Every year many homeowners who had a great looking lawn for the first half of the year tell us once August hits, my lawn seems to fall apart! Let’s discuss why this happens.
What were you doing in the year prior to each summer’s heat and drought? Did you plant your grass seed in early fall so that it has at least nine months to establish a good root system? That is why you hear that fall is the best time of year to plant grass seed, trees and shrubs. During the fall months the ground is warm, rainfall tends to stabilize, heat, insects and weeds are much less of a problem and plants establish well. If you wait and plant grass seed in the spring you only have a few months to get it established and then wham… hot, dry weather shows up, thank you Mother Nature! Now if you have bare spots, yes, apply grass seed in the spring or weeds will fill in these spots.
If crabgrass is a problem in your lawn ask yourself did you apply crabgrass preventer in the spring? Did you apply it too early so the control was not effective later? Cool, wet weather delays spring crabgrass germination until late spring. Excessive rain also washes out some of the crabgrass control’s effectiveness. Apply Jonathan Green Crabgrass Preventer plus Green-Up Lawn Fertilizer in late spring extending the length of control or consider applying a second application around June 1st to extend control into summer months. Remember, crabgrass only grows in sunny areas of your lawn.
Did you fertilize your lawn only once since the beginning of this year? If so, your lawn is hungry and needs to eat more than one to two times a year. During the growing season from March through November your lawn should be fed three to four times a year for optimum growth, and to resistance insects, heat and drought conditions. Man cannot live on bread or vitamins alone, plants need food too. Use Jonathan Green Green-Up Lawn Fertilizer or try one of our organic fertilizers like Natural Beauty.
What about your watering practices? More lawns are being damaged by improper watering either with over watering or under watering. The rule of thumb is one inch of water week from rainfall or irrigation. The exception to this rule is in severe hot, dry weather. We would prefer to have you water three to four times a week during severe weather but for longer durations. Your watering practices from spring through summer will determine how you lawn survives. Watering too much during these months promotes shallow roots and when hot, dry weather comes along your lawn suffers greatly. Did you go on vacation and your lawn turned brown? Did you forget to turn on the sprinkler? If the heat and drought are severe enough, the lawn will go dormant, like a hibernating bear during winter. This is a natural state for the lawn trying to survive. Many areas of your lawn if well-established will come back in the fall when favorable weather returns.
Consider changing your fertilizing program to include some organic lawn fertilizers. They help to promote good soil health and can prepare the soil to hold more moisture. By promoting the biological activity in the soil you will grow a healthier grass plant. The Jonathan Green line of organic products promotes healthy soil. Healthy soil is necessary in order to grow a healthy plant. Traditional fertilizers tend to feed the plant and not address soil conditions. Organics also provide a slow, gentle feeding during summer months. Use Jonathan Green Organic Lawn Fertilizer or Natural Beauty Lawn Fertilizer to give your lawn the nourishment it needs. Do not fertilizer your lawn if temperatures are greater than 85 degrees and with high humidity levels to avoid any potential to burn the grass while it is under heat and drought stress.
We hope your lawn holds up well this summer so you can keep having fun playing kick-ball and having picnics. If you are disappointed in your lawn, try a new, long-term approach to your lawn care with Jonathan Green products. Happy summer!