Taking care of your lawn doesn’t have to be all-consuming, expensive or difficult. More often than not it just needs a little bit of effort on a regular basis to keep your lawn lush, healthy and the envy of the neighbours. The Daleys Turf team have compiled our All-Time Best lawn care tips to help you take care of your lawn.
The very best tip of all is to choose your lawn variety well in the beginning. Have a chat with a lawn professional about the location of your property, the local climate, the amount of maintenance you’re prepared to do, the amount of sunlight/shade in your yard – and they will be able to provide practical suggestions on the best lawn variety for your needs.
Weeds, Pests, Diseases
To maintain the health of your lawn and reduce the amount of herbicides, insecticides and pesticides applied to the lawn, it’s important that you deal with any issues as soon as they appear. Undertake at least a weekly inspection for weeds, pests and disease – that just means a few minutes walking around your yard taking a focused look at your lawn. If you see an issue in one part of the lawn, treat as soon as possible to avoid the problem affecting the entire space. Small amounts of weeds can usually be eradicated by hand before they invade the whole yard – same with pests and disease.
Be vigilant and ensure that you treat all three – weeds, pests and disease – as soon as they rear their heads. This will make sure that the problem doesn’t spread to the entire lawn, and will greatly reduce the need to use chemicals – herbicides, pesticides and insecticides and the like.
Mowing your lawn on a regular basis will encourage a dense mat which will, in turn, help to stop weed and pest invasions. Mow more often during the growing phase (warmer months) to ensure that the lawn stays healthy but don’t cut the lawn too short – a slightly longer lawn will protect the soil from the sun and will be healthier. Mowing too short also runs the risk of scalping and stressing the lawn.
Watering the right way
Too much water will weaken the stems and leaves and can even drown the roots if they become waterlogged. Aim for deep but infrequent watering that will provide the water needed and encourage a deep, strong root system. Aim for around 2.5 cms of water across the entire lawn each week – keep an eye on natural rainfall – Mother Nature might take care of this task for you from time to time. Just take notice of the lawn plants themselves – they’ll show you when they need water – they will begin to yellow and wilt. Don’t just water your lawn for the sake of it.
Applying fertiliser every few months will ensure that your lawn receives the nutrients it needs to stay strong and healthy, as well as maintaining it’s colour.
Don’t leave heavy objects sitting on the lawn and avoid using the same path over and over in the yard eg. back and forth to the clothesline – this will just lead to soil compaction which will then stop water, oxygen and nutrients penetrating the soil and reaching the root system. This will eventually lead to damage to the lawn plants. Fixing soil compaction is possible by using a garden fork to create air holes or a coring/aerating machine which will remove cores from the soil and open up the pathways for the much needed nutrients, oxygen and water.
Obviously lawns need adequate sunlight in order to survive and thrive. As a guide:
Couch, Kikuyu and Queensland Blue varieties of lawn need direct sunlight for the majority of the day – they won’t thrive in shaded areas.
Zoysia, Durban, Soft-leaf Buffalo varieties of lawn are able to survive with less direct sunlight and don’t mind a bit of shade.
Depending on the type of lawn you have, you can let more sunlight reach the lawn by trimming back any overhanging branches and shrubs.
While thatch is the natural layer that ensures lawn is durable enough to be walked and played on, and protects the soil below from water evaporation, it will build up over time and make it difficult to mow. If you find that your lawn is thick and spongy to walk on then it may be time to dethatch or vertimow your lawn – this process will remove the excess thatch and let the lawn regenerate from its own runners. You can remove thatch by strongly raking the lawn with a stiff, metal garden rake, or hire a vertimowing machine for larger areas.
All lawn care should be regular to ensure you don’t get bigger problems. Staying on top of your lawn care can take as little as ten minutes a day. You might need to spend a little more in the yard during the warmer months since that’s the growing phrase and also the time when top-up watering may be required.
There you have it – our all time best lawn care tips. To get started on the right foot, get your new lawn from the experienced team at Daleys Turf.