Do not ignore your lawn just because it’s cold outside. Many of the things homeowner have to do to have a healthy lawn come spring starts during the winter, when temperatures begin to drop. For example the best season to prune your trees is winter because pruning promotes new growths and production of fruit.
If you failed to winterize your lawn mower in the autumn, it is not too late to have Salomon Lawn Care & Exteriors come and check things out and get it spruced up in time for the next mowing season. Salomon Lawn Care & Exteriors works 365 days a year. Our work months include of months of every season including winter, spring, summer and fall. During the winter, we offer lawn care clean-up services. We can rake and blow your leaves from the ground and take care of things that may not have been done in the fall.
Winter Lawn Care Tips:
Care of your lawn in the fall is as important as in spring and summer. Regular care is the key to an attractive and healthy lawn through the fall and winter months in St Louis Mo. Here are few things you can do to help your lawn survive the winter and recover vigorously in the spring.
Fertilization & Weed Control: Fall fertilization and weed control in St Louis Mo is the key to prolonging fall color keeping your winter lawn nice. It also helps in promoting early spring recovery of the lawn. It helps produce a dense turf that resists winter weeds. Fertilizer used in the fall should be higher in nitrogen and potassium and lower in phosphorus. Grasses fertilized this way have shown greater survival during winter months than those fertilized with high phosphorous.
Watering: When your lawn goes dormant during winter months, it is important to remember the grass is living and needs moisture for survival. During the winter, if it doesn't rain for several weeks, then the lawn should be irrigated. Irrigation before a hard freeze is helpful in reducing freeze injury to the grass. It takes much colder air temperatures to lower the temperature of a moist soil than that of a dry soil. Late September and early October is the time to strengthen and prepare your lawn for strong root growth this winter and next spring. After our beautiful recent rains, your lawn is going to be ready for attention and work in the following three areas: fall diseases, pre-emergence weed control, and feeding.
Pre-emergent Herbicide - Fall and winter weeds such as henbit, chickweed, or bluegrass may best be controlled now with weed control services @ Salomon Lawn Care & Exteriors.
Fall Lawn Care Tips:
Water during the winter - 1/2 inch/week if rainfall is lacking.
Aerify new sod - water, food and air must get through that gumbo base!
Don't "scalp" your lawn in the fall - mow grass and leave at least 2 inches high.
Autumn is not only a time for harvesting, it’s also an important season for fall gardening. From late summer through the month of October, you can enjoy a plentiful crop of produce, as well as prepare your flower beds and vegetable gardens for winter and a healthy spring season.
1. Cultivate a crop of fall vegetables and herbs, beginning in August
2. Plant spring-blooming bulbs
3. Dig up and store delicate bulbs
4. Divide your perennials to revitalize them
5. Plant or move trees and shrubs
6. Enrich your soil with compost in preparation for spring planting
7. Do some garden construction
8. Get roses ready – or hardened off – for the cold
9. Spend some time pulling or spraying weeds
10. Mulch to protect plants from sudden temperature swings
Fertilize Evergreens - Fertilize (Azalea, Rhododendron, Holly, Dogwoods, Junipers, Spruce, etc. ) with Holly-Tone - use half the recommended rate for spring
Fertilize Deciduous Trees - Fertilize these trees when they begin to loose their leaves with Tree-Tone - use half the recommended rate for spring
Use Plant-Tone - for any other shrubs or perennials that need to be fertilized, and use half the recommended rate for spring
Transplant Trees & Shrubs - use Root Stimulator to encourage root growth, and pine soil conditioner to improve your soil
Fall Lawn Watering - For New Plantings up to 2 years old, water when necessary until the ground freezes - Fall watering is VERY important
Fall Pruning - Prune any plant that flowered in late summer or fall - Also, prune back your Junipers and Yews if needed
Corrective Pruning - Some Corrective Pruning can be done to shade trees in the fall (crossing, dead, or diseased branches)
Do Not Prune Evergreens - These evergreens such as Blue Spruce, Norway Spruce, White Pine, and Austrian Pine - Pruning will remove buds for next years growth
Do Not Prune Spring Flowering Trees or Shrubs!
