One of the first steps of getting your lawn ready for spring is to get it ready for winter. Once fall creeps in, you find that is the best time to winterize lawns.
While you won’t reap, the benefits of your work until the spring, your lawn, and garden will deliver fantastic results with all the work you have already done.
Here you can learn when is the best time to winterize your lawn and other top tips for a healthy lawn.
Selecting the Right Fertilizer for Winterizing Lawns
You will find that every lawn there is, can benefit from a good dose of winter lawn fertilizer, which is purpose made for grass.
However, there is one thing not to overlook, and it does make this one of the most critical steps.
The type of grass you have makes all the difference. Cool-season grasses like perennial ryegrass, bluegrass, and fescue all reach their prime periods of growth during the cool weather of fall.
To deliver the best for these cool-season grasses, you serve them a good dose of winter fertilizer.
Once you look at warm-season grasses such as St. Augustine, Zoysia and Bermuda grass. You find these are the most common, and they benefit from a good deep feeding during the spring. The reason for this being they all go dormant as soon as the cold weather arrives, and thus adding any heavy fertilizer here doesn’t offer too much. (Learn How Fast Does Bermuda Grass Spread)
However, these warm-season grasses can benefit from a light feeding of a regular slow-release fertilizer. It is this slow-release nitrogen, which helps to keep your lawn as green and healthy for as long as possible in the winter.
When to Winterize Lawn
When you look at winterizing your lawn, you will find these fertilizers are different from the regular ones. Because the nutrient uptake is changed over the winter, they alter these fertilizers to accommodate these differences.
The most significant difference being they are high in potassium. One thing new gardeners do is to apply these without going through the right procedures.
One of the most being conducting a soil test. If soils show the correct levels of potassium, then you may find you don’t require any winterizer for your lawn.
Besides, if you have been feeding your lawn organic fertilizers or using composts throughout the year, you can find you don’t need to winterize your lawn, as there is potassium still in the soil.
Like selecting the right fertilizer for winterizing your lawn, the time can vary depending on whether you have warm-season grass or cool-season lawns.
If you are lucky enough to live in regions that don’t suffer from winter frost, you may find your warm-season lawn can remain green with good grass health all through the winter. If you live in this kind of area, then you can prepare your lawn by adding your slow feed nitrogen fertilizer to your lawn in the early fall.
If where you live comes with mild winters, and you do get some mild frosts, you may find you need to prepare your lawn with the fertilizer no later than September 1.
When you winterize grass that is cool season varieties, you can find it better to prepare your lawn for winter with two feedings rather than one.
The first feeding will be of the winterizer fertilizer during the late summer, to the early part of the fall.
Your second fall fertilizing period will be once leaves begin to reach their peak color in the region where you live. Such times are nearly always during the late fall.
While these can be the best times to fertilize, you can make things far more straightforward. You can apply fertilizer once in late November or in the early part of December.
Winter Lawn Care
For new growth and the chance to have a lush lawn in the spring, there are other things you can do through the winter to achieve this. Fertilizing is one part of your winter lawn care regimen.
How to winterize your lawn correctly can include aerating your grass. Doing this allows the water and nutrients to reach the grass roots quickly, and it improves soil drainage. While you can purchase aerator shoes, you can also get push aerators that make the job easier.
Overseeding with annual ryegrass seed can cover bare spots on your fall lawn, and they benefit in spring, where they compete against weed growth.
Besides this, one thing you may be doing depending on your region is mowing your lawn in winter. The frequency will be much less than spring and summertime and is generally at half the rate of summer moving to retain a healthy lawn.
One thing is for sure; it can be more comfortable using one of the top-rated riding lawn mowers than a push mower. It requires you to alter the mower blades as follows.
In the fall, raise the mower blades to half an inch above your summer lawn mowing height. If it is your final mowing of the season, you need to lower your blades to half an inch under your summer lawn cutting height.
When checking all those lawn mower reviews, make sure you can adjust your mower in this way because it does deliver benefits.
By doing these cuttings, you can encourage new growth in your grass, but ultimately, with these last cuts of the year, you will remove any grass blades that will be distressed or become damaged during the coldest periods.
One final thing is not to fall to the temptation of leaving leaves on your lawn before you pull out your lawnmower. It is an extra job, yet if your riding mower has a mulching attachment, you can do this for added protection and nutrients rather than being a place for mold to grow.