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In this post, we’ll review the most common lawn issues that are caused by too much rain.
We’ve had a very rainy spring so far. This past April has been the second wettest April on record, with 7.01 inches. The last time we got this much was rain was in 2011. Last year at this time we had only received about 9.55 inches. Our year to date precipitation is 17.14 inches. And it looks like we have more rain on the way.
We’re not the only one’s that suffers from the rain and being trapped inside. Your lawn also suffers when it receives too much rain.
Related: Tips for Proper Watering
We all wish we can control but we can’t. We can, however, take steps to help your lawn get through periods of both rain and drought.
Make sure your yard has proper drainage.
After a rain storm, check your yard for puddles or standing water. If there are low spots in your yard, bringing in some fill dirt and reseeding the area can help. Also, make sure your rain gutters are clean and that the downspouts have extenders on them to direct water away from your home’s foundation. You can even install extenders that can be buried to form a french drain system that disperses the water underground instead of on your lawns surface.
Know when and how much to water your lawn
Basically, your yard should be watered deeply but infrequently. Here in Illinois, most lawns only need about an inch of water per week, and watering every day usually isn’t necessary. Letting the soil dry out between watering will encourage deep root growth and thick grass coverage, which means your lawn will withstand drought conditions better. You’ll need to adjust your watering plan throughout the season as your lawn’s water needs change.
In this post, we’ll address the most common lawn care myths that are often repeated but not actually true.
It’s common for us to encounter people who have heard bad advice about lawn care. Sometimes they have often repeated myths and other times people just make assumptions that aren’t actually true.
We love healthy lawns and want you to have the best grass possible, so we’re going to try to dispell these common myths.
In most cases, this is not true. Grass clippings are made up of 75% or more water. They contain nitrogen and will act as a natural fertilizer, cutting down on the amount you will need to add. They will also help your lawn retain water and promote healthy root growth. They are not the cause of unhealthy lawn thatch, which is actually created by roots, stems, and rhizomes that don’t decay fast enough.
Related: How to deal with lawn thatch
Though this may be factually true that you may add a couple days before you mow next, you also increase the potential for damaging your lawn.
You may add a few days between mowings, but you also risk damaging the lawn. Shorter grass will grow a shorter root system and become more susceptible to drought. It will also allow more sunlight to reach any weeds, which will grow and expand quickly, crowding out grass.
You should set your mower blade height to only remove one-third of the total grass blade surface at any one time.
Related: Lawn mowing tips
See how affordable professional lawn care can be!
More is not always better when it comes to watering your grass. How much water your lawn needs depends on a variety of factors, including the type of grass, temperatures, rainfall and soil type.
It is actually better to water less frequently but to irrigate your lawn more deeply. This helps your grass grow deeper, healthier roots.
Related: Tips for proper lawn watering
There is lawn aeration shoes available for sale online and at local home stores, but you won’t receive the results you’re looking for from them. The impact they make will cover too small an area and usually not as deeply as recommended.
The best way to aerate a lawn is with a plug aerator. This tool will extract plugs of soil, allowing a deeper aeration and a greater loosening of compacted soil.
Related: Why aerate my lawn?
Although moles will eat grubs if they come across them digging and tunneling, they are not generally a major source of food. They prefer hunting and eating earthworms.
A better way to determine if you have grubs is if you see signs of grub damage such as brown patches in the lawn and grass that you can pull up very easily.
Moles do eat grubs if they come across them in their tunneling, but their preferred food is earthworms. The best way to know if you have grubs is to watch for signs of their activity, including brown patches in the lawn and grass that pulls up easily.
A funny note about grub control: those spiked lawn aeration shoes we said didn’t work earlier for aerating will work for killing grubs.
Related: When to apply grub control
We hope this post helps you take better care of your lawn and get the healthy green turf you desire.
Thank you for celebrating National Lawn Care Month with us in April!
We love lawn care (obviously!) and so this year we tried to really join in on the celebration by creating a special series of lawn care blog posts, promotional images, coupons and social media promotions.
Our designer at Green T Marketing was working hard to create new social media promo images for our Green T Services Instagram account so that we could post a new one every day of the week. We think he did a great job!
The posts received many likes and shares and gained us a lot of new followers on both Instragram and Green T Services on Facebook. The reach and impressions the images received on Facebook and Instagram were in the thousands. We enjoyed seeing likes and comments from both old and new followers.