St Louis Mo Lawn Care Tips
Spring Lawn Care Tips:
Probably one of the biggest mistakes homeowners make is not starting to mow their lawns soon enough. Remember the mowing “rule of thumb”. For optimum turf health “try not to remove more than 1/3 of the leaf blade during any one single mowing”. For example, this means that for a lawn being maintained at 3 inches you should not be removing more than 1.5 inches of leaf tissue or mow when the turf reaches 4.5 inches. Not mowing soon enough or mowing in excess of 4.5 inches will violate the “1/3 rule” and result in turf stress and could affect rooting or scalp the turf. Salomon Lawn Care & Exteriors notifies last years clients when it is time to start mowing again.
Spring Lawn Care Preparation:
#1Remove any lawn debris prior to mowing (twigs, sticks, leaves, children’s play equipment, etc.)
#2 Make sure your mower is tuned up and ready for the season: check the oil, gas, etc.
#3 USE SHARP BLADES!!!, dull blades = increased turf stress and poor mowing appearance
Mid-August to mid-September is the best time to seed cool-season grasses. However, sometimes turf is damaged throughout the winter or the previous year and must be seeded in the spring. Spring seeding is difficult so there are a few helpful hints to ensure the most successful outcome.
Seeding should take place early in the spring (early April) to decrease weed competition. Prior to seeding, the soil should be disturbed by raking to improve seed-soil contact. Once soil temperatures climb above 50-55 degrees Fahrenheit, germination will occur in the soil and the area must be irrigated often. For newly-established lawns, the soil should be kept fairly moist throughout the entire summer. Finally, do not use broadleaf herbicides in the area until the new turf has been mowed at least three times (for preemergence herbicides, the turf should be mowed four to eight times).
Although it is generally preferable to fertilize home lawns in the fall, a late May fertilizer application can help the turf retain its color and vigor during the summer. If conservative nitrogen rates are used, fertilizer can be applied in late spring without dramatically increasing vertical growth. To aid the turf in keeping its color longer, select fertilizers that contain slow-release nitrogen sources. These will be listed on the fertilizer bag as sulfur- or polymer-coated urea, urea formaldehyde, methylenediurea, dimethylenetriurea or natural organic/biosolids. Apply 0.75 to 1.0 lbs. N/1000 sq. ft. with a product that contains 50% or more slow release fertilizer. If possible, try to schedule a fertilizer application prior to a soaking rain. If not, irrigate after application to wash fertilizer off the leaf blades and into the soil so the nutrients are absorbed by the roots. A properly fertilized turf has fewer weeds, is more resistant to insects and disease, and decreases water runoff compared to malnourished turf.
Other spring lawn care considerations:
Q. Should I return clippings or bag them?
A. Generally it is best to return clippings back to the lawn as they are a significant source of plant nutrients and it takes less time to mow. “If” you want to remove clippings it is appropriate as it may remove some of the unsightly dead leaf tissue but make sure you properly dispose of the clippings (e.g. compost pile, etc.)
Q. Is it better to mow lower than normal in the spring?
A. The answer is yes and no…… I does not hurt the turf to mow slightly (1/2”) lower than normal (2 ½ - 3 ½) for the first mowing or two as this may remove some of the brown dead tissue from the leaf tips. The danger would be first scalping and second if you continue this for the remainder of the season it likely will negatively affect rooting depth (deeper roots = superior drought tolerance!!!). Lastly, mowing too low could make the turf more prone to crabgrass invasion as the turf may lose shoot density and crabgrass seeds require sunlight for germination.
Summer Lawn Care Tips:
Ever wonder how your neighbors achieve thick, vibrant lawns year after year, or how they keep their lawns and landscapes healthy as temperatures continue to rise throughout the summer months? The answer is simple: They work at it!
