The last time your lawn was mowed before winter. How to get your lawn ready for winter?
The last time your lawn was mowed before winter. How to get your lawn ready for winter?
Don’t forget about your lawn when harvesting and preparing your beds for winter, even if it takes up a small portion of your garden. Only when properly prepared will your lawn enjoy itself from spring to fall. Try to do all lawn preparation for winter before the first frosts come.
The preparatory phase involves clearing the lawn of debris, fallen leaves and enthusiastic grass with a foam rake. Then it remains to cut or mow the grass to a height of 5-7 cm. In autumn, the lawn should be mowed less often than in summer – every two weeks, as the growth of the plants slows down.
The last time before winter, the lawn should be mowed in early October, but this is typical for the middle strip. In southern regions, the cold weather comes later, and in northern regions, snow may still lie in October.
Lawn must be mowed for the winter, but not too short; it should be at least 5 cm high. Overgrown grass will dry out with the onset of frost and could be an obstacle to new shoots in the spring. After mowing the lawn, remove the grass clippings.
September is the time to feed the lawn before winter. This is usually a phosphorus and potassium fertilizer. After fertilizing, water the lawn so that the fertilizer granules dissolve and do not cause chemical burns to the grass. Some experts recommend applying deoxia (chalk, lime flour, etc.).
If you find bunched-up posts in your lawn, have the grass seeds grafted, preferably the one you sowed, so that the newly grown grass is not different from the grass that grows on the dew, page ˅. Apply a 2-3 cm layer of sifted compost to the yellowed areas of the lawn. The grass catch can be left for the spring. In autumn, fill the holes formed with a mixture of sand and humus and lightly compact it.
The next step in preparing the lawn for wintering is to aerate the floor on which it grows. In other words, it is necessary to penetrate into the lawn to a depth of no more than 20 cm. This applies in particular to tapes. The piercing can be carried out with a pitchfork at 30-40 cm, which slightly raise the lawn.
In this way, drainage of the soil and access of air to the root system of plants is carried out. After draining work you should not go out on the lawn for 2-3 days. For lawns on sandy soils this stage of the work can be neglected, the water in such floors goes away on their own.
Before the onset of frost, it is better to cover the lawn with a mixture of peat and dry compost. For tired soil, this will be a good fertilizer.
Mow the grass for the last time.
Lawn care comes down to systematically mowing the grass. Winter is just around the corner, which means you need to take care of your lawn. How to properly mow it and what you should pay attention to in the first place? This is what we will talk about.
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How to properly mow the lawn
After mowing, you get a dense, beautiful covering of rich grass. If this procedure is not done in time, the lawn can look neglected. The first mowing should be done at the first stage of growth. In any case, the climatic conditions of the site should be taken into account. If the grass has reached a height of about 10 cm, it indicates that a number of manipulations will have to be carried out to shorten it.
To cut the lawn, it is desirable to choose a sunny day. The soil should not be too wet, as the lawnmower will not pull the grass by the roots.
Important: Before you mow the lawn for the first time, you should check whether the blades in the machine are needed and set them to the maximum height. During the warm season, mow the crops once every 7 days. If the rainy season comes and there is a lot of rain, mow less often, but in this case the height of the grass should not be maximum 5 cm.
The last cut of the season can be made 2 weeks before frosty days. This is usually in mid-October. In any case, the weather conditions must be taken into account. It is unacceptable to send the lawn to winter in an unacceptable form.
How to properly mow the lawn
In order for the lawn to always have a presentable appearance, and the machine for his mowing served for many years, you should not neglect a number of important rules:
- Each time before mowing, you need to inspect the lawn mower, to check if the trimmer has any damage.
- After the procedure, the device should be cleaned of grass. It is also necessary to sharpen the blades.
- Make sure that no stones or other objects are clogged in the device, which can cause malfunction.
- The container in which the grass catcher box is collected occasionally breaks down. It should not be allowed to be overfilled.
- If there are hard spots on the lawn, you should not use the machine. In these areas, the grass should be cut by hand with scissors.
- To protect the lawn from the scorching sun, the grass clippings can be placed on the surface.
- Mowing the grass should be resumed when it has outgrown the acceptable norms by 3 cm.
Mowing is carried out according to the following scheme:
- First, a strip is made in one direction.
- Then a parallel strip in the opposite direction.
Tip! When the grass has grown to the approved height, mow in the highest position first, then in the corresponding position.
Lawn mowing is a procedure that requires special care. If done correctly, the lawn will look neat and fresh.
Mulching your lawn for the winter. lawn mulching
In order to have a beautiful ornamental lawn on your property, you need to take proper care of it. Lawn care involves more than mowing. There are many other operations: feeding, aerating, combing and so on. Lawn mulching is not the least of these.
Why mulch a lawn?