We received a lot of traffic on our new blog posts we published in April. We started off by publishing The Benefits of Lawn Care to get Lawn Care Month started, then published Stop Dandelions from Spreading (timely!), Lawn Repair: Five Common Problems, What You’re Getting from Our Round 2 Application, Caring for New Grass Seed, and finally a post for the Lake County Home and Garden Show.
We also shared some of our most popular older articles including Common Northern Illinois Weeds, Lawn Care Schedule for Northern Illinois and What’s the Difference Between Lawn Care and Landscaping because if you write a quality timeless blog post, it will still be relevant a year later or more.
Green T is proud to participate in National Lawn Care Month and we’ll be sure to do it again every year.
Beautiful green lawns and landscapes help keep our local communities such as Aurora, Naperville, Elgin, Geneva, Joliet and Schaumburg looking great. They improve our neighborhoods, raise property values, lower crime and give our families a place to play and enjoy the seasons.
Thank you for being a part of it and trusting us with your lawns!
Our most popular tip:
Tune up the mower for spring!
All seeds require moisture and a certain temperature range before they begin to germinate. Once the germination process has begun, if conditions change, the seed or new sprout is vulnerable and can die.
If the seed or sprout dries out — it dies out.
The germination time for grass seed ranges from 5 to 30 days depending on the variety. It can be even longer than this in cooler temperatures. Until you see a grass sprout, it is important for the seed, soil or mulch to stay moist. Once the new grass is visible, the roots are also growing down into the soil. This happens quite quickly. As soil moisture below ground is more accessible to the roots, the plant is not vulnerable now. But don’t reduce the amount of water just yet.
Related: Caring For New Sod
Seeds will not sprout all at the same time. Seeds will be buried at different depths, absorb water differently, or be of different quality or maturity. Many seed mixtures are blends of multiple varieties that will have different characteristics affecting their development. It is important to keep the surface area constantly moist until all seeds have germinated.
Until the planted area is densely showing green growth, don’t allow it to dry out.
The requirements for watering new grass seed can be altered for each of the following circumstances.
You must water every day. If you have a sprinkler system set automatic timers for about 5 to 10 minutes, early in the morning, and again at mid-day. Make sure you adjust the time accordingly, all sprinkler systems are different!
Watering done by hand or hose-end sprinklers must be consistently and evenly applied. It should provide approximately the same amount of moisture throughout, but less in shady areas.
Twice daily watering is essential until the new grass is up, then after one more week, reduce to once per day. Adjust this pattern according to the season and temperature demands.
If a lawn area is of substantial size or you have multiple areas, follow the same instructions as above.
For smaller amounts or areas, if hand watering is practical, leave the lawn on its normal irrigation schedule for a single cycle each day. Supplement the bare areas once or twice daily, or as needed, to keep the new seed moist.
New lawn preparation done properly will have tilled the soil to loosen the ground for the new grass plants. This loose soil is prone to holding large amounts of water. DO NOT OVER-WATER!
The top inch of soil should stay moist at all times. This may take only 2-3 minutes or 5-6 minutes, or longer, depending on your sprinkler system and the soil type. Use your best judgment, moist but not soggy is the plan!
As above, it should be repeated 2 or even 3 times each day is appropriate if the weather is hot enough to require it. Watering new grass seed on new lawn areas do NOT require lengthy watering times. That simply sends the water deeper than it is needed at this early stage.
Frequent watering is the only way to keep adequate surface moisture.
Related: Tips for Proper Watering
There will be free admission and free parking available for all visitors to the show which will take place at the Lake County Fairgrounds.
This huge event is the largest home improvement show in Lake County and will feature hundreds of home improvement services and products from local and national companies.
Exhibitors will include Green T lawn care, architects and interior designers, windows and door replacement companies, roofing, gutters, remodeling companies, kitchen designers, landscaping services, bath and shower liners, heating and air conditioning contractors, whole house generators, pest control, rain barrels, ponds and water features and many, many more.
You will be able to find services providers for every home improvement need. From interiors to exteriors and décor to outdoor, find the best solutions for all of your needs, all under one roof and ALL in one visit with free admission and free parking.
As a local company providing lawn care services in Grayslake, the northwestern suburbs and all of Chicagoland, we look forward to meeting you and being a part of the community!
We love to set up at our local area home shows and talk with you in person!
Chad will be at the Green T booth ready to answer your questions about lawn care.
