Horticulturist by trade and author of Lawn Care for Dummies, Lance Walheim says the key to a great looking lawn is not doing one thing right but doing several things right. Here are his five tips for a great lawn.
First have your soil tested. This is going to give you your soil PH and let you know what kind of adjustments you might have to make. He says it also talks to you about nutrient content so you can really get some specific fertilizer going on.
Second, Lance says you want to mow properly. You want to start the season with a really sharp mowing blade. If you have a dull mower blade it will leave a ragged edge on the grass blade and give the overall lawn a straw-ish appearance. Next make sure you are mowing at the correct height. Lance says the key thing there is to know that in summer it is important to be in the upper level of that range because taller grass is going to give you a deeper root system which is going to be able to take more moisture and better withstand heat and drought during the summer. If you are mowing frequently enough and the general rule is, you mow when you are a third higher than the recommended height. If you are doing that frequently then you can go ahead and leave the clippings on the grass because they will break down, add nitrogen and organic matter and you won’t have to send it to the landfill.
Safety – Keep the kids away. There are too many injuries in the summer from lawn mower accidents so keep them away and make sure there is no debris or hard substances on the lawn.
Number three Spring is a very important time to apply a quality lawn fertilizer. You want to get that on to keep the lawn green throughout the summer.
Number four, Lance says is very important. He says what people don’t often understand is to water efficiently. He says most lawns are going to need an inch to an inch and a half of water per week. The goal is to get that water to go down six to eight inches and then give the lawn some time to dry out between irrigations. Watering everyday a little bit is never any good. The lawn needs to dry out between watering’s.
Number five. No matter how best your intentions are, you are probably are going to get some weeds and so you are going to want to use some type of herbicide or pre-emergent to prevent or kill the existing weeds. Lance says he recommends going to bioadvanced.com. They have some great stories on lawn care, and they will give you specific products for specific parts of the country and for specific weeds and those are all things you need to get rid of weeds.