Combine cold, wet days with reduced light from overcast skies, and it’s no wonder lawns struggle to look their best during winter. Here are my recommendations on how you can help your lawn get through this tricky season:
1. Start early
During autumn we often experience cooler evenings, warmer temperatures during the daytime and the occasional rain showers. This combination makes for the perfect growing weather. It is important you get ahead now with repairs to your lawn to encourage a speedy recovery from summer damage.
2. Make repairs
Now is the time to rake out moss, thatch and debris to encourage the grass to spread. It’s important you spike the lawn to improve drainage and air circulation. Over-seed the lawn to thicken grass coverage and apply a top dressing to improve soil structure and drainage. If carried out early enough in autumn, the lawn will bounce back before winter fully sets in.
3. Remove fallen leaves
A blanket of leaves will make lawns patchy as the grass dies underneath. Ensure to rake them up often or collect with a rotary mower to make a great compost. Using a ratio of 20-part leaves to one-part lawn clippings, fill a compost bin or meshed enclosure and allow to decompose. By the time next autumn hits, you’ll have a beautiful leaf mould to use as mulch for your borders. It will also encourage garden-friendly wildlife, such as hedgehogs, to overwinter on your plot.
4. Ensure you still mow your lawn
When mild autumn weather extends further into early winter, it prolongs the mowing season. Understandably, mowing the lawn requires more motivation in the colder months but cutting grass encourages it to thicken, allowing it to outcompete weeds. The time to stop mowing is when the daily air temperature regularly drops below 10°C.
5. Don’t fret – all lawns look their worst in the dead of winter
Be assured that if you follow all of the above, your preparations will give your lawn the best chance to bounce back with the return of spring.
Haskins has compiled a number of handy ‘made easy’ care guides which are free to download and cover a range of gardening topics, such as year-round lawn care, bulb planting and houseplants.
You can find out more information here.