Your Checklist for Summer Time Lawn Care
Summer time is the best time to enjoy your beautiful green lawn, especially when you’ve prepared it by sticking to your fall and spring lawn care schedule. The good news is that your do it yourself lawn care schedule for summer is a little more low-maintenance than your spring and fall lawn care schedules for most grasses.
A proper summer lawn care plan will keep your lawn healthy and free of pests and weeds, setting you up for further growth and a healthy root system as you head into fall. Here are your summer lawn care tips for your healthiest, greenest lawn yet.
Your schedule for lawn care in early summer
If you cared for your lawn properly in the spring, your early summer lawn is probably thick and green. Early summer is the time to get into your regular cutting schedule, and it’s important to make sure you’re not cutting too short. Mowing heights should be kept between 3 and 4 inches for cool-weather grasses, and between 2 to 3 inches for warm weather grasses. Regardless of the type of grass you’ve planted, you should only cut about ⅓ of the grass blade during mowing.
Your watering schedule should be infrequent (1-2 times per week) and you should water deeply. Overwatering can result in fungal diseases and take a toll on turf by causing moisture stress, even during the hot summer months. Read more about proper watering techniques below, and in our recent article, “How and When Should I Water My Lawn?”
Let grass clippings remain on the lawn after a cut. They will protect the lawn from water loss, and break down into the organic components they’re made of to feed your grass. Warm season grasses might also need fertilization in early summer to prepare them for the rest of the growing season. If you choose to do this on your own, make sure the fertilizer you choose is appropriate for the grass type and is as natural as possible without added chemicals.
Early summer can also be a great time for a soil test if you have concerns about soil health or haven’t had one in a while. You should also take this time to sharpen your lawn mower blades as dull blades will damage grass and will not deliver the cut you’re looking for. If you’re using a gas-powered mower, this is also a good time to check your engine’s maintenance requirements, clean your mower, and replace spark plugs as needed.
Next on your lawn care schedule: pest control
With summer in full effect, nothing dampens the mood in your outdoor space like pests that attack both you and your grassroots. Pests like grubs can eat away at your root systems, killing grass from beneath the surface. Grub control doesn’t have to be harsh on the ecosystem though. Our eco-friendly grub control programs can do that trick.
Not treating your lawn for grubs can result in several types of damage to the grass. Signs of pests can include brown or dry patches in the lawn, or your grass layer might lift easily away from the dirt in areas where grubs have eaten through the roots. Sometimes, you might notice your lawn is suddenly lumpy and bumpy as grubs work their way through. Protect your lawn from grubs and other pests to prevent these types of lawn care issues.
Early summer is also a good time to treat your lawn for mosquitoes and ticks. Green Roots Organics offers fully organic solutions for both, so you can protect your family and pets and leave your outdoor space smelling great all season.
Attacking the weeds that attack your grass roots
Like grass, weeds have everything they need to thrive in the summer. Properly caring for your grass will help edge out many of the weeds that would otherwise rob your grass of nutrients. This includes through proper watering and aeration, and reseeding as necessary.
When more resilient weeds continue to pop up, using a pre-emergent herbicide or other weed control products can help. However, you should not use an herbicide too close to reseeding time, if you plan to reseed. Our semi-organic lawn care services throughout the season can also help keep weeds away. Read more about semi-organic weed solutions here.
Preparing your summer lawn for fall
As summer comes to a close, continue cutting your lawn as needed, keeping the grass at least 3 inches long to protect against dehydration and exposure damage. Fall is a critical time for lawn maintenance, so in order to prepare for fall maintenance tasks, you should dethatch the lawn with a sturdy rake and let grass clippings remain on the lawn surface after each cut.
At the end of the season, your grass may need additional deep watering. August can be a harsh month for plants in the New Jersey area, because rain often decreases as the temperature remains high and the days are still long. You can check whether your lawn is getting enough water by inserting a screwdriver or other tool into the soil. Water should penetrate to about 4 to 6 inches from the surface of your lawn.
Some lawns need feeding in late summer months due to heat stress. If you’ve properly cared for your lawn throughout the season and find your grass is still struggling to grow even with a healthy root system, you may need a late-season fertilizer to encourage growth.
What’s next? Fall lawn care services
As the season comes to a close and you prepare your lawn for dormancy in winter, there’s lots to do. Make sure your lawn is prepared for the harsh winter months and success in the spring with aeration and reseeding, followed by an application of organic fertilizer or compost. This will help prepare your lawn for spring and get ahead of the winter thaw for new spring growth.
Not ready for the workload? No problem, we can do the heavy lifting. Our fall services range from basic aeration and reseeding to a complete restoration of your lawn. Get in touch with us today for a free estimate and to get set up for fall services.