Is it to early to mow your yard??
Global warming, El Nino, farmers almanac, Moon phases, we have heard all of the possible reasons for the extraordinarily warm weather for winter. All I can say is my yard is turning green and bulbs are trying to come up here in Baltimore. A good friend of mine is a meteorologist. He believes it could be combination of weather cycles. Anyway with it turning warm everyone can use some lawn tips to consider so here are a few.
Mowing – Don?t start mowing too early if you are in the north east… but if you are getting growth you don?t want to cut more than 1/3 of the blade. If you still have a lot of white dormant looking turf..its best to hold off. Its best to wait until after the last heavy frost which can happen in March. When it does break remember, consistency is good in a lot of things, but don?t try and rely on mowing the same day each week. Rain, drought and fertilizer treatments will govern the day you should mow. Not you!
Dead spots in my yard –How about those dog urine spots in your lawn. Basically, that brown area of grass is due to a high concentration of a liquid fertilizer in one little spot. We started to give our dog a little bit of tomato sauce with his food. This increased his water intake which diluted the urine and our spots greatly decreased. Before you start making your dog Italian dishes, check with your veterinarian!
Watering –If you irrigate/or water your home lawn, try to do so early in the morning. This time of year in the northeast you should be careful with water. Pending the time of year and location you also want to stay away from watering at night during those humid times of the year or you may be looking at a fungus problem. Water deeply, not frequently. On the other hand, if it?s a new lawn you may need to water the seed frequently for the first month.
Mower maintenance -Mowing your grass with a sharp mower blade helps keep the turf healthy. Get ahead of the neighbor while the weather is good and have your mower serviced.
Thatch removal -Check your thatch layer each spring. , sometimes your lawn looks weird because its ´hydrophobic, ´ meaning heavy thatch is blocking water movement. This condition also prevents your fertilizers and pesticides from the roots. Generally speaking, a thatch layer greater than 1/4 inch can cause problems. Rent a de-thacher and thin out your turf . Don?t go crazy! We are just removing the thatch. Prepare for a long day of work and a lot of trash bags because you will need to pick up all the debris. You should wait until after the first frost to de-thatch if you are up north.
Seeding or sodding – If you?re planning on planting seed this time of year it wouldn?t be a bad idea. Plant your bluegrass seed now…. not during the summer. You will get better germination. If you live in the south and have that wonderful St. Augustine or Bermuda type turf grass for your lawn you are really starting to get busy. Soil temperatures for growing plugs or sprigs of this type of turf should be around 57 degrees before they really start to take off.
Fertilize with a complete type fertilizer. First one in the northeast would be late march. If you really want to fertilize properly take a soil sample of your lawn to your local extension office or university and have them provide an analysis. Other fertilizer companies like lesco or Scotts also offer these programs. If you don?t want to spend the 25 bucks for the report try to establish an annual fertilizer program using a balanced fertilizer Ferts are broken up into ratios like 4-1-2 or 3-1-2 to give those little grass blades a well balanced meal!
- The first number is Nitrogen. This really makes the leaf grow
- The second is phosphorous. This one helps the stem and rhizome development
- And the last is potassium. This one helps the root growth and makes the plan stronger.
Good luck and if you need more info send me an email. If I can?t help you out?.I will find someone that can!
Normally about this time each year your home lawn starts to "perk up". If it isn?t, you might be missing something. Many people have specific lawn care maintenance programs that they stick with year after year. Establishing consistency is really important. Good luck and don?t pack that snow suit up quite yet.