Fall Lawn Care & Maintenance
Fall lawn care is crucial to a healthy green lawn for the following season. Each fall there are certain lawn care projects that you can do yourself to achieve that healthy green lawn that looks like Fenway Park or the links at Pebble Beach.
Probably the single most important thing you can do is have a soil test performed on your lawn. I had a Lawn Soil Test Report done last year and it identified the proper levels of fertilizer that my lawn needs and also a serious problem with the acidity of our soil.
Our soil was extremely acidic which required a significant amount of lime last spring and again this fall. You can read all about Correcting Lawn pH with Lime for how I followed the results of the soil test. Most states offer affordable soil testing through the university system. So if you’ve never tested your soil make sure to have it done as you may find some surprises.
Fertilizing your lawn in the fall is the best time of year to do it. If you only fertilize your lawn once each year then fall is the ideal season to do it. When you apply fertilizer in the fall you’ll want to use a N-P-K ratio of 3:1:2 or 4:1:2. It’s not necessary to match the ratios perfectly but use them as a guideline to find the best match. A post I wrote about Selecting A Lawn Fertilizer can shed some light on finding products with the ratio you need. Check the fertilizer bag for information about how many square feet a bag will yield and what setting your spreader should be adjusted to.
The best way to apply your fertilizer and lime is using a spreader. I use a John Deere Tow Behind Broadcast Spreader to do my lawn because I have 1.5 acres. You might want to consider buying a Scotts Deluxe EdgeGuard Broadcast Spreader if you have a smaller lawn.
Prior to fertilizing and applying lime to the lawn I aerated it. Lawn Core Aeration is a great way to promote healthy growth of grass and prevent disabling soil compaction. I’ve written a post on Lawn Aerating Tips which contains some great advice on how to aerate your lawn. Aerating your lawn is certainly an easy DIY project that anyone can do and it will compliment the other lawn care projects nicely.
Lawn overseeding is really important if you want your lawn to stay looking new and thick. By continually planting new grass seed you ensure that your lawn will have a long healthy life. Most grasses have a limited life span so overseeding helps replace grass shoots as they die. Check out my post about Lawn Overseeding After Aerating which explains how to do it and all the great benefits your lawn will see.
So this fall before you put all the tools away make sure you spend some time caring for your lawn. You’ll be glad you did next spring when you are the envy of the neighborhood with your beautifully green lawn.