It’s the weekend and you’re taking a leisurely stroll in your garden, coffee in hand, to admire the lawn, lush and green. You’ve even achieved the much-desired Wembley striped effect. Your lawn is the envy of your neighbours.
Only, this year’s wet, cold spring and baking hot summer has been tough on grass and has made this ideal almost impossible to achieve. Don’t despair, though, September and October are the perfect months for repairing the damage.
Applying EverGreen Autumn Lawn Feed early in autumn will act quickly to green your grass. Not only will it encourage root growth, which will make your lawn more drought tolerant next year, it will also toughen the leaf blades, which will help it withstand a harsh winter.
Before you set out to feed your lawn however you’ll need to take several important steps to improve its appearance next year.
Firstly, increasing the height of cut on your mower so that we leave a longer blade of grass on the lawn when you cut. You can then tidy the edges of the lawn with an edging iron “half-moon”. To help define the edge of the lawn and your borders, use tanalised timber or a plastic or aluminium lawn edging when mowing. This will make it easier to cut the edges of the lawn using long handled edging shears. You’ll also need to prune any bushes that might have encroached on the lawn.
Using a flexible springbok rake, remove the dead thatch (moss, grass and weeds) from the surface. If you haven’t yet applied a weed killer this year, this debris makes for good compost to add to your patch. Don’t be alarmed if your lawn looks worse. At this point, run the lawnmower over the grass again removing any grass or clover runner brought to the surface.
Aerate and Dress
If you happen to garden on heavy clay or have poorly draining soil, consider aerating the grass by using either a hollow tine fork or a traditional garden fork. The hollow tine fork will remove a core of soil, which you’ll need to set aside before sweeping in a lawn dressing. Lawn dressing is a mixture of sharp sand and top soil which will be free draining, encouraging oxygen to reach the roots of the grass. Levelling out any hollows and deeps that exist in the lawn is important as this will reduce the chance of scalping the lawn next spring.
You should now have a lovely flat surface on which to apply the autumn lawn fertiliser and to get an even application use a spreader or a hand-held applicator. If applying it by hand, ensure you’re wearing gloves, make sure you read the instructions on the packaging and follow carefully.
Reseed, if needed
Encourage fresh grass to grow in any existing bare patches by reseeding those areas. Grass seed is often a mixture of several species of grass, some grow upright, others low and spreading. Some species of grass are hard wearing and excellent for children to play on, others are finer and more suitable for shade. Take the time to carefully assess your lawn and decide on which types will best serve your garden. Once you’ve selected the right seed mix, scatter evenly over the surface of your lawn. If no rain is forecast over the next couple of days and you’re able to water your lawn, do so as this will spur germination.
All that’s left is to rake up any fallen leaves and maintain the grass by cutting until winter arrives.