8 Tips for Preparing Your Lawn for Winter
As we head into the last of October, we start seeing the effects of the change in seasons beginning to hit: cooler weather, leaves turning brilliant colors, and haunted hay rides. Pretty soon it will be winter, with the leaves gone, the cold wind blowing, and from what we hear it will be a rough winter with high snow accumulations.
To ensure your lawn is prepared to hibernate during the winter months and grow healthy in the spring, there are several steps you can take right now. Here are our 8 tips for preparing your lawn for winter:
- Assess your lawn
Appraise your lawn conditions coming out of summer-look for problems that may need addressed such as broadleaf weeds or thin and bare areas. A summer such as this year has taken a toll on Bergen County NJ lawns, as well as lawns in Rockland County, NY. Lawn renovation could benefit greatly. Fall is the best time to get control of many of the persistent weeds we see throughout the summer. Seeding your lawn with a high quality grass seed can help fill in some of the areas damaged by summer drought, disease, and insects.
- Do a fall cleanup
It is important to keep up on leaf pickup during the fall and into winter. To most people this is not a fun job but necessary to keep leaves from smothering grass over the winter. Mulching the leaves regularly will keep debris small and allow you to keep from raking; however, in heavy leaf drop locations some pickup may be necessary to keep leaves from becoming a huge mess to deal with. Smothering leaves can also promote disease issues to deal with later on. Helmke is happy to give you a competitive price on leaf clean-up. We can remove your leaves from your property, or blow them into the woods.
- Don’t stop mowing
Just because turf growth slows heading into winter, it is still very important to mow at proper intervals. You may gradually drop your mowing height as you phase out mowing altogether. The shorter turf will minimize outbreaks of snow mold that favor higher, matted down grass. Be sure not to put the mower away too early and pay attention to the growth of the grass. Once mowing is done be sure to have mower properly serviced for the next season.
- Fall fertilization
Fall is inarguably the best time to fertilize your lawn. The grass will be keeping energy to store for the winter. A proper late fall fertilizer will provide essential nutrients for the turf and provide a stronger root system without causing rapid growth. A professional fall/winter fertilization will also allow for a nice green lawn in the springtime. #4 and #5 are both very good value – you don’t spend a lot but you will certainly see the results.
Core aeration is often overlooked as a major contributor to turf health. This practice of mechanically pulling “plugs” of soil from the ground can relieve oxygen depriving compaction, allowing for improvement in air, water, and to get down into the soil and root system. Core aeration, recommended by the experts such as Cornell Cooperative Extension, will go a long way into the long care health of your lawn. Combined with the spread of grass seed after core aerating will provide a better yield of grass as well as the seed falls into the holes left by the aerator. This again is a very good value for your money.
- Call a professional
If you have lawn struggles, as likely was the case this year, then there may be some issues that need extra attention. Perhaps a soil test may also indicate soil deficiencies that may need addressed. Grass is not just grass so your situation may be totally different from your neighbors. Allow a professional company like John Helmke Industries to assist you in all of your lawn care needs.
- Winter is a great time for Home Improvement projects
Also please remember Helmke Industries offers home improvement and renovation services. Anything from the mailbox to the roof. Our experienced craftsmen can give your prices on flooring, kitchens, bathrooms, basements, insulation, windows and doors, roofing and more. Painting and fine finishing is also offered.
- Snow Plowing and shoveling
Helmke Industries offers snow plowing for Tappan, Palisades, Sneden’s Landing, Blauvelt, Nyack, Orangeburg, Pearl River, and neighboring communities. Winter is so much more enjoyable (and safer!) when you don’t have to shovel snow!
Give us a call anytime 845-398-2300 or email us [email protected] with any questions or to set up a no cost consultation.