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Aeration aids root development, air percolation, root pruning and drainage. Aeration is the process of making holes in the lawns surface. The action of aerating will let the stale Carbon Dioxide air out of the soil and the fresh Oxygen rich air into the soil. The action of aerating will also stimulate and encourage root growth. There are many different types of aerator tines yet the majority of lawn treatment and care companies always use a hollow core tine, thus removing a core from the surface of the lawn. They tend to leave the cores on the lawn’s surface too, making it bumpy. They should be cleared away to a compost facility. What the majority of UK lawns require is deep solid tine aeration, like down to 125mm to break up aged compaction and this alone will help break down a thatch layer. A lawn should be solid tined twice a year and hollow tines every two to three years through fear of upsetting the lawn levels.Read more
You can Download and Print a PDF copy of our Calendar of Lawn Care Calendar and pop it in your garden shed for future reference.
One of the biggest questions we get asked is to do with the timings of treatments and mechnical tasks. The science and practice of turf care is a bit of a science that the weather always appears to mess up for you. In the spring time, you are trying to get your lawn out of the winter doldrums. In the early summer make it look fabulous for entertaining in the garden and in the winter you will be doing everything you are able to ensure lawn turf grass density when it is cold and horrible outside. The Calendar of Lawn Care will break down some of the myths of what to do when and if you do not manage to complete task like aeration in February, do it in March but make sure that you do it. Thge when is mostly down to the weather and ground and growing conditions which of change throughout the seasons.
There are many Lawn Diseases that can have a detrimental visual and damaging effect on the turf grasses in your lawn. Weed grasses, are also prone to Disease more frequently. The majority of Lawn Diseases rely on a Disease triangle consisting of Pathogen / Host / Environment. It is mostly the environment of which we have little control over that changes; resulting in Disease appearing to include: temperature, soil moisture, air moisture, shade, drought. Such lawn / turf diseases may include the very common Red Thread in the growing months, Fusarium in the lesser growing months, Fairy Rings in early Autumn and also Rusts and Smuts. There are numerous diseases of new seedling grasses. Some lawn diseases are genetic withing the grass seed and higher rated cultivars of a species will be listed in a free from a certain disease league table to help you purchase the best. If you maintain healthy turf grasses and maintain a regular mowing, feeding and maintenance regime, then you will be doing the best to keep your lawn disease free.Read more
You will never forget the drought of last year. The natural evaporation rate per hour on a warm day would be 7mm so trying to water a lawn, to get some vital green colour back is a bit of a losing battle as you would need to apply 7mm of water each daylight hour to keep abreast of the natural water loss from the lawns surface and turf grass plants. It is easy to see that you will be in a water deficit in no time!
There is lots you can do to prepare your lawn for drought. Simple tasks such as get rids of your weeds and moss as they take up lots of available water that could be used for your turf grasses instead. Fertilise your lawn at regular intervals like every three months – keep it healthy and it will cope with whatever weather is thrown at it. Raise your height of cut to at least setting three or four on a Hayter, so around 4 cm and make sure the mower blade is sharp so as not to stress the turf grasses further.
