Lawn Care and Maintenance - WINTERS COMING
Updated: Jan 17, 2021
After months of mowing from early spring to late fall, most people will tend to take a break on lawn care and maintenance during the cold winter months, thinking the mowing season is at an end. On the contrary, lawns will continue to grow well into late November or even early December. Muscle Lawns USA recommends putting together a winter lawn maintenance routine that will bring great rewards when spring makes its debut. Here are a few tips from our pro staff to take your lawn to the next level and produce a show-stopper in the spring.
Mowing is the most obvious and visible lawn care that is often stopped prematurely, ranging from weeks to months. Since turf will continue to grow, though at a slower rate, mowing a few extra times into late November or early December is often a necessity. As of October ages, the mowing height can slowly be dropped each week or every other week until the final cut that should be between 1.5” - 1.75”. Choosing to gradually cut your grass shorter and shorter will keep you from shocking the grass with a short winter cut.
How short should your last cut be? It really depends on the type of grass you have. For warm-season grasses, cut down to at least one-inch, and for cool-season grasses, cut down to at least two inches. Whether your lawn is large or small, Muscle Lawns USA offers a wide range of mowers that are perfect for those aiming for an all-around, even cut. A clean-cut at the true end of the season can help reduce leaves and debris as well as winter damage and snow mold.
IT’S OKAY TO LEAVE MULCH
While a thick layer of leaves and debris will smother your lawn by blocking out light and air, possibly cause parts to die off, it is okay to leave a little mulch on your lawn for the winter. If done correctly, mulch and clippings can add much-needed nitrogen to the soil over the winter months.
Leaves and other debris can pose a real issue to lawn health, especially in shaded areas or newly planted grass. Heavy leaf and or needle cover can mulch a lawn, blocking available sunlight. A good rule of thumb is to remove leaves a few times each fall or wait until all the leaves have dropped from the trees and then do one large cleanup. Leaving leaves and needles on your lawn can result in turf thinning and damage, especially if left over the winter into spring.
EARLY WINTER APPLICATIONS
Late-season “winterizing” treatments that can prep your lawn for 2020 include potassium, lime, core aeration, and spraying for difficult to control weeds such as ground ivy and violets.
KEEP IT CLEAN
In addition to picking up layers of leaves and big branches, you should also make sure that items such as toys, lawn furniture, and lawn accessories are cleared off of the lawn for the winter. Large, heavy items such as toys left on your lawn during extremely cold weather and snow can cause thin brown patches when the grass begins to grow in the spring. Items and longer grass lengths can also create a perfect nesting scenario for mice and other rodents to burrow.
These are just a few tips to get you started on your winter lawn maintenance. A little work during the cooling months will pay off in huge rewards in the spring.