It can be a challenge to keep grass looking green and lush in shady parts of the garden, however with a little know-how and regular lawn care maintenance, your lawn can look thick and green – even in shaded areas. Find out how to care for a shady lawn with lawn care tips from Paynes Turf.
Large trees and buildings often create unwanted shady areas in the garden. Grass needs at least 4 hours of natural light every day In order to grow strong and healthy – without this healthy turf will become less resilient and prone to disease. Turf that is constantly under shade will generally require a helping hand from the gardener in order to grow strong and healthy.
If possible, prune large overhanging branches from trees to improve light levels to the grass. Trees need an enormous amount of water and can literally suck the life out of turf. To prevent grass competing with trees for water and vice versa, keep a turf-free zone one metre around the base of trees.
Grass generally grows at a much slower rate in shady areas, so the need for mowing is lessened. Mow less frequently than grass in sunny areas, and mow slightly higher than you normally would – to around 6cm in height. To protect the healthy part of the grass blades and encourage stronger growth, never cut more than a quarter off the top of the grass blades at any one time. In addition, always remove the grass clippings after mowing in shady areas as the darker damp conditions coupled with clippings left on the lawn could encourage the onset of lawn diseases.
Give shady lawns a growth boost by feeding in the autumn. Fertilisers rich in potassium are excellent for grass that is growing in the shade. Feed the lawn just before the leaves fall in the autumn for the best results.
Scarify your lawn in spring and autumn to remove moss and thatch. Thatch is a build up of dead plant material which could suffocate the grass if left. To remove thatch and moss, gently pull a fine tined rake across the lawn. The extra space created between the grass blades will allow the grass to thicken up, especially when top-dressed and seeded where necessary.