1060 E Peterson Rd, Grayslake, IL 60030
As spring continues to gives us some awesome weather, your lawn is beginning to recover from the winter. Your lawn care is shifting to weed and crabgrass prevention. March to April is the best time to begin getting serious with your weed and crabgrass control before they can develop and fully mature this is key! Once weeds and crabgrass begin to develop, eliminating them becomes very difficult. So attacking them before they even establish themselves in the lawn’d root system is the most effective way to control weeds throughout the season.
Related: Spring Lawn Care Checklist
Crabgrass is a weed that grows annually with wide, spreading leaves that can stretch out in diameter up to 12 inches. These plants are capable of producing over 150,000 seeds and they leave behind large areas of dead grass if they are removed after they sprout. The best way to combat crabgrass is to attack it before it starts to grow with preventative pre-emergent.
Here at Green T we apply a spread-on, granular based pre-emergent that creates a barrier in the soil to stop the germination of crabgrass. Applying this pre-emergent in mid-March to the end of April, can be quite effective in preventing crabgrass growth throughout the season but applying it too early in March can disrupt the germination of the grass seed.
Along with the addition of crabgrass control, mid-spring lawn care should also maintain focus on slow release fertilizer and weed control to continue the recovery and promote a strong and healthy root system is a lawn’s best natural defense against weed growth and development and the continuation of slow release fertilizer applications throughout the spring will help strengthen the root system to effectively fight off weeds all season.
We all enjoy a lush, green yard, and we all run into trouble sometimes, even the experts. Lawn repair is easy to do; you just need to know the best way to get it back into shape. And as your local lawn care experts we know just the way to do that.
Here are the five most common problems we hear from customers and our easy solutions to fix them.
Certain problems can block the grass from getting its nutrients.
Related: Why Aerate Your Lawn?
Brown spots are are usually dead or dying grass caused by too much nitrogen, either by too much fertilizer or animal urine. Lawn repair can be done with re-seeding, but watering away the nitrogen first is a big help.
Related: Lawn Mowing Tips
When it almost seems as though your have more broad leaf weeds than grass in your yard, you can still get the lawn you want.
Repairing lawn with moss is not about just digging up the moss; you have to solve the underlying problem.
Lawn repair for bare or patchy turf starts the same as #1, by fixing the soil with aeration and over-seeding.
Stop dandelions as soon as you see them. If you do not kill or remove them before they flower and go to seed, they will continue to spread across your lawn.
Although kids may love them, gardeners and lawn care enthusiasts everywhere consider the dandelion public enemy number one. It’s one of the most frustrating weeds. They spread easily and quickly, they crowd out other plants and grass and a single plant can produce thousands of seeds.
One dandelion becomes ten. Ten become a hundred. Left untreated, dandelions will be happy to take over your yard and crowd out all your grass with their leaves that spread outward.
So how do you prevent dandelions from taking over?
Dandelions will thrive in poor soil. If you nourish your lawn with proper fertilization and lawn care, it makes it harder for dandelions to thrive.
Every dandelion flower can produce between 54-172 seeds. A single plant can produce dozens of flowers. It’s essential to get to the flowers as soon as possible so they don’t have a chance to seed. Once they go to seed then it’s a much harder battle to win.
Related: How to get rid of dandelions
If you mow the plants before they flower, you prevent them from spreading seeds. You don’t want to mow the grass very low though. Keeping the grass slightly higher keeps the soil cooler and provides shade that restricts the growth of seeds germinating into new weeds.
Related: Lawn mowing tips
The best times to fertilize are in the spring and fall. By fertilizing in hot summer months, you help feed the weeds at the time they need it most.
Lawn care has a large number of benefits to you, your family, your home, your neighborhood, community and the environment.
A healthy lawn and landscape are the foundation for living, working and playing outdoors. A healthy lawn is good for your health and your local community. It makes your neighbors happy and it makes you happy too.
We love promoting the benefits of lawn care because beautiful lawns and landscapes are our passion. We love working in the outdoors and spending our weekends there with our families.
It doesn’t have to be National Lawn Care Month to promote the benefits of lawn care. Let’s review some of the reasons lawn care is a great investment for your family, community, and happiness.
Healthy lawns are essential to our families, communities, and environment, but they don’t just happen on their own. Grass, plants, and trees need care and attention to ensure their health and provide the benefits we need.
The lawn care professionals at Green T are trained on how to protect and nurture these benefits. We are stewards of the environment who use the latest technology and science-based practices to improve your landscape and benefit your family.