Love your lawn
Repair, Improve, Maintain
Here in the UK, we collectively care for an estimated 15 million lawns, and they generally do very well as we rarely suffer from drought. In fact, the world’s most famous lawn can be found here, known to many as Centre Court at Wimbledon. There certainly is something very British about meticulously preparing your lawn ready to be shown off at BBQs and family events. Whether you take pride in having the best lawn on the road, or you’ve always struggled to keep yours looking good, here’s a few helpful hints and tips to get your patch into shape for summer.
First things first, we need to wake our grass back up after a long dark winter. Due to the lack of sunlight over winter on top of several bouts of snow, your lawn could well have large areas of very damp, dark or even dead grass. If that is the case, cover any bare patches liberally with fresh seeds, raking over afterwards to cover the seeds with a fine layer of soil. If you have always struggled with a brown lawn, then it might be that you have the wrong grass type for your garden, in which case digging it up and starting again with seed or new turf may be the answer. Now is the time to get this done, so the new grass has time to establish before any wear and tear in summer.
Due to the recent damp weather, you may well have a moss epidemic on your hands. If this is the case, clear mossy areas using a fan-shaped rake, and finish with a spring fertiliser containing moss killer. Be sure to be as light-handed as possible with the rake, taking care not to tear vulnerable grasses. For any other larger weeds such as dandelions that may have cropped up, use a Long Handled Corkscrew Weeder to easily pull them out, and then fill in the hole with plenty of fresh seed.
Routine spring lawn care can now start taking place but be sure to ease in slowly. Make sure to water liberally after any re-seeding to promote new growth and apply a nitrogen-based spring fertiliser when the grass is dry, but the soil underneath is still moist.
Even distribution is essential to avoid scorching your turf, so perhaps buy a top lawn containing colourant, or use a wheeled mechanical distributor or watering can to help you. After fertilising always check the forecast and water in if rain is not due for a few days.
Before your first mow of the season, check that all your equipment is in top condition, sharpening the blades on your mower and refilling the engine oil. Set your blades a little higher than usual for the first few mows, not taking off more than a third of the grass.
Taller grass has deeper roots, which is essential whilst your grass is still recovering from winter. Sharpen your Edging Shears and edge your lawn regularly to keep things looking neat. If you suffer from thick thatch, or your lawn gets a lot of heavy use, then aeration is key to allow nutrients to get into the soil. Use a Four-Prong Aerator or Garden Fork after mowing and watering to push down into the soil and make small holes all over the lawn, thus improving drainage, nutrient absorption and stimulating new growth.
With these few crucial tasks, your lawn will soon be well on the way to restoring its former glory. Don’t forget that grass is a plant like any other and depends on light, water and nutrients to survive, so make sure it has access to everything it needs to thrive.
Always rake away any debris and continually move items such as climbing frames or rabbit runs around the lawn to get as much light to the grass as possible. Despite our regular rainfall, we do have the odd hot spell, so invest in a good quality sprinkler to evenly water your grass with during dry periods.
Trim back any large overhanging trees and shrubs that could be causing a blockage and don’t forget to cater to your lawn’s individual needs. It might be that you have a very drought tolerant grass type and you garden gets plenty of rain, so watering is not usually necessary. Or perhaps you have sandy soil that is lacking in nutrients, so fertilising is essential. Whatever the case, take note of the weather and the conditions of your garden in order to determine a routine of care. You’ll soon be back into the swing of regular mowing and gearing up for BBQ season – so don’t forget to take the time to relax and appreciate your lawn as well!
Love your lawn