The team at Turf Australia have prepared a simple yet effective guide to turf maintenance. They have outlined seven (7) key items which are important to ensure your new and established lawn stays green providing you and your family with the best possible outdoor space. The original article can be found on their website.
1. Effective Mowing
The key to a beautiful lawn is to keep it young, and the best way to do this is by mowing regularly which promotes new growth. Some top tips include;
- Do not scalp your lawn in the hot months
- Do not mow grass which is stressed or wet
- Ensure your mower blades are clean and sharp
- Mow regularly, never mowing more then 1/3 of the height per cut
- Match the mowing height to the expected wear
Your lawn may not need as much water as you think. Extra watering won't necessarily benefit your lawn. Top tips include;
- Only water when your lawn needs it – change of colour may indicate water needs
- A lawn should be partly dried out between watering as it allows air to get to the root system and creates a more drought resistant lawn
- One deep watering is far more beneﬁcial than frequent shallow watering – and it will save you time
- The best time to water is early in the morning when less water is lost through evaporation and wind; avoid watering in the evening or at night as the lawn will remain wet encouraging disease
- Your lawn may become dormant in periods of dry weather without watering, however, if the soil is kept moist, it will survive and in the rainy season come back as good as ever
Fertilising is an important part of lawn maintenance; it promotes new leaf gives your lawn the boost it requires. Some top tips include;
- Don’t over do it! Little and often is best.
- Use a fertliser with a high nitrogen content
- Match fertiliser rate to growth rate. Don’t fertilise when the grass is growing vigorously
- Slow release fertilisers don’t need watering in, soluble fertlisers do
- Fertlising in late summer and autumn helps maintain a better colour in winter
- Lawns in alkaline and sandy areas may need an iron supplement
4. Renovation and Repair
From time to time, your lawn will need require some maintenance from wear and tear. Some top tips for this include;
- Soil may become hard and hydrophobic; using a garden fork to break up and aerate the ground will assist in fixing the problem. Normally this does not need to be done more than once per year (the best time of year is spring)
- The best method is to use the fork moving backwards. Drive the fork in vertically and lever it through 30 degrees to crack crack the ground. Keep doing this at 15cm intervals
- It’s easy to patch worn areas by turning new grass into the worn areas •
- Lift a ﬂap of soil and put grass runners half in and half out parallel to the ground
- Keep the patched area damp until the roots have taken hold
Top dressing is not always required but can be used to create an extra smooth surface. For this it is best to shave the lawn down, using a washed river sand and never make it more then 1cm deep. Working the the top dressing in until some leaf shows. You can also use an organic fertiliser under the top dressing if required. For more information on top dressing see our previous blog post
6. Pest Treatments
Although rare, pest treatment may be required. Contact us for for more information on treating specific issues or determining whether or not you have a pest problem.
A well maintained lawn should not require too much weeding. Hand weeding is generally recommended as using chemicals may discolour the lawn, consult with a lawn specialist should the weed situation get out of hand and always ensure you use the correct product for your lawn type.