When And How To Winterize Your Lawn
You might want to get your outdoor affairs in order before the cold season comes. But don’t be too quick to put away your mower and forget about yard work. Instead, you must take advantage of the cooler temperatures during fall to prepare your lawn for winter.
Knowing when and how to winterize your lawn plays a crucial role in its overall health and growth. Unfortunately, many homeowners don’t know how to prepare their homes for the cold temperature. Most of them focus on things around the house but neglect their garden and outdoor space.
Remember that the lawn care season isn’t over just because the weather gets cooler. Preparing your lawn and landscape for winter ensures green, thicker grass come spring.
Simple Care Tips to Prepare Your Lawn for the Winter
Whether you live in an area where snow quickly piles up on the ground or winter is mild, you need to take the necessary steps to prepare your lawn for the cold weather. If you need some guidance, here are some ways to give your grass some TLC so you’ll be seeing gorgeous green next season.
When to winterize lawn
Fall is more than about spending your weekends raking leaves and packing your lawn furniture away. Taking care of some simple things in the fall can make a huge difference in how your plants and grass grow in the spring. That’s why it’s the best time to plan and organize your garden so your lawn can flourish at the right time.
Therefore, don’t waste your weekends this fall and consider proper maintenance to maintain your turf health. Your cool-season strategies are the best defense against common winter diseases. It’s also essential to know the type of turfgrass you have and any related diseases you must watch out for so your lawn doesn’t suffer during winter.
How to winterize lawn
If you live in snowy regions, completing specific tasks before winter strikes can lead to greener and more beautiful grass in spring. It can also save you hundreds and even thousands of dollars.
Trim your lawn
Some may think that it’s best to let their turf grow longer to prepare for winter, but it does your garden more harm than good. That’s because leaving the grass long can make it an ideal home for voles and mice under the snow. The shorter length will also keep moisture from gathering between the grass blades, resulting in potential diseases and matting.
So it’s best to set your mower at 2 to 2 ½ inches during your regular mowing season in fall. You also shouldn’t let leaves and clippings piling up on your lawn because a buildup of leaves will block out the sunlight your turfgrass needs to remain healthy.
Fertilize the grass
An essential step to winterizing your lawn is applying the right fertilizer to ensure it receives the nutrients it requires during the cold season. But first, you need to know whether you have warm- or cool-season grasses to know which fertilizer will be best for your lawn.
Cool-season grass thrives better in colder temperatures between around sixty-five to seventy-five degrees. On the other hand, warm-season grass grows best in the warmest months and must be fertilized differently. This type of grass could be damaged by excessive fertilizing, as it can upset the appropriate balance of nutrients or cause burning.
But fertilizing your cool-season grass in the late fall will provide your lawn a boost in nutrients and prepare it for the cold temperatures. You can take a soil test to determine the exact nutrients your turf requires or if you’re unsure whether you should apply fertilizer or not.
Don’t overwater your grass
Overwatering is a common lawn issue in winter. It can increase the likelihood of fungal diseases and cause the rotting of the thatch layer. So only water your lawn when you notice the soil becoming dry and do so only in the morning to allow excess water to evaporate during the day.
However, if you live in an area where winter is mild and you only experience minimal snowfall or rain, your lawn might still need a bit of watering during the winter months. Adequate watering ensures that your turfgrass has enough water and remains healthy.
Aerate your lawn
The ideal time to aerate the lawn is before the grass enters the most active growth phase. For cool-season grasses, it is early fall, whereas aeration is best in late spring or early summer for warm-season grasses.
When you aerate, make sure that your grass will have at least four weeks to grow and recover before the freezing temperature comes. It will also be best to apply fertilizer on cool-season grass immediately after aeration to promote recovery.
With the right tool and preparation during the fall, you can ensure your lawn will be thick, green, and healthy the following season. Fortunately, winterizing your property isn’t a complex process if you know what to do. Just follow these tips on when and how to winterize your lawn, and you’ll see the fruit of your hard work when spring comes.
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