The fall season is here and winter will soon arrive, one of the last things you are thinking about is lawn care. Fall’s cooler temperatures and occasional rainfall, is the best time to prepare your lawn for next spring.
Lawn Tips for Spring
During this time of year, grass is absorbing energy, moisture, and nutrients preparing for a long, dormant winter. Take the time and address the slower growth, and you’ll be rewarded in the spring.
Continue To Mow Your Lawn
Water and mow your lawn, as needed, throughout the fall season. When the Fall season draws to a close, drop the mower’s blade to its lowest setting for the last two cuttings of the year. This will allow more sunlight to reach the crown of the grass.
Fall is also an ideal time to aerate your lawn so that oxygen, water, and fertilizer can easily reach the grass’s roots. The self-propelled machine will quickly punch holes into the soil and extract plugs of dirt. If you’ve got a very large yard—say, more than 3 or 4 acres—and don’t feel like aerating it yourself, hire a landscaping contractor.
Remove Fallen Leaves
Rake the fallen leaves from your lawn as soon as possible. Waiting until all the leaves have fallen from the trees to start raking will become wet from rain and morning dew, stick together, and form an impenetrable mat that will suffocate the grass and breed fungal diseases. Regardless of whether you use a rake or a lawnmower, just be sure to remove the leaves before they turn into a soggy, suffocating mess.
Fertilize for Future Growth
A fall application of fertilizer delivers essential nutrients for the grass to grow deep roots now and to keep nutrients on reserve for a healthy start next spring. Wait until mid-to-late fall, then apply a dry lawn fertilizer to all grassy areas. You could use a crank-style spreader, but for best coverage, consider using a walk-behind drop spreader. It takes a little longer, but a drop spreader provides the best way to apply an even, consistent layer of fertilizer.
Fill in Bald Spots
Autumn is also a great time of year to fix any bare, bald spots in your lawn. Lawn repair mixtures are the quickest, and easiest way to do this. Sold at most garden shops and home centers, this ready-to-use mixture contains grass seed, a special quick-starter lawn fertilizer, and organic mulch.
Rake the loose the soil at the bald spot in your lawn, next spread a thick layer of the lawn repair mixture over the area. Lightly compact the mixture, then water thoroughly, and continue to water every other day for two weeks.
Weeds, like most plants, are in the energy-absorbing mode during the fall. They are absorbing nutrients and water faster than normal grass would. Using weed killers and apply an herbicide now and the weeds won’t return in the spring.
Please read the package label before use. Herbicide manufacturers usually recommend applying the weed killer during early-to-mid fall, when daytime temperatures are consistently above 60 degrees Fahrenheit