn.
Feeding your lawn during the Spring or Summer
When you feed your lawn during the Spring and the Summer you want to make sure you are making use of a fertilizer that has a high nitrogen content. This is going to help promote strong and healthy looking grass. You will want the fertilizer to be applied at a rate that is recommended by the manufacturer.
When you apply fertilizer you will need to use a spreader that will ensure the application is as even as possible. If this does not happen then the grass can end up having a color that is not even and you do not want this. Also, the fertilizer should not be applied a few days before you mow or a few days after you mow.
Feeding your grass in the Autumn
When you feed your grass during the autumn you will want to make sure you are not using the same fertilizer as you might during the Spring and Summer. If you do this then it can lead to grass growing that is going to be weak when it comes to bad winter weather.
Also, you want the fertilizer you use during the autumn to have a high potassium and phosphorus ratio. This is going to help promote leaf growth and root growth that is really strong.
What else do you need to do in order to make sure your lawn look nice year round?
So much of what you have to do in order to keep your lawn looking nice year round is going to come down to what part of the country you live in. In places like the Southwest, it gets so hot that a lot of people do not even have lawns.
They have the rock designs mentioned earlier. In places where it rains a lot, you will need to make special adjustments. In places where the winters are bad, you might need to do things differently.
When you think of it like this it is easy to get confused, but you really do not need to be. Here is a solid plan in order to ensure your lawn looks nice year round. Find out what the dominant weather is in your area of the country and what type of grass would work best for it.
This would include areas where winters are bad. Replace your current lawn with that type of grass and make sure you get plans from the lawn and garden care store you got it from.
This way you get a chance to get a fresh start. You will know how to water, when to water, when to fertilize and other minor things you needed to do in order to ensure your lawn stayed looking the way you want it to look no matter what time of the year it is.
How to Plant a New Lawn
Planting a lawn from seed has several advantages: it’s the cheapest way to establish a lawn, you can choose from a variety of seed blends, and you can do it yourself without hiring any extra labor. If you’re still intimidated by the thought of planting your own lawn, here is an overview of the steps you would need to complete. They are simple to follow, and if done correctly will result in a healthy lawn.
1. Rototill the soil. This will help loosen compacted soil, bring in oxygen and make spaces for new roots to grow in easily. You should be digging at least 6 inches deep. If your soil area has weeds, now is the time to remove them, either through hand pulling or spot treatments with herbicides.
2. Decide where on the spectrum your soil falls, from clay to loamy to sandy. Loamy is the most ideal soil for plants to grow in. Add soil amendments if you think the soil structure could be improved. Organic amendments such as topsoil, compost, or shredded leaves are usually your best options.
3. Take several soil samples from different areas in your yard and send them to a county extension office to have them analyzed. The results of a soil test will be able to tell you additional amendments you should add, the pH level of your soil, whether you need to apply lime, and the fertilizer recommendations for your yard.
4. Install your sprinkler system before you plant your grass seeds. Sprinkler systems are much more water and time efficient than watering by hand. Two common sprinkler types are spray head sprinklers and rotary sprinklers.
5. Make the soil level with a rake, so that there are no noticeable mounds or divots in the area. Remove any obstacles, such as rocks, that would block seed germination.
6. Use a lawn roller half filled with water to firm the soil. Don’t roll too hard; you don’t want to undo all the work you did to loosen the soil in the first place.
7. Each grass species will need to be seeded at a different rate. Check your seed bag for the recommendations. Determine how much seed you will need according to how big your yard area is.
8. Use a drop spreader to make your seeding even. Take half of the total seed you need to plant and sow it back and forth across the yard in a horizontal direction. Then take the other half of the seed and sow it back and forth across the yard in a vertical direction, perpendicular to your first sowing.
9. Lightly rake across the soil of your yard to ensure that there is good contact between the soil and the newly planted grass seeds. This is one of the signs that encourage the seed to start germinating. Make sure that you don’t rake too deeply—each seed should only be buried ¼” deep in the soil.
10. Lightly and frequently water the soil until you begin seeing grass growth. The goal is to keep the soil moist but not soaking. Once grass shoots start appearing you can start to water the lawn deeply and infrequently to increase the length of the grassroots.