Autumn and Winter Lawn Care
13 Feb 2014
At this time of year the lawn may not look its best after a horrendous wet autumn & winter period which will inevitably bring moss. Moss is a symptom of poor growing conditions and will occur if the soil is compacted and/or if there is little or no air movement to help dry out the soil surface. Spiking with a garden fork or hollow tinning (the removal of soil cores) helps relieve compaction. Then top dress the lawn with coarse sand (4kg per square metre) and brush as much as possible into the holes – this will keep the holes open and increase root development.
Correct mowing and feeding will also help suppress moss growth, ensuring the grass is cut not too short allowing the leaf blade to be strong and enable itself to grow vigorously so there is no room for moss to invade.
Regular feeding of the grass throughout the year will continue a healthy grass sward whether it is in the Spring/Summer when top growth is required or through the Autumn/Winter period when root development is occurring.
The Dreaded Casting Worms!
Throughout the Autumn/Winter months there will be an increase in worm activity, although worms are good for the garden, they can be a real problem in the lawn by producing surface worm casts. Ignoring the casts and squashing them flat with the mower or underfoot creates an uneven surface, smothers the grass and provides a seedbed for weeds to grow on.
Casting worms do not like acid soils, so when a soil acidifier is applied to the lawn they will burrow deeper into the soil. This will not harm them but will reduce the casts on the surface. Prevention is always better than cure and we recommend that an application of Sulphur is made before the casts become a problem. An acidic soil will also ensure a healthy lawn, as plant nutrients are made more readily available, resulting in better colour, vibrancy and growth.
Sulphurlawn chips are a special mini-granular formulation designed specifically for acidifying the soil. Apply them at two-monthly intervals to create the ideal soil acidity and always water-in after applying during the drier weather.
One of the traditional methods of controlling moss on lawns is the use of iron-based products; which blacken and kills the moss. We recommend that the lawn is left for 10-12 days to allow the iron to really bite into the moss; then it’s a simple matter of raking out the dead grass.
Once this process has been carried out the area may be sparse of grass which may need overseeding at 30 grams per square metre.
This product is an excellent quick-acting form of iron for extra hardening and blackening of the lawn in the autumn and for use all year round as a green-up. It contains a very high 20% soluble iron; making is stronger than standard preparations for greening and toughening the lawn to promote strength and disease resistance
Fertilising the lawn is very important especially after a wet winter that we have experienced as the majority of nutrients will be either used by the plant or been washed through the soil profile and therefore the grass will be hungry. A fertiliser with a balanced feed will be required with a good Nitrogen percentage as Nitrogen increases leaf growth which in the Spring is important to ensure a healthy plant.
The number one lawn fertiliser applied three times per year at four monthly intervals, provides all the essential nutrients needed for healthy grass growth without the flushing effect that can occur with other fertilisers. Will not burn or scorch and requires no watering-in. Can have Sulphur added to help acidify the soil if required.
Happy gardening, we love to hear from you so any questions of concerns regarding your garden please drop us a line.
Posted on Categories : Lawncare, Lawn Fertilisers, Worm Control, Moss Control, Grass Seed Mixtures, Organic Lawn Fertilisers
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