Summer is a fantastic season to enjoy your lawn, from relaxation and games to picnics and parties. No matter how you use your yard, however, you need to provide the best summer lawn care to keep your grass healthy and thriving under all of summer’s stresses.
How Summer Stresses Lawns
Summer might seem like a season with few stresses, but your lawn can suffer tremendously during the harsh summer season. Excessive heat and drought threaten lawns, while sudden storms can create flooding and soggy conditions that smother turf. Wildlife and pests are thriving in the summer and looking for homes and food in your lawn, causing damage to tender new blades. Extra use from children and pets can compact soil and crush grass blades, as can different equipment such as toys, hammocks, grills, tools, patio furniture, and inflatables. With so many different stresses on your lawn all summer long, it is imperative that your grass receives the best possible care throughout the season.
Best Summer Lawn Care
Good care will help create thick, lush turf that will be more resilient to stresses and pests. Furthermore, a stronger lawn will resist weeds, and will improve your home’s curb appeal. To properly care for your summer lawn…
- Leave Grass Taller – Taller blades of grass will provide deeper shade for the soil, conserving moisture and protecting the roots.
- Mow Properly – Only trim one-third of the grass height when mowing to minimize the stress on turf foliage so it can recover well after each trim.
- Sharpen the Mower Blade – A sharp mower blade will trim grass more easily without tearing and causing extra stress. Ideally, sharpen the blade every month during the summer.
- Let Clippings Decompose – Use a mulching mower to chop clippings into fine pieces and allow them to decompose on the lawn to return nutrients to the soil.
- Fertilize Only If Needed – If necessary, fertilize your lawn appropriately for the grass type and condition throughout the summer, using an organic, slow-release formula for gentle feeding.
- Water Appropriately – Water less frequently but deeper in summer, and adjust your watering schedule when Mother Nature gives your grass a drink.
- Water at the Right Time – Water grass in the early morning to minimize evaporation while also ensuring fungus does not have time to develop on damp grass.
- Treat for Pests – Many beetle species thrive in summer, so be sure to treat your lawn for any regional pests such as Japanese beetles or June bugs.
- Clean Up After Pets – Create a potty spot for pets, and clean up waste right away so it does not damage the lawn. Rinsing the grass with water will prevent browning from urine stains.
- Don’t Park on the Grass – Avoid parking cars, grills, all terrain vehicles, RVs, trailers, boats, or other vehicles on the grass. Parking will compact the soil, and fuel drips can be toxic.
- Pick Up Toys – Pick up all summer toys, including kiddie pools, hoses, lawn games, and other equipment as soon as you’re finished using it so brown spots don’t have time to develop.
- Pick Up Litter – Similar to picking up toys, pick up litter and other debris on the lawn, such as branches that may be brought down in a summer thunderstorm.
- Weeding – You should weed your lawn from early spring through late fall, even in the heat of summer. Keeping up on this chore will prevent stubborn weeds from getting established.
A summer lawn needs the proper care to look and perform its best for all your seasonal activities. With the right maintenance, your lawn will be healthy and resilient even on the hottest summer days.