Nothing enhances a home's curb appeal quite like a lush, green lawn, yet if you take care of your own lawn, you understand what a project it is to keep said lawn lush and green. It is a constant project that can take us from happy homeowner one season, to grasshole in two seconds flat if you don't know what you're doing. Luckily for you, we got you!
Timing is everything. Lawn care is performed in seasons. It is important to pay attention to each season's tips, or else much of the money and time that you spent in previous seasons will have been wasted. Fall is a magic time for a lawn! You must prepare it for the winter, so that when the Spring comes, your work will be magnified and produce the beautiful results you're looking for. So let's jump into our Fall Lawncare Tips!
1. KEEP WATERING
Continue watering your lawn until the fall rains have taken over and be sure to water during the day in the Fall, as cooler nights allow for fungus to grow. When is fungus EVER a good thing? Seriously. It is also super important to note that without an irrigation system, having a lush green lawn is 170,000 x more difficult and time consuming to produce if it can be done at all. I know it is a lot of money. I've been there as a young Mom with the worst grass on the block! IF you want your lawn to look the best it can, irrigation is a must.
2. MOW LOW
By low, I mean adjust that mower blade lower than you had it in the Summer, but never less than 2 inches. By doing this, you'll gradually expose the base of the grass and allow more sunlight to reach it, preventing brown and mushy grass under snow and rain.
3. BLOW OUT THE IRRIGATION SYSTEM
Speaking of, in the Fall you must winterize or "blow the lines out" before the ground freezes. If you do not, that expensive irrigation system with freeze and crack the lines, leaving you a mess to fix int he Spring. A lawn care services can do this for you at a low cost. Want to learn how to winterize your sprinkler system? Here's a video!
4. Remove THE Weeds
Trust me when I say, you want to remove weeds in the Fall or they may become worse in the Spring. Weeds spend the Fall absorbing energy during their hibernation, getting ready to attack at the first sign on Spring. Use a liquid weed killer for lawns.
5. Check Thatch Levels
Thatch is a smorgasbord of dead grass, jacked up root systems, and other fun collections of tightly packed greenery that will choke and kill your lawn. Check the amount of thatch that has built up in your yard over the Summer season. The best way to see how much thatch has developed is to use a shovel and dig a small cross section from the top of your lawn. If there is more than an inch of thatch built up, you will definitely need to aerate the lawn to give the grass more room to grow.
Aerating your lawn not only churns that thatch up, it allows more water and nutrients to penetrate deeper into the soil. You can rent or purchase an aerator. Aerating your lawn allows the roots to access oxygen and water more easily, allowing for a stronger root system. This will give your lawn a head start come Spring!
7. Seed or Sod
Seed and overseed in the Fall, so the seeds will have all Winter to germinate and begin to grow. Give your lawn the most amount of time to grow and develop solid root systems. Spring or Summer seeding forces seeds to grow more quickly, which can make the lawn sparse.
If you are planning on installing sod, Fall is go time. Fall sodding allows the root system to develop more slowly and deliberately than sodding in the Spring, giving you a strong, lush lawn with established roots. Bonus points: you'll also have a lush green lawn earlier in the season as well!
8. FERTILIZE YOUR LAWN FOR FALL LAWN CARE
Mid to late Fall is KNOWN as the fertilization Season. Use a dry fertilizer over the lawn to promote root growth. Learn how to Fertilize with this video from Home Depot! Don't let the kids walk on the lawn when you do this, btw, Mom & Dad! And you too! OFF THE LAWN!
9. FALL CLEAN UP – RAKE THOSE LEAVES!
Actually, I take that back. Raking is the worst, unless you need some physical movement in your life. I have deep seeded memories as a child of raking leaves into pumpkin halloween bags for hours and getting blisters on my hands. No. Buy a leaf blower and save yourself. BUT DO THIS! If not, you will destroy your lawn. The compacted leaves suffocate the grass. Don't let it be you!
10. USE THE LEAVES TO MAKE SCARECROWS
Now that our lawn is prepped for an awesome Spring, and we have successfully thwarted Grassholedom, throw a little fun in! Use the leaves to craft a Scarecrow Family! Get some old flannels, old jeans , a pumpkin head, and a straw hat and stuff them with the crunchy Fall Leaves! Set them on a hay stack and you now not only have a well prepared lawn, you also have a fun Family activity and something to bring joy to the kiddies! Happy Fall, Y'all!