With warmer spring temperatures on the way our lawns are waking from their winter slumber (dormancy period). Considered the time of a new dawning in the turf world spring is when our green patches begin a growth phase that prepares them for the heat of summer. Without some help though they may not make it through.
Lawns should be renovated in Spring. The recovery phase is quick at this time of year. Thatch removal, feeding and aeration should be conducted over spring.
Thatch is an accumulation of dead leaf and stolon material above the soil and forms a hydrophobic layer that repels water and enhances disease. Yearly removal of this organic layer in mid spring will enhance the look of the lawn through the production of new leaf and stolons. Couch and Kikuyu lawns can be scalped back to almost the soil layer to remove thatch by mowing on the lowest setting with the catcher on. Scalping also has the added effect of leveling the lawn as high spots are removed in the process. Buffalo lawns such as Sir Walter can be mown slightly lower than normal however never scalp Buffalo as unlike Kikuyu and Couch it does not have rhizomes and relies on its stolon activity to self repair from the renovation process. Buffalo lawns will benefit from a thorough raking with a stiff leaf rake or nail rake to remove dead organic material. Mow with the catcher on to remove any loose material that comes to the surface after raking.
Tall Fescue lawns should not be scalped.
Following the de-thatching process the lawn should be fed with a High Nitrogen Lawn Food such as Lawn Solutions Professional Fertiliser with Trace Elements.
If you are in a sandy soil area your lawn will probably also benefit from an application of Dynamic Lifter pellets.
Uneven areas can be top dressed in spring using sandy loam soil or washed sand. Apply 5-10mm layers at a time. Thicker layers of topdressing material will smother some lawn types. Two or three topsoil applications of a thin layer applied a few weeks apart are better than one thick smothering layer.
Aerate any worn or compacted areas using a corer or garden fork and if you had a consistent wet area over winter consider installing some drainage. Tall Fescue lawns will benefit from aeration and should only be top dressed lightly if at all.
Your lawn is yawning and needs their equivalent of coffee and breakfast. Help it to wake up and reap the benefits of a green oasis this summer.
The short of it…
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