Preparing Your Lawn for the Fall
The summer has come to an end in Pittsburgh, and with the fall season comes cooler days and brisk evenings. While many are preparing their homes and properties for the upcoming winter weather, there is a few tips you can follow to help prepare your lawn for the upcoming seasons, to keep it looking its best year-round:
- Be sure to continue your watering schedule. Cooler weather does not mean that your lawn does not need to be watered. The best time to water a lawn is in the early morning, as this allows wet grass time to dry throughout the day, reducing fungal problems in the lawn. Morning is also the time of day where water is less likely to be lost to evaporation.
- Fertilize your landscaping. Particularly in Pittsburgh and in Western PA, where the weather is cooler, and grasses that thrive in this climate prevail, such as Kentucky bluegrass, rough bluegrass, perennial ryegrass, the fine fescues, tall fescue, and the bentgrasses. These types of grasses respond well to fall feeding – the best time is in early September, and again in late fall.
- Check your mower’s height and adjust if necessary. If you are using a professional landscaping service, they will know the right mower height that works best for your lawn at a given time of the year. The average height for a mower is around 4 inches, and a lawn that is cut short during the cooler fall months avoids the “matting” of grass under leaves and snow.
- Dethatch your lawn. Thatch is a layer of decaying stems, foliage and roots, which can easily build up over time below blades of grass. A thick layer of thatch creates a barrier to moisture, nutrient contribution and air circulation in your lawn, which can lead to disease, insects, drought and mold. For thatch layers that are between 1/2 inch and 1 inch, a garden rake can be used to remove some of the thatch from your lawn. In the case of excessive thatch buildup, a dethatching machine, or vertical mower is necessary.
- Aerate your lawn properly. In addition to reducing the amount of thatch in your lawn, aerating increases air and moisture infiltration, improving microorganism activity. The cool-season grasses that are native to Pittsburgh and Southwestern PA should be aerated in early fall.
- Check your irrigation system. Any pipes that are used to water your lawn should be drained, or else freezing and/or cracking can occur during the cold weather season. Be sure that the water source that supplies the drainage system is shut off as well.
The experts at 20 Landscaping can help you prepare your lawn for the fall. We offer a wide range of landscaping services to Pittsburgh and the surrounding area including grass cutting, shrub trimming, lawn fertilizing, leaf removal, and even storm cleanup.
20 Landscaping is a full-service landscaping company, providing quality landscaping solutions to residential and commercial customers in the greater Pittsburgh area. For more information on our services, contact us today for a free estimate!