We’ve all heard the phrase “the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence.” And sure, we all know it’s a metaphor for being content with what we have…but right now, it is summer. And we want our grass greener. So, make sure your grass stays green all season long by following these steps to rejuvenate your yellowing or struggling lawn.
Start With Weeding
Every good lawn care practice will begin with one simple, highly beneficial, and often loathed exercise: weeding. A greener lawn is a healthy one and a healthy lawn is free of pesky weeds that are robbing your precious grass of its nutrients. So, while it may not be your favorite task, before you do anything else, start your “green revival” with a thorough weeding. We find that getting our hands dirty and using them as the primary tools to remove weeds all the way down to the root works best. And if you find that the weeds have networked a bit more than you anticipated, pick up an herbicide to spread throughout your lawn. As with any chemical substance you add to your lawn, be sure to do your research on what to use and how much to use per area.
Remove Excess Debris
Now that you’ve gotten rid of the weeds, you can focus on the other areas that are causing your lawn to look less than green. One of the first things to look for after weeding is debris. This can be lawn trimmings, leaves, mulch, or other vegetation that can get packed into your lawn through a number of different ways. The more there is, the more your lawn can get choked out or not receive enough sunlight. This is commonly called “thatch” and you need to get rid of it. Raking and bagging your lawn will help but to really eliminate thatch, try using a power de-thatcher. These are much like a reel mower except they dig up/slice up debris. Your lawn will need to heal afterward and it will probably look a bit torn up, however after one to two weeks, it will begin to look healthy again (and it will be now that it’s thatch-less).
Next, it’s time to consider aerating. This may depend on the last time you aerated your lawn as you can aerate too frequently and cause too much stress on the grass and soil. If you haven’t done so this season, it’s may be the boost your lawn needs to stay green throughout the summer. First, test a section of your lawn by carefully digging straight down and lifting up a small area (about a hand trowel worth) and check to see if the grass roots are deep or shallow. If deep (3 inches or more), you may not need to, but if less than 3, it might be time to aerate. This will allow your soil to breath and take in more nutrients. Be sure to give your lawn plenty of time to recover afterward by not walking on it or intensely mowing.
When all this is done, inspect the areas of your lawn that still look like they’re struggling and spot treat these sections with fresh seed. An aerated lawn is the perfect time to spread seed so the new grass will acclimate to the rest of your lawn fairly quickly.
All these efforts together will prepare your lawn to receive ample sunshine, absorb rainfall, and have breathable, well churned soil to provide an optimal condition for your grass to grow in. Be sure to mow according to the grass type you have, being careful not to mow too low or let the grass grow too high. Also, the summer months will mean keeping an eye on how much water your lawn is receiving. Be careful not to overwater and drown your lawn but don’t neglect it either. Start with once every morning for 10 minutes and gauge appropriately from there. Before you know it, your grass will be the greenest side of any fence!