Autumn lawn care tips
September and October is the ideal time to give your lawn a little TLC and prepare it for the winter ahead. Find out how to treat your lawn to a full workout and health boost, with lawn care tips from Essex turf supplier, Paynes Turf.
Scarify the lawn
Scarifying involves removing dead plant material, including dead roots and moss (known as thatch), from the lawn. Thatch builds up over time and could eventually cause the grass to turn yellow and die, so try to remove it on a regular basis.
To scarify your lawn simply drag a spring-tine rake across the grass, pulling it towards you in short, sharp movements. You’ll find that you will have removed a surprising amount of dead material. Your lawn may look a little ‘bald’ in places after scarifying, but don’t worry – if you aerate the lawn and apply a top dressing, your lawn will recover over the winter months and will be greener, stronger, and healthier than before.
Aerate the lawn
Aerating involves poking small holes into the lawn to allow water to drain through easier and faster. If your lawn is often waterlogged then it will benefit greatly from aerating every year. Aerating will also allow fresh air and nutrients to reach the roots of the grass which will help to promote healthy growth, and also help to ease soil compaction.
To aerate a lawn you’ll need a garden fork. Push the fork into the lawn, down to around 15cm deep over the entire area, 10-15cm apart. This could take some time, so if you have a large lawn then you may want to consider hiring a spiking machine to enable you to complete the job much faster.
Apply a top dressing
After aerating your lawn, apply a top dressing. This will provide essential nutrients to allow your lawn to grow healthy and strong, will assist with drainage problems, and help to even up bumps in the lawn.
To apply, simply use a stiff broom (or the back of a rake) to brush the top dressing into the lawn, and then water thoroughly. Make sure that you have left the surface of the lawn flat and even, or you could end up with a lumpy lawn!
Repair damaged sections
If you have areas of lawn that have been damaged or worn down by pets or children playing, it’s a good idea to overseed these areas. Autumn is the perfect time to overseed as the cooler, wetter weather will encourage the seeds to grow quickly. All you need to do is apply grass seed (following the manufacturer’s instructions) and water in.
Feed the lawn
Feeding your lawn during the autumn will provide much needed nutrients which will allow the lawn to survive a harsh winter. An application of autumn lawn feed also discourages the onset of Fusarium Patch – a lawn disease that often occurs during the autumn and winter months.
Each fertiliser is different, so always follow the manufacturer’s instructions on how to apply.