Lawn

Lawn, Maintenance

The Ultimate Organic Lawn Care Guide

organic lawn care imageLawns are the pride and joy of any garden landscape, small or large. If you’ve taken upon yourself to invest in an environmentally friendly, organic lawn, then keep reading. Whether you’ve had organic lawns before, or are new to them, there’s a few tips & tricks you need to know to ensure you care the best you can for it.

After all, you’ve put so much work, energy & money into crafting your garden, now is not the time to let a key part of it, your lawn, wither and die. Welcome to The Ultimate Organic Lawn Care Guide, brought to you by The Trail Creek Nursery!

Mowing

First up, let’s talk about Mowing. A common misconception about organic lawns is that it’s healthier for the grass to be shorter. In fact, it’s much healthier for the grass to be long. Longer grass is more exposed to the sun, the roots to grow healthier and in turn keeping the grass itself healthy.

That said, the grass still needs to be kept control through mowing. Setting your mower to its maximum setting – usually a cut at 2.5 to 3 inches will ensure the grass is still tall enough to stay healthy. It’s also important to keep the mower blade sharp, leading to a cleaner cut and reducing any risk of tearing. Tearing can cause all sorts of problems for the grass.

After you have moved your lawn, keep the grass clippings on the lawn to give additional benefits to the grass and it’s soil.

Watering

Next stop, water. Compared to an artificial lawn, organic lawns benefit more from less frequent watering as this forces the roots to travel deeper in the soil and in turn discourage weeds.

As for when to water, you should always do this early in the day. Don’t wait until the evening as this will lead to less evaporation and in turn lead to fungal growth.

Soil

Soil is another essential part of lawn care. You should arrange for your soil to be tested through a local agricultural extension officer, or buy a do it yourself kit. Knowing precisely what soil you have, you know how to best look after it and give it everything it needs to keep the grass growing and very importantly, keep those pesky weeds away.

Whether you get the soil tested or test it yourself, it will be easy to determine the type of soil and how to best look after it.

And as an added bonus tip -all soil types benefit from having compost added to it, once or twice a year ideally between the months of June & August.

Fertilizing

Depending on the results of your soil testing, your soil will need different fertilizer but always ensure the fertilizer used is a natural one! Fertilizer is best applied to soil in both the spring and the fall. Whilst more expensive, it’s always worthwhile paying out for organic fertilizer because it benefits the soil and thus the grass so, so much more!

In addition to fertilizer, it’s widely recommended to feed your lawn seaweed extract. This will support the grass’s health, encourage development and fight off any threat of fungi.

Raking

Raking is an essential thing to do during the time of spring to early summer as it removes thatch aka dead grass.

In addition to raking, you should consider using a motorized aerator. This will remove plugs of dirt and increase the soil’s ability to retain water. Aeration can really help your lawn, and it doesn’t have to be an expensive investment. You can rent an aerator from any good and local garden center.

Curing

There are three main and common lawn problems that you’ll likely face during the duration of your garden.

Firstly, there is yellow grass. This is easily identifiable by the grass being – you guessed it, yellow! Yellow grass is caused by a lack of water. As mentioned earlier in the guide, it’s best to water infrequently than frequently. But, if your lawn is turning yellow, consider increasing the frequency of watering for the time being. Testing the soil may also reveal other ways to restore your lawn back to its former glory.

Secondly, there is the issue of bare or rough spots on the lawn. This is caused by people/animals trafficking the lawn far too often, and also things like dog poo. This is all easily fixed by limiting the number of people and animals that frequent your lawn and pick up any dog mess instantly.

Last but not least, there is brown grass – again, easily identifiable. Whilst brown grass doesn’t look that good, it’s not a huge signal that the grass is unhealthy. It just means that it’s been a little neglected, and needs to either be left to grow longer or watered more often – or both!

