Just like all the other plants in your garden, the lawn requires special care. Lawn maintenance is done both on a seasonal basis and on an occasional basis. Whatever the task, it’s always in the spring that you’ll need to begin.

1 – Spring cleaning

To promote a healthy green colour and stimulate growth, always start with a thorough cleaning. This involves using a leaf rake or broom to remove surface debris and rubbish.

2 – Dethatching

Throughout the season, a certain amount of thatch or matted grass builds up on the surface. This layer is necessary and delivers organic matter to the lawn. Too much thatch, however, has an adverse affect on growth. Dethatching involves removing lawn clippings and dry and dead roots to allow the lawn to breathe more easily. Dethatching is done with a thatch rake or a power rake.

Benefits of thatch – when it is between 1.2 cm and 2 cm thick

  • Ensures the distribution of necessary minerals
  • Protects against fluctuations in temperature
  • Minimizes the effect of trampling
  • Helps prevent soil erosion and water and fertilizer loss

Benefits of dethatching – when it is more than 2.5 cm thick

  • Maximizes water absorption
  • Helps the grass absorb fertilizers
  • Promotes deep root development
  • Increases the lawn’s resistance to dry conditions, insects, and disease

3 - Aeration

The roots of plants need to breathe. Compacted soil prevents air, water and nutrients from circulating. Aeration involves removing columns of soil from the ground using a plug aerator, thereby rendering the soil more porous to allow air and water to reach the roots. By alleviating soil compaction, the roots will grow more deeply and produce a stronger, more vigorous lawn. Spring is the ideal time to do this, when grass is in a period of growth and the lawn can heal.

You need to aerate the lawn when:

  • Water does not penetrate into the grass
  • Undesirable plants such as plantain or knotweed appear
  • The lawn becomes very sparse
  • There are no worms

Benefits

  • Helps to reduce the accumulation of thatch
  • Ensures air circulation
  • Promotes the activity of microorganisms
  • Increases water penetration
  • Stimulates roots

4 – Topdressing

Topdressing consists of spreading enriched topsoil or compost over the entire lawn surface. Often bypassed, topdressing should be done every spring: this will allow you to cut down on fertilizers and on your watering schedule. After aerating the soil and before seeding, topdressing stimulates lawn regeneration.

Benefits

  • Adds organic matter
  • Improves soil fertility
  • Reduces the reliance on fertilizers
  • Cuts down on watering needs
  • Corrects damage done by insects and disease
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