How much water does my lawn need?
It’s very hard to say exactly. Many factors such as different types of grass, different soil conditions and amount of shade versus sun can vary this answer. The basic rule in Manitoba is to have about 3-5 cm of water on your lawn each week. Don’t feel like you need to water every day to keep up. Watering less frequently is better. The key is to water deep into the soil rather than constantly sprinkling the top of the grass. You should water in the morning to achieve the best result. Aeration will save you $$ here by allowing easier access for water to your lawns root system.
What the heck are Chinch bugs?
Chinch bugs are considered to be a lawn disease. Like most diseases, the best way to avoid them is to do the right things to keep your lawn healthy overall. These tiny bugs live in the thatch layer at the base of your lawn. They suck vital nutrients out of your grass by feasting on the tiny bits of sap in the blades close to the ground. If your lawn has all of a sudden become full of brown patches and has become seemingly unresponsive to watering, planting new grass, or anything else you try; there’s a very good chance that chinch bugs are at the bottom of it all. Once your lawn starts to be destroyed you need to treat the bugs before you try to grow any new grass or use fertilizers on the lawn. Once treated, keep them away by mowing at the proper height to provide shade. They will not live in shade as they live in areas which receive direct sunlight. Chinch bugs love drought so proper watering is another major deterrent. Keeping the thatch reduced by aerating & dethatching is also key, as this thatch layer is where the pesky bugs call home.
How often should I aerate my lawn and why?
Aeration should be part of any lawn care regiment, especially here in Manitoba. Once a year is the minimum you should consider while many resources point to twice a year as being more ideal. Spring and fall are the best seasons to perform this service. In the fall, aeration is a great complimentary service to go with over seeding. Aeration reduces your lawn’s soil compaction allowing the roots to breathe and grow strong. It also helps water to get better absorbed into the soil and to the root system. Aeration is arguably the best thing you can do regularly to keep your lawn healthy.
Why do golf courses have such nice short green grass? Everyone tells me that I need to keep mine longer to keep it healthy.
Golf courses get away with it due to the fact that they have a grounds crew dedicated to constantly monitoring and treating the grass. If you want to cut your lawn to less than 2.5”, you’ll have to consider mowing 2-3 times each week and just skimming the tips of the grass off each time. For a lower maintenance green thick lawn; maintain your lawn between 2.5”-3.5 “in height. Try not to ever cut more than a third of the length off your grass at any one time. Longer grass helps shade out many problems such as weeds and pesky Chinch bugs. Longer grass also makes your lawn way more drought resistant, saving you $$ on water.
Is liquid or granular fertilizer better?
There is much debate on this topic. There is one thing almost everyone can agree on though; a slow release of nitrogen to your grass is better than quickly releasing it all at once. Lawn Dudes use a slow release granular fertilizer to help ensure your grass stays green for longer.
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