Summer is a critical time of the year for lawns. Heat and drought contribute greatly to the stress the lawn faces. Following a few summer lawn care tips can help ensure the lawn is more enjoyable and stays green a little longer, if not all throughout summer.
Fertilization & Weed Control
Synthetic fertilizers will burn a lawn during the summer heat. It is recommended that the only fertilizer that goes onto a lawn during the summer months is organic fertilizer. Weed control can also burn a lawn easily during the summer months. When the temperatures increase, a little bit of weed control can go a long way. Lawn care technicians are trained to only spot spray weeds during this time of year.
During the summer months, mowing may become few and far between. It is recommended that when mowing in the summer, the mower deck be raised to the highest setting and ensure that the blades are sharp and that no more than 1/3 of the grass blade is being removed from the plant. Mowing at a higher setting will allow the grass to be thicker with a denser root system, allowing for a slower dry out during drought conditions.
Mornings are the best time to water the lawn or use a sprinkler system. Morning watering allows the water to dry fairly quickly eliminating the risk for diseases to set in. During the summer months, watering should be deep and infrequent allowing 1 to 1 ½ inches to keep the lawn green and vibrant. If there is any doubt about when to water, look for cracks in bare dirt or try piercing a screwdriver into the soil; if you cannot pierce the screw driver 6-8 inches into the soil, it’s time to water!
For cool season grasses like fescue or bluegrass, this is the time of year that they will turn brown and go dormant, which is completely natural. If this occurs, they are in their dormant state until their fall growing season and should not be watered or fertilized out of dormancy. Trying to do so can stress the grass plant even more by using up the lawns conserved energy.
Sum it up
One of the best summer lawn care tips, when dealing with cool season grasses, is to decide well in advance if the lawn will be watered and cared for all summer long or if the lawn will go into its dormant state. Keeping a lawn green and vibrant throughout summer takes maintenance but is achievable when following the proper practices to help prevent and protect against summer stresses.
It is always a good idea to consult with a lawn care professional and ask any questions you may have. Look around, ask friends or family, and research companies on the Better Business Bureau to find a company that you can trust.