Spring lawn care tips
Most things in nature improve as they mature. A lawn is no exception. If you want your lawn to look fantastic this summer, start work now.
Planning your summer lawn
What would you like your lawn to look like this summer? Let me guess. Weed free with no bare patches and a lovely velvety texture. Well, there are two ways to achieve your ideal lawn and both involve lawncare work in spring.
- Renovate your existing lawn with our spring lawncare regime
- Create a new lawn from turf
A beautiful lawn is what every garden needs
Renovating your existing lawn
Lawn renovation is hard work and it takes time, but it is very satisfying. Most lawn problems can be traced back to shade, soil compaction or both.
Lawns don't like shade
Start by tackling the shade. Trim trees and shrubs to let as much light into the lawn area as possible. Doing this will also improve the air-flow and help keep common lawn diseases at bay. If the shade is unavoidable (eg from a building), order some shade tolerant grass seed for overseeding once the soil renovations are finished.
Relieve soil compaction
Compacted soil restricts root growth, makes it difficult for water to percolate through the soil and limits the oxygen supply to your lawn’s roots. It is very common and proves that your lawn has been enjoyed.
The best way to relieve soil compaction is to dig up the lawn and start again. The second best way is to aerate the lawn.
Aeration makes little holes from the surface of the lawn deep into the soil. It opens up the structure of the soil and helps to ensure that the roots have everything they need to grow strong enough to supply the plants with water and nutrients.
You could buy those funny sandal things to strap on to your wellies but if you want to aerate your lawn properly, hire a machine or call in a lawn care professional.
Scarify to let the plants breathe
Once the lawn is thoroughly aerated, it’s time to scarify. Scarifying gets rid of moss, dead leaves and what we call the thatch layer. A thick layer of thatch harbours disease, strangulates the grass and makes a barrier between rainwater and the soil.
A springtine rake and lots of energy will do an OK job of scarifying but a proper machine will do it better. You can buy a petrol driven scarifyer online for about the same price as a mower. Or you can hire one. Or you can call in the professionals.
When your lawn has been aerated and scarified it’s going to look worse than it did before you started. You’ll see bare soil and spindly plants. But don’t panic. You have to make a mess to clear one up and you are well on the way now.
Topdressing to improve the soil
Next job is going to be topdressing. This will help make a nice bed for the seed you will soon be sowing. Plus it will help avoid severe soil compaction. Spread a thin layer (around 1-2cm) of rootzone over the whole of your lawn and use a stiff broom to brush it down the holes made by aeration.
That’s going to give you a seedbed for the final stages of renovation, feeding and seeding.
Feeding your lawn. A lawncare essential
Every lawn should be fed every spring. We have developed our own fertiliser for use on domestic lawns. Wimborne Turf’s general purpose lawn feed is packed with the right nutrients to help your lawn wake up for summer. If there’s any left over, it’s also suitable for flower borders and shrubberies.
Overseeding to repair thinning or bare areas
The very last job is the easiest and least onerous. Seeding. Choose the right type of grass seed for your lawn and follow the directions for overseeding. Be very careful not to use too much seed. It’s easy to do but instead of producing a lush lawn, the plants compete for light and nutrients and don’t tend to thrive.
Keep the seed moist until it is growing strongly and then you can launch into your spring and summer mowing regime. Your lawn will be strong enough to use in 3-4 months-time.
Creating a new lawn from turf
Lawn renovations are great and you can get really good results if you are able to put in the time and wait for the new plants to gain strength.
If you are not able to do all that work or you don’t want to wait for your fabulous lawn, why not create a new lawn from turf?
A newly turfed lawn - 100% soil coverage from day 1.
Laying new turf gives you a lawn that is beautiful to look at from the get-go. It needs a month or so before you can actually use it, but the view from your window and the kerb appeal of your property will be improved straight away.
You can lay your own turf – it’s physically demanding but not difficult to do. Or you could use Wimborne Turf’s supply and lay service. The choice is yours.
Read more in these articles.
- Alex Mason