Summer is here in Sarasota, a preview of the annual season already occurred. If you think you’re dealing with a lot of stress and dread heat and humidity, just think about your yard. It can’t escape the sun and you compound its problematic existence by walking all over it. Hours of high heat, with little reprieve overnight, made worse by strong summer storms all spell trouble for your yard. That’s why it’s important to know how to keep a yard health during summer.
Why Routine Lawn Care is So Important
To maintain its natural green beauty, your grass must be cared for in the proper manner. This includes such things as a regularly serviced, tuned-up lawn mower, along with other lawn care equipment. Now is also a great time to test run your irrigation system. It’s possible you’ll discover leaks, breakage, and other problems; but, that’s okay, because there are ways to troubleshoot a sprinkler system.
According to Audubon.org, the average homeowner spends roughly 40 hours mowing their lawn each year, and we Americans spend $8.5 billion on lawn care products and equipment. Lawns are a major part of the gardening scene, with millions of acres in this country alone. Keeping a lawn in tip-top shape can be a big job, but my approach to it is a little more relaxed than others. —Today.com
Since you can’t relocate your lawn, you’ll need to care for it as the summer months bear down, day after day. It’s possible you’ll have to revive a winter beaten lawn or perhaps now is a good time to put down new sod for a great look and plenty of enhanced curb appeal.
How to Keep a Healthy Summer Yard
Remember, the sun isn’t the only thing your yard deals with — pets, pests, weeds, non-native and invasive plants, and towering trees can also present serious competition for sunlight, soil, moisture, and nutrients. Here are some helpful suggestions about how to keep a yard health during summer:
- Keep foot traffic to a minimum. Walking on well-watered grass is something to be avoided. When grass is wet and endures foot traffic, the blades will spring back. However, when you walk on a wet lawn, you are compacting the soil. That causes air to be choked-off from the roots. What’s more, on a dry lawn, grass blades will remain tamped down, causing damage to your yard.
- Always cut grass at the right height. It’s very tempting to cut the grass short to lengthen the time between mowing. No one likes suffering through the heat of summer when it’s more convenient to mow it short, that’s understandable. But doing so will expose the soil to more heat, causing moisture to evaporate at a faster rate. In addition, the more grass tissue removed, the less cool your lawn will be during summer. Cut the grass 3 inches high and your lawn will benefit.
- Water appropriately, don’t overdo it. Many people know the best time to water a lawn is just before sunrise, when it can bolster dew, making for a great environment for grass to drink and thrive. Water deeply but infrequently, a good rule-of-thumb. Too much moisture is trouble for grass physiology and for soil organisms, being deprived of precious oxygen and more susceptible disease. Water in zones and then wait until the lawn is dry to water again.
- Do not bag grass clippings, use them. It’s common for homeowners to bag and discard grass clippings after mowing their lawns. After all, it looks better and is also a great way to gain organic materials for composting. But, it’s a waste because grass clippings can be broadcast over the lawn with a mulching mower. These act as slow-release fertilizer as the clippings decompose. You should not spread grass clippings near water or storm drains, though.
- Wait until fall to overseed your lawn. Some lawns are more prone to heat stress because of the species of grass. This makes seeding and overseeding seem necessary to revive and make your grass healthy once again. However, it’s actually best to wait until fall to overseed your lawn. This will equip it to withstand the summer heat when it arrives again the following season. You should learn which species of grass you have and how it’s best seeded for the best results.
If it’s time to refresh your landscape, contact us. We are a full-service, professional landscape design company and serve all of Sarasota, including near Bayfront Drive, around Rolling Green Golf Club, along Longboat Club Road, and elsewhere.