Tips for Lawn Care in Ontario

The Canadian province of Ontario encompasses USDA hardiness zones 1A through 7A, according to Canadian garden author Mark Cullen, and supports all standard turfgrass species. The Ontario Ministry of Agriculture proffers several specific care tips and principles to ensure a lush and green turf, whether you're in major Ontarian cities like Toronto and Ottawa, or smaller communities like Alberton.

Lawn Clippings

Gardeners shouldn't remove the grass clippings when moving their lawn. When left on the turf, these decompose and return much-needed nutrients to the soil. In fact, clippings allow Ontarian gardeners to reduce fertilizer use by up to 35 percent, according to the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture.

Weed Management

Various broadleef weeds, such as crabgrass, often invade Ontarian lawns, according to the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture. These often begin appearing in the summer. Pre-emergent herbicides can stop weed seeds from germinating, thereby breaking the weed life cycle, according to "The Lawn Bible." The Ontario Ministry of Agriculture recommends a corn gluten meal product; other options include pendimethalin and oryzalin. Both manual removal and selective herbicides will eliminate weeds that have already germinated. Avoid using non-selective herbicides like glyphosate on an Ontarian lawn, because such products kill both the weed and the desirable grass.

Watering

Ontario's summers, even in more northern areas like those surrounding the cities of Thunder Bay and Dryden, can get hot. Homeowners must supply sufficient water to prevent drought stress of the lawn. Supply enough water during each watering session to wet the soil to a depth of approximately 7 inches, according to "Lawns: Your Guide to to a Beautiful Yard." In most Ontarian soils, this equates to adding 1 inch to 1 1/2 inches of water to the soil surface, according to the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture.

Pests

Several insect pests are common in lawns in Ontario. These include the sod webworm, which measures just under an inch and causes irregularly shaped dead spots in the turf; the European crane fly, which the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture says is new to the area and feeds on the grass foliage and roots; and the turfgrass scale, which cause small dead patches in the grass. Standard lawn insecticides, like a permethrin-based spray, can eliminate these pests, according to "The Lawn Bible."

Keywords: Ontario lawn tips, Ontario lawn care, Ontario lawn maintenance

About this Author

Josh Duvauchelle is an editor and journalist with more than 10 years' experience. His work has appeared in various magazines, including "Honolulu Magazine," which has more paid subscribers than any other magazine in Hawaii. He graduated with honors from Trinity Western University, holding a Bachelor of Arts in professional communications, and earned a certificate in applied leadership and public affairs from the Laurentian Leadership Centre.