Tips for Winterizing Your Lawn
Here in Brownstown, Michigan the winter season is one of the harshest in the country. Winter is not just tough on us, it is also harsh on our lawns.
Our lawns contend with a lot, including cold temperatures, violent snowstorms, ice storms, and more. This is why you must use autumn to strengthen your lawn and prepare it for winter.
Once the temperatures get cooler and leaves start to drop to signal the fall season, it’s time to do some yard work and get busy winterizing your lawn.
To winterize your lawn and ensure it is in good shape come spring, here are a few steps you should take.
Rake Your Lawn
Raking your lawn removes the leaves that piled up during autumn. Failure to remove the leaves could cause your lawn to suffocate during winter.
This is because they will prevent light, air, and water from getting to your lawn grass.
This is also the time for dethatching. Thatch is the layer of dead grass and roots stuck between the grass and the soil surface. Too much thatch will reduce the amount of oxygen and moisture that reaches the grass roots and the soil.
Brown spots on your lawn are telltale signs that thatch is stopping your lawn from getting enough water. To dethatch your lawn, you can use a thatch rake or rent a dethatcher.
Test the Soil pH of Your Lawn
The next step is to check the pH level of your lawn. Soil pH levels influence your lawn’s ability to take in nutrients, and a neutral Ph level is essential for a healthy lawn.
A pH level of 7 is neutral, less than 7 is acidic, and over 7 is alkaline. You can test your lawn pH level with a pH testing kit or have it tested by a lawn care expert.
If your lawn is acidic, apply lime. If it is too alkaline, apply sulfur.
Aerate Your Lawn
Brownstown lawns go through a lot of stress during warmer months and aerating your lawn will help relieve the compaction built up during summer.
Aerating your lawn will provide extra air for the grass roots and let them breathe before they go dormant in winter. You can aerate your lawn with a manual aerator or rent a motorized lawn aerator.
Before aerating your lawns, make sure you mark your sprinkler heads and utility lines to ensure you don’t run over them with the spikes of your aerator.
Spread Grass Seeds to Reseed Bare Spots
You and your kids have had fun in your yard all summer, and all these activities could have caused bare spots to appear on your lawn.
Autumn is the time to reseed your lawn. The cooler temperatures of autumn are ideal conditions for grass seed germination.
Use high-quality grass seeds and make sure they are in contact with the soil. Ensure they get adequate fertilizer and water to make them well-established before winter arrives.
Fertilize Your Lawn
After aerating and reseeding your lawn, it’s time to fertilize your lawn. Fertilizing your lawn provides essential nutrients to prepare your lawn grass for winter. The fertilizer will also support the growth of your new grass seeds.
The best winterizing fertilizers are high in potassium and also include nitrogen and phosphorus. Potassium helps to strengthen your grass to make them more resistant to cold and stress, nitrogen promotes stem growth, and phosphorus helps to enhance stem growth.
It is better to use a motorized spreader to spread the fertilizer since it is more accurate. Also, overfertilizing will burn your grass, so only apply the recommended amount.
Continue to Mow Your Lawn Until Winter
Mowing your lawn will prevent grass blades from becoming too tall. Tall grass blades will get matted down by snow, and this will make the grass susceptible to diseases.
Keeping your turf low will also prevent moles and other critters from burrowing beneath your lawn during winter.
Keep mowing your lawn until it stops growing and send your lawn into winter in the best condition possible.
Avoid Salting Your Lawn During Winter
You can’t really avoid salting pathways and your driveway during winter, but keep the salt off your lawn.
Salt will steal moisture from the soil and prevent water from reaching your grass’ roots.
Also, keep foot traffic off your lawn as much as possible during winter. After a frost, your grass is more susceptible to damage. Walking on your lawn can break grass blades and damage root systems, which will lead to brown patches on your lawn come springtime.
Lawn Winterization 7-Step Checklist
You may not see the benefits of your efforts to winterize your lawn immediately, but come spring, your lawn will be healthier and greener for it.
If you need expert assistance to winterize your lawn and get it ready for winter, Brownstown Lawn Care is a reliable company that recognizes the importance of a healthy lawn.