The key to a beautiful lawn is to keep it young and mowing promotes new growth. Warm climate grasses commonly found in Australia, need a close shave once a year to rejuvenate.
• Don’t scalp the grass
• Don’t mow grass that is stressed or wet
• Keep the mower blades sharp
• Mow regularly, never removing more than 1⁄3 of the height per cut
• Match the mowing height to the expected wear
Your lawn may not require as much water as you think. The frequency will depend on the weather, the type of grass and the soil conditions.
• Only water when your lawn needs it – change of colour may indicate water needs
• A lawn should be partly dried out between watering as it allows air to get to the root system and creates a more drought resistant lawn
• One deep watering is far more beneficial than frequent shallow watering – and it will save you time (In a Sydney summer for example, a deep watering is about 15mm)
• The best time to water is early in the morning or late afternoon when less water is lost through evaporation. Avoid watering in the evening or at night as the lawn will remain wet encouraging disease
• Your lawn may become dormant in periods of dry weather without watering, however, if the soil is kept moist, it will survive and in the rainy season come back as good as ever
Top dressing is only needed for an extra smooth surface.
• Shave lawn first
• Use a washed river sand and never make it more than 1cm deep
• Work top dressing in until some leaf shows
• You may use an organic fertiliser under the top dressing if required
Most pests are specific to regional areas and expert advice should be sought if you have a serious problem.
A well maintained lawn should require little weeding or none at all. Hand weeding is generally the best solution for most lawns and is often good exercise too. Where serious weeds occur or become a problem, consult a lawn specialist.
RENOVATION AND REPAIR
Lawns will always require some maintenance from wear and tear.
• Avoid soil compaction by using a garden fork to break up and aerate the ground. Normally this does not need to be done more than once per year – the best time of year is spring
• The best method is to use the fork moving backwards. Drive the fork in vertically and lever it through 30 degrees to lift and crack the ground. Keep doing this at 15 cm intervals
• It’s easy to patch worn areas by turning new grass into the worn areas
• Lift a flap of soil and put grass runners half in and half out parallel to the ground
• Keep the patched area damp until the roots have taken hold