Everyone loves a beautiful lawn, right? Unfortunately, there is a lot that goes into creating that perfect landscape. Throughout the year, we mow the grass, fertilize, water, rake leaves, plant new grass, and more. But there’s a lot that homeowners can do in the fall to make sure that their lawn is taken care of throughout the winter season and ensures that that the landscape is easier to take care of in the spring.
Lawn care takes careful planning and being on top of getting things done right when they are needed. At Impeccable Landscapes, we have been in the lawn care industry for over 20 years and we know exactly what a landscape needs to look, well, impeccable! If you’re not able to, don’t have time, or the means of taking care of your lawn, but still want to enjoy lying in a bed of soft, lush grass, then get in touch with our experienced landscapers today. We serve the entire Spokane, Washington, area and would love to give your lawn the attention it craves.
What Your Lawn Wants in the Fall to Protect it During the Winter
It’s tempting for homeowners to mow the lawn when it gets just slightly above the desired length. But whether it’s spring, summer, or fall, cutting the grass too early will only do more harm than good. When the weather begins to cool, only mow the lawn every 10 to 14 days until the leaves have all dropped and make sure the blades are still 1 to 1½ inches long. Keeping the grass at a healthy length will make sure it can protect itself during winter. Mowing the lawn will also help you identify any bare patches that will need fertilizer added.
Over the summer, the soil can become compacted simply by walking on the grass or when heavy equipment is used on the lawn. This prevents essential nutrients, water, and air to reach the roots of the grass. For northern, cool-climate grasses, early fall is a great time to aerate the lawn. There are several aerators that can be used, including spike, slicing, and core or plug aerators. Most lawn care professionals use core or plug aerators that pull up small cylinders of soil. This is best done when the soil is moist, going back and forth until the entire lawn has been aerated.
Top-Dress or Compost
If you have a high-quality organic compost or top-dress available, use this to sprinkle on areas where the grass is sparse. This will help prepare the area for seeding. Spread about a half-inch layer of compost and work it in with a rake. Make sure the compost is at the final stage and ready to be used. It should be dry, crumbly, and cool to the touch. When the compost is fully cured, it will have the maximum levels of humus, a perfect nutrient for soil.
Giving the soil a layer of fertilizer will ensure that the grass is lush and green in the spring. Spread a thin layer of fertilizer over the lawn using a rotary spreader. If you already know the soil type in your yard, go ahead and use the recommended fertilizer based on the soil’s needs. If you’re not sure of the soil type, it’s best to have a soil test done so you can give the soil the proper nutrients. When spreading the fertilizer, be careful to not put too much down.
Depending on how much precipitation there has been, you can either slow down how much you are watering the lawn or stop altogether. The temperatures in Spokane at night can reach fairly low, so when you head into early October and November, you can safely stop watering completely. While you still want to provide some moisture, the dew in the morning may be enough and you don’t want to risk freezing the grass.
Cool weather and plenty of water equals the perfect breeding ground for mosquitoes. Even though this isn’t exactly a lawn care tip, it will make your landscape more comfortable to spend time in. Mosquitoes don’t need much stagnant water to lay eggs in, so do a thorough check of your garden, rainwater barrels, flowerbeds, and any pots laying around for potential mosquito homes. When they don’t lay eggs in the fall, there will be fewer mosquitoes in the spring.
In the fall, many homeowners simply rake up the fallen leaves and cross their fingers that the grass will look OK in the spring. When you want a flawless landscape, it requires some elbow grease and some know-how. At Impeccable Landscapes, we know that everyone has busy schedules and sometimes the lawn care is the last thing on the to-do list. If you fall in this category, get in touch with our team. We have served the Spokane area for years and we know how to do lawn care right. Call today for a quote.