With the colder months of the year now definitely on their way, it’s time to think about tasks you need to complete to keep your home and garden in good shape over winter. Whether you want to sell your property soon, are a keen gardener or simply house-proud, things won’t take care of themselves, and you need to make the effort to get the results you’re after.
In particular, if you want to ensure the outdoor areas of your property keep looking their best, you need to maintain your lawn year round, even when it’s much colder than you’d like outside! Caring for the grass in your yard doesn’t have to be complicated or too time-consuming, though. It just takes some regular upkeep. Read on for some things you should do to help keep your lawn looking beautiful as winter hits and progresses.
Many people think that since their lawn doesn’t grow much in winter, they don’t need to keep mowing it, or have to only when the grass builds up a lot. However, it’s important to keep your lawn trimmed (though not severely) to keep it in good health. Mowing helps the grass to thicken up, and it keeps mold away. When you mow, you also remove a lot of debris from your lawn, which might be stopping the blades from getting enough water, sun and air.
When you cut your grass in winter, be careful to crop off only a small amount each time. You should trim a maximum of a third of its length off. In addition, be kind to your lawn by keeping your lawn mower blades nice and sharp. When they’re in good condition, the grass will be cut properly, instead of being torn off and damaged.
To keep your grass looking lush even in the cold months, it’s necessary to feed it. In particular, add fertilizer before the real cold hits, so the food has some time to do its work. Be careful choosing feed, though. Opt for specific fertilizers made for the winter months. These have more iron in them than other types of feed, along with helpful ingredients such as nitrogen, potassium and phosphorous. These chemicals are required for optimum lawn health.
Before you spread the fertilizer around, always read the label. Adhere to the recommendations given by the product’s manufacturer since amounts and usage vary from brand to brand. It’s helpful to dole out the feed slowly and carefully, too, so no areas are missed. A drop spreader is a good tool to help achieve consistency. Then, if you apply fertilizer and don’t get any rain, remember to water the lawn, so the feed soaks in. This should be done within three days of application.
During the winter months, help your lawn breathe and get access to the sun, water and feed by removing debris that may smother it. After lots of leaves fall off, they often stick together and form a mat that doesn’t enable the lawn to get what it needs and can even lead to disease. If you hate the job of raking leaves, consider using a special lawnmower that features a vacuum-style system. This then enables you to collect leaves as you mow.
Winter is a good time to aerate your lawn, too. If you haven’t ever done any aerating (where holes are punched down into the soil, and plugs of dirt extracted), you may wish to engage a specialist to complete the job. Alternatively, hire a walk-behind lawn aerator for a day or two, depending on the size of your lawn, to do the job effectively. The benefit of aeration is that it allows more oxygen, water, fertilizer and sunlight to reach down deep to the roots of your lawn. This helps to keep it healthier, in turn.
Another task many home owners don’t think to do much of in winter is watering, yet lawns need moisture year-round. You certainly won’t have to spend as much time watering as you do in summer when the heat dries out the soil more quickly, but give your grass at least a bit of a drink on a regular basis. Many areas around the country don’t get much rain in winter, after all, so if you don’t water, lawns can get quite thirsty.
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