The late summer heat of Texas may not make a lawn owner think of the cooler days of fall, but now is the time to think about and get ready fall lawn maintenance. Following are some tips to make sure to keep your healthy lawn prepared to return green and healthy in the spring.
Pay Attention to Your Mowing Height
Most areas in Texas don’t get the type of hard frost that can make a lawn go dormant, so the lawn will need to be mowed as long as it’s growing. The rule of thumb is to mow your lawn one third of the height of the lawn mower blade. Letting the grass grow rampant might cause it to mat and be prone to diseases, but a thin lawn is traumatizing. It can stunt the growth of the roots and make the lawn unable to bear up under the state’s dry winters and periods when it gets colder than normal.
During early fall lawn care, homeowners should continue to water the lawn so that it gets at least an inch of water every week. This is important since Texas winters are so dry for warm season grasses. Make sure that all hoses and sprinkler systems stay in good shape throughout the winter months. Unlike cool season grasses, homeowners will need to make sure their lawn stays hydrated for the coldest days.
Enjoy the Fallen Leaves, Then Rake Them Up
Autumn leaves are beautiful, and fall is the best time to rake them into hills and play in them. However, those hills need to be removed eventually. As leaves decay, they block out the light that should get to the grass during the coldest times of the year. Since they hold on to moisture, they put the grass at risk of mold, other pathogens, and fungal diseases.
Take some time to do a soil test on your lawn. Even though the lawn’s growth is slowing down, it can still do with a bit of nitrogen-heavy fertilizer. Lawn experts recommend a slow release 24-0-10 fertilizer. This is 24 parts nitrogen to no phosphorus to 10 parts potassium. The nitrogen supports the grass blades and potassium supports the overall health of the plant and helps it withstand drought and cold. One caveat is to not spread the fertilizer near a body of water. The fertilizer can pollute it.
Aerate the Soil
Fall is just about the best time to aerate the soil. Aeration prevents thatch, which is a snarl of dead grass blades, roots and other debris that cut off the lawn’s air and light and block nutrients. A lawn owner can rent an aerator that punches holes into the thatch then pulls up and spits out the plugs. Another tip is to fertilize the lawn immediately after it’s aerated.
Though some lawn owners associate overseeding with spring, using grass seeds in the fall is also a good idea, especially in the milder Texas climates. But overseeding a lawn, especially a big one, is a job of work. Many lawn experts recommend a power seeder, which can inject the the seeds directly into the soil. Seeds and soil must be in contact for the seeds to sprout, and the overseeded area needs to be kept moist.
Rely on The Grass Outlet for Everything Grass Tips
Here at The Grass Outlet, we offer high quality types of grasses for homeowners in Texas. Many Texans rely on us for essential tips for various grass types and situations. If you’re looking to make your lawn a beautiful part of your home, contact us online or call us at 512-996-8100 today!