8 Tips to Keep Your Lawn Safe and Healthy This Summer and Fall
Easy Ways to Help Protect Your Lawn in Late Summer
The later it gets in summer as we head into the start of the fall season, the hotter, drier, and sunnier the weather tends to be. And given these three issues, your lawn can suffer the most damage during this time of year. Luckily, protecting your lawn’s health isn’t that hard to do if you know how. Here are eight easy tips to keep your lawn safe and healthy as the summer season winds down and fall rolls in.
#1: Water Properly
During the later stages of summer, a lot of homeowners make the mistake of either watering their lawn too much or not enough, and both of these can have a negative impacts on your lawn’s health. For instance, too much water will make your lawn attractive to ticks, while too little water will result in brittle, brown blades.
Ideally, the lawn should be watered deeply, but not frequently. Usually, giving a lawn 1” of water (1 hour of sprinkling) per week is suitable. As always, check with your local water authority office to ensure you’re complying with any drought regulations that may be in place.
#2: Keep the Lawn Short, But Not Too Short
According to TurfCare, letting your grass grow out a little bit during the dog days of summer will help keep it healthy when the heat is high and the weather is dry. But, there are limits as to how high you want to keep it.
TurfCare recommends that you let your grass grow roughly half of an inch higher than the recommended cutting height for your area. This will help keep your grass healthier while making your lawn less hospitable to ticks and fleas.
#3: Keep Your Yard Clean
Near the end of summer, the dry weather often causes some trees to start shedding their leaves earlier than usual. Or, if you live in an area that experiences heavy storms around this time of year, you might also have a lot of debris in your yard. Take the time to clean up after a storm. If you don’t remove debris, it can damage your lawn and create an unsafe environment for your children and pets.
#4: Aerate the Lawn
Aerating your lawn as fall begins helps to improve the overall quality of the soil. This process helps eliminate the buildup of thatch on the surface of the lawn and it relieves soil compaction. The process also allows the lawn to absorb more water and nutrients so it will stay healthy through fall and be prepped for coming back next spring.
#5: Keep Up on Weeds
Don’t let up on weeds through summer because they can still go to seed well into fall. You can choose to remove them by hand, use a weed and feed product, or use one of the many natural DIY solutions shared by EveryDayCheapskate.com. From table salt to dishwashing liquid, you’ll find several non-toxic ways to get rid of weeds.
#6: Fertilize at the Start of Fall
In order for lawn fertilizer to work, it is best administered while the grass is still actively growing. At the start of fall, fertilizing your lawn with a product that contains slow release nitrogen is recommended. This will help feed the grass through the winter so it can come back stronger in the spring.
#7: Check and Treat for Grubs
Grubs are small worm-like creatures that live below the lawn’s surface. They might look like fat, stubby worms, but they’re actually the larvae of Japanese Beetles and they can attract moles by the score. And, moles can be devastatingly destructive to a lawn. So, use a spade to dig up and lift a square-foot portion of lawn. Insect the soil and count the number of grubs you find. If you find five or more in a square foot of soil, then you should administer a fertilizer/grub-killing product to your lawn.
#8: Prune Trees and Shrubs
Ticks and other insects love gathering in shady and damp areas. So, the more sun your yard gets, the fewer insects you’ll have to worry about. So, prune your trees and shrubs in the summer to maximize your yard’s exposure and you’ll make your yard safer and more beautiful.
That’s all it takes to turn your lawn into a wonderful environment for everyone, including your pets. Protect your lawn in summer and start preparing your lawn in fall for spring’s return — and year after year, your lawn will come back fuller, greener, and softer.