An application of a slow phased release granular fertiliser with a nutrient analysis appropriate to the time of the year. The nutrients in the Lawn Shop fertiliser will be released over a period of 8 – 12 weeks, thus providing a steady supply of food to the turf grasses. You can fertilise your lawn as soon as you commence mowing it in the spring and also straight after you have mowed but do not mow three – five days after applying fertiliser otherwise it may end up in the mower. You can use a Spring and Summer fertiliser product at half rate as an Autumn and Winter fertiliser, as the technology of such products is so good, the nutrients will stop releasing when the weather turns colder and start again when it warms up. Always feed before you weed, thus fertilise the turf grasses before you apply a selective weed killer just in case you check the grasses. Fertilise every three months in the growing season to keep the grass health and free from disease like Red Thread.Read more
The key to lawn maintenance is keep it planned rather than reactive and your lawn will truly thank you for it. The largest time consuming maintenance task is that of mowing, followed by scarifying and aeration plus then making lawn treatments. Mowing can really make or break a lawn and this is why a new lawn of either turf or seed can quickly go downhill or not establish correctly. Wlecome to new grass and real grass problems! So many lawn diseases are inidicators of poor or over nutrition and also poor mowing regime too. If you do not manage to scarify or aerate your lawn each year, do it every other year but at least do the mechanical tasks rather than not. If you have weeds and moss in your lawn, get rid of them and over seed the lawn to fill in the bare areas. Most gardens have a restriction of natural light, air flow, sunshine, shade to name a few and not all areas of the lawn will grow the same all over the lawn’s surface. If you have got the know how, you will feel confident doing multi tasks on the lawn on the same or consecutive days and in the correct order to make life easy for yourself and your lawn.Read more
Moss should be controlled in the early spring and once the lawn has received it’s first mowing with the view of eradicating what we refer to as winter moss.
Moss can be controlled just ahead of a lawn renovation programme when the lawn is completely over-sown with grass seed. If your lawn has more moss than grass in it, plan to renovate it.
Moss is an indicator to tell you that there is a problem with your grass denisty and vigour. You should not have moss in your lawn. Mosses are plants, comparatively simple in structure and function and, with the Liverworts, comprise the Bryophyta family – one of the least complicated groups of the plant kingdom. Controlling moss invasion with Sulphate of Iron will result in stronger grass growth and the moss then tends to disappear naturally because of the increased competition presented by healthy grasses.
Mowing can really make or break a lawn, even a newly constructed or renovated lawn. Turf grasses will grow all year round, not at the same rate each week or month but even when you think that you should stop mowing for the winter. The timing of the peak growing months is really dependent on the prevailing weather and in some months you will be mowing weekly or twice weekly and in the lesser growing months just once a month. Mowing depends upon the ground conditions. Many a lawn owner make the big mistake of being too reactive with their mowing regime when. Little and often is the key. Always alternate the mowing direction each time so that you do not build up what is a called mowing washboarding. The majority of turf grasses are tufted in habit so do not allow a build up of a deep vegetative layer on the lawn that you and the mower sink into. Always use a mower with a sharp blade!Read more
Lawn patches happen for a reason. They are usally indicators of a particular problem and some are human caused and some are not. These range from a pet urine burn, fertiliser or treatment burn, disease marking, signs of lawn pest damage, mower scaling, excessive wear and tear, worm casts, chemical contamination from washing the patio, mower fuel and oil burn, shrub overhang, bare areas, the list goes on… Always try to determine why the lawn is patchy and is there any shape to it? Trying to establish the cause is the best route towards finding a solution to the existing or future problem. There may be surface or soil bourne problems like fungal or dry patch which is a naturally occuring condition where the soil can naturally becoome hydrophobic. Trees, hedges, shrubs and plants can play a part in causing bare areas like shade, locolised dry areas alongside hedges for example and also topography can play a part in creating a north facing side of the lawn.Read more
The are many lawn pests, most of which will be under the turf, eating the grass roots. You could have 100-200 larvae per square metre with a really bad infestation. Chafer Beetle and Leatherjacket Larvae will literally strip a lawn bare of grass cover and sadly, there are no pesticide control products to control them thanks to The Ministers in the EU Parliament. Your only option is to go for Biological control using Nematode worms which seek out their specific host and eliminate them. Leatherjackets live in the soil only for one year whereas Chafer Beetles live in the soil for up to three years making them harder to eradicate. Larger Mammals like Badgers and Foxes and also Birds will see the lawn grubs as rich sources of food when times are tough and they will all seriously rip up the turf to get to the grubs, making a right mess of the lawn surface and make it hard to repair it. Moles may also be a problem in allowing you to maintain a nice green sward.Read more
Any Lawn Renovation Programme will involve a client or gardening team performing a few tasks (if work is being outsourced) before, during and after the process. The lawn should be initially treated for weeds or killed off totally. After two weeks mow the lawn really short, multi directions, then scarify in two directions, debris cleared and disposed of, mown again in multi directions on the same low setting, until nothing comes off the lawn, aerated, fertilised, over seeded with grass seed and then top dressed with a suitable top dressing material. Then water if required, mow again after ten days if there are exsiting grasses to mow, and then leave for another 7- 10 days whilst seed germinates. Mow again on same hieght setting, multi directions, collect clippings and then weekly thereafter. Expect to do some locolalised over seeding of any failed areas.Read more
Scarification assists in the removal of the dead grass leaves that will turn into thatch.
