Winter is synonymous with cold and snow. You tend to cuddle up in warm clothes while avoiding outside activities, including lawn maintenance and care. Still, you should remember that your lawn does not have the luxury of warmth and heat; it, therefore, requires you to put a bit more effort into keeping your grass green through winter.
To achieve green grass during winter, you should invest in some lawn care procedures long before winter arrives. Not only that, but there are also steps to take during the winter season to maintain green grass.
Early Lawn Care Tips to Achieve Green Grass during Winter
#1. Remove fallen leaves before snowfall, in preparation for seeding
Fallen leaves should be raked and removed, to give the lawn access to sunlight. Without light, the grass may end up dead as seeds cannot penetrate the soil. Also, clearing your lawn will help with weeding and mowing while raking will stir surface soil, which is a practical way to strengthen the roots of your grass.
Another substitute for removing fallen leaves is by pulverizing tree leaves with a mulching mower and allowing the leaves to decompose on your lawn. Note that it has been established that a coating of tree leaves up to 15 cm deep can be mulched in a lawn without adversely affecting it.
#2. Ensure you mark irrigation heads to avoid damaging your grass during mowing
For areas that are irrigated, flag all sprinkler heads, mainly if rotors are used. Rotors tend to stick up a half-inch or more and could get damaged by lawnmower blades during the scalping process. To pulverize, you start with mowing dry leaves with a mulching mower with a sharp mower blade.
#3. Weeds will get your grass killed
They should be removed as soon as possible. The faster weeds are removed, the less likelihood of them robbing your lawn of nutrients. Weeds, when not removed before winter, will cause more harm in the cold weather.
#4. Fertilize the soil early
This will boost the healing of lawns damaged by the summer toil and provide nutrients for the coming winter. You should do this just before the winter season commences to nourish and strengthen the grassroots against frost.
Two applications of fertilizer are required here. The first application in early fall (from mid-August to mid-September), with a compost-enriched in nitrogen and potash, will boost lawn growth and recovery from damage that occurred during the growth period.
Fertilizer should be applied at a rate to deliver 0.5 kg of nitrogen per 100 m2. Later on, when the seeds germinate in mid- to late October, you use a starter fertilizer to accelerate root growth, this time, with a fertilizer high in potassium and phosphorus.
#5. Raise the mowing height a bit above average in the fall
The depth of your grassroots is equalized with the height mowed. In other words, the length of the lawn mowing determines the depth of the roots as well as the insulation of the crown of the grass. However, the grass should not be excessively long in winter to avoid the grass being matted and encouraging winter diseases such as pink and grey snow mold.
#6. Overseed lawns as early as autumn
During this period, the climates are ripe for germination due to cold air temperature and warm soil. This will allow the seedlings more time to germinate without any adverse effects. Overseeding will also fix damages that fertilizer couldn’t.
Perennial ryegrass (standard), fine fescue (for shade or low maintenance) and tall fescue (for drought tolerance), are the recommended species for overseeding. For best results, use a seed spreader. If you don’t own one, you can rent one for the day at your local gardening shop.
#7. Water your seedlings three times daily
Do this early in the morning, late in the afternoon, and middle of the night. Germination can happen within 7 to 21 days into the process. It is essential to keep the seeds moist over the 21 days. Try not to over water too in order not to drown the grass seed. Cease the three times a day routine once the grass grows to one inch tall. And then once a day will be sufficient.
Winter Lawn Maintenance to Achieve a Green Grass
After you must have completed the early lawn care tips in fall and autumn, you shouldn’t relax, you should maintain the green grass during the winter season in the following ways.
- Do not mow the grass after it had rained. If you mow wet grass, you’ll only end up damaging the roots of the grass.
- Reduce friction on your lawn by restricting footsteps on your turf. Limited movement on the grass will allow it to grow, especially in winter. Take proper care of your grass by stopping footwalks over it in wet and cold climates
- Remove heavy objects and outdoor furniture from your lawn. These objects can cause dead spots in areas they have been, so they should not be found on fragile, wet, and cold winter grass. Again, when springtime returns, those particular dead spots will still be visible as they won’t flourish. Further, the dead grass left by heavy objects may likely lead to diseased patches that will lure in pests such as mice and insects.
- Winter and ice are synonymous, don’t leave your grass to battle with the ice alone. You should scrap away deep shades of ice accumulated on the grass to give your lawn a better chance at surviving the harsh elements.
Your grass doesn’t have to be all frost and ice during winter. Following the above lawn care tips, you can keep your grass green during the winter season. You’ve understood that the preparation for winter comes way earlier before winter. Now is the appropriate time to begin the implementation of the mentioned lawn care.
Start by clearing fallen leaves and weeds, the oversees, fertilize, and water. The second set of tips doesn’t have to happen now until winter season begins, and you’ll end up with a green and luscious grass.