Winter lawn care

Winter lawn care Rake

How to restore the lawn after the winter, what to do if the lawn does not grow yellow?

Growing a lawn on your property is not as easy as it may seem at first glance. Its beautiful appearance and longevity depend on proper care and implementation of necessary agro-technical measures not only in spring and summer but also in winter.

Peculiarities of lawn wintering in different climatic conditions

It is necessary to take into account the climatic features of the area even at the stage of lawn creation. For regions with cold and humid climates it is recommended to use frost-resistant and unpretentious varieties of grass, but even this does not guarantee the desired result if you neglect the care of the lawn in winter.

General recommendations can be highlighted:

  • You should not walk on the lawn when the temperature drops below +5 degrees. At this time, grass growth stops and its ability to recover from physical influences sharply decreases.
  • Both seed and roll lawns can suffer from hard frosts and sudden thaws in winter. Natural snow cover with thickness of not less than 20 cm helps to survive the vagaries of weather. In regions where snow-free frosty winters are common, the lawn should be covered in advance with an agro fabric.
  • Garden rodents must be controlled during the winter.
  • Sometimes, usually in late autumn, frost can form on a lawn if the temperature changes drastically. It is destructive to the grass, so the ice crust should be removed with a rake.

How to prepare the lawn for winter?

Many gardeners wonder what to do so that the lawn does not suffer during the winter months? It often happens that after the winter, the lawn does not grow, as if it cannot wake up from sleep, its appearance remains untidy for a long time, and in some places even formed spills. In most cases, this is due to lack of lawn care in autumn. Lawn grasses in the pre-winter period require no less attention than other garden plants.

Preparing the lawn for winter comes down to several agronomic measures:

  • fertilizing,
  • mulching,
  • mowing the grass,
  • aerating,
  • autumn repairs.

In preparing the lawn for the winter, special attention should be paid to feeding. During the cold season, it needs micronutrients such as phosphorus and potassium. They promote active root formation, and thus the plants can store nutrients and thus more easily survive the winter. Lawn fertilizers can be used in liquid or dry form as lawn fertilizer. Fertilizers should only be applied to damp soil.

Mulching is another important lawn care measure that can be combined with fertilizing. For mulching carefully sifted, nutritious, light-weight soil mixture should be used, spread evenly 1.5 – 2 cm over the whole surface of the lawn. Mulching improves soil structure and composition, has a beneficial effect on the health of plants, and to some extent serves as a shelter for the root system from frost.

Mowing the grass before winter is a must! The best time for this is when the leaves are falling, 2-3 weeks before frost sets in. If you leave the lawn uncut, the high grass will prevent young growth in spring.

Aeration is a deep loosening procedure. It is necessary to ensure normal air exchange and ventilation of the root system. And in the spring, during the active snow melting, the aerated lawn is freed from excess moisture faster, and the plants will not dry out during the period of soil warming. Aeration is carried out with the help of special devices or ordinary garden forks.

Autumn repair is necessary if the lawn frayed in places from active trampling or received other damage, for example, as a result of the activities of moles and field mice. The soil is loosened and seeded in areas of gaps. The pits are leveled, and holes from moles are filled with soil, pre-packed with poison for rodents.

In addition to the basic care measures, you should not forget about watering. It is carried out in dry weather regularly until frost begins to appear on the grass.

Lawn Restoration After Winter

Despite all of the fall activities, signs of unhealthy grass can be observed in the spring.

Why does the lawn turn yellow after winter, and sometimes even disappear? The main causes may include:

  • Freezing – partial or massive death of plants as a result of severe frost. It happens when the cold weather comes abruptly and the grass does not have time to prepare for the cold.
  • Wheezing can occur both in the fall and spring because of excessive moisture in the soil.
  • Damage to the turf layer of lawns occurs because of sharp fluctuations in temperature, when the wet soil freezes and thaws again. This causes it to swell and tear at the roots of the plants.
  • If your lawn has dried out after the winter or if there are gaps in it, you need to start resurfacing immediately. There are several ways to bring your lawn back to life: fertilizing, combing out, aerating, and planting new seeds.

How do I care for my lawn after the winter?

Examining your lawn after winter, you may notice that it has yellowed in places, and looks dull and unhealthy. In this case, the question arises, how to restore the lost appearance of the lawn?

Rolling and combing. With the help of a fan rake, you need to clean the area of leaves and dry grass. After that, a special roller or improvised tool is made to roll, which will level and compact the soil.

Scarifying is the removal of a layer of so-called “felt”, pressed remnants of dried grass, moss, debris, and dust. Scarifying is also carried out at the same time, i.e. shallow cutting of sod to aerate the soil and stimulate root formation.

Sanding means filling the area with river sand or a light soil mixture.

Sanitary treatment is necessary for the prevention of grass diseases, weeds, and pest control. At the same time, it is necessary to select means safe for lawns and use them in strict accordance with the instructions.

All spring lawn care should be carried out before the grass begins to actively grow.

David West is an experienced gardener and former salesman at a garden tools and supplies store. He has tended his own garden plot for many years and has extensive knowledge of plant care, landscaping and garden design.

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