Lawn Care in Extreme Heat

By: Gary Smollen Email
By: Gary Smollen Email

The heat may have let up by a few degrees but the dry, sunny days are wreaking havoc on lawns throughout the Metro.

In many cases homeowners are fighting a loosing battle but there are things you can do to get more favorable odds.

But it takes a plan and some effort.

There is good news for people who have lawns that are burnt and brown even something that badly burned can make a comeback and be green and lush headed into fall.

But there is no quick fix and it will take an effort on the part of the homeowner.

The key is to keep the lawn watered and cut back or stop anything that removes moisture from the grass.

You'll find Greg Keefe every week mowing his father's lawn as well as their neighbor's yard.

For as long as he can remember it has been mow once a week and water about an inch during the early morning hours.

It's a combination that works for the Keefe's.

Greg Keefe says, "It grows, to me it has a mind of its own, it grows pretty good."

Scott Farrington owns the Indian Creek Nursery and says there are a couple of other things all of us should be doing.

He says an inch to an inch and a half per week is the right amount of watering. But you also want to conserve as much moisture in the lawn as you can.

That means adjusting your mower settings.

Scott Farrington says, "Mowing is fairly critical and you want to keep it fairly long; 2 1/2 inches to 3 inches and on most mowers you're going to be at the highest setting or the next one down."

Farrington says we shouldn't be putting anything on our lawns right now; any applications designed to make our lawn healthier could actually make it more susceptible to the sun's rays.

Scott Farrington says, "You do want to be careful of week killers as well as fertilizer. There is really not a need to feed right now I would wait until mid-August until mid-September."

Between now and then remember; an inch or so of water per week and longer grass is less likely to burn.

Almost as important as an inch of water per week is how it is applied. Think of it as the right tool for the job.

Fan sprinklers can cover a wide area but are not very efficient. Drip hoses are good for flower beds and rings work well in small spaces.

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