A beautiful home starts with a great lawn.
Whether your grass is brand new or been around for half a century, it would be wise to assess its condition periodically, especially if you weren’t completely satisfied with its look this year.
Perfect lawns exist because something was done right. The proper seed for your location was used as well as the proper maintenance. This all sounds relatively easy to comprehend for most homeowners, except that varying factors exist for every lawn.
New lawns get their best start by preparing a good seed bed for seeds to germinate properly. This may mean bringing in additional black top soil for an adequate depth of two to three inches.
Quite often backfill doesn’t get evenly distributed and areas of yard are woefully thin of rich black soil. This may cause variations in germination, as well as the ability to water properly so as to keep all areas looking the same. Most good contractors are careful to save an adequate layer to distribute over the entire plot but inevitably there are areas that seem to have more gravel than black topsoil.
Determine the amount of sunlight and/or shade your new grass will receive and purchase seed accordingly. New homes, in most cases, will have little shade for at least the near future so a “sun” mix would be in order- circumstances when building in a wooded lot would obviously change this to a sun/shade mix or other variations determined by the amount of sun and/or shade in a particular area.
Full sun mixes contain variations of bluegrass/rye/and tall fescues because they will tolerate the heat and sun. For areas of sun and shade where grass will be shaded 50 percent of the time, consider a bluegrass/rye/ and fine fescue mix.
For areas receiving more than 50 percent shade throughout the day then a rye/fine fescue mix should be considered. These are suggestions and most packagers define their mixtures on their labels this way.
IF IT’S AN OLDER, established lawn that you’re trying to rejuvenate then maybe all that is needed is an additional over-seeding to supplement the tired lawn.
The perfect method in this case is to mow your lawn short (2 inches or so) catching any clippings while performing this task. Then “plug” your lawn with an aerator leaving all the remnants to break down naturally.
After plugging, over-seed the entire area with an aforementioned seed mix, fertilize with a slow-release lawn fertilizer and water thoroughly. It isn’t necessary to rake the seed into the soil as the aerator will make the perfect seed-bed for germination. On established lawns it’s not as necessary to water daily because the existing grass will shade new seedlings.
In a case of uncertainty, of whether to over-seed or not, and if your lawn was decent but not quite up to expectations, then my recommendation would be to just over-seed thin areas and apply fertilizer according to manufacturer’s recommendations. Then in the following year, step up your fertilizer program by including an additional application.
ALWAYS REMEMBER, when seeding, to forgo the use of a broadleaf control/fertilizer or your seed will be rendered useless. Use only a straight fertilizer.
A fertilizer program of four applications (May and June then September and October), plus a November winterizer application, should yield positive results, providing your lawn is watered on a regular basis (a minimum of 1 inch weekly) and mowing height is maintained (for bluegrass and tall fescues) at 3½ to 4 inches and mowed twice a week.
If mowed regularly and not more than an inch at a time removed then it’s not necessary to “catch” grass clippings. If clippings tend to “clump” simply use a leaf blower to allow them to settle into the turf. Your lawn will thank you for the additional nutrients and compost.
A beautiful home starts with a great lawn.
- Local News
- Local churches worship, have fun on Easter holiday GOSHEN Encouraged by bright blue skies and near-perfect temperatures in the low 70’s, families and churches from all across Goshen took to their yards Sunday afternoon to participate in a time-honored tradition: the Easter egg hunt. Included among th
- You Should Know: Anthony Kalil GOSHEN -- Goshen native Anthony Kalil has been awarded a Richard Trucker Career Grant, which includes a $10,000 cash prize. He currently lives in New York. The grant is awarded to three of America's top young opera singers who are selected after a by
- Taking 'Steps' in Bristol BRISTOL -- The Elkhart Civic Theatre crew is set to present the classic Alfred Hitchcock mystery "The 39 Steps" at The Bristol Opera House. Performances of "The 39 Steps" are planned for two weekends -- this coming Friday and Saturday and May 2 and 3
- Recent decisions by FEMA have frustrated state and local leaders KOKOMO, Ind. -- Pamela Jackson thought she was lucky to escape harm as a tornado bore down on her neighborhood last November. She huddled in a bathroom with her two disabled sons, critically ill husband and six other family members as the twister ble
- Goshen High School Super Mileage team to compete in national competition for third straight year GOSHEN -- The Goshen High School Super Mileage team is heading to Houston this week to compete in the Shell Eco Marathon for the third consecutive year. The team, led by engineering technology teacher J.J. Johnson, is taking two cars to the competiti
- Mistakes businesses make with their home page Mistakes businesses make with their home page
- Undeterred by last year's bombing, several locals return for Monday's Boston Marathon GOSHEN "Boston Strong" is the moniker that emerged from Boston a year ago, describing the way people dealt with the tragic events that marred the 117th annual running of the Boston Marathon. Three spectators were killed and 264 more people injured w
- Local Christians reflect in advance of Easter Sunday GOSHEN - Members of the community gathered at First Presbyterian Church of Goshen to observe Good Friday with a Stations of the Cross tour.
- Briefly Elkhart Store opens at mall Creative Life Memories is now open at Concord Mall. The store is owned by Jose Elizalde, a native of Chicago, Goshen College graduate and resident of Elkhart County. CLM specializes in engraving and personalizing small gif
- Trio of GC alums return from Pan-American trek GOSHEN — The dream for a pan-American cycling adventure was born for Levi Smucker, Abe Stucky, and Michael Miller on the couches in a dormitory room at Goshen College in late 2010,
- More Local News Headlines