Summer is a time of year most of us look forward to throughout the dreary winter months. The promise of long evenings, warmer weather, and light summer clothing is something which keeps us going when the snow and ice set in. It is also an ideal time to enjoy your garden and entertain friends and families with parties, barbeques, and get-togethers.
While summer may be a dream come true for you, it can cause serious harm to plants in your yard. Heat, lack of rain, and prolonged use can leave your lawn looking dry and unpleasant, spoiling your summer experience. Luckily, we have the top tips for protecting your landscaping in the heat, focusing on California lawn care—a state known for its fiery temperatures!
Don’t cut too short
The rule is that the shorter the grass, the weaker it is. This will also extend to the root system, reducing their strength and giving weeds the chance to break through and take hold. As a rule, remove no more than ⅓ of the blade height in one cutting, and you should always use the highest setting on your mower – usually around 3 ½ – 4 inches. You also want to time your mow for after a recent rainfall or watering, not when the lawn is dry and dehydrated – this will only add more stress.
Give it enough water
Making sure your lawn receives the correct amount of water is a balancing act—too little, and it becomes drought-ridden and dead, too much and you risk suffocating the roots through cutting off their oxygen. Your lawn should receive around an inch of water a week. Sometimes this can be provided by rainfall but must be supplemented during dry spells. The good news is that this can be a weekly watering, as long as it is deep and consists of an inch at minimum.
Reduce insect damage
Insects are one of the most common reasons for a destroyed lawn, and the heady heat of summer is the perfect time for them to wake up. Common culprits include armyworms, sod webworms, fleas, ants and chinch bugs. All the above can wreak havoc on your hard work. To help, take the time to apply an environmentally-friendly pesticide designed. The initial investment will be