#1 soil testing & fertilizer program
#2 mowing & watering procedures
#3 core aeration & over seeding
Despite clashing viewpoints, turf grass can be an important element in our urban landscapes. When maintained with sustainable & sensible techniques lawn areas provide financial value, improve water & air quality and help protect the local environment. The following tasks listed below are vital steps to reaping the benefits of a lush healthy lawn.
#1 SOIL TESTING & FERTILIZER PROGRAMS
Testing routinely every 3-4 years provides a measurement of plant available nutrients in the soil and plays a crucial role in our fertilization programs. Periodic soil testing will aid in correcting nutrient deficiencies as well as help save money from avoiding excessive fertilizer applications. This is the first step with all of our new clients when inquiring about lawncare.
Growing a beautiful lawn cannot be done without high soil quality. Over time these nutrients naturally deplete and will need to be replenished. Throughout the season mulching grass clippings back into the lawn will assist in adding the needed nitrogen required for growing vigorous turf.
However a more comprehensive fertilizer program will still be recommended for achieving and maintaining optimal soil pH levels.
#2 MOWING & WATERING PROCEDURES
Using improper mowing techniques is one of the more overlooked causes of damaged, unsightly lawns. With just a small amount of knowledge these issues can easily be corrected.
GRASS HEIGHT in our climate should be maintained on the taller side, in the 3.5 inches range. Mowing too short will directly reduce root growth as well as the plant’s ability to photosynthesis.
FREQUENCY of mowing should be done regularly, especially so during cooler growing Temps of 60-75°f. Removing more then 1/3 of the grass blade at one time will result in damaged root systems and can be prevented by mowing more often.
Making sure using only SHARP BLADES will reduce the damage given to the turf by providing a cleaner cut. Frayed lawns will result in discoloration and are at much higher risk of disease.
Water conservation and landscape stewardship are topics that hold our focus here at Cedar Horticulture. If you are anything like us im sure you want to do your part as well.
Begin with installing native grass types fitting for our region being mindful of differing site conditions. This will provide a more successful lawn while requiring less overall water & maintenance.
Other things to consider are timing of watering. Make sure to choose a consistent morning routine with deep soakings and don’t forget to keep monitoring. Typically, cool season grasses in our area will need 1″-1.5″ of water per week between rainfall and from additional water sources.
If these tasks seem difficult to manage, reducing the lawn areas and replacing with garden beds will be a much better solution. Some great eco friendly ideas include permaculture, edible gardens, native habitats and rewilding designs. These options yield much more seasonal interest while further helping the ecosystem.
#3 AERATION AND OVER SEEDING
Aerating is the process of removing small plugs of soil and grass from the lawn in order to allow air, water & nutrients to better reach the soil zone beneath.
We do this to help stimulate root growth and reduce compaction. In the end growing healthier, stronger turf grass.
When combining aeration services with over seeding in the early fall the benifits we receive are increased. Mixing cooler temperatures with lawn cultivation creates good seed to soil contact and better germination rates.
We at Cedar Horticulture understand lawn areas still have there space in our urban environment. Whether it’s a small footpath through a garden or even a local athletic field, however we encourage our community to constantly consider more sustainable maintenance options as technology increases as well as reducing the overall lawn sizes at our homes and businesses. We highly encourage re-introducing native plants and trees to our landscapes, doing so will better provide an ecosystem which includes food, water and shelter for birds, insects and other kinds of wildlife.