After a long, cold winter, Minnesotans are happy to get out in their yards again. The bulk of lawn care tasks, including renovation and fertilization, are best performed in the fall, according to the University of Minnesota Extension. Since every lawn and every spring are different, surveying the lawn each spring will determine exactly what is needed. Do this when the ground is no longer wet and muddy to avoid unnecessary compacting of the soil. Though it might be tempting to get an early start, do the lawn a favor by letting it dry out first.
Rake the lawn lightly when the ground is firm to remove leaves or debris while also lifting grass leaves to stimulate growth.
Repair damaged areas of the lawn caused by winter salting -- look for a narrow band of dead grass next to streets, driveways or sidewalks -- or extensive vole activity, for example, or other problems. Rake the soil lightly in areas that need reseeding.
Scatter lawn seed on the needed patches and rake it in to ensure seed-to-soil contact. Gently sprinkle enough water on the newly seeded areas to dampen the topsoil. Scatter no more than ¼-inch of straw on top to help retain moisture.
Water the newly seeded areas daily or as needed to keep them moist until the seed has sprouted. Sprinkle lightly for five to 10 minutes. Water weekly in the absence of rain to provide about 1 inch of water per week.
Wait until new green grass blades begin to appear and go over the lawn with a core type aerifier if the lawn has suffered from flood damage and has silt deposits of 1 inch or less. Go over the lawn surface about three times.
Remove as much of the silt as possible if a flooded lawn has silts deposits of greater than 1 inch. Work the soil and lay sod or reseed the lawn in the coming fall.