Lawn Care Information, Tips And Tricks

Fall Lawn Care


Fall is not the time to ignore or neglect your lawn. A simple fall program will have your grass looking it's best next spring.

Fall Lawn Care Tips:

FallThe heat of summer has departed and fall is in the air. Now is not the time to ignore or neglect your lawn. With winter coming and snow soon to be piled up on your perfect lawn, it's time to take a few steps that will ensure a healthy green lawn next summer.

First on the agenda will be to rake the thatch out of your grass. For severely compacted lawns you may want to consider core aeration as described here.

Don't be fooled by stores that try to sell their leftover "spring" fertilizers in the fall. Apply a slow release "fall" fertilizer.  Read the instructions very carefully before applying your fall fertilizer.

Plug any bare spots with a commonly available grass plugger or, if you choose, place topsoil and seed over larger bare spots.

Top seed the rest of your lawn by evenly throwing grass seed by hand over the entire lawn. Apply approximately two pounds of grass seed per 1000 square feet of lawn. Keep the lawn moist until seeds germinate and begin to grow strong. Over-seeding your lawn this fall will help crowd out the weeds next year.

As fall comes to an end, make sure to rake all the leaves off of your lawn to prevent them from smothering your grass over the winter. If you prefer you can mow the leaves with your lawnmower using a sharp mulching blade, this will reduce the leaves to a fine mulch that will be quickly used by the soil micro-organisms and worms next spring. Mulching the leaves is best done when they are dry and crunchy.

Remember that the salt you will be throwing on the driveway this coming winter is harmful to your grass and gardens when you shovel or snow-blow it onto your lawn. You may want to consider other alternatives to salt when melting ice. Most large retailers have alternatives to salt.

Don't Forget: The best herbicide-free way to protect your lawn from weeds is to keep it strong and healthy. The thicker your turf, the more chance it has to shade-out the germination of weeds.

Taking Care Of Your Equipment:

Don't forget your gas-powered lawnmower, weed eater and blower in the fall. Seriously consider using a fuel stabilizer in the gas before putting them away. Check your owners manual, or search the internet for "fuel stabilizer" to get more information. You can choose to either run the fuel and stabilizer though the mower / blower / weed eater until they stop (when they run out of gas), or as many prefer, you could fill up your tanks and leave them alone AS LONG AS THEY HAVE STABILIZER in the gas mixture. A little research as well as reading your owners manual will help you decide which is best for your situation.

Why Fuel Stabilizer?
A short and simplified explanation: Gasoline doesn't last long before it starts to degrade. If you don't drain the tank and carburetor and you don't add fuel stabilizer, the gas will go bad right inside your equipment . As the gas in the unused equipment slowly evaporates in the carburetor, the float in the carburetor calls for more gas to fill it's bowl. Unlike when fresh gasoline is flowing through the carburetor while being used, the slow evaporation process of the stale gasoline leaves a tiny bit of sludge behind each time the gas in the bowl evaporates. After numerous evaporation cycles, you're carburetor slowly  but surely will get clogged with sludge and that will make starting and running your equipment a supreme headache next year. You may get away without using fuel stabilizer once or twice but it's false savings when compared to your equipment starting and running properly when you need it.

Finally, don't forget to change your equipment's engine oil and lubricate any moving components such as wheel height adjusters and cables before you put your babies away for the season. Spraying a thin coating of rust protection on the underside of the lawnmower and waxing the shiny side will also help extend the life of your equipment. Your owners manual will also discus any special procedures that should be performed, such as fogging the cylinder or adding a bit of engine oil through the spark plug hole to help prevent rust from forming on the inside of your engine.


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