A beautiful and healthy lawn is a source of fulfillment all in itself. Besides serving as a place for relaxation during weekends, it also fosters better health by letting you breathe fresher air and helping ease your worries.
But lawns aren’t all butterflies and rainbows. Sometimes, it can also have brown patches, pests, and even weeds.
Of course, these aren’t anything that proper lawn care cannot fix (or even prevent). You just have to know what solution works best for every situation.
So without further ado, here are the top five lawn care challenges you might face and how you can overcome them.
After a brief rain shower, you’d expect the grass in your lawn to become healthier and greener. But if you see more weeds than grass, then your lawn may end up lacking sufficient nutrients instead.
Some weeds – particularly crabgrass – tend to do more harm than simply being an eyesore in an otherwise lush lawn. This type of weed typically dies off during the first frost, which can lead to soil erosion.
To get rid of crabgrass, try applying corn gluten meal on the affected area. This is a natural alternative to chemical herbicide and can help contain the problem.
When dealing with most weeds, the best solution is to dig them out. You can also fertilize the grass and only use good quality seeds in your lawn.
Mowing high frequently is also recommended to leave no room for and deprive weeds of sunlight. Set your mower deck to around 3 and 1/2 inches. If your deck has notches instead of inches, you may need to do some trial and error to get this right.
Another common issue in lawn care is fungal diseases which affect the appearance and health of lawn grass.
There are several varieties of fungi that can damage your lawn. In most cases, the fungal disease is caused by one or more of the following factors:
- Incorrect soil pH
- Too thick lawn thatch
The best protection against fungal diseases is a well-kept and healthy lawn. When fungi occur, it’s ideal to seek out help from a lawn care specialist in Chesterfield, Missouri.
Thin or patchy grass
Most chronic lawn issues, like thin or patchy grass, are more about the soil, not the actual grass. Soil testing helps determine if this is the case for your lawn.
You can find DIY kits sold at home and garden stores in the neighborhood. However, it is better to seek expert help from your local nursery in testing your soil.
Lawn care experts can pinpoint the exact issue, whether it’s the pH level or missing nutrients. They can also prescribe treatments for each case, like spreading limestone over acidic soil or sulfur for soil that’s overly alkaline.
Regular soil testing every few years is ideal, but if you’ve just relocated to a new property, you might want to have one done annually until the expected state of lawn starts to show.
Remember that bare patches only make a weed problem worse. If you don’t deal with it quickly, the weeds will beat you to it.
Start filling in bald patches in spring as the cool and wet weather is most conducive to growing many species of grass. Dig up the damaged area about two inches deep. Be sure to add six inches of the surrounding healthy portions.
Then, level the soil and toss in a bit of starter fertilizer, plant-based compost, and other soil amendments before you begin seeding or sodding the area.
For seeding, use a straw to cover the spot lightly. Make sure that the ground is moist until the grass germinates.
For sodding (which works better but is a lot more expensive), cut a section that fits the bald or patchy area and press it down into place. Water frequently until the grass takes root.
Grub and other pests
Grubs are beetle larvae that eat grass roots and cause dead spots in the lawn. They also attract raccoons and moles to the property.
A few of these milky-white larvae should not be a problem. However, if you spot at least ten larvae per square foot in your lawn, then you should begin with the treatment. Take note that this varies depending on the species, as healthier lawns can tolerate higher densities of grub.
If there are signs of damage, like a wilting or dying turf, ask lawn care experts for the best treatment. This depends on the species of grub present in your turf.
You can avoid this altogether by applying preventive insecticides during spring. Take note that, in certain places, the local government regulates the use of these chemicals. In some places, only certified professionals are allowed to apply them. In others, they are illegal altogether.
Either way, you can opt to use organic alternatives like heterorhabditis nematodes, which are equally effective.
Erosion and runoff
Runoff is quite a common subject for public debate, as it involves not only water waste but also water pollution. Runoff tends to deposit sediments to other people’s yards, carry pollutants to bodies of water, and cause landscape-damaging erosion. It also increases your water bill and uses up precious natural resources.
If you have clay soil, you might have a bit more difficulty with runoff, as this kind of soil composition doesn’t always readily absorb water. In this case, you must be very careful not to over-water. It also pays to know your property and landscape well.
If the runoff is not related to over-watering, there are certain landscaping solutions you can try.
To avoid erosion and runoff, you can ask landscaping professionals in Fenton, Missouri to install paving stone walls around the area. They can also ensure proper drainage in your landscape design and create a most suited landscape for the slopes and hills within your property.
Lawn care problems can be easily solved if you have the right tools and knowledge for the job.
If the particular challenge seems difficult to manage, don’t hesitate to get help from professionals.