Summer is the time of year people are enjoying their outdoor spaces the most, so it’s necessary these areas are in tip-top shape. Keeping lawns healthy now will make preparation for the cooler weather much easier when the time comes. Here are some summer lawn care tips:
1. Address Pests: One single insect can lay thousands of eggs, ensuring a continual attack on your lawn and landscape, but if you know where to look for these pests, their impact can be minimal. For your landscape plants, you need to start by looking at the leaves or needles and keeping an eye out for chew marks, feeding trails, or curled leaves, as all can be indicators of insect activity. Insects that bore into the trunk, or develop in the tips of pine trees, however, can be harder to locate. As for lawns, most surface-feeding insects will hide in the thatch layer during the day so you need to look for signs of their activity versus the actual insects. The most obvious sign of surface-feeding insects in turf is thinning or loss of color. If you notice pencil-sized holes, it’s possible your lawn has Sod Webworm. Salomon Lawn Care & Exteriors can inspect and treat lawns for insect damage.
2. Watch Your Water: When Mother Nature doesn't supply enough rainfall, supplemental watering is integral to maintaining a healthy lawn. You must remember too much water can be wasteful and even detrimental to the lawn’s lifespan, yet too little water can lead to turf that is more susceptible to disease, insect, and weed infestations. A well-maintained lawn needs one inch of water per week to stay green and growing. Instead of setting your automatic sprinkler system to come up every day to water each zone for 10 minutes, set the system to run only every three to four days for a longer time per zone — a practice which prevents roots from growing closer to the surface. It is practical to use hoses and a pulsating portable sprinkler, leaving it in one position for 30 to 60 minutes before moving it to another location. Early morning watering is best. Watering in the evening can increase the likelihood of disease development because the lawn will remain cool, dark, and moist for an extended period of time. If you are unable to water due to watering restrictions, your lawn will go dormant- the turf’s natural defense mechanism in which it will shut down all non-essential parts, like top growth, to keep the crown alive. Turf is a remarkable plant and most varieties can survive for four weeks or more without irrigation of any type. If the drought is severe enough, some lawn renovation may be necessary once it starts to rain or you are able to water again.
3. Mow, Mow, Mow Your Lawn: Lawn care mowing is a simple process, and is a necessity. Mowing has more impact on the health and growth of a lawn than any other regular maintenance activity. Start by determining what type of grass you have. Bermuda Grass and Zoysia Grass, usually only found in the south, can handle shorter cutting heights between 1 ½ and 2 inches. Other southern turfs like St. Augustine Grass and Centipede Grass, along with all northern turfgrasses like Bluegrass, Ryegrass, and Tall Fescue should be cut higher at 2 ½ to 3 ½ inches. Start by setting your mower deck to 2½ to 3½ inches and mow your lawn when it needs it as opposed to keeping to a weekly schedule. Understand turfgrass grows slower in the summer and infrequent rainfall can also play a factor in sluggish growth. Running a mower across drought-stressed turf can hurt instead of help. Since mowing opens up the tip of the grass blade, it’s best to mow early in the morning after the dew has dried, or in the evening when temperatures have dropped instead of in the heat of the day when the most moisture can be lost. Remember, grass is between 80- to 90-percent water, so clippings and nutrients can be recycled back into the lawn, providing beneficial organic material for future growth.
4. Fight Back Against Weeds: Different types of weeds germinate in the spring, summer, and fall, so the battle to banish them from your lawn is an ongoing and frustrating process. The weeds that germinate in the summer are generally the summer annual weeds, which grow rapidly, produce a flower, go to seed, and then die with the onset of fall. Many of these summer annuals can easily be controlled by pulling them out by hand, because they usually cannot re-grow from the remaining roots; spot treating with a commercial weed control product labeled for use on home lawns is also effective. The best overall method of controlling weeds is a thick, well-maintained lawn; as wind-blown weed seeds will have a harder time germinating in the middle of a lush lawn. By mowing properly, watering as needed, and fertilizing to keep your lawn growing, it is positive to say that
you will discourage many weeds from ever germinating.