After a long winter starts coming to an end, your thoughts may start turning to springtime tasks, including taking care of your lawn. If so, use the following lawn care tips in early spring to give your grass a head start in growing into a green, lush lawn.
1. Use a Leaf Rake to Fluff the Grass Before Mowing
Over the winter months, rain, snow, and ice have probably smashed the blades of grass in your lawn to the ground. If they are left this way, the existing grass will be smothered and may not be able to grow correctly. Also, grass mold can grow on the blades because they are not receiving enough fresh air, creating a constantly moist environment in which spores can sprout.
On a clear, breezy day after the grass shows signs of life and before you mow your lawn for the first time, use a leaf rake on the grass to fluff up the blades. This fluffing makes the blades stand up straight and allows air to circulate around them.
While you are fluffing, you will also be removing any dead grass and debris to further help clear the spaces so that the grass can breathe. This removal also lets you see where any bare spots have formed so that you can sow grass seed a little later on in the season.
2. Leave the First Mowing's Grass Clippings
Once you have fluffed your grass and the threat of cold, wintry weather has fully passed, you should be ready to mow your grass for the first time. If possible, try to do this before the grass has grown too high, as the winter grass will be tougher than the new spring growth.
After you mow your grass, you may be tempted to rake up the grass clippings. However, at least for this one mowing session, leave the clippings on the ground.
Because the winter grass has nitrogen stored in the blades, leaving these first clippings provides extra nutrients that your lawn needs for greener and healthier growth. As the clippings decompose, the extra nitrogen will absorb into the soil and feed the roots of the grass.
3. Spread Cornmeal on Your Lawn to Inhibit Weed Growth
Along with your grass, weeds also start waking up once the warmer weather of spring arrives. Many times, these weeds will start to grow and thrive before your grass has a chance to become established and could overtake your lawn and mar the beauty of it.
However, do not reach for the weed killer just yet to combat any crabgrass or dandelion growth that you see. Especially in early spring, some weed killers could burn or stunt the growth of your grass, leading to bare spots or uneven growth in your lawn.
Until your grass has a chance to mature a little bit, spread cornmeal on your lawn instead of chemical killers. As it dissolves, the cornmeal will slow down the growth of some weeds to give your grass a fighting chance. And, as a bonus, the meal contains high levels of nitrogen. As the weeds are stunted, the grass will be nourished and allowed to grow stronger so that the weeds can be dealt with once the blades have matured.
Using the above tips can give your grass a healthy start in the spring so it may turn into a lush lawn. However, if you do not have time to maintain your lawn or have multiple problems areas with which you do not know what to do, contact a residential landscaping service to find out your options for having a professional take care of the spring lawn maintenance for you.