If you want to make sure that you’ve got a good lawn that is going to grow well and look good enough to be on the cover of the neighborhood quarterly paper, then you have to know some of the tricks of the trade. Lawn maintenance requires a steady dedication to putting to use all the information, advice, tips, hints and secrets you can collect. And believe me, there is a lot more out there than I could ever provide in just one or two articles.
The secret to watering your lawn so that it achieves peak beauty is a paradox: you need to water infrequently, but regularly. What in the name of John Deere is that supposed to mean? That means that proper watering of your lawn should follow a strictly regimented schedule that allows about an inch of water to penetrate the grass every week. This means give your lawn a good, deep, penetrating water rather than just going out and spreading the hose over it when you remember.
This lawn care tip accomplishes two things: it helps to fertilize your lawn and you help to save the planet by recycling. Coffee grounds can be at least as effective as chemical fertilizers and reduce the chance for damage as well.
Mowing the lawn is an art, not a craft. It’s a project that some people take too seriously, but too many people don’t take seriously enough. The big secret behind mowing a lawn is that you never, ever, never want to cut off more than a third of your lawn’s height during any one mowing operation. Cutting the lawn super-short not only weakens your mower blades, it send out a gilt-edged invitation to weeds and invasive grasses that are not going to do your lawn any favors.
Use your garden trowel to cut through your sod so that you can inspect for signs of stems, intertwined roots and runners. Thatch that is no more than a half-inch thick is actually a good thing for lawn growth. Thicker thatch that twists and twines thoroughly ticks off a lawn and makes it stubbornly resistant to peak growth. Dethatching is mainly done to help aerate the lawn.
The purpose of aeration is to create small, but appropriately deep recesses in the lawn. This allows air and water to penetrate more efficiently. A small lawn can be aerated well enough simply by going outside and walking around with a pair of metal cleated footwear. If you really want your lawn to shine, however, you should invest in a power aerator. The leftover sod and soil that you find after using a power aerator can then be recycled as compost.