Tips For Early Spring Lawn Care In Maryland
Hit the ground running this spring by getting your lawn off to a great start. Work done in early spring will pay off big dividends later in the ear in the form of a stronger, greener and healthier lawn. Add these six important to-dos to your list. Follow these tips for early spring lawn care in Maryland to have the best lawn ever this year.
Too Much Fungicide: Lawn Care No
Fungi often develop resistance and/or a tolerance to fungicides. When this happens, the fungicides become ineffective in combating the lawn fungus. This results in homeowners using more and more fungicides on their lawn without getting the fungal disease to go away.
Using too many fungicides on your lawn is bad for the environment. It may also pose a health risk to pets and young children in your home. On top of all that, its likely to burn a hole in your pocket.
Fungicide rotation is the recommended way of fighting lawn disease. Get two or three fungicides with different modes of action. After one or two treatments with one fungicide, switch to the next and keep rotating until your lawn is completely free of disease.
Generally, it is advisable to reapply fungicides every two to three weeks, or as needed. Finally, you should pay attention to local disease forecasting systems to know when to apply protective fungicides, which fungicides to use, as well as how to apply them.
Fungicide application may also be guided by personal experience. If, for instance, your lawn gets a brown patch during summer, start applying fungicides in spring and continue doing so throughout summer to protect your yard.
Apply A Late Season Fertilizer Application
To ensure good winter survival and early-spring green-up, make this fertilizer application when the turf has stopped growing but is still green, usually in mid- to late October. Timing is critical. Fertilizer applied too early will promote succulent growth in the fall that will make the lawn more susceptible to winter injury. Fertilizer applied too late will be of no benefit to the turf. If you make a late-fall fertilizer application, spring fertilization can be delayed until late May to early June. The application rate for this time of the year is the same as for the early fall application .
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Which Fertilizer Should I Use In Spring
Feeding your grass in spring is essential to a beautiful lawn, but which fertilizer should you use? Heres what we recommend.
A lawn needs food to grow thick, green, and lush. The benefits of a well-fed lawn extend beyond good looks, though. When you feed your lawn throughout the year, it will emerge greener and stronger after the winter, can crowd out future weeds, and will be more resilient in the face of heat and drought.
To start the growing season off right and give grass the nutrition it needs to grow after a long winter, your lawns first feeding should be in the spring. Which fertilizer solution to use depends on where you live, what type of grass youre growing, and any lawn problems that might be present. Heres what we recommend.
If you live in the North:
Fertilize your Kentucky bluegrass, bermudagrass, perennial ryegrass, tall fescue, or fine fescue lawn with Scotts® Turf Builder® Triple Action, which tackles three important tasks with a single application. First, it will give your lawn the nutrients it needs to get thick and green this spring, helping the grass establish deep roots so it will stand up stronger to heat and drought later in the growing season.
Then, 6 to 8 weeks after using Triple Action, apply Scotts® Turf Builder® Lawn Food according to label directions to continue giving your lawn the nutrition it needs to keep growing strong.
If you live in the South:
Redraw Bedswith A Garden Hose
You may wish to redraw the boundary between your garden beds and grass in springtime. Wider beds mean less lawn care, too. Heres a simple way to do it yourself: Use a garden hose to mark out a nice line for your garden beds. Then, along this bed line, take a sharp metal edger and drive it into the ground as deep as it will go. Dig all along the hose line and then remove the grass thats there, creating a nice bed. Once done, fill up the bed with 2 to 3 inches of mulch or youll just get a bed of weeds! Then youre ready to transplant or plant perennial flowers.
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Clean Up Leavesgo Easy
Even if you cleaned up some leaves in the fall, there are many trees that shed leaves over the winter and well into spring. Now lets not go crazy as if we have to clean up every single leaf off our lawn to compete for the neighborhood beauty pageant. A little leaf litter helps our pollinators and wildlife survive the winter.
Remove any debris or heavy piles of leaves or any layers of leaves. This invites mold and disease and decay. However, dont rake into wet ground. Its best to wait until temperatures are reaching the high 40s or the 50s. If you have a compost pile , add those leaves to the pile. Otherwise, just mow any thin layers of leaves in with the seasons first cut, and theyll also break down and add organic matter and nutrition to the soil.
If you have perennial beds, wait to cut down those spent perennial stems until the weather has definitely warmed and it feels like spring is here to stay. So many beneficial insects and predators are still hibernating in leaf litter or hollow plant stems. They will wake up as the weather warms and daylight increases. If you just cant stand to wait, cut those spent plant stems and simply set them at the edge of your property or the woods. The native bees will thank you!
