7 Quick Lawn Care Tips: Summer

7 Quick Lawn Care Tips: Summer

Create a healthy, green lawn with our quick and simple care tips.


With end-of-summer barefoot afternoons and outdoor gatherings coming up, it’s no time to slack on your lawn upkeep. Keep your lawn looking great in the warm months, and you’ll create a luscious green space without a lot of labor — which means more time for fun in the sun!

Keeping a lawn beautiful all season long doesn’t have to be hard. Keep grass maintenance simple with these seven tricks of the trade:

1. Fertilize Early
Treat your lawn with summer lawn food in early June. The nutrients are formulated for warmer weather to provide the nourishment needed to thrive in the upcoming heat.

Tip: Apply in early morning before the heat of the day.

2. Let it Grow
Raise the mower blade so grass is allowed to grow longer, about 2 1/2 to 3 inches long. This will allow it to develop a better root structure to weather the heat.

Tip: Longer grass will also shade the ground, conserving water while also deterring germination of weed seeds.

3. Keep Clippings
As you mow, leave the lawn clippings on the grass. They will compost and provide much-needed organic material to the soil.

Tip: After mowing, if there are clumps lying on top of the grass, remove and compost, or scatter throughout the lawn. Heavy grass clippings can kill what’s underneath.

4. Sharpen Blades
Dull mower blades tear the grass, which can lead to increased moisture loss, while also giving cut ends a ragged appearance.

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5. Water
Lawns do best with about an inch of water a week. Water in the early morning or early evening, when moisture will not evaporate as quickly.

Tip: Place a small soup can anywhere in the watering area to measure the amount of moisture your lawn is getting.

6. Monitor
Dig up and pull random weeds with a trowel, and treat tough ones with a broadleaf herbicide in a spray bottle.

Tip: Label all herbicide bottles to avoid using the wrong chemical.

7. Take a Break
Do not fertilize your lawn from late June through August, when temperatures are high. Resume in September when temperatures begin to drop.

Tip: Fill flowerpot saucers with a mixture of sand and water, then add a pinch of salt. Set them around your yard to attract beautiful butterflies.

Tips for a Dormant Lawn
Did you return from vacation to a brown lawn? It’s not dead — it’s sleeping! Grass can go a long time without water, usually up to six weeks. The amount of water a dormant lawn needs depends on temperatures, humidity and rainfall amounts. Keep these tips in mind:

  • Apply at least 1/2 inch of water after the initial 4-6 weeks of drought, then apply at least 1/2 inch of water every 2-3 weeks after, as long as drought continues.
  • These waterings are to keep the underground portions of the plant alive, and you won't notice any above-ground greening.
  • If there’s a lot of rainfall, don’t water at all. Keep track with a rain gauge, and only water enough to make up the difference between the lawn's needs and the precipitation it receives.
  • Avoid walking on dormant lawns. It’s stressed, and foot or vehicle traffic may kill it and cause bare spots.
  • If you need to mow, keep the grass at least 3” tall.

Tip: Newly sodded or seeded lawns, new grass with thatch buildup, or grass with insect and disease damage should not be allowed to go dormant. In all these cases, water your lawn regularly to keep it green.

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