Today marks the first day of fall, and soon we will see the tell-tale signs that the seasons are changing. The leaves will soon start changing colours, hinting that snow is just around the corner. Frost will soon greet us in the morning (so make sure you have a scraper in the car!). Summer is regrettably all but over. At this time of year, it’s typical to forget about lawn care as thoughts turn towards preparing for the long months of winter that lie ahead. But if you are expecting green grass in the spring, there is still work to be done.
Here are eight simple fall lawn care tips (say that ten times fast!) so that you can prepare for the colder months ahead and give your lawn every chance to grow lush and green in the spring.
- Mow. One of many helpful fall lawn care tips is to continue mowing, even when it starts to get colder. Keep mowing until you see the growth slow. Try and keep your grass at 2 to 2 1/2 inches (5 to 6 cm) tall throughout the fall months. If it gets any longer, it can mat and this can damage your lawn. If it is shorter, your lawn’s ability to store food for growth will be limited.
- Water. Although the temperatures are cooler, it is important to continue watering. Since grass continues to grow in the fall, it is important to sustain its growth by watering consistently. Water as needed until the ground begins to freeze.
- Weed. Take care of those last few weeds. Hopefully you have been keeping up on that all summer and you are winning that never-ending battle. Deal with the last remaining hold-outs before leaves and snow make it difficult for you to keep up. Not only can it be harder to deal with weeds at that point, some weeds can be particularly aggressive and start to take over your lawn in the fall when your grass is becoming less active.
- Rake. Be sure to thoroughly rake your lawn before the snow falls. Over time, grass clippings and leaves will start to decompose, taking important moisture out of your soil and providing a welcome home to insects that may damage your lawn. Decaying leaves may also leave dead spots in your lawn in the spring, which will invite weeds to quickly move in and take over.
- Aerate. Over time the soil in your lawn can become hard and compacted, making it more difficult for nutrients and water to reach the grass roots. To help provide the air pockets needed for a healthy lawn, make sure your lawn is aerated annually. Fall is a great time to do this and gives your lawn the best chance to receive the nutrients and water it needs to grow healthy all season long.
- Over-seed.As your lawn gets older, it becomes tired, and grass reproduction rates slow down. This is when those weeds can start to take over. To combat this, spread grass seed over your entire lawn before the first snowfall. Apply all grass seed according to package directions and make sure to keep your lawn watered. This will encourage new grass to pop up and fill in those unhealthy spots and contribute to a beautiful fresh green lawn next spring.
- Lime. Most soils in the Atlantic region are naturally acidic, and liming is essential to keep the soil rich to support a healthy lawn. While lime can be applied to a lawn any time of the year that soil isn’t frozen, it is typically done during spring and fall. It is recommended to apply lime twice a year to maintain soil pH and improve fertilizer performance. Apply all lime according to package directions.
- Fertilize. A special fall fertilizer will help your grass get all of the nutrients it needs to stay healthy in the fall and come back vigorously in the spring. Fertilize early in the fall season to keep your lawn beautiful and healthy throughout the autumn months, letting you enjoy it just a little longer before the snow comes. Apply all fertilizers according to package directions to avoid burning the lawn.
Follow these simple lawn care tips, and you are sure to have a greener lawn when the snow melts. Good luck! Can’t wait for Spring!
If you would like more information on lawn care tips and how to keep your lawn greener, or if you have any questions on your home or auto insurance, please contact Munn Insurance at 855-726-8627 today.