Successful lawn care shouldn't require constant activity. It also shouldn't require excessive chemical fertilizers and herbicides. Follow some proven strategies to maintain a green, relatively weed-free lawn to spend more time enjoying it and less time fighting problems.
Topsoil should be 6 to 8 inches deep with a pH of 5.5 to 7.0 (slightly acidic). It should have plenty of organic matter (loam) and drain water well (friable). If you have an existing lawn, get a soil test from your local university agricultural extension with recommendations for soil amendments.
The Right Seed
Plant grass varieties that thrive in your growing region; fast-growing annual varieties provide cover until perennial grasses get established. Over-seed each fall with more perennial seed.
Keep it Trimmed
Mow frequently; remove only one-third of a blade at a time. Find the right mowing height for your perennial variety (usually 2 to 3 inches) and mow more often when the grass is growing rapidly.
Feed it Right
Leave your mowing clippings on the ground---they are a good source of nitrogen. Use fertilizer balanced for lawns and follow directions exactly; too much fertilizer is an overdose for your lawn. Skip summer feedings in hot, dry weather.
Keep it Moist, Not Soggy
Water your lawn deeply--at one time--so that its total intake (including rainfall) is 1 inch of water a week.
Use Chemicals Only When Necessary
A thick, healthy lawn will not support weed growth. Get herbicide recommendations from your extension agent.
- Five Steps to a Lush Lawn
- Mowing, Thatching, Aerating and Rolling Lawns
- Fertilizing Lawns
lawn care, weed-free lawn, fertilizers, herbicides
About this Author
Laura Reynolds began writing professionally in 1974. She has worked as author and editor in nonfiction, professional journals and newspapers. Reynolds has also served in numerous appointed and elected local offices. She holds a Bachelor of Science in education from Northern Illinois University.