April Lawn Care
Taking Your Time
With very few exceptions your lawn and soil will need time to adjust to new conditions as you change them. A good rule of thumb is to wait until you have mowed your lawn three times before addressing the next issue. Yes, it can take some patience, but the end result will be effective solutions and a healthier lawn. Allowing an adjustment period in between projects will require some planning (if you have multiple turf issues you’d like to fix) and let temperature be your guide for what to do when.
Cool Temperature Lawn Care
While there is still a chill in the air and night temperatures are low you can take care of:
Aeration and Drainage:
Aerating your lawn and improving drainage before your grass starts growing in earnest will set your lawn up for success. Start by aerating your lawn then rake in a ¼” thick layer of washed, coarse sand. This helps to introduce more oxygen to the cramped root system of your lawn and improves drainage immensely. If you haven’t limed yet this spring, you can apply it right after you aerate too.
Once the temperatures have warmed to about 10°C in the daytime and 6°C at night, you can overseed to thicken up your lawn. We recommend using ‘Natural Knit’ which contains a blend of stoloniferous and perennial ryegrasses. These grasses are vigorous growers that can hold their own against aggressive weeds. You’ll want to spread 5lb of seed for every 1000 square feet, spreading it as evenly as possible. After seeding, you must keep the seed moist for its entire germination cycle. This will take 7-10 days under ideal conditions but could take up to 14 days if the weather stays cool. Other overseeding options include microclover, a derivative of ‘White Dutch’ clover, that grows like other grasses, is drought tolerant and attracts pollinators such as bees. Please note, night temperatures should be at 8°C to seed new lawns; overseeding can be done when it’s a bit cooler.
Warm Spring Weather Lawn Care
Once the weather warms, you can take on the next projects (as needed):
Moss thrives in areas of shade, acidic soil, poor drainage and low fertility. By aerating, sanding and liming early in the season you’ll start to improve your situation, and then, when it’s warm enough, you can apply moss control. Moss control is heat-activated, so you’ll need at least two dry days above 12°C for it to be effective. After the moss control had done its work, remove the dead moss. Wait until you’ve mowed your lawn three times before you start to overseed to fill in the gaps.
You can stay 100% organic by pulling them out, and long handled weed-pullers can make it easier on your back! Alternatively, you can spot treat your lawn with liquid solutions. The best time to target weeds is when they are actively growing and when nighttime temperatures are hovering around 10°C. Organic treatments need heat to be effective, so day time temps around 15°C and two dry days following application are required. Make sure you take the time to read product packaging to make sure it targets the weeds you want to eliminate. The packaging will also provide detailed application instructions.
Fertilizer is a great boost that can help your lawn flourish through the growing season. Mature lawns will benefit from a slow release fertilizer, which shouldn’t be applied until the grass starts actively growing. Hold off on fertilizing until you see promising new growth, so that you know you’ll be feeding your grass and not hungry weeds.