Aug 1, 2013 by

Most people think all I have to do now is cut the grass, but there are considerations to be taken like, does it look good, if it doesn’t why not? All grass lawns need care and attention, other questions may also come to mind, like “how do they get those stripes, can I leave the cuttings where they lay, its looking a little under the weather, when is best time to water it ?”

Grass lawn care, gives results that can be the envy of yStriped grass lawnour friends and neighbours. A typical example would be likened to washing/waxing your car, ie you use it, but you do have to look after it!

Grass in your yard/lawn, needs a little help from yourself in the way of water and fertiliser, so I will start by giving you an idea on water requirements, with A WARNING, never OVER water, like clothes you know when they are saturated as the excess runs off, and on the lawn puddles may appear.

There is no exact science to the amount of water you need but as a rough thumb nail guide, the average lawn if kept to around 7 cm  high,it  may not need  the watering of a cropped, or very short grass. ( short grass is exposed to more drying by condensation, and the soil is open to the air meaning it will dry out faster). Also the grass can hold more nutrients/fertiliser, ( which I go into later). Whereas the shorter grass tends to encourage disease, fungus and varius  other weeds as you  tend to water more. The best times to water are evenings when the sun is low as the soil will soak up most of the water, together with dew if it is forming at night, however if, you have already given your grass a crew cut, you should try to water in the mornigs as the ground will dry out leaving the soil exposed and consequently leaving little or no moisture for weeds to grow. My tip for you to adjust your mower to the right height, is to place the mower on a level path or similar and then you can gauge the height, or to be exact to measure the distance from the ground to the blades. (For those of us who like to stick to real measurements, 7 cm. is approximately 2 -7/8 inches.)

If you are spraying your lawn with hose pipe or sprinkler, a fine spray is far better for both the grass and soil, think how you would re-act in bad weather would you prefer a fine rain or a down pour? I already see the problem of you asking “how do I know how much water has poured onto the lawn”, take an old  glass jar or tin and place it in the area to be watered and you will see how much is contained,you need to water so it soaks into the soil around 12 cms. deep (around 5 inches) to check, you can physically take out a piece of lawn or keep an eye on your container, alternatively try pushing a spade into the ground Consider also the areas you are watering, for instance a sloping lawn will require more water whilst a shady area will need less water, trees also soak up water so you will need additional water around them. Just watering lightly is no help to the grass as it promotes short/shallow roots and to keep the grass healthy, water properly and take your time, yes it’s a chore but consider if you did not wash your car properly!!

Incidentally did you know that lawns are better for the air we breathe?, they produce around three times more oxygen than trees! and when the trees shed their leaves the grass is still producing the oxygen!!

Now we turn to fertilisation, an all important system that will produce a healthy good looking grass, which can be carried out using various methods, and materials. If you Blue bird inspecting the lawn carehave chosen the method I have suggested in my composting pages, where you make your own compost, providing it is very fine, this can be spread on the lawn, and rake in. I have outlined in the pages on mulch, the benefit of spreading such compost, in the saving of moisture, and the compost releasing nutrients to the soil. Similarly you can purchase fertilisers in bags from all good horticultural/garden centres ready for use from the bag, which you can spread and rake in. if you are suffering with lawns drying out too quickly, then the addition of these types of fertilisers will hold more moisture but a further application(s) may be necessary later on, on the other hand if you find water is  laying on the lawn,  an  addition  when fertilising, is to mix some lawn sand with the fertiliser before  spreading.    

When cutting your lawn, some people advocate that the cuttings should be to lie on the grass, I honestly feel that this is an idea to allow the grass to decompose allowing the nutrients to go back to the soil, however this can cause a build up in “thatch” and by covering the growing grass can help “starve” it of the sunshine necessary, promoting moss and algea which is no help, furthermore the dead grass lying around does not look good, and other people will think you are too lazy to clear up. The last statement generally refers to people who have left the grass cutting late, consequently there would be a thick layer and possibly clumps causing the thatch, if you are cutting the lawn lightly in the warmer months try it to see the effect. My only other objection to leaving the cuttings being the thatch thickness, which will require more raking, ( oh no not more work) and scarifying to stop the roots seeking moisture in shallow depths rather than lower depths to make a stronger rooting system.

Another part of lawn care is weeding, but remember if you “pull” a weed the root remains and will probably regrow, you can combat them in various ways, by either digging them out or using “feed and weed” solutions which are has a desired effect of killing weeds as well as fertilising  the grass, other brands  can be used as spot treatment, but do remember to read the instructions on applying before comencing, as overspray may kill the grass, some remedies for dandelions, is to cut the plant so that it bleeds a milky white substance and then apply salt or vinegar, but remember salt or vinegar must be applied in moderation, as sodium(in salt) or the acid (in vinegar may affect the soil around. some other weeds which spread may be dealt with by the use of a systemic weed killer, this type is either sprayed  or  “painted  on to the leaves of the plant and is absorbed into the system an kill  both plant and roots, I could go on and on about the different remedies available, but I have chosen just a few examples to show you as the list of different weeds are matched by the different treatments,and to go further may “bore” you which is definately not my intention, if in any doubt I am sure your local plant centre is more than happy to advise you on a suitable remedy, I must give you yet another serious warning on these type of remedies ” STORE  AND KEEP OUT OF  THE REACH  OF CHILDREN”, some if not all can be dangerous.

Remember a well kept lawn can be your “crowning glory” and will reward you with admiring looks from others as a good colour will set off your other plants, trees, shrubs and flowers, also it can be the right place for impromtu football and other games, both for your children and pets, it also allows you to keep an eye on your little “darlings” oh and by the way, somewhere to have that drink of………?

Related Posts


Share This

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *