Having a healthy lawn not only adds beauty and value to your property, but it can also have other benefits. Having a lawn can help to reduce soil erosion and can filter out pollutants that can contaminate surface water and groundwater.
Lawn photo from @Homesteadlawn on Instagram
During springtime, people start to think of their lawn after a break from lawn care during winter’s dormant period. It is time to get back and be ready for the active growing season!
Here are our top tips to help your Florida lawn thrive in Spring:
One of the most important home lawn management is mowing. To maintain turf’s maximum vigor, it is best to maintain a regular mowing schedule during the growing season.
Mow grasses at the recommended height. The recommended height for each grass type helps develop a deep root system which makes the grass more stress-tolerant.
Mowing too low or scalping can add stress to your grass, making it susceptible to disease, drought, and insect infestation.
Check your lawn mower to make sure that it is functioning well. Perform regular maintenance to the mower such as changing any filters, oil, etc. Sharpen blades as dull blades cause the leaves to tear. Torn leaves not only look unappealing but can also add stress to the grass.
Safety Tips: Do not mow when the lawn is wet to avoid slipping accidents. Always wear closed shoes and eye protection when mowing.
Proper watering is crucial for a lush, green lawn. A healthy lawn has deep roots, so you should train grass to be more drought tolerant by watering deeply but infrequently. Overwatering can cause shallow root growth, which can make grass less able to survive during droughts. Deep infrequent watering can encourage the roots to grow deeper into the ground to search for water.
You will know that the lawn is ready for water when it shows any of these signs: leaf blades start to wilt or fold over, or when footprints are still visible after a while.
Watering frequency may depend on the type of soil, and how much of your lawn is under shade. During active growing seasons, lawns generally need 1-2 inches of water per week.
It is recommended to calibrate your sprinkler system. This would allow you to know how long you need to run the sprinkler to get the correct amount of water into the lawn. Improper irrigation damages more lawns. You can measure how much water your lawn is getting by setting out a few empty tuna cans across the lawn or purchasing a few rain catchers.
Irrigate early in the morning or at sunrise so that the leaves can dry out during the day. Watering too late in the afternoon or at night time will keep the leaf blades wet which can provide ideal conditions for fungal growth and disease.
Fertilizer is composed of three main elements such as nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium, micronutrients, and organic matter from natural sources.
We recommend obtaining a soil test 1 time per 1-2 years. Soil testing should be completed before applying fertilizer if you have not tested your soil. Over-fertilizing or applying nutrients at the wrong time can damage your lawn. Always read the fertilizer labels carefully for details and proper application instructions.
Proper fertilization should be done for maximum uptake and benefit of the plant. This consists of choosing the right type of fertilizer, applying it at the right time, and applying the right amount. Throughout the growing season, lawns will require nutrients to grow. Generally, the growing season for Florida lawns is from late spring through summer, although lawns in southern and even central Florida may remain green all year round.
Newly planted sod risks nutrient leaching due to a lack of a deep root system. After planting, you have to wait for 30 - 60 days before applying nitrogen fertilizer.
Slow-release nitrogen fertilizers can continue to feed over time, and do not burn your grass by releasing too many nutrients at once.
Any unused fertilizer should always be stored in a cool, dry place. Make sure to keep your fertilizer separate from other chemicals that can contaminate it.
Weeds and your lawn compete for space. Weed infestations happen when the grass is not strong enough to keep them out, however, it is normal to have a few weeds in the lawn. To keep the lawn growing its best, you should provide proper fertilization, watering, and mowing. and pest control. A healthy lawn can prevent weed infestation. Scout for weeds as early as spring and determine how you can deal with them.
Treat weeds before they mature and spread seeds. Weeds can be cut down by applying a pre-emergent herbicide. Pre Emergent herbicide, when applied at the right time, can eliminate weeds that have not sprouted yet. For summer, apply from early February to early March, and for winter annual weed control apply from mid-October to early November based on location. It is important to follow label directions to make sure that the right amount of product is applied.
Having a healthy lawn not only adds beauty and value to your property, and if you focus on good lawn care practices, responsible weed control, proper fertilization, and watering you will have the best lawn on the block in no time! The beauty of having a Florida lawn is that it can stay green all year round in certain areas. If you have any questions about your Florida lawn, fill out our questionnaire, or send us an email at email@example.com