A lush green lawn is the backdrop of many happy memories: picnics, barbeques, and family gatherings included. Unfortunately, droughts, pests, and other factors can make lawn care more challenging. And let's face it; on a hot, humid day, sitting inside with a cool drink is a lot more appealing than the weekly or biweekly mowing! Here are a few tips to better care for the “large green room outside your home.”
Less Is More – Do not Cut Too Short
Taller grass is healthy, prevents weeds, and allows grass roots to reach water underneath the ground surface. Cutting your grass too short will make it dry out faster. A rule of thumb is to not cut more than 1/3 the blade's length and to leave about a finger length of blade (3 inches).
Chose the Right Plants for Your Unique Terrain
Florida State Extension suggests choosing “the right plant for the right time.” Are you living in an arid environment? Temperate? By choosing plants, shrubs, and landscaping that works with the natural climate, your plants and yard will be happier and you will be working with nature and not against it. Some species, such as the Tropical Soda Apple, are invasive and should be avoided.
Be Water Savvy
Certain bushes, shrubs, and trees are hardier in low water conditions and are drought tolerant. Consider container planting or rock gardens to lower water needs. Be aware of community water use requirements and how this supports your dream lawn. Are you envisioning acre after acre of green turf with free trees or bushes? This may be difficult to realize if you live in a locality that practices water rationing. Call a local professional for direction, advice, and to assess your unique lawn-care needs.
Do you know which plant species are considered invasive? What kind of mulch to buy? What is soil pH? Organic Lawn Care professionals, state extension programs and the library all have great resources for answering these questions and learning to maximize your lawn's health and beauty.
Make Time for Your Lawn
Today, people are living busy lives, but surrendering your lawn to daught, weeds, and pests only diminishes your home's value and your own peace of mind. Do not wait for the neighbors to nag. Your lawn needs you and will repay you and your environment with lush green beauty, oxygen output, and a natural filter for rainwater.
Do not Forget Pest Control
Pest control does not begin inside the home but outside. Many people consider their yards an extension of the home; something that's hard to do when mosquitoes are swarming or fire ants are chomping on your barbecue guests. Luckily, there are organic pest control options out there these days to mitigate and eliminate a pest occupation of your yard. These include kid and pet-friendly non-toxic solutions.
Law care is an investment of time and resources. But with the right tools, know how and support, it will be well worth it. Now, onto that cold drink.