Did you know that since the pandemic, there is an estimated 16.8 million new gardeners worldwide?
Superficially, a well-maintained lawn can make the front of your home look presentable to the world and can increase property value.
Yet, even as important as it is, keeping a lawn tidy is easier said than done. Knowing how to care for grass can be a daunting task, even for the most veteran homeowners – mistakes can and will happen.
Read on, and we’ll walk you through the top five grass care mistakes you can make over and over!
The Top 5 Grass Care Mistakes New Homeowners Make
If you’re like most people, you probably think taking care of your lawn is easy. After all, how hard can it be to mow the grass and water it occasionally?
As it turns out, there’s a lot more to it than that. In fact, there are a number of common mistakes that can actually do more harm than good. Here are the top five:
1. Cutting Your Grass Too Short
There are a few lawn-mowing mistakes that can be easily avoided if you know what to look for. One of the most common mistakes is cutting your grass too short. This can be detrimental to the health of your lawn and lead to a host of problems, such as increased fertilizer and water needs, scalping, and weak or bare patches.
First, it can scalp the lawn, which can damage the grass and make it more susceptible to disease. Second, it can cause the grass to dry out, which can make it more difficult for the roots to absorb water and grass nutrients.
Third, short grass is more likely to be uprooted by things like wind and heavy rain. And finally, it can make the lawn more susceptible to weeds since the shorter grass leaves less room for the weeds to grow.
To avoid this, make sure to set your mower blade to the appropriate height for your grass type and never remove more than one-third of the grass blade length at a time. Another mistake to avoid is mowing too frequently.
This can also lead to scalping and weak or bare patches. Mowing more than once a week is typically not necessary and can do more harm than good.
If you find yourself having to mow more often, consider raising the mowing height or letting the grass grow a bit longer before mowing again. When the grass is too short, it can’t photosynthesize and produce the food it needs to stay healthy.
2. Not Aerating Your Lawn
If you’re not aerating your lawn, you’re making a mistake. Aeration is key to keeping your lawn healthy and avoiding a host of problems. Without aeration, your lawn will become compacted, which can lead to thatch buildup, root damage, and a host of other issues.
Aeration also helps your lawn to better absorb water and nutrients, so not aerating is a recipe for a sickly lawn. There are a few different ways to aerate your lawn, but the most important thing is to just do it. Not aerating your lawn is a mistake that will come back to bite you, so avoid it by getting your lawn aerated on a regular basis. To know more, check out DTL Total Turf Care.
3. Applying Too Much Fertilizer
If you love your lawn, you likely want to keep it looking as healthy as possible. One way to do that is by applying fertilizer, but too much of a good thing can actually have negative consequences. Over-fertilizing your lawn can lead to problems such as excessive growth, burns, and even killing your grass.
When it comes to fertilizing your lawn, it is important to be aware of the potential risks and take steps to avoid them. One way to avoid over-fertilizing is to get a soil test done to determine the nutrient levels in your lawn. This will help you to apply the right amount of fertilizer for your lawn’s needs.
Additionally, be sure to follow the instructions on the fertilizer label and water your lawn after applying fertilizer to help prevent burns. With a little care and attention, you can keep your lawn looking green and healthy all season long.
4. Not Watering Your Lawn Properly
Lawn mowing is a chore that many homeowners dread. After all, it can be hot, sweaty work. But if you don’t take the time to do it properly, you could end up making some common mistakes.
One of the most common lawn mistakes is not watering your lawn properly. Without enough water, your lawn will start to turn brown and die.
On the other hand, if you water your lawn too much, the roots can drown and the grass can die. The key to watering your lawn properly is to water deeply and less often.
Watering deeply encourages the roots to grow deep into the soil, where they can access more water. Watering less often will train the roots to grow deeper into the soil to access the water they need.
The key to avoiding this is to water your lawn deeply and regularly. Depending on the type of grass you have, you may need to water it every day or every other day.
If you don’t water your lawn properly, you risk making it dormant and yellow. To avoid this, water your lawn in the morning so the water has time to evaporate before hotter temperatures occur. You should also avoid watering your lawn in the evening as this can encourage disease.
5. Mowing Wet Grass
If you’re reading this, then you probably already know that mowing wet grass is a mistake. It can ruin your lawn mower, your grass, and your day.
This can result in a number of problems, including clumping, smearing, and scalping. Wet grass also clogs mower decks and engines and can be a safety hazard.
For starters, try to mow your lawn in the morning when the dew is still fresh. If you must mow in the afternoon, make sure that the grass is completely dry. Avoid mowing in the evening, as the grass will be damp from the night’s dew.
If you must mow while the grass is wet, be sure to use a sharp blade. A dull blade will tear the grass, leaving brown patches. Also, be sure to go slowly and be extra careful not to scalp the turf.
6. Mowing in the Same Direction Every Time
If you mow your lawn in the same direction every time, you will eventually create ruts in your lawn. Ruts are caused by the wheels of the lawn mower digging into the ground.
To avoid ruts, you should mow your lawn in a different direction each time you mow. You can also avoid ruts by filling in any existing ruts with topsoil.
In addition, mowing too close to the edge of your lawn. This can damage the grass and make it more difficult to achieve a clean edge. Be sure to leave a few inches of grass around the perimeter of your lawn to avoid this problem.
7. Not Keeping the Season Change in Mind Soil compaction
Another lawn-mowing mistake is not keeping the season in mind. Many people start mowing their lawns too early in the spring and end up damaging the grass. Lawns need to be mowed differently in the spring, summer, and fall.
Spring is the time to start mowing again after the winter dormancy. The grass is growing more quickly and will need to be mowed more often. In the summer, the grass will need to be mowed less often, but it will still need to be mowed.
The fall is the time to start getting the lawn ready for winter. The grass will need to be mowed less often, but it will still need to be mowed.
8. Soil Compaction Growing the Wrong Type of Grass
Soil compaction occurs when the soil is tightly packed together, preventing air and water from getting to the roots of the grass. This can lead to brown patches, thinning grass, and even bare spots.
To avoid soil compaction, make sure to aerate your lawn regularly. This can be done with a garden fork or a lawn aerator. Another way to avoid soil compaction is to keep traffic off of your lawn, especially when the ground is wet.
9. Planting the Wrong Type of Grass
If you plant the wrong type of grass, it will be more difficult to grow and lawn maintenance. If you live in an area that’s prone to droughts, it’s essential to choose drought-tolerant grass.
Zoysia grass and Bermuda grass are two examples of drought-tolerant grasses. If you plant grass that isn’t drought-tolerant, you’re likely to have dead patches of grass in your lawn during periods of drought.
These Tips Will Help Make Your Lawn Look Good All the Time
Lawn mowing mistakes can be costly and time-consuming to fix. Luckily, by knowing grass care and being aware of the most common mistakes, you can avoid them and have a beautiful, healthy lawn.
Did this guide help you? Browse the rest of this section for more advice on a variety of useful and exciting topics.
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