6:00am

Sat June 29, 2013
Garden Report

Bluegrass Can Purify Your Garden

Bluegrass can stay green if you don't cut it too short.
Credit Moyan Brenn / Flickr/creative commons

If you have Bluegrass in your yard, these tips will help keep it lush and green in the summer heat.

Bluegrass is a cool season grass, so as the weather warms up it will show signs of stress.

How Much Should You Water?

Bluegrass will stay alive but will look brown and dormant with two inches of water a month during the hot summer months. Bluegrass lawns will look acceptable to most people with three inches of water each month. With more than three inches of water a month, most lawns will be as attractive as a golf course. 

When the weather cools into autumn, bluegrass requires a lot less water. In September a couple inches of water will keep the grass green. By October, an inch is all the lawn needs. So do a monthly adjustment.  Don’t forget to water the lawn during the dry, windy winter months. Change your sprinkler system clock or your watering practices to match the weather and grass needs.

What Length Should You Cut Bluegrass?

I’ve seen a lot of lawns that have quickly stressed in the recent heat. The grass is being cut too short. Keep bluegrass at least two and a half inches tall. The longer the grass then the deeper the roots go. Deeper roots use water more efficiently. Mow often enough that you cut only one-third off the top of the grass. Cutting more makes the grass turn brown.

Bluegrass purifies water born pollutants as they pass through its root system.

Keep your mower blade sharp. A dull blade splits the grass blades and makes the grass turn brown. 

When to Fertilize?

Grass is a heavy feeder. Fertilize every four to six weeks during the growing season for a dark green, lush, weed choking lawn. Some recommendations are not to fertilize during the heat of July. We use a granular, organic fertilizer that’s made in Loveland. It works great. And it’s easier on our kids, pets and environment. 

Bluegrass doesn’t have to be the resource sucking monster it’s sometimes made out to be. Bluegrass is a natural filter. It removes dust, dirt and pollutants from the air. It also purifies water born pollutants as they pass through its root system. Turf areas can be twenty-five to thirty degrees cooler than asphalt on hot days. Properly trained and maintained grass areas can be environmentally beneficial.

tom@throgmortonplantmanagement.com

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