All green lawns are constantly exposed to many adverse natural factors. As a result, their surface gradually deteriorates, nutrients are washed out of the soil. This can lead to weakened roots and deterioration of the appearance of the grass cover.
– Improvement of air and water circulation in the lawn soil; – Reduction of moisture evaporation in hot weather; – Increase of thickness and strength of the turf layer; – Replenishment of nutrients in the soil; – Acceleration of young shoots growth; – Leveling the lawn; – Improvement of lawn resistance to adverse weather conditions.
How and what to mulch the lawn
The easiest way to mulch a lawn is simply to run a grass mower over it. Of course, this produces a very thin layer of mulch that covers the green lawn more or less evenly. The only thing to keep in mind is that the grass must be well shredded. With regular lawn trimming, this is done on its own, and it’s very good for you. But by no means should this layer become too dense and airtight. And if it rains a lot at this point, the grass clippings can rot, bacteria and fungal infections can spread on their own and easily infect the growing plants. Therefore, mulch should be accumulated at least three times a year and combed through the lawn with a steel rake. Otherwise, bare spots can form on the green carpet. And then you will have to remove the old lawn and replace it with a new one.
Another type of mulching is carried out in autumn after the last mowing. Its purpose is to prepare the lawn for the winter to form a layer of good and nutritious soil.
In this case, the mulch consists of a mixture of peat, sand and garden soil. At the same time, the peat should only be well-decomposed, and the sand – a coarse river. The most common quarry – sand, which in dry weather flies, for example, dusty, is not suitable here. Peat and garden soil can be taken in equal quantities, and sand is added depending on the mechanical composition of the soil. If it is sandy, then sand is required no more than half the weight of the other two components of the composition. If it is heavy – in a ratio of 2 × 1. If there is no peat, instead of it you can use decomposed manure, finely chopped tree bark or old sawdust. About 1.5 kg of mixture per square meter of lawn.
The characteristics of autumn mulch
1. The components of the mulch should be sifted, dried and thoroughly mixed before beginning work.
2. it is very important to fill all depressions and not to create new gaps. The lawn grass must not be spread too much – it must always be above the level of the mixture. If this rule is not followed, some of the grass may die.
3. mulch is often combined with lawn fertilization and ventilation, especially on heavy soils. If the soil is hard, experts recommend going over it with a pitchfork to a depth of 10-15 cm. Some fertilizers can be added directly to the mulch.
4. Before you start mulching, the lawn should be thoroughly cleaned of plant debris and foreign bodies. Use an ordinary garden rocket for this purpose. Pour a layer of mulch about 0.5 cm thick and level it evenly with a fan rake. Sometimes wide and smooth boards are used on large plots. Such a covering not only protects the grass roots from winter frosts, but also prevents soil depletion.
Some people think that mulching is too complicated work, requiring impractical time and labor costs. But believe me, it is much easier to properly prepare your lawn for wintering in the fall than to do the restoration yourself in the spring.
Lawn preservation for the winter.
During the work, the day should be sunny and the grass should be dry
One of the important works to prepare your cottage for winter is lawn preservation. In order for your green lawn to feel good during the cold season and turn emerald green again in the spring, it is important to perform all the necessary procedures for a successful overwintering.
“Preparing the lawn for winter includes procedures such as last mowing, fertilizing, treatment against fungal diseases and, if necessary, aeration and scarification,” says Dmitry Panaseiko, a garden specialist at Garden World, next for a beautiful and healthy lawn Lawn care will be seasonal. All work should be done on a sunny and dry day. The soil may be slightly wet, but the grass should be dry.” Below we’ll talk about each method in detail.
FERTILIZING: LOW NITROGEN BUT HIGH POTASSIUM
Applying mineral fertilizer before winter will help ensure that the lawn’s root system develops normally and is resistant to adverse weather conditions. However, unlike spring and summer fertilization, which is aimed at the growth of green mass, fall fertilizers should stimulate the formation and growth of roots. Therefore, the usual nitrogen fertilizers are not recommended now – otherwise the grass can continue to grow in the winter, and we do not need it.
In the fall, it’s better to focus on phosphorus and potassium. “We recommend making fertilizers based on phosphorus, potassium and a small part of nitrogen, – says Dmitry Panaseiko, – the ideal fertilizer in this case are compositions with a high content of phosphorus (P) and potassium (K) . -Phosphate-potassium fertilizers (nitrogen (N) -10%, phosphorus (P) – 26%, potassium (K) – 26%), which besides the above mentioned elements also contain sulfur, magnesium, calcium and small amounts of Cu, Zn, Mn, Fe, Si, etc., which increase the agrochemical value of the fertilizer. If you have acidic soil, some experts recommend adding substances that reduce soil acidity – chalk or limestone flour.
