5 min readOne of the biggest features that stand out when passing by or stepping onto someone’s property is how healthy their lawn is. Lush green grass will show your guests and potential buyers the effort you put into maintaining a super healthy lawn. Whereas, a brown patchy lawn shows that you may need some help to bring your lawn back to its former glory.
Whether you’re about to lay a new lawn, want to maintain your current lawn or are attempting to breathe new life into your declining lawn, these nine tips will guide you through how to grow and maintain a super healthy, green and lush lawn.
1. Picking the right lawn.
If you don’t currently have a lawn or are in the process of replacing your current lawn, selection and preparation are key. There are hundreds of grass types on the market, each of which perform differently depending on the local climate. Do your research online and speak to local turf suppliers to find out which grass types perform best in your area.
2. Mowing the right way.
While all homeowners understand that there’s a need to mow their lawns, the way you mow will determine how well your grass grows. Each type of grass has its own ideal mowing height, but as a rule of thumb, most grass types stay their healthiest at three to three and a half inches tall.
Check the settings before purchasing a new lawn mower to ensure it allows adjustment (check out this handy guide on different types of lawn mowers you can get). Proper mowing will also help to reduce the chance of weeds and keep your lawn lush and green.
Some tips to keep in mind when mowing:
- Always keep your mower blades sharp.
- Mow in different directions each mowing session to prevent ruts.
- Where possible, mow in the evening when the sun is starting to set.
- Only use your lawn mower when your grass is dry.
- Adjust your mower height to a higher length in summer, allowing grass to grow and protect the soil.
- Wear appropriate personal protective equipment to avoid accidents.
3. Soak don’t sprinkle.
One of the best ways to keep your lawn lush and green is to ensure deep roots are watered, not just the top of your lawn. Water occasionally, but focus on soaking the grass rather than just sprinkling. For the best results, water your lawn early in the morning or late in the afternoon to reduce evaporation from the sun. It’s also important to increase your watering amount and frequency in dry climates or during warmer seasons.
4. When to fertilise.
Fertilisation will help boost your lawns level of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium to promote growth. The ideal ratio for most lawns is usually made up of a mixture of 70 to 60 per cent fast release and 40 per cent slow release fertiliser. This will give your lawn a boost straight away while ensuring nutrients are continually being released in the long term.
You should aim to fertilise your lawn once a year to keep it super healthy and promote growth. The best time to fertilise your lawn is during the cooler seasons but preferably not while it’s raining. Where possible, you should also look to use organic fertilisers as they are usually less harsh on your grass, which is even more important if your lawn is currently in decline.
5. Weed control.
Weeds usually begin to sprout due to problems with your backyard environment. While fighting off weeds with herbicides will help reduce the number of weeds, this will likely be met with unsatisfactory results if the underlying issues are not addressed.
One of the best ways to control weeds is to maintain dense, thick and healthy turf cover. A few small changes such as increasing your lawn mower height and changing your watering routine will help fight off weeds. If you’re still dealing with troublesome weeds and the changes you’ve made aren’t working, it may be time to consider herbicide options.
6. Let your lawn breathe.
One of the reasons your lawn may not be performing well could be related to a lack of aeration. Just like you, your lawn and the soil beneath it needs to breathe and by helping it do so will promote its growth.
One of the biggest benefits of lawn aeration it that it removes lawn thatch. Lawn thatch is the layer of primarily dead grass sitting between the soil and green vegetation which reduces your lawns ability to breathe. Using a ‘lawn aerator’, you can assist your lawn’s breathability and promote its growth.
Where possible, aim to aerate your lawn during spring or autumn for optimal results. This should not be done on a regular basis and is more likely to only need to be done every few years or as needed depending on your lawn’s condition.
7. Maintaining your lawn.
So, you’ve managed to improve your lawn and it’s currently in a super healthy state, now what?
If you don’t properly maintain your lawn, its health will soon show signs of decline. Proper and regular maintenance is necessary to ensure your grass continues to stay healthy. You should research your lawn type and its recommended maintenance schedule, but as a rough guide, your maintenance schedule should include all points mentioned above on a regular basis.
8. Grass showing signs of decline? Keep off.
If your grass is showing poor signs of growth or declining health, keep off it. Continue with your regular maintenance routine while keeping animals and pests off the lawn where possible.
9. Still not working? Time for an alternative.
Have you tried everything possible with no luck?
It may be that your location, climate or soil is just not up to the standards required to promote a healthy lawn. If this is the case, it’s time to think of some alternatives to ensure you can still have a beautiful backyard. You might want to change your landscaping efforts to include more plants, garden beds, bricks, gravel or even artificial turf.
In order to grow and maintain a great looking lawn, it takes a lot of time, effort and patience. However, once your lawn reaches a green and lush state, you’ll be rewarded with a beautiful back and front yard, perfect to entertain guests and enjoy with the family.