Did you know that in just one day, a single acre of grass produces enough oxygen for 64 people to breathe? Healthy, green grass is good for the planet, but sadly, homeowners often make lawn care mistakes that result in a less earth-friendly lawn. Are you ready to green-up your lawn care practices? Here are four simple strategies to implement starting today.
1. Mow to the Right Height
The healthier your grass is, the fewer herbicides, pesticides, and fertilizers you will need to use. Many homeowners unknowingly sabotage their grass’s health by mowing it too short or allowing it to grow too long. Then weeds appear or the grass turns yellow, requiring the use of chemical preparations to revive the grass.
If you keep your grass at the right height, it will remain healthier, and you won’t need to use as many chemical treatments.
Different grass varieties have different height preferences. Keep Kentucky bluegrass, perennial ryegrass, and tall fescue between 1 1/2 and 3 inches tall. Buffalo grass and blue grama grass do best between 2 and 3 inches tall. If you are not sure what kind of grass you have, take a plug of it to a local garden or landscaping company and ask them to identify it for you.
2. Spot Treat Weeds
If your grass is mowed to the right height, it will be better able to out-compete the weeds. Still, you may see the occasional weed. Spot-treating weeds as they appear is far better for the planet than treating the whole lawn just to eliminate a few weeds. Treat the weeds as soon as they appear to keep them from reseeding.
As for organic and all-natural weed control products, they don’t always work very well. You’re better off using small amounts of herbicides only as needed than dousing your entire lawn in organic products that just allow the weeds to keep proliferating — causing you to use even more herbicides down the road.
3. Use Organic Fertilizer
Unlike herbicides, there are organic fertilizers that work just as well, if not better than, conventional fertilizers. Organic fertilizers are better for the planet because they do not run off and cause harmful pollution of nearby streams and waterways. They are safer for pets and humans, too.
Using an organic fertilizer keeps your grass healthier, and healthier grass is better able to produce oxygen and absorb carbon dioxide from the air. Plus, fertilizing your grass with a good-quality organic product will keep it stronger and free from pests, so you don’t have to use as many chemical pesticides or herbicides.
4. Avoid Over-Watering
Regular watering is important to keep a lawn healthy and lush, but many homeowners apply far more water than is needed. Wasting water is not good for the planet. The more water you use, the more fossil fuels are consumed in order to clean that water and deliver it to your home. Plus, an over-watered lawn is more prone to invasion by insects like grubs, which you may need to use pesticides to remove.
So how much water does your lawn really need? Most lawns need about an inch of water per week. To find out how long it takes your sprinklers to apply an inch of water, place empty tuna cans within the sprinkler zone. Time how long it takes the sprinklers to fill the cans — that’s how much watering time you need to apply an inch of water. Divide that time into two or three watering sessions per week.
You can also check your soil periodically to make sure you are watering enough. If the soil is moist at least six inches below the surface, you’ve watered enough.
As you can see, greening up your lawn care routine is not all that complicated. Mow to the right height, spot-treat your weeds, switch to an organic fertilizer, and make sure you’re not over-watering. Contact Schulhoff Tree & Lawn Care, Inc., if you’re looking for a landscaping company that offers organic lawn fertilization in the Golden, CO, area.