6:30am

Sat March 23, 2013
Garden Report

Early Spring Lawn Care Tips

Spring preparation of a lawn develops deep, drought resistant roots that use less of our precious water resource.

Tom Throgmorton offers these suggestions for preparing your lawn for the spring season

Each lawn is different. Factors like the soil type, grass type, the amount of sun or shade, and the time of year all effect how a lawn should be watered.

Train a lawn to use less water by soaking the root zone to a depth of 6 inches. Water until the soil is moist but not saturated. Let that watering soak in. Then add more water to push the moisture deeper into the root zone. It will take some experimentation to figure out how much water your soil requires to be moist. But it’s worth the energy because your grass will have deeper, drought tolerant roots.

Mowing also trains lawns to be more water efficient. Mow often enough that only one-third of the grass blade is removed. Use a mulching mower and leave the grass clippings. The clippings will breakdown adding organic matter and nutrients. The preferred mowing height for all of the lawn grasses that grow in our region is two and one-half to 3 inches. Short cut grass needs more water and is also more susceptible to weeds.

Aerating the lawn in the spring is one of the most important ways to improve a lawn’s water efficiency. Aerating lessens soil compaction. It lets air, nutrients and water into the soil. Aerating is easiest when the soil is moist. Leave the plugs on top of the soil. As they breakdown they add organic matter and nutrients.

Back in the day composted manure was the only organic fertilizer available. Now there are organic fertilizers that are also environmentally friendly. These fertilizers have uniform nutrients and are easy to apply.

We use an alfalfa based organic fertilizer made in Loveland. It’s high in organic matter, has all of the nutrients a lawn needs and is adjusted for our region’s soils.

Start looking around. The flowers are blooming and spring has sprung.

tom@throgmortonplantmanagement.com                                 

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