This summer the weather is expected to be warmer and dryer with little rain predicted. Now is the optimal time to prepare as it’s not too hot yet, plus it’s the growing season for most Australian lawn types... So now is the time to prepare your lawn for the hot dry months ahead!
There are a few simple maintenance steps that you can do to set up your lawn now to prepare it well for the spring and summer months.
Weeds, weeds everywhere!
Unfortunately, when the lawn is stressed due to dryness, weeds tend to start to multiply! You will need to look at removing and/or killing the weeds to allow your new lawn to take hold again.
Single weeds can easily be removed, however large areas of weeds, like broad leaf and clover patches for example may need specific weed killer to remove them. Make sure you check what type of grass you have as some grasses, such as Buffalo doesn’t like some weed killers and it will be impacted if you use the wrong one, so check with your local plant nursery for the best product to use.
Healthy grass then tends to take over the weeds and you won’t have to keep attacking the weeds once the grass is back on track.
Once the weeds have been removed, you need to look at aerating your lawn to allow space for it to grow in!
Aeration helps to reduce the ‘clumpyness’ of the lawn as well, it allows air, water and nutrients to circulate better and get directly to the roots of the grass to help it stabilise and grow for that healthier lawn.
Aeration is particularly good for popular areas, which can be addressed year ‘round, not just spring time, to help the grass to continue to grow and not have the ‘path’ appear in the lawn.
There are some cool aeration shoes you can purchase if you want the exercise, or you can use a garden fork or hire an aeration machine for those big lawns to help get through them quickly.
Tune up your mower!
Your mower may have been sitting idle in your shed or garage over the winter months and may need some TLC to keep it going for years to come at optimum speed and sharpness.
You may need to check underneath that the blades are clean and assess if they need sharpening, plus refuelling with fresh fuel, oiling and new spark plugs wouldn’t hurt, if they haven’t been changed, before pulling that starter cord and putting your back out!
If you’re not confident with doing this, there are local mowing shops around that can help with this for a small fee, then you will have no excuses to hit the mowing.
Try to avoid scalping your lawn to low if you have let it go over the winter months, especially when it is so dry. Don’t cut too low too quick, try taking down the leaf-height gradually with each mow; this will elevate it drying out too much and putting stress on the grass. Make sure to wait until you’ve got good growth a few weeks into spring before you do any scalping or scarifying.
Fertilise and water!
Then you need to put on a light fertiliser and water to bring it all together for a great lawn to get you through the summer months. This will give the lawn the ‘kick start’ it needs to develop the growth to help it manage the warmer months. Make sure to not use too much fertiliser if the lawn is still stressed as this will hinder its growth with too many nutrients burning it.
Make sure to keep the water up, especially at the moment as it’s been dry, to help the root system become stronger and deeper, this will help it prepare for summer. Then you can sit back and watch it grow!