Sow in the fall. Only on properly fertilized soil.
MOWING, AERATING, AND TILLING
Mowing the lawn before winter is a must, as overgrown grass left on the lawn creates a greenhouse effect and promotes lawn diseases. Ideally, the last mowing should be done 2 weeks before the first frosts, which is around the end of October in the central Ukraine. The grass is cut in such a way that during the frosts its height does not exceed 7-8 cm. You can put cuttings on the lawn – they become a kind of mulch and organic fertilizer.
If there is a lot of dry grass or hay on the lawn, you should scarify it, or to put it simply, comb it with a thick rake or a special scarifier. In winter, if it is not combed out, the hay turns into what is known as reeds – a dense layer of plant debris that contributes to lawn diseases. Leaves and other garden debris should also be removed from the lawn. If necessary, scarifying should be repeated in the spring.
WITH THE WIND. Aeration or “aeration” is necessary to normalize the access of moisture and nutrients to the roots of the lawn grass. This measure consists of piercing the soil throughout the lawn with a pitchfork or special equipment – an aerator. Moisture, oxygen and fertilizers flow freely through the holes formed to the roots, which ensures healthy grass growth. The holes can be filled with sand, which allows air and moisture to pass through well.
Measure. A small lawn can be “aired out” and so on.
DISEASE PROTECTION AND ROLLS
In winter, spores of various fungi can live on the grass under a layer of snow and multiply actively, which can significantly damage the lawn. To protect against disease, the lawn should be treated with fungicides. This treatment is preventative in nature and will greatly reduce the risk of rapid and drastic fungal disease development in the spring. Fusarium is one of the most common lawn diseases. The fungus spores are transmitted through contaminated soil or through the air, and the infection can develop from late fall through spring. The causative agent of Fusarium is frost-resistant, but it develops best at temperatures from 0 to minus 5°, and such temperatures are not uncommon in winter. Therefore, if the lawn is not protected from winter, signs of the disease can be recognized in the spring: silvery or slightly pink spots of glued grass on the thawed lawn, similar to snow (the disease is also called “snow”). Other lawn diseases are also true mildew, rust and red thread.
Getting your lawn ready for winter
Winter lawn care begins when grass growth stops. As well as cutting and feeding at the right time, there are other things you can do to prepare your lawn for the winter. When they are neglected, the grass freezes in winter and hurts in the spring. Mistakes in care mean the vegetation will have to be restored the following year.
In the south and coastal region, the preparation time is calculated so that 2 weeks elapse between the start and the first frost. In the middle belt, the beginning of wintering is scheduled for the second decade of September. With the onset of frost, preparatory procedures are completed.
In autumn, the rains begin, so it is not necessary to water the lawn vegetation. Water only when the weather is dry. To prevent water from collecting in puddles and not stagnating, sprinkling is used. This is regulated automatically: the intensity and fall of the droplets is reduced. If the air temperature drops, the water should be slightly heated.
If the air does not get warmer than + 5-7 degrees, irrigation is fully adjusted. Water is poorly absorbed by cold soil, and there is a chance that it stagnates on the surface. When the root system of lawn grass gets soaked, plants weaken, pathogens and mosses begin to develop in the ground.
The frequency of watering in dry weather is no more than twice a week based on air temperature. A week before the last mowing, watering is suspended and resumed in a few days.
In the middle belt, it is recommended to stop watering even in case of drought, otherwise the root system may freeze when frosts come. As for the care of grass in the fall, walking on the lawn is undesirable: presses shoes through the floor, and the lawn in these areas does not have time to overgrow. In the spring, “bare spots” form on the sagged areas.
In autumn, the lawn is fertilized with phosphorus- and potassium-containing fertilizers. The goal is to strengthen the root system. Strong roots ensure strong grass growth in the spring. When choosing fertilizer, the following ratio of nutrients should be achieved:
- N (nitrogen) – 10;
- P (phosphorus) – 30;
- K (potassium) 20
Potassium is especially important – it increases the frost resistance. There are special fertilizers for lawn fertilization in the fall, which contain the following trace elements:
In the middle belt agitates in autumn in September and in the first decade of November in the northern regions – a little earlier, in the south – later. Consumption rate – 300 g per 10 sq. m, if otherwise indicated on the package.
Airing is carried out shortly before fertilizing: pierce the top of the lawn with a root circle and lift it slightly. This is necessary to supply the root system with oxygen and moisture in the lower soil layers.
Lawn fertilizer in autumn can be used with a special cart, but it is better by hand so that the substance is distributed evenly. When using mechanical devices, large pellets are clogged in the holes. In addition, if the machine moves unevenly, in some areas there is more substance than necessary, and the grass burns out.
Fertilize 3-4 days after mowing in dry, cloudy weather. The vegetation should be dry and the floor slightly damp. After fertilizing, water abundantly immediately.