The process should be performed in the Autumn and Spring periods and as part of a complete renovation programme but always in the growing season so as natural regeneration and recover can occur, never in the winter / slow growing season. A lawn should always be over seeded with new seed after scarification so that weeds and moss do not take root in the bare areas. Always plan to mow the lawn down tightly before you scarify as this reduces the volume and density that the scarifier has to work through. The scarifier blades should only be lightly touching the soil surface as you are grooming the grass at it’s crown level not rotovating! Be cruel to be kind to the lawn! If it wants to come out, it will. Make two passes across the lawn but not at right angles, collect the debris and mow again to collect and minor debris any straggly bits. Take care of the lawn edges. Then aerate.
Turf grasses on lawns do not last forever, pretty much like a shrub in the garden. If a lawn is not ‘pruned’ (mown) at the appropriate time, the density of the lawn will become thin and sparse giving rise to the ingress of weeds and moss. A lawn should always be over-seeded after scarification and when it shows natural signs of thinning throughout the year. Grass Seed is per square metre, a very cost effective product in improving a lawn either as part of a new construction or renovation so do not be shy to over-seed your lawn if it looks like it needs some. Don’t expect your newly sown grass seed to germinate overnight! Be patient. About two to three weeks to germinate and then just over a week to ten days for each additional leaf stage up to four leaves and then a few more weeks to get to five or six leaf stages. Count the leaves. Mow at 4 leaves and no more than 25% of the height at any one time. Do not forget to mow a new lawn when it needs it.Read more
Top Dressing a lawn is the term used to describe the careful application of a loam, sand or soil conditioner material to the surface of a lawn to restore the micro levels. The term is often confused with a fertiliser application as a ‘dressing’. Top dressing is typically applied in the spring and autumn after scarification, aeration, over seeding and renovation when around 8mm or 1/4 of an inch of material is applied and worked into the lawns’ surface. You could expect to apply two cubic metres of top dressing material to a well used lawn with an area of 100 – 200 square metres that has never received any in it’s life. The top dressing will fill in the footmarks, wheel barrow marks and secret throughfares across the lawn. It will restore the lawn after being abused by builders and football tournaments. You could use a recycled green waste material from your local waste transfer station or a blend of materials so that the existing and new grasses can easily grow through it.Read more
If you do not have time to wait for grass seed to grow, opt for turf. It can be more expensive per square metre than seed but the end result is really worth the increase in budget and you get an immediate visual. Like seed, you will have to be a little patient and wait for the newly laid turves to knit together and there is a greater need for watering to prevent shrinkage in the more traditional dryer months. Keep an eye out for Fusarium Disease and don’t forget to mow it within 7-10 days after installation, plus fertilise it after a couple of mowing sessions to aid establishment. Mow little and often in multi directions and collect the clippings. Always purchase your turf from a reputable grower and pay the most per square metre that you can afford. Prepare the ground ahead of ordering the turf and make sure you use boards and do not walk on the new turf unless you have to otherwise you will create footmarks. Have your sprinkler and hose at the ready.Read more
Over the coming months of February and March, The Lawn Company Team will be out on site making some lawn care, tell show, do videos to help you with your lawn. Being able to see a lawn professional guide you through some complex lawn maintanance tasks will really help you manage and care for your lawn.
