We all know that spring lawn care is all about getting your grass as green and healthy as possible. But what about summer lawn care? Keeping your lawn as healthy as it can be when the heat of summer is in full effect is the main goal of summer lawn care. Here are some tips on how to keep your lawn healthy during the summer time.
Midwest Grass Selection. . .
In our area warm-season grasses simply put, will not work. If you live in our area of the northern Midwest always plant cool-season grass seed. Kentucky bluegrass, bent grasses, fescues, and ryegrasses are all examples of cool-season grasses that will work great.
However, in the heat of mid-summer, your cool-season yard will need a little extra attention for the yard to stay healthy all year. Following these tips below, there is no doubt in our mind that your lawn will be the envy of the neighborhood year round.
Mowing tips. . .
When you’re mowing in the summer it is best to put your mower on one of the highest settings, so that the grass stays a little bit longer than usual (keep grass at about 3″- 4″). This helps your lawn to shade itself. Which will help lock moister into your lawn, because if it’s shaded the water will have a harder time evaporating.
The longer grass will also produce longer roots which will reach water that is deeper in the ground. Now, longer grass is going to grow faster which means more mowing, and some of you might not like the sound of this but it is very important to mow regularly. This will prevent you from cutting more than 1/3 of the grass at one time.
Make sure your blades are as sharp as can be. You want to make sure you are cutting the grass not ripping it. This will help to minimize stress and disease during the hot temperatures.
Watering tips. . .
Water is extremely important to the health of your lawn in the heat of the summer. So naturally, how and when you water plays a big role in how healthy your lawn will be during the hottest parts of the summer.
A good rule of thumb to follow would be to give your lawn about an inch of water a week, and during those super dry times about 2 inches.
This will encourage drought-resistant roots, and help you save money on the water bill each month. Another thing to think about is what time of day are you going to water.
If you water in the middle of the day the hot sun will cause most of the water to evaporate, resulting in a major waste and a brown lawn. If you water at night you will put your lawn at risk to fungus and disease, because this is when most fungus and disease are more active.
So, your best bet is to wake up early, and get that lawn watered before work (5 a.m. is the ideal time). This will give the yard plenty of time to absorb the water before the sun has the chance to evaporate it and you’ll also avoid all the fungal problems.
Fertilizing tips. . .
As we’ve said before if you live in the Midwest chances are you have cool-season grass. With that said, there is no reason to fertilize cool-season grass during the summer. Fertilizing your cool-season lawn in the heat of summer can actually be very harmful to your lawn.
This is because cool-season grasses are not suited to withstand extreme heat, and it will be under a lot of stress this time of year. Any fertilizers applied this time of year will not have much effect, and all of the excess nutrients in your lawn can be very damaging.
If you live in an area that doesn’t get the extreme heat in the summer, or if your having a relatively mild summer, then fertilizing can be continued. If this is the case then simply spread the fertilizer evenly from spring to fall and this will help boost your lawns resistance to the coming winter.