Thursday, 18 October 2018
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This Old House - Do-it-Yourself

How Pro Homeowners Get Their Lawns Ready for the Winter

Written by Posted On Wednesday, 06 December 2017 22:06

As the temperature drops outside, one of the last things likely to be on your mind is spending time outside. Before you can say goodbye to another season of warm temperatures however, it is vitally important to prepare your lawn for the next growing season. Doing so now will ensure you experience quick greening, a thick, healthy lawn, and easier maintenance in the spring and summer to come. Here are a few tips to help your lawn make the most of its time off this winter.

Keep it Clean

The change in seasons means that leaves are falling all around. When your lawn is covered, it can be tempting to just leave it until spring, when the temperatures are warmer, and you’re not as busy preparing for the holidays. Waiting, however, can choke and kill grass while it’s covered for several months, and lead to slower greening, or even dead patches once the temperature starts to rise.

Feed It

Fertilizing your lawn to get it ready for winter may seem almost counter-intuitive. After all, fertilizer is intended to green-up lawns and assist in their fast growth. Why, then, would you use it right before your lawn goes dormant for the year? Even though grass is dormant, it is still able to absorb nutrients in the soil, which it then uses for a mighty comeback when spring arrives. By feeding now, you give the grass a chance to absorb all it needs, getting it off to a good start the next time it grows.

Maintain It

Another, often overlooked, step in preparing your lawn for winter is performing any landscape improvement projects that require disturbing the soil. Since these projects are intended to beautify your outdoor space, their completion is typically associated with the seasons that you actually spend outdoors. For example, installing a sprinkler system, like those available from Design Rite Sprinkler, involves digging shallow trenches to place supply lines. It also involves disturbing the areas where the sprinkler heads and valves are placed. By completing projects like this in the fall, as your lawn is going dormant, you allow it to recover more completely when spring arrives, while also not interrupting its growth by having to disrupt the soil once growth has begun.

Prepare It

Speaking of sprinkler systems, it’s important to winterize your system before the temperature outside gets too low. Leaving excess water in pipes or sprinkler heads can cause damage to the pipes by allowing water to freeze and expand inside them. These faulty pipes and other system components can also damage your lawn by expanding and/or collapsing in the soil beneath the surface, leading to ruts, dead spots, and just an overall mess to clean up, come spring.

While it can be easy to overlook, ensuring the continued health and beauty of your lawn is a project that is not just relegated to the warm months of the year. With a few simple steps, you can be sure your lawn is ready for the long winter ahead, and enjoy one of the first signs of a coming spring, a lawn rejuvenating and coming back to life.

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Rachelle Wilber

Rachelle Wilber is a former real estate agent now turned freelance writer that specializes in home realty, mortgage, and building. She graduated from San Diego State University with her Bachelor's Degree in Journalism and Media Studies.

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