We are hoping that the Beast from The East does not re appear this spring time.
We will be out with our drone for some overhead shots to follow the machines and operator as we areate and scarify etc and a still video camera filming a lawn renovation process with some before, during and after images as it progresses. At some point this year, we will take requests from customers and readers of the lawn subject matter that you would like to cover in a future video as we build the library. It will take a while so please bear with us as it is a big job if we are going to do it properly. We have a lawn superb site lined up already which consists of a 1,600 square metre lawn. Watch this space for more details.
Quality, not quantity is the key. When and how much water should you give your lawn in the summer months? Should you water your lawns or not in the dry summer? We can also get dry Springs and Autumns. The natural water loss from the lawn can be 7mm per hour when the temperature is 29 degrees and 4mm per hour when it is 24 degrees. We say no, don’t bother and water your plants instead before there is a hosepipe ban.
If you have to water a lawn, water at the coolest part of the day and do not water until run off. Use a wetting agent to solve dry patches in the lawn. The more healthy your turf grasses are, the best they will survive a dry spell. Weed grasses react violently with big changes in climatic conditions. Weeds in the sward take up a lot of precious water intended for the grass plants. Remember one thing – you cannot beat natural rain for evenly watering a lawn to a depth.
A healthy lawns should not have any weeds in it. Let’s say that again, a lawn should not have any weeds in it. Weeds compete for vital water with the turf grasses plus they look unsightly and grow faster than the grasses so you will increase your mowing frequency to suit the weed growth. Some larger rosette weeds can be easily dug out but the finer weeds are best sprayed with a Selective Weed Killer with a garden sprayer. Always apply a liquid or granular weed killer three or four days after mowing and do not mow for a few days after, longer if you can get away with it. It will take a few weed control sessions to finally rid of the weeds and not all lawn weeds are easy to kill, especially Parsley Piert, Speedwells and Field Woodrush. Some weeds are best controlled by using a Soluble Iron used for Moss Control rather than a Lawn Weed Killer. Always make sure that your sprayer is clean and calibrated correctly before mixing a treatment up.Read more
Check out what some of our lawn lovers have to say about us
Lawn Care – Not all lawn care companies are the same. It’s obvious to see the results of your lawn renovation. Thank you for saving my lawn!
Lawn Renovation – thank you Mike for all your helpful advice and hard work transforming my lawn from the mess it was! After the party in December last year, I thought that it would need to be dug up and returved. How wrong I was….
Thank you for your excellent technical leaflet downloaded from your web site on how to control fairy rings – I have put into practice your advice and I note that the fairy ring is starting to show signs of giving up.Mr G. Windlesham
Lawn Shop Customer – Hi Mike, Can I just say what a breath of fresh air it is to find a retailer that will go the extra mile. Rest assured when I need any kit you will be the guy I contact first. Thanks again.Mrs Thomas Climping, West Sussex
Lawn Advice & Treatments – Thank you for all you are doing to improve our estate; your expertise is much appreciated.
There is so much to know about lawns… I never knew there was so much to learn about caring for a lawn. The lawn blog is a fantastic resource and it has allowed me the opportunity to learn so much about my lawn and to realise that I was getting the flow chart all wrong. Now I have the correct advice and access to some excellent lawn products too, it is looking so much better already. Thank you for your advice and products. I will certainly be recommending your company to my friends.Mr V. Woodbridge, Suffolk
Lawn Renovation – thank you Mike for all your helpful advice and hard work from you and your Team transforming my lawn from the mess it was! After the party in December last year, I thought that it would need to be dug up and returved. How wrong I was….
CastClear Lawn Worm Cast Suppressant – Mike, this stuff is brilliant. I have got a mere 70 sqm of lawn but now gone of loads of worm casts!
Lawn Renovation – My lawn is transformed, please thank your team of lawn specialists who transformed it.