Sometimes, all we need to feel better is a bit of springtime sunshine and warmth. However, as you venture outside, you quickly notice that the winter has left its mark on your yard. There are bare patches and broken branches everywhere. What’s more, the spring brought all sorts of annoying weeds that ruin the look of your garden.
Like all other seasons, the spring requires homeowners to do some basic maintenance in their yards. That green area behind (or in front of) your house will certainly thank you for addressing a couple of vital tasks.
Here’s how to take care of your yard in the spring:
Prepare your lawnmower for the season
Maintaining a happy, healthy lawn requires regular care. And out of all your gardening tools, none works as hard as the lawnmower.
Before using the lawnmower for the first time in the season, have it serviced. An experienced technician will check the battery, spark plug, belts, air filter, and the starter.
The technician will also sharpen the machine’s blade. Don’t forget – a dull blade makes rugged cuts, leaving your grass susceptible to diseases.
Keep weeds under control
A well-maintained yard successfully resists weeds. However, a couple of interlopers are inevitable.
If your yard is small, getting rid of the dandelions will take just a few minutes. Those with larger yards should consider using appropriate organic herbicides.
Make sure you’re using the herbicide only where it’s needed, though. Otherwise, you may damage or even kill the plants in your yard.
Either way, it’s of crucial importance to deal with the weeds during springtime. They compete with grass – eradicating them before they spread will get your yard off to a good start.
Fill in the blanks
Weeds are bound to fill all of your yard’s bare patches if you leave them unattended. Fill in the blanks with sod patches or grass seeds.
Whatever option you decide to go with, you’ll have to prepare the soil first. It’s nothing too complicated – use a rake to loosen the soil’s surface.
After sowing the seeds, cover them lightly with some fresh topsoil. After that, simply tamp it down. For sod patches, on the other hand, cut one so that it fits and press it into the soil as firmly as you can.
In both cases, watering is essential. It’s particularly important for the seeds – they need moisture until germination. This leads us to the next step:
Water the right way
The right time to water the yard is when it needs it. At the start of the season, watering isn’t as important.
As expected, the part of the grass that grows first is the root. When the ground is dry, the roots grow deeper into the soil than usual. Deep roots are crucially important during hot summer days – your grass won’t go yellow as easily.
This is precisely why holding off on watering at first is so important.
When is the time to water? Take a walk across the yard and have a closer look at the grass. If the blades you stepped on aren’t springing back, it’s time to water.
Aerate your yard
If your yard gets heavy traffic, this may lead to soil compaction. Compacted soil can make it hard for the new grass to develop roots. The solution is called lawn aeration.
This process of making small holes in the soil can be done with a lawn aerator. Whether manual or motor-powered, an aerator will create openings that allow air and water to get into the soil.
Spring aerating should be done before weeds go to seed. The best time to do it is around Memorial Day.
Spring fertilization needs to be lighter than the autumn one. After all, you’ll be feeding tender new grass.
During April or May, when your grass is actively growing, treat it with a slow-release, well-balanced fertilizer. You can also fertilize organically – use mulching mowers and compost.
If you’re unsure how to do this properly, consider hiring an approved yardwork expert.
A well-maintained yard isn’t just pretty to look at – it’s something that grows your home’s value. By tackling a few simple springtime chores, your yard will be healthy enough to deal with this year’s wave of drought, diseases, and weeds.