The spring season officially kicked off March 20 and if you haven’t started already, now is the ideal time to get outside and start preparing for the warmer weather! Start tackling these activities to give your yard what it needs to rise and shine.
Dethatch and rake
Thatch can be an ongoing problem that keeps your lawn from living up to its true potential. It’s an almost impenetrable mat of tangled, intertwined grass, keeping water, air and nutrients from getting to the soil.
To remove lawn thatch:
- Use a thatch rake in a push-pull motion to rip out thatch and dig into the soil. Digging into the soil will prepare the lawn for reseeding or fertilizing.
- Use a leaf rake and tarp to gather and remove the dead thatch and other material from your lawn.
- Removing the thatch will allow new seed to grow, and allow water and fertilizer to reach the existing root system to create a healthy lawn.
Survey your lawn
After a long winter, your lawn could use some TLC. If you have bare spots, use all-in-one seed/fertilizer mix to start new growth and bring life back to those areas.
Sow seed evenly then rake it thoroughly to increase your chances of quality germination. You can also aerate your lawn after sowing, which further enhances seed contact with the soil.
Clean and trim
- Clean out your garden bed by removing weeds, dead flowers, leaves and other debris to help expose your soil to the sun’s warmth.
- Start trimming roses and fruit trees for the upcoming growing seasons. You’ll want to trim these before they begin to sprout and flower. Be sure your clippers are sharpened and dip your shears into a Clorox solution – 1 part Clorox to 4 parts water, with a few drops of liquid dish detergent to prevent the spread of disease between cuts.
- Don’t forget to replace old mulch.
Check your sprinkler system
A healthy sprinkler system is key to getting your lawn and garden in tip top shape. Now is the perfect time to de-winterize and check in on your sprinkler system before its time start watering.
- Start by turning on the sprinkler and reviewing settings in control panel.
- Check sprinkler heads to make sure none are broken or pointed toward walls, sidewalks or streets. If the sprinkler head is broken, unscrew it and bring it in to your local hardware store for a replacement.
- If your sprinkler system has more extensive damages, consult to a lawn and garden professional for help repairing.
A few other reminders when it comes to keeping your lawn and garden thriving all season long:
Any vegetables or flowering plants can be planted indoors now to later be transplanted outside. If you’re eager to start digging outside, seedlings such as petunias, lettuce, broccoli, cabbage and winter peas are frost-resistant and can be planted now.
Prepare for the unexpected
You can’t predict the weather, but you can keep a watch on your area’s forecast and have protective materials ready. Stock up with a few frost blankets to place over tender, newly budding plants in case of a late frost, which help ensure the upcoming season’s success.
Nip pests in the bud
With spring regrowth comes the pesky emergency of bugs and rodents. To get ahead on pest control, start by checking your home’s wood structures, foundation and surrounding areas for damage, holes or cracks and standing pools of water in which pests thrive. If you see eggs, insects or signs of infestation, consult your local gardening expert to determine the best course of action before purchasing pesticides.