Preparing the lawn for winter includes mowing. Its frequency is gradually reduced: in the summer mush-grass1-2 times a week, closer to the autumn 1-2 times a month. The lawn should go to a residual state with a grass height of 6-8 cm. The last time it should be mowed is 2 weeks before frosts. In northern regions it is the third decade of September, in the middle belt – in the first half of October, and in the south of the country – until early November.
When deciding to trim your lawn in the fall, be guided by the frost statistics of recent years. When you mow, you leave the height of the grass about 4 cm, then the grass has time to grow to 8 cm. This is the optimum length at which the lawn overwinters well, and in the spring the old grasses do not interfere with the sprouting of new ones.
If a lawn is not left shortened, the grass field and roots do not get enough oxygen. Excessive shortening is also undesirable because the grass transfers nutrients to the roots.
You should not leave cut vegetation on the lawn: underneath it is a fungus that transfers to live grass. If the grass happens to be shorter than necessary, this is not critical. In this case, you can not run on the lawn, and the floor should be well mulched.
Sowing grass for the winter
Autumn sowing of the lawn is preferable. The floor and the air have optimum humidity. The weather is still warm enough for the seeds to germinate and there are no weeds at this time. If you sow the lawn in time in the fall, it will grow up to 8 cm during the frosts. In the winter, the grass will take good root and get stronger.
Create site preparation:
- Level the surface so water doesn’t stagnate;
- Perform drainage with sand or gravel;
- Remove debris, pebbles, and plants;
- Dig the hole and leave it for 2 weeks;
- Cover the floor with a layer – it provides the germinating seeds with nutrients;
- Check the pH level, and if it is below 5.5, apply and water.
- Mineral fertilizers are added.
Choose a quiet, calm day for sowing. Spread the seeds evenly, then cover with peat and roll with a roller. Excluded seeds can be watered if there is no rain.
The term is calculated so that about 40 days end with frosts. In order not to be late, you need to prepare the soil in August. Another option is to sow on slightly frosted soil shortly before snowfall. In this case, watering is not necessary. Seeds overwinter well and appear in early spring with friendly sprouts.
Autumn mowing of lawns can be carried out from August to October. They begin to prepare: fertilize, water, and after 3 days, the excess moisture is removed with a broom or watering can. The grass is combed to remove debris.
For sand, take sifted yellow sand with particles of 0.5 to 0.8 mm. Depending on the type of soil consist of a mixture:
- Regular. 3 parts sand – 3 parts peat, 4 parts soil.
- Sandy. 2 parts sand – 4 parts peat, 4 parts soil.
- Volumetric. 5 parts sand – 2 parts peat, 3 parts soil.
The mixture is thoroughly mixed and evenly distributed over the lawn, spending 3 kg per 1 sq. m. A small area is handled manually, it is more convenient to use a bag of sand. After spreading the mixture, it is scattered with a brush or broom. The effect of the process can be improved by adding zeolite, a water-soluble organic fertilizer.
Thanks to the sand, the structure and mineral composition of the soil, the fertility of the upper layer improves, the roots are better supplied with oxygen, the plants are less sick.
Do not apply sand if the lawn is on a steep slope. As a result, a stepped hill is formed. If the soil is sandy or just very loose, this procedure is also not worth doing, as the sand will grow loose.
Scarifying the lawn in the fall is done in mid or late October. The purpose of this measure is to remove the accumulated straw. If its layer does not exceed 5 mm, it is not necessary: straw works as mulch, maintaining a favorable temperature and humidity at the roots. But if there is too much straw, it becomes a favorable environment for weeds, pathogens and fungi. In the first 2 years, the thickness of the layer reaches 10 mm.
Three weeks before planting, assess the condition of the lawn. If there are weeds, treat the lawn with a product against them. Otherwise, this step is canceled. 2 weeks before the procedure, the grass is mowed to a height of 5 cm. It is better to mow several times and cut the grass shorter. One week before the treatment, the lawn should be treated with an anti-moss product. 1 day before the procedure, the remains of moss are removed with lawn sleepers, and if they are not available, fans will do.
For the treatment of the lawn, any sander is suitable: gasoline, electric or manual. The processing is carried out in several passes. Start with the corner. The first pass moves along the long side, as if mowing. Reaching the ledge, go to the side and move back. After finishing the entire lawn, collect the grass with a lawn mower capable of creating plant debris.
During the second pass, move diagonally at a 45-degree angle in the first direction. After the sifting, the lawn looks bad. However, it will soon recover, especially if warm, moderately rainy weather persists for a while. In the spring, sow the seeds so that the grass grows thicker.
Knowing how to prepare your lawn for winter, all that’s left to do is to take action without missing anything. Then the lawn will be thick and emerald green in the spring.