The Turfonline team share our summer lawn care tips to help you make the most of your lawn.
- Allow grass to grow a little longer to shade the soil
- Keep mowing regularly for neatness and to keep the sward thick
- Remember to feed your lawn
- Be Waterwise: Established lawns don’t need watering
- Move furniture, toys, etc around the lawn at least every couple of days
- Consider leaving an area for wildlife
- Plan any autumn repairs
Help your grass to stay green all summer long
A parched, brown lawn is still an amazing thing but most of us dream of lush greenery which truly compliments the rest of the garden. Raising the height of your mower blades will definitely help the grass to stay greener.
Lawn care experts tell us that longer grass = longer roots. Which makes sense when you consider that those green blades of grass are producing some of the food that helps roots to grow.
Longer roots = better access to soil water. And when your grass is well hydrated it will look much greener.
A longer, thicker sward of grass also helps to shade the soil against the hot sun and drying breezes. Thus reducing the amount of soil moisture loss through evaporation.
Of all the summer lawn care tips in this article, maintaining your lawn at 5-7cm long may feel the strangest. But I promise you that it works and that your lawn won’t look odd. Just so long as you keep on mowing regularly and all of the grass is the same length, it will still look manicured and neat.
Summer lawn feeding
If we have a dry summer, your lawn may not be growing very fast. But it still needs nutrients to keep those roots in good health. If you like to have an evenly coloured lawn with a beautiful deep green colour, feeding is absolutely essential.
Keep feeding every 6-8 weeks using a good quality lawn feed but be sure to pick a day when rain is forecast because granular lawn feed must be watered in.
Grass has different nutritional requirements in autumn and winter. So from late September through to February, switch to an autumn-winter lawn feed.
Watering your lawn in summer
If your lawn is newly established – ie it was turfed or seeded in the last two months – it’s important that the roots are not allowed to dry out. You can read more about nurturing summer laid turf here.
However: Older, better-established lawns have inbuilt survival systems. It’s a wicked waste of water to irrigate an established lawn. Yes, it may lose its colour for a while, but that’s OK. The grass knows what it’s doing and it will green up again when the weather changes. You can still use your lawn if it’s straw-coloured – but plan ahead for some autumn renovations to help repair the soil structure.
Avoid dead patches by keeping the lawn clear
You don’t need to be obsessively tidy on your summer lawn. Nobody wants to be picking up toys and putting sunbeds away every 10 minutes. But please be conscious that your lawn needs light and air. It must have sunlight in order to survive. All of that fun stuff actually creates deep shade beneath it. The very worst culprits are paddling pools and groundsheets because they affect airflow too.
If your pool, picnic rug or tent has been in one place for more than a couple of days the grass beneath it will become pale, weak and sickly. You may still see a mark all through the autumn and into the winter as it takes a while for the plants to recover.
Avoid the damage by regularly moving all of those bits and pieces. Trust me – it’s worth the effort.
A wildlife lawn
Rewilding an area of the lawn to help wildlife is not everyone’s idea of great gardening – but some of Turfonline’s customers are really enjoying it. Not only does it cut down on summer lawn care, but it also brings a lot more interest into the garden.
You could either just let the lawn grow longer and see what appears or you can actively introduce some wildflowers for extra colour.
Letting the lawn grow long brings some interesting textures as well as movement. The sight and sound of grass swaying in the wind is very soothing. As an added bonus, the meadow brown butterfly likes to breed in the long grass. You could well be blessed with a colony of flying flowers! Mow some paths through the grass so that it looks manicured not abandoned.
Support struggling wildlife species by replacing an area of lawn with wildflower matting. Simply remove the grass and its roots. Dig the area over to loosen the soil and lay Meadowmat wildflower turf. This is especially lovely under trees where it can be more difficult to maintain a lawn. Meadowmat for Woodland Shade looks amazing in spring and early summer.
Planning autumn lawn repairs
If your lawn has taken a hammering this summer – that usually means you’ve been enjoying the garden. So well done!
A while ago, we published a helpful article on autumn renovations – you can read it here