Want that picture-perfect green lawn you've been dreaming of? The lawn experts at Flymo share their top tips for maintenance, mowing and fertilising.
Most lawn maintenance happens in early to late spring and early autumn when you are winding down for the winter. Any of these maintenance jobs can be done at either end of the summer.
Aerate the Lawn to Loosen Compacted Soil
This will loosen the soil and allow oxygen and microbes to circulate around the grass roots to improve grass growth. It will also improve drainage. Just use a standard garden fork to create holes around 2cm deep.
Pull Up Any Weeds
The sooner you can do this the better, as the warm weather will encourage weed growth as well as grass growth. If there are a lot of weeds you may wish to use weedkiller to kills the roots and prevent regrowth.
Remove Moss and Scarify
Moss likes to grow in bald patches of the lawn and can quickly take over. While some gardeners like a bit of moss, if you are looking for the perfect green lawn, it has to go. Use moss killer first, and then remove it from the lawn.
Scarifying the lawn will also help to remove thatch which may cause problems later on in the year. Once you have removed moss, you should overseed to fill in the gap to discourage further growth.
Bare patches are quite normal after a long winter or a hot summer and are very easy to fix. First remove any brown and dead grass. Then loosen the topsoil and sprinkle over grass seed at half the recommended rate. When the new grass sprouts, there should be less room between the tufts and blades for weeds to get in, and your lawn should be thick and green.
Regular mowing is the only way to keep your grass at the right height, but how you do it makes all the difference.
Never Cut More than 20%
Cutting the grass puts stress on the plant which is why you should never trim off more than 20% at once.
At the start of the season, and over a series of weeks, you should gradually reduce the cutting height on your lawn mower until you reach the height you want for the summer months.
Try a Taller Lawn
Though it might be tempting to cut your grass short, longer grass is usually greener, healthier and shades out weeds too. Letting the grass grow longer will stress it less and encourage deeper root growth.
Always Use a Sharp Blade
A blunt blade will tear the grass instead of cutting it. This will stress the grass more and will leave your lawn looking untidy and run the risk of the tips of the grass turning yellow. Every year you should look to sharpen or replace your lawn mower blade to achieve the best results.
Mow Your Lawn Regularly
Between June and July, the warm weather will encourage your grass to grow much faster. During these summer months, mowing once a week is the best way to keep the lawn tidy and green.
Leave the Grass Clippings on the Lawn
If you are cutting the lawn every week, then your grass clippings may be short enough to leave them on the lawn to break down and decompose. This is a great way to add natural nitrogen-rich fertiliser to your lawn and keep the grass green.
Water Your Lawn Through the Summer
After mowing the lawn, you should give it a good water - especially in hot, dry weather. This will help the grass recover after the cut and encourage further growth.
Flymo has a range of lawn mowers suitable for lawns big or small. This includes hover mowers, rotary mowers and even robotic lawn mowers that automatically cut the grass for you, so you don't have to.
Nitrogen is the most important nutrient for strong, green grass and fertiliser is often the best way to give your lawn what it needs. A well fertilised lawn will be greener, stronger and have a much deeper root system.
When Should You Add Fertiliser?
As a general rule you should fertilise your lawn once in early spring, and again in the autumn. You should use a nitrogen rich fertiliser to encourage the lawn to grow green.
Avoid over fertilising your lawn as too much nitrogen will actually harm your lawn. Avoid adding fertiliser to your garden during wet weather as rain water will wash the fertiliser from your lawn and into rivers and drains, adding pollutants to the environment.
The Perfect Green Lawn Year Planner
Aerate the the lawn
Pull up weeds
Sharpen your lawn mower blade or replace for the new season
Start mowing the lawn, gradually reducing the height as desired
Mow each week, taking only a small amount off the height
Leave short grass clippings on the lawn
Water the lawn each week or more in hot weather
Stop mowing and allow your lawn to recover some height
Aerate the lawn - especially areas worn from the summer
Add a slow release autumn fertiliser