Pest Controlling

By following and more importantly, putting into action, the contents of this guide – your lawn should already be well protected from the many pests that threaten it. But even the most cared for lawns are still vulnerable, here are a few tips to defeat some of the more persistent pests;

-If clover has started to appear on your lawn, that means your lawn isn’t too healthy. Firstly, you need to till the lawns soil and add compost to get rid of the clover. Then, to ensure the clover doesn’t return, apply fertilizer in the fall and in the summer, leave grass clippings after your routine mowing.

-Darn those dandelions! To get rid, remove the flower heads and dig the dandelion routes out with a special

-Dirt mounds appearing on your lawn is a sure sign of a mole infestation. Firstly, focus on minimizing the damage by pressing down gently on each mound with a rake or smaller garden tool, allowing the soil to re-engage with the grass roots. To then keep moles away from your lawn, you need to remove their food source – grubs, earthworms, etc. To do this, we’d recommend applying milky spore. With the food source gone, the moles will have no alternative but to move on, allowing your lawn to prosper once more!

We hope this guide has been helpful, whether you have a lawn already or are thinking of getting one. Following the guide will ensure it remains a key feature of your garden or landscape, for years to come.

6 lawn care tips for summer
Lawn, Maintenance

6 Lawn Care Tips for Summer

These 6 lawn care tips for summer give your grass and yard the best chances for the best-looking yard on the block.

1. Water your lawn in the early morning hours

The ideal time to irrigate your lawn is from 4 am to 10 am. Watering at night can lead to fungus growth. Using the suggested times allows your lawn to absorb enough water and also keep some water in the grass as the temperature rises.

2. Mow your grass at the correct height

Generally speaking, mowing your lawn at 3 inches is best for summer weather. This helps the soil stay moist and your grass grow deeper stronger roots.

3. Keep your mower blades sharp

Dull blades cut the grass blades with jagged edges leading to a dryer lawn than if you use sharp blades. Plan on sharpening your lawnmower blades once a year.

4. Use the correct fertilizer at the correct time

Fertilizing incorrectly in the summer can lead to big problems. Make sure to use a type of lawn feed specifically designed for summer use.

5. Spot treat weeds

Attacking problem weeds in your lawn that crop up during the summer helps combat the spread throughout your yard. Just spot treat them rather than treating your entire lawn.

6. Leave your lawn clippings

Using a mulching lawn mower or just allowing the clippings to stay on the lawn helps to feed your grass. The clippings break down and help create a strong healthy lawn. Then plan on dethatching in the following spring.

Use these 6 lawn care tips for summer and dominate your neighborhood!

unthatch your lawn
Lawn, Maintenance

When Should You Dethatch Your Lawn?

unthatch your lawn

Should you dethatch your lawn?

When should you dethatch your lawn? Most likely these questions arise because we just want our lawn to wake up and look nice without any effort other than turning on the sprinklers.

Perhaps we think “The thatch and decay in the lawn will provide some nourishment to the lawn. Kind of like compost. Yeah, that thatch is like compost. We can leave it and the lawn is healthier for it”. Unfortunately, that is not the case.

Removing the old dead grass and other detritus helps the grass to breathe and grow.

When can you dethatch your lawn?

Yes, it’s spring, and it’s also time to dethatch your lawn. Think of it as a gentle facial, if you’ve ever had one, that is. Think how much your yard will appreciate the cleaning and massaging of your rakes. All these actions help the grass to grow healthy and active.

Removing the thatch from winter improves the growth and overall health of your lovely yard. Depending on where you live, you may have voles that wreak havoc through the winter months. The little devils using the snow depth as insulation and terrorizing your lawn underneath the protection of pristine white snow all winter long.

Dethatching and removing all this dead and decaying material is key to a beautiful green lawn this spring.

Once the snow finally melts from your yard, you can go about lawn care. Using simple rakes, or power rakes pulls up the dead material, giving your lawn room to breathe. There are even attachments so you can dethatch your lawn with a lawn mower.

Now that your lawn is dethatched, you can add seed and fertilizer. You also need to keep your lawn well watered to help the lawn heal. Dethatching also makes room for fertilizer and other lawn treatments to reach the lawn. Otherwise, those fertilizers and food for your grass might go wasted away on the dead material choking your yard.