As you already know, it’s HOT! With the heat comes stressed plants, disease, insects and most importantly turf loss! Below are a few things you need to know to help your lawn make it through.
With all the routing changes we have made this year, we have increased our efficiency in servicing lawns in a much more logical manner. However, each year presents new challenges we must overcome. This year, we had excessive rain this spring and now we are dealing with a drought period. Last year we had almost the same scenario. We had over a full month last year without any rain. Leaf Spot disease & melting out occurred on many lawns and people suffered turf loss because of it.
When we have excess rain, we get fungus, the same goes for excess heat and humidity. Also, with the rain, we cannot service lawns. When the temperature reaches close to 85 degrees, we have to stop treating lawns yet again. The wind is also an issue. With all these factors Mother Nature throws at us, it makes it difficult to keep pace with our schedule. We ARE ON TRACK! However, this excessive heat we are dealing with now is of concern. We have been working early mornings and doing our very best to service properties and keep with our schedule. When the temps go up, we stop treating so as to not burn or stress turf grass.
STOP! If your lawn is showing signs of stress or is in the full sun all day, let your lawn grow at its own rate during this heat. When we get some moisture again you can start to resume your mowing schedule. Right now, if you mow especially if you mow high noon or afternoon, you are stressing your lawn. If you must mow make sure your mower blade is cutting the grass at 3″ or higher! Make absolutely sure your mower blades are sharp! Dull mower blades will split open the tops of grass shoots and allow for fungus to enter. It’s like making an open wound each time you mow. If you’ve ever cut yourself with a piece of paper or a sharp blade it tends to heal quicker than a cut that was made with something jagged or rough. The same thing applies to lawns. Sharpen your blades in the spring and again about this time to make sure your cuts are clean! If you have your lawn mowed by a mowing company call them and ask them how frequently they sharpen their blades. It should be weekly for a commercial mowing firm.
Don’t mow in high heat, mow high & sharpen your blades, especially if your lawn is in full sun areas!
Your lawn needs to receive 1 1/4″ – 1 1/2″ of water each week. Just like all the precious plants and flowers you may have around your home your lawn needs moisture as well. The nice thing about lawns is that the soil will hold moisture quite well.
Organic matter is probably the most important. If your lawn never seems to thicken well, you experience consistent turf loss each year, then there is a very good chance you have poor soil. Having good organic matter has many benefits to turfgrass but most importantly is water retention. There is plenty of clay soils in Maine and most lawns are comprised of it. If you are unsure call us and we’ll come and discuss your soil make up with you. Or you can have a soil test done at the University of Maine Cooperative Extension.
The watering technique is immensely important. When you water does it early in the morning. 4 am – 8 am is usually best, due to the fact that the water is less apt to evaporate and most importantly it is not shocking the hot stressed plants with cold water. Additionally, watering early in the morning will reduce the chances that your lawn will become infected with fungus.
When you water, make sure you water heavily but infrequently. Don’t water every day… do it every other day for at least 45min in each spot. This way you are ensuring the water goes deep in the soil down where the roots of the plant can use it. When the temps go up during the day it will just evaporate off the first 1″ of soil and you will have wasted the water you were trying to help your lawn with.
One of the main reasons so many lawns look bad is due to the lack of mowing and watering techniques. If you love your lawn and we know all of you do, otherwise you wouldn’t be enrolled in our services, then you need to ensure your techniques are in check. If you are unsure of your techniques and would like to discuss it with us, please call us! 207-989-1433!