Fall might not seem like the perfect time for lawn maintenance, considering your landscaping may soon face wintery precipitation. However, moist, cool fall weather will help grass develop better than in summer. Proper fall lawn care helps you enjoy lush, green grass year-round. Here are five fall lawn maintenance tips to keep your yard healthy throughout the year.
Remove Leaves for Fall Lawn Maintenance
While fallen leaves are beautiful to look at, they aren’t great for your grass. Leaves block sunlight and trap moisture, creating ideal conditions for diseases and mildew. So, when leaves start to fall, rake them regularly before they accumulate. This boosts circulation in the lawn and allows the yard to receive enough sunlight.
Continue Watering the Grass
In the fall, many homeowners cut back on watering the lawn. While there is usually more precipitation in autumn, it may not be enough to keep your grass healthy and hydrated throughout the season.
Continue watering your lawn at least once weekly. Use a rain gauge to track how much water your yard is getting. If it isn’t getting one inch of moisture or more per week, you need to water it.
Fall Lawn Maintenance Involves Mowing
Don’t put the mower and lawn equipment away just yet. Grass won’t stop growing until the first hard frost, so cut it regularly to maintain an ideal height.
Be sure not to cut it too short or the blades will struggle to photosynthesize enough nutrients before winter, impeding your lawn’s ability to withstand dry, cold weather. Grass that is too long may become matted under leaf litter or heavy snow. Letting it grow long will also trap moisture, making it vulnerable to fungi and diseases.
Fall Lawn Maintenance: Aerate
Regular aeration is critical for effective fall lawn maintenance. Aeration helps to loosen soil and reduces thatch and debris that block nutrients, oxygen, and water from reaching the earth. Experts recommend performing aeration before fertilizing.
Apply Fertilizer in the Fall
Just as the grass roots need water, they also benefit from a seasonal fertilizer. Adding fertilizer gives your lawn sufficient nutrients to survive the winter season and helps the grass grow healthier in the spring.
Perform these fall lawn maintenance steps and make sure you follow the timetable for each action. For instance, if you fertilize or seed too close to winter, your soil won’t have adequate time to absorb the nutrients, and the new grass won’t develop strong roots before cold weather arrives. If you aerate the lawn when it’s too hot outside, moisture in the soil will evaporate quickly, and the project won’t be as efficient.
It’s easy to keep your lawn healthy with regular upkeep. If you don’t have the time or equipment for lawn maintenance, hire a professional landscaping company to do the work for you.