A Guide to Fall Lawn Care
When Fall rolls around, you might be thinking that your lawn care duties have finally come to a seasonal end. And while most people think that lawn preparation is best left for Spring, Fall is actually a great time to take steps toward achieving a thicker, fuller, and healthier lawn. In fact, many of the things you do in the Fall will help your lawn come back stronger the following Spring.
Follow the steps below to help your lawn look its best, and do them each Fall to increase your results.
Rake and Mow
Continuing to mow your lawn at regular intervals throughout the Fall is an important part of lawncare. For Fall mowing, however, you will need to change your mower’s setting so that your grass is cut shorter. Keeping your grass shorter during the Fall will help your grass survive the coming winter, and it will also prevent grass that is too long from acting as a cover and inhibiting new growth.
In addition to mowing in the Fall, you should also make sure to rake away any dead leaves or debris from your lawn. Clearing dead leaves and debris will make it easier for new grass to grow in the Spring.
Controlling weeds and other invasive plants is another critical step in lawn care. And, since Fall is just before winter, any weeds that have roots in your yard will need to be killed before the end of the season. The weeds that you kill won’t return in the Spring, while any weeds that remain in your yard will likely have living roots that will allow them to come back next year.
Aerate and Fertilize
Fall is an ideal time to aerate clay soil or other heavy, thick soils. Aerating soil helps to loosen compacted dirt and will also help oxygen and water filter through the soil more efficiently. Aerating can be done in several different ways. One method is to strap aerators, or downward pointing spikes, to your shoes and walk around your lawn. This method can be labor intensive, so if you have a large lawn, you may want to rent a power aerator that will make the job easier. You can also apply gypsum to your lawn. Gypsum naturally aerates soil by helping soil particles clump together, creating channels in the soil for oxygen and water. Encap’s Fast Acting Gypsum is an effective soil amendment. It loosens even tough, clay soils, to make space for roots to grow, water to absorb, and soil to thrive.
Aerating your lawn will not only help oxygen and water filter through the soil, but it will also help fertilizer seep into the ground. And since Fall is an ideal time to fertilize your lawn, the two activities often go hand-in-hand. Fertilizing your lawn in the Fall has several advantages. First, it will strengthen your grass and help it remain strong throughout the winter months by providing essential nutrients. It will also help your grass come back stronger the following Spring and Summer, because the grass will keep the nutrients in reserve for the following year.
Filling in bare spots, or reseeding your entire lawn will help your grass to grow back thicker in the Spring. To reseed a bare spot, you’ll need to clear the affected area of debris, then spread seed and mulch over the area. To reseed your entire lawn, you will clear the lawn of debris, make sure it is properly mowed, and then spread seed over your entire lawn. Reseeded spots and lawns will need to be thoroughly watered and kept damp in the weeks after you put the seed down.
Aside from the tips above, you should continue to water and care for your lawn as you normally would during the Fall. If you follow the steps noted above, your Fall lawn care routine will yield thicker, greener, and healthier grass come Spring and Summer. For more information on Fall lawn care, contact us today!