As we reach the start of a new school year, many homeowners are starting to plan for their fall vacations or even their winter retreat. While these plans go on, often times the lawn is overlooked.
Right now is the perfect time to plan on getting your lawn into great shape moving into the fall. This planning is especially important, because many parts of Canada experience summer drought conditions, which puts stress on home lawns. Drought stress sometimes comes at a cost, as many grass cultivars found in a lawn cannot withstand being dormant more than four to five weeks and will not come back with future rains. Also, with drought conditions, it is sometimes hard to detect damage caused by surface insects. In both instances, there will be bare areas where the lawn has died and are prime locations for undesirable plants to grow.
Consider over-seeding your lawn in late August to early September. This is considered the best time of year to seed because there is normally enough moisture available and the soil is warmed from the summer climate. The spring is considered the second best time to seed, but varying soil temperatures can make the germination inconsistent. When over-seeding, make sure that you utilize a quality lawn seed. Inexpensive seeds generally do not have the newest technologies or utilize the best new cultivars available. Each year, seed producers are coming out with grass plants that are able to withstand insect, disease and drought pressure better. The addition of these seeds will help your lawn withstand future years with summers similar to this one. Also, buying a quality seed will ensure that you are not adding more weed seeds to your lawn. Not all lawn seed blends are equal.
Along with over-seeding the lawn, you should plan on aerating it. You may ask, “Why would I need to aerate when I have bare soil within my lawn?”. Yes, you could just go over these areas with a light raking to scratch the soil and provide adequate seed/soil contact, but you would not be getting all of the benefits. Aeration will provide the grass seed with a good place to germinate while breaking up any compacted areas in your lawn, which a light raking will not do. Also, your lawn may have a thick mat or thatch layer that is conducive for surface insects. Aeration brings soil to the surface and in this soil are thousands of micro-organisms that will slowly work away at any layering problem you may have. Combining these two services this fall will only make your lawn healthier and stronger going into winter.
Always feel free to contact your local Weed Man lawn care professionals with any questions or concerns while you plan for your lawn going into the fall. Remember, Weed Man is your lawn’s best friend.