In spring, when the weather becomes warmer and the days longer, it’s essential to give your lawn the proper care it needs for a successful growing season.
The grass and soil type are factors you’ll need to consider, and aerating and fertilizing are just a couple of steps you can take. Learn about these and more by reading our 8 spring lawn care tips below!
Compacted soil makes it difficult for the ground to get air, water, and nutrients. Aeration, the method of poking holes into the soil, reverses these effects and gives the roots more room to grow. This is done during the peak grass-growing season, which differs depending on the type of grass.
The ideal time to aerate warm-season grasses like Saint Augustine and Bermuda is in late spring or early summer. It’s best to aerate cool-season grasses like Kentucky bluegrass and perennial ryegrass in the fall.
The best time to seed the lawn is in early spring. Cooler temperatures may slow down its growth, but you can also plant grass seeds in the fall.
To do so, follow these steps!
- Rake the area to remove dead grass.
- Then aerate the soil.
- Sprinkle on several inches of compost or loamy soil and, with a rake, mix it into the existing soil.
- Spread the seeds evenly but not so thick the seeds pile up.
- Next, take the rake to ensure the seeds are evenly distributed.
- Lightly water daily until the seeds germinate and spout, which will take about 10 days. Afterward, water every two days for a month, and then water weekly as the new grass becomes mature.
- Allow the grass to grow a little taller than the rest of the lawn, as you’ll want the color of the patched area to blend in with the rest of the lawn. This may mean waiting 7 weeks before the area is ready to be mowed.
#3. Test Your Soil pH
Some plants prefer soil that is acidic, alkaline, or neutral. To maintain a healthy garden, you’ll need to know the pH level of your soil, which is easy to do. You can pick up testing kits at your nearest garden center or plant nursery. The instructions generally involve the following steps.
- Dig a small hole 2 to 4 inches deep into the soil.
- Fill the hole with distilled water. In other words, this water is not acidic or alkaline.
- As the water becomes a muddy pool, insert the test probe.
- Wait, and you should get a reading after a minute.
- Even in a small yard, pH variations are common, so it’s recommended to test several parts of your yard.
The soil is acidic if the pH is lower than 7 and alkaline if higher than 7. Most plants do well in soil with a pH between 6.5 and 7, so like many gardeners, you may have to amend your soil. You can add sulfate with a broadcast spreader if the pH level is too high or add lime with a broadcast spreader if the pH level is too low. Then test the soil 30 days later.
#4. Apply a Lawn Fertilizer
You can boost your grass and plant health with fertilizer.
A complete fertilizer has nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. Incomplete fertilizers, which lack one or two nutrients, are primarily used when one or two elements are missing from the soil. A soil test will determine if you need a complete or incomplete fertilizer.
Weed and feed is a 2-in-1 lawn product that contains herbicide and fertilizer, so it kills weeds and feeds the grass. It’s also possible to avoid the use of harsh chemicals with these natural ways to kill weeds.
- Mulch is any sort of cover that smothers the weeds. Options include bark, grass clippings, straw, and biodegradable products like cardboard and newspapers.
- Solarize the yard by placing a sheet of plastic over the weeds for 4 to 6 weeks. This will heat the area underneath to temperatures too hot for weeds to survive.
- Or, simply pull out the troublesome weeds by hand once you spot them.
Knowing how high to mow grass also makes a difference. A general rule of thumb is to let the grass grow to about 3 to 4 inches. This makes the lawn look fuller, prevents damage to the grass, and helps suppress weeds.
A sprinkler timer, also known as an irrigation timer or water timer, easily connects to your garden hose and automatically turns your sprinkler on and off. They’re relatively inexpensive, and make sure you don’t miss an early-morning watering session.
#8. Prune Plants and Trees
Pruning, the act of cutting away dead or overgrown branches or stems, encourages new growth and enhances the plant’s shape.
Prune spring-blooming shrubs and trees in late spring, when the old flowers have fallen and before new buds sprout. Wait to prune berry plants and fruit trees until winter, when they are dormant. This avoids damaging the fruit’s production.
Reach Out to The Massey Team
With this in mind, perhaps you’re looking for a bigger or more inviting backyard. If that’s the case, reach out to The Massey Team at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Select Properties! Our goal is to make the process of buying or selling your home as stress free as possible.
To speak with a member of our team, contact us today at (618) 791-5024 or (618) 791-9298!
Your yard should be an oasis, a place to hang out with friends and family or relax at the end of a long day.