The end of winter is one of the best times to start thinking about preparing the lawn for spring. Here are five essential tips to help with this process.
Prepare Outdoor Power Equipment
The lawn mower is probably the most important piece of equipment in your arsenal. To make sure your mower can perform throughout the season, homeowners should start with some simple maintenance, like replacing the air filter, examining the tire pressure, changing the oil, and checking the spark plugs. Maximize your lawn mower’s potential and have the mower blades sharped or replaced. This will also ensure your grass is cut evenly. Lastly, clean under the mower deck by removing any grass and dirt. Most power equipment dealers will offer these tune-up services and stock the necessary replacement parts you’ll need to get you back up and running.
Remove Leaves and Yard Debris
Once your power equipment is performance ready, remove any leaves that may have accumulated on the yard in order to promote better air flow throughout the grass. Clearing the lawn of excess debris will prevent disease and insect infestation. Also, the lawnmower will be able to properly cut the grass without a struggle.
Combined with shredded bark and compost, the leaves and yard debris can serve as protective mulch. Apply two to three inches of this mulch around the perimeter of plants, shrubs, and trees. The rich nutrients in the mulch will help to regulate soil temperatures, prevent weeds, maintain soil moisture, and increase the prevalence of beneficial soil microorganisms.
Cultivate the Surface Soil
Beginning several weeks before the final frost, homeowners can cultivate the surface soil in areas where weeds have been abundant. Troublesome weeds and plants such as dandelions, poison ivy, and dock weeds should definitely be eliminated as soon as the soil is no longer frozen. As spring approaches, these weeds are prone to grow extremely quickly. Eradicating bothersome weeds and plants during the late winter will save homeowners precious time and money since they won’t have to purchase expensive herbicides in the months ahead.
Aerate the Lawn
Homeowners should begin aerating their lawn in April. Lawn aeration consists of utilizing a liquid, mechanical, or manual aerator in order to create approximately twelve holes in a given square foot of grass. Along with promoting an attractive lawn, the purpose of this essential process is to facilitate a deeper growing grass root by encouraging water, nutrients, and air to directly reach the root system. Some of the advantages of aerating a lawn include preventing the development of thatch, improving the soil’s drainage factor, reducing the quantity of runoff, decreasing the compaction of soil, and alleviating damage that is caused by droughts. According to many experts, those who have poor soil should consider aerating the lawn at least once a year for the first five years. Homeowners who have maintained a healthy lawn are encouraged to aerate the grass once every one to three years.
Apply Fertilizer to the Lawn
Directly following the aeration, homeowners are urged to fertilize the lawn. The optimal time to fertilize a lawn is also in the spring because the grass is quickly growing. A healthy concentration of lawn fertilizer usually involves a unique blend of lime, iron, nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. The fertilization process should occur about three to five times throughout the year. Because most fertilizer brands provide the user with detailed directions, the majority of fertilizing programs work really well.
Where to Buy Outdoor Power Equipment for Your Spring Lawn Care
Shank’s Lawn Equipment is the premier provider of lawn and garden equipment in Central Pennsylvania. Visit their shop at 4900 Molly Pitcher Highway in Chambersburg, just off Route 11. Live elsewhere in the U.S. or Canada? Visit their website at shankslawn.com for an extensive list of replacement parts that will ship directly to your door. The company also has expert staff that are eager to offer customers the best service possible.