Getting your Lawn ready for Spring!

As the snow begins to melt, we look towards warm, sunny days spent outside, enjoying our yards. But, getting the lawn looking its best can be a daunting task. The pros at Capital Services have a few helpful tips so that you can have a healthy, lush, green lawn with spectacular curb appeal and little effort on your part.

Winter can dramatically alter the pH of your soil, causing the ground to become very compacted, and create poor conditions that will ultimately lead to weeds and lawn disease, so it’s important to tackle any issues early in the season, before bigger problems arise. The first step, once the ground is dry, is to give the grass a light raking and find out the problem areas. If the ground has become uneven, cut away the raised areas and fill in sunken spots with new soil. If you notice that the dirt has become very compacted and tight, core aeration is likely needed.

Core aeration is an important first to restoring the health of your lawn. A lawn aerator is used to remove plugs or “cores” of soil and thatch (tangled mass of roots) from a lawn, creating channels through which oxygen, water, and nutrients can penetrate. The root system of the lawn to grows and becomes stronger, making it resistant to weeds and diseases. It’s beneficial to leave the plugs on the lawn. They act as “topdressing”, returning much needed nutrients to the soil.

When your lawn is ready, reseed bare and brown spots. The optimum time to reseed is when the daytime temperature is consistently reaching 18 C, as it provides the proper environment for the grass seed to germinate. New seed requires regular watering and fertilization with nitrogen containing products. An important step is to have your soil tested to see what minerals may be lacking. In the Ottawa area, it is highly common for lime and calcium to test very low. Mineral-rich fertilizers act as a kind of vitamin boost for your lawn.

Once new growth begins, resist the temptation to mow! It is important for new grass to reach at least 7.5 to 10 cm before cutting. When you do mow it, do not remove more than 1 cm the first time. Cutting grass too short can be very harmful. More exposure to sunlight means more opportunity for weeds to grow. Taller grass provides shade, which allows soil to retain more water, promoting a larger, stronger root system.

What about those grass clippings? It’s best to leave light clippings on the lawn. They decompose and provide vital nutrients for the grass and soil.

Still overwhelmed? Capital Services can take care of all of these lawn care needs and more. Call us for an evaluation and we will meet with you to create a program specific to your yard’s needs.

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