Lawn care, a tricky gardening skill that seems to be an ongoing learning journey for many. There are many questions like when is the right time to seed, lime, cut and everything else that goes into having a healthy lawn. The surprising answer is don’t rush it
Dave Bury is our onsite lawn specialist at Arts and his biggest tip is to take your time. We are all eager to get outside and start gardening as soon as we see the sun, but this is not that way to achieve the optimal results for your lawn.
Before anything else, you’re going to want to make sure that your lawnmower is in good shape. It’s important to keep up with lawn mower maintenance so that you don’t end up doing damage to your lawn or machinery. Check the blade before the season begins so that you don’t end up having to fix it when you need it most. If your blade is in good condition, make sure to sharpen it so that it cuts your grass easily and efficiently. If you’ve had your lawnmower for a while it may be time to invest in a new blade, better to get this done before other problems occur.
Once your lawnmower is checked and ready to go, the next step is to Lime your lawn. Now the question is, what is Lime and how do you use it?
Lime is a soil amendment specifically for lawns, it decreases your soil PH levels which is really important when building a foundation for healthy, long-lasting grass. It helps with root development as it adds rich nutrients to the soil. You’re going to lime your lawn before anything else, this includes overseeding, fertilizing and aerating.
You’re going to want to lime your lawn at the beginning of March, or when your lawn becomes frost and dew free. You’ll lay the lime down by using a seed spreader so that it is evenly distributed across your lawn. If you can time this before a rainfall you won’t have to worry about watering, it into your lawn. However, if it doesn’t look like it’s going to rain you can lightly water your lawn after applying the Lime.
Lime is also relatively safe for pets as long as they are not consuming a large amount of it, so you don’t have to keep your animals off the lawn.
What’s the next step after Lime?
Once you have put the Lime down, wait 2-3 weeks and then you’ll get a starter lawn fertilizer. The fertilizer will encourage root development and get your grass growing before doing anything else to your lawn. Grass usually doesn’t look the best after winter so it’s important to let it sit with Lime and fertilizer before doing anything more invasive. For example, you won’t want to aerate or dethatch your lawn in March because the grass is too soft, it will rip the lawn up. You’re going to wait until April or May to aerate or dethatch, but we will talk about that in a future blog!