Lets face it, people were meant to grow things and there is a certain amount of pride that comes along with growing beautiful flowers, a green grass, or a bountiful vegetable crop.
Now, this isn’t to say that we are all good at growing things. I am reminded of a close family friend. He had a plant in his apartment that was given to him when he moved in and after awhile the plant started to look a little rough.
My dad asked our friend what was wrong with the plant—his response: “I told that plant when I put it there that as long as it could take care of itself it could stay”. Well, needless to say when our friend moved out the plant was still there, but when we went to move the plant it disintegrated. It was dead and completely dried out.
While our friend didn’t have a green thumb it is generally accepted that we [as people] enjoy a nice-looking yard, lawn, etc. and take pride in it. So, this blog is going to help you maintain your pride and allow your neighbor to water his/her lawn with their tears while they stare enviously at your green, luscious, and thick lawn.
If you are looking to have a perfectly green lawn that doesn’t require maintenance, cutting, or repair buy astroturf. Its fake, plastic, and doesn’t require any work. End of blog. Just kidding, we know you are looking for that real fescue with the authentic fresh cut lawn smell. On to the real tips.
Real Tip #1 Healthy Soil Needs to Breathe
Aerating a lawn can give it new life and when done in Spring can jump start it on the path to greenness. Aerating is the process of puncturing the soil crust (top layer of soil) which breaks up soil and loosens compaction, allowing the soil to breathe.
Air and oxygen are crucial for soil health as they allow for decomposition of organic matter and contribute to increased microbial activity. Microbe healthy is very important because they break down organic matter, releasing vital nutrients and minerals into the soil. The main take away—Don’t be afraid to poke some holes in your lawn.
#2 Reseed the thin parts of your lawn
Grasses will naturally spread out and thicken, however, it can be a slow process. To speed up the process you can reseed the areas of your lawn that are thin.
- First, make sure the ground temp is warm enough for the new seed to germinate. The germination temperature can usually be found on the lawn seed bag, once you are now the temp you need to reach grab a meat thermometer and find out where your soil is at.
- Second, spread new seed on to the lawn using a lawn seed spreader, you can find the correct rate to spread the seed on the seed bag.
- Using a lawn seed spreader or by hand spread peat moss on the area that you spread seed. Peat moss will give the new seed cover, help retain water, and balance the pH to give the new seed a healthy start.
- Water as needed.
- DO NOT USE WEED AND FEED PRIOR TO SEEDING. Many herbicides will prevent the new lawn seed from growing. If you have already used a herbicide, wait 4 weeks until reseeding.
#3 Tune Up your Lawnmower
Yep, you read that right. Tuning up your lawnmower can help your lawn. Dull blades, overheating bearing, poorly running engines can all affect your grass. Dull blades will tear at the grass blades in stead of cutting them, this causes excess moisture loss and plant damage.
Bearings that are running hot can cause excess moisture loss, discoloration, and even start a grass fire or worse a garage fire! And a poorly running engine means lower RPMs, which again, causes the blades to tear or “swat” the grass causing an uneven cut and damage to the plant.
So here’s a punch list for your mower:
- Air up the tires to the correct pressure. Properly inflated tires wont tear up the lawn too much, still provide plenty of traction and give a comfortable ride.
- Grease the zerk fittings. We recommend using the Lube-Shuttle® Homeowner Greasing Kit to ensure you are using the correct grease and so you have a mess-free greasing experience. Lube-Shuttle® is designed with the user in mind—no dripping, leaking, or wasted grease it is the only mess free grease gun on the market.
- Oil or lubricate any pivot point that doesn’t have a zerk fitting with an aerosol lubricant. Wagner Micro Ceramic Spray is a great option that won’t evaporate, run off, drip, and is rated for long term use!
- Sharpen the blades or take them in to be sharped professionally. Sharp blades are going to give you a great looking cut and a healthy, green lawn.
- Make sure to use a fuel stabilizer and conditioner to keep your mower engine running in tip top shape. A great all-purpose additive is AirTec Octane FS1. It keeps your fuel stable, increases octane, cleans the fuel system, and prevents build up in the carburetor. Remember, if your mower isn’t running right it isn’t going to cut well and can damage your lawn.
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Here’s a last free tip: Pick up dead leaves, dog droppings, sticks, and any other debris before your first mowing in spring. Any leftover debris rotting organic matter can lead to mold, blight, and other diseases that can harm or even kill your lawn.
Maintaining a lawn is a big job and can be a lot of work, but the results are visible and are sure to make you proud. (Not to mention increase your home’s value) So enjoy your green lawn and be the envy of your neighborhood!