Why Autumn is a Great Time to Spruce Up Your Lawn …
The fall of the year is an absolutely great time to spruce up your lawn. Most grasses used in the northern midwest portions of the United States are cool weather grasses, which mean they grow best when the temperature is in the 60s and 70s.
It is a good idea to take advantage of the cooler temperatures during the fall to feed your lawn. Since the lawn is alive and vibrant, feeding it will strengthen the root system which will better prepare it for the onslaught of the coming winter.
If you cut your lawn higher during July and August in an effort to reduce the stress of the summer’s heat, autumn is a good time lower the blade back down.
A good height for most lawns is two inches when you are cutting your grass during the fall season.
By cutting your grass a bit shorter you are helping to prevent your grass from matting down when the lawn is covered with leaves eventually slow.
You shouldn’t cut your lawn too short, however. If you clip the turf too tightly you will weaken the root system which is a sure way to give weeds a green light to grow. Remember, there is no better weed control than a healthy, lush lawn itself. If your grass is healthy and thick, weeds will not have a chance to grow.
If, by chance, you do have some weeds at the end of a stressful summer, autumn is a great time to apply a weed-and-feed to eliminate them before they become firmly rooted.
Whenever the conditions are dry outside your lawn will need water. If the dryness of summer continues on into your fall season, be sure to water your lawn sufficiently enough so that the water reaches down several inches into the soil.
It is usually best to water your lawn early in the morning because there is less wind. Also when the air is cooler there is less chance that the water will be lost to evaporation. Never water your lawn at night because it encourages fungal diseases.
If you have a warm season lawn such as bermuda grass or zoysia, fall is a good time to over seed with an annual ryegrass. Since warm weather grasses turn white in cold weather, annual rye will give you a thick green carpet during the winter months. Prepare your lawn for over seeding by mowing it about a half inch shorter than normal and collect the clippings. Then spread your seed over the area you mowed. Pass over the lawn twice, the first time going north to south, the second time east to west.
Cool weather grasses, including fescues, bluegrass and rye respond very well to a fall feeding. You can generally fertilize early in September and then again late in October.
There is nothing like a great looking lawn. Many gardeners feel that beautiful spring lawns are really made in the fall. That is why autumn is such a great time to spruce up your lawn.