Will Heavy Rain Wash Away Pre Emergent
Soil-applied, pre-emergence herbicides applied at the beginning of the growing season require rainfall or irrigation for activation. This water turns the herbicide into a solution that can be taken up by weeds. Too much rain, however, will cause the herbicide to become diluted and leach or wash away. via
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Leave The Lawn Cut At The Right Height
Raise the mowing height slightly in the fall. Rooting depth is proportional to mowing height – the longer the leaves, the deeper the roots. Longer grass blades provide some insulation for the crown of the grass plant. However, if the grass is too long going into the winter, it will become matted, which encourages winter diseases such as pink and grey snow mould.
What Month Do You Put Down Crabgrass Preventer
To prevent crabgrass from germinating in your lawn, apply a pre-emergent early spring because this is the time when the weed will start to sprout in your lawn. Any time between late March and early April are the perfect times to put down a preemergent herbicide such as Snapshot to give you protection all season long. via
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Early Spring Lawn Care
Every spring, Mother Nature gives plant life a chance to start over. The winter season has been a long time out. Its the first weekend in March, and now there is a chance to begin anew. Gardeners and homeowners cant make spring come one day sooner, but they can be prepared for an early start with Uncles spring lawn care tips.
How To Choose And When To Apply Grub Control Products For Your Lawn
Not all the grub control products on store shelves will be effective this spring. Heres how to choose and use the right one for your lawn.
Be sure the problem is grubs. Before doing anything, it is important to make sure the problem is grubs. In the last 10 years, the amount of European chafer damage to home lawns in southern Michigan has steadily decreased to the point where it is unusual now to find populations high enough to damage turf. However, as European chafers and Japanese beetles have spread northward, lawns and other low maintenance turf areas in much of the Lower Peninsula north of Lansing and in the eastern half of the Upper Peninsula are seeing more damage. The outbreak phase where turf damage is common may last five to 10 years.
European chafer grubs may be found in all locations in Michigans Lower Peninsula and in much of the Upper Peninsula. Regionally, European chafers are a much bigger problem than they used to be. In 2002, they were only found in New York, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, Delaware, New Jersey, Connecticut, New Hampshire, Vermont, Maryland, Southern Michigan, and eastern Ohio. Now it has spread throughout Ohio, Michigan , northern Indiana and into eastern Illinois. It was also reported in Wisconsin in 2013. In Canada, it is a problem in Ontario and Vancouver, so Washington State is on the lookout for it also.
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Rake Away Thatchnot Til Dry
Its too early to talk about thatch but we need to do it now because many folks do it way too early. When we say thatch, were talking about the matted areas which have died out they can harbor snow mold. You dont want more than ½-inch of thatch on the ground. A good raking will promote air flow throughout the grass, prevent disease, and help germination. Its essential the ground and grass is dry enough or you will do more harm than good, raking up grass seeds. Rule of thumb: If footprints remain after walking, then its still too moist. That said, rake as soon as its dry and the grass is still brown raking too late will harm healthy roots.
Fall Fertilizer Tips To Set Your Calendar By
Fall is right around the corner. That means its time to play football, pick out pumpkins and prep our lawns for the cold winter months ahead. Fall fertilizing can set your lawn up for success year-round, but timing does matter. Drill down on the best practices for fall fertilizer with the experts from Spring-Green, your neighborhood lawn care professionals since 1977. The dates of the first frost in your area will vary by region, but heres what you generally need to know for fall lawn care.
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Your Spring Lawn Care Checklist
When you start thinking about the warmer weather coming in the springtime, images of water parks, picnics, cookouts and block parties may pop in your head. But you should be thinking about your lawn too.
As with all changes in seasons, your lawn must be ready for the warmer weather and sunshine that comes with spring. Below, our spring lawn care checklist breaks down everything you must do to ensure your lawn is ready before the weather warms up and your grass starts growing.
Preserve And Protect Your Lawn
While the major benefit of using lime in your lawn is correcting soil acidity, calcitic lime also adds an important nutrient to your lawn that’s right, calcium.
Calcium helps maintain your lawn’s colour and strength, and also helps protect the lawn from stress, including heat, drought, or heavy foot traffic.
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Loosen The Soilif Its Compacted
Do you have flower beds? After the winter, the soil in your garden beds may be completely compacted. Remove thick layers of leaves which are covering evergreen ground cover beds. Thin layers of leaves in your beds can be left alone and simply mulched over later. Theyll break down and add organic matter to your soil. Then, loosen the soil to help oxygen reach the plants roots. You can use hand tools for small areas, but larger areas may benefit from tilling.
A grass lawn also gets compacted soil, especially if people walk on it. If you see patches of moss or signs of decline, we would advise aerating the lawn this allows water and air to reach the root zone faster, resulting in new growth and increased root development. However, this is usually best done in the fall. Plan to rent a lawn aerator at your local home improvement store. If you aerate in the spring, it is important to core aerate before the soil temperature reaches about 55 degrees F. As it warms, youre simply making room for, and inviting, aggressive weed seeds to find a home.
Moss can also mean that your lawn is getting acidic. If you are growing grass, the goal is a neutral pH. Get a soil test . If your lawn is acidic, youll need to apply lime to it the Extension folks can advise you.
Mow Grassbut Not Too Soon
Mow the lawn when the grass level reaches 2 to 3 inches tall. The lawn needs time to recover after winter. However, if the grass grows too long, it shades the roots, which allows fewer weed seeds to sprout.
If you use a traditional lawn mower, spring is the time to clean the filter and spark plugs. Its important to sharpen the mower blade every month or two for a clean cut. When you just rip grass and leave it with open cuts, you leave your yard susceptible to fungi and disease. See more about lawn care.
If youre interested in alternative mowers, consider a reel mower or an electric mower as a more environmentally-friendly option. These mowers work best if your property is one-third of an acre or less. Its important to mow your grass regularly, as its much more difficult to cut the grass if it gets way too tall .
Of course, we have to mention that there are alternatives to grass as well! Many folks are starting to use more ground cover plants , walkways, and wider flower beds. Theres also a growing trend to add vegetable garden beds or to integrate edibles into your front yard. See more about edible landscaping!
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Keep The Yard Clear Throughout The Winter
As youre wrapping up yardwork in the fall, be sure not to leave anything behind. Rake away all the leaves and put away sprinklers, hoses, garden furniture, yard toys and decorations. If something is left on the surface, the grass will get matted down during the winter months. With the added moisture of rain and snow, this can also make the perfect environment for pests and mold to sneak in and damage the turf or kill it.
Dont Wait Too Long To Mow The Lawn
Finally, it may seem early, but in most parts of Pennsylvania, grass will be ready for its first trim sometime in April. We recommend that grass be mowed once it reaches about 3 inches in height. By mowing the new green blades when they get to this point, you will prevent the grass from getting overgrown and stimulate continual growth.
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Getting Ready For Spring Lawn Care
As your lawn responds to nature’s spring wake-up call, help prepare it for a year of healthy growth with the lawn care it needs to help it thrive. By tackling a few simple chores, you will prepare your lawn to defend itself against this year’s wave of weeds, diseases and drought.
Anytime in early spring or fall
Use only on established lawns of the following turf types: Bermudagrass, centipedegrass, all varieties of St. Augustinegrass and zoysia.
Do not use on any other turf types: bahiagrass, bentgrass, ormond variety of Bermudagrass, buffalograss, carpetgrass, dichondra, fescue, kikuyugrass, ryegrass or seashore paspalum lawns.
Use 2.5 pounds per 1,000 square feet
Apply anytime – spring through fall at temperatures between 50 degrees F and 90 degrees F.
On established lawns without harming lawn grasses.
Do not use on Carpetgrass, improved varieties of St. Augustinegrass, such as floratam, dichondra or desirable clovers.
- 0.073% Dicamba
- 0.240% Dithiopyr
|Use only on established lawns of the following turf types: Bermudagrass, Buffalograss, Kentucky bluegrass, ryegrass, fescue, seashore paspalum and zoysia.|
|Do not use on bahiagrass, carpetgrass, annual bluegrass , bentgrass, centipedegrass, St. Augustinegrass or dichondra.|
Spring Tips For Northern Lawns
When spring arrives in northern climates, lawn care shifts into high gear. Common cool-season lawn grasses such tall fescue, Kentucky bluegrass and perennial ryegrass enter one of their peak growth periods of the year. These northern lawn care tasks can take your lawn from early to late spring with optimized beauty and health:
Deal with post-winter lawn diseases now to prevent future problems.
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When To Apply Lawn Weed Killer
You will only kill weeds when they are actively growing. This means commencing sometime in May and finishing sometime in late September or early October.
I would not rush to apply lawn weed killer to the whole lawn in the early spring as there will be a lot of weeds that wont surface until later on. In early spring just spot or hand weed. For a good weed kill over a broad range of weeds in your lawn try starting in May. If you need to repeat the treatment you still have plenty of time before cold weather makes it impractical. Read the label of your weed killer to make sure repeat treatments are allowed.
A well fertilised lawn will help you get the most from your weed killer. In spring apply fertiliser in April and weed kill end of May or early June. In autumn feed 7-10 days before weed spraying.
One of my favourite times for complete lawn weed control is in late August or September whilst there is still some warmth around. I would recommend this if you just need the one application in the year. The reason for this is:
- Most weed types are still around
- The spring seeds in your lawn will have germinated so you get those as well
- Killing weeds in autumn is easier than killing winter hardened weeds in spring
- Youll have a weed free lawn until the next round of weed seeds germinate the following spring