Especially during the winter season, it’s imperative to prioritize lawn care whenever you have the chance. Snow melts but leaving your lawn unattended when the ice starts to fall can put you at risk of having to tend to bald spots and frozen soil. If you’re tending to a natural lawn, it can be easy to fall into the trap of taking shortcuts, especially when you don’t have the time. While there are always services for lawn maintenance in Mississauga, there are a few bad habits you definitely want to avoid at all costs.
DON’T: Remove grass clippings
If you’ve been hearing that stray grass clippings can cause thatch problems, you’ve been hearing a myth! They can actually help the overall health of your lawn, which means you can leave them be when you give your garden a mow.
DON’T: Skip aerating
Seeded and sodded lawns usually rest atop a skimpy layer of topsoil, which can be prone to compacting over time. If you have pets who enjoy digging or kids who engage in outdoor activities on a regular basis, it can be difficult for air, water, and other vital nutrients to penetrate the deeper layers of the soil.
To help loosen the soil, rent a power core aerator from a hardware store or garden center. This will help it restore its natural, healthy composition.
DON’T: Use dull mower blades
Just like a dull kitchen knife, dull mower blades won’t completely cut through the grass. This can stress your plants and leave the top of your lawn looking broken and messy. Be sure to sharpen your blade regularly or replace it if needed.
DON’T: Water your lawn daily
Contrary to popular belief, it isn’t healthy to water your lawn or plants on a daily basis, as they can become dependent or even drown. Skip watering your lawn for 15 minutes every day and opt for watering it once weekly for an entire hour. This will allow your grass to become drought-tolerant and much healthier in the long run.
DON’T: Forget to dethatch
As grass stems, roots, and clippings decompose over time, they settle above the surface of your soil and become thatch. Ignoring this can suffocate your lawn, so be sure to remove thatch as it builds up. The most common causes of thatch are over-fertilization and over-watering, and a buildup of ¾ of an inch is enough to restrict water and nutrient flow.
DON’T: Ignore shady areas
Growing grass in the shade isn’t easy, but doing it successfully can result in a fuller, richer garden. Use seed rather than sod. Most garden centers will have mixes specifically formulated for growing in the shade, so plant these during the late summer and mid-spring.
If your grass is struggling, don’t jump the gun and fertilize it. If you’re planting in both a shaded and sunny area, understand the different needs of each area. In fact, you can treat it as though you’re tending to two different lawns. Shady areas require less water and fertilizer, so be sure to take note of how much you’re using.
DON’T: Neglect soil moisture
If you’re using heavier soil, it won’t absorb moisture as quickly as loose or sandy soil would. In order to get the right amount of moisture into your soil, know what type you’re using in the first place.
To check how much water your soil is absorbing, set your sprinkler off on dry soil for 30 minutes. Then, check the moisture depth by using a shovel to determine how much of the soil the water was able to penetrate. A good level of moisture is 3 to 4 inches deep.
Incorporating a natural lawn into your garden is a great way to up your curb appeal. However, if not maintained well, you could be dealing with time-consuming and costly problems that could otherwise be avoided. Be sure you’re ready to commit to a lawn before growing one!
For the best lawn care service in Mississauga, give us a call at Lawn Care Alert! We’re now bustling with clients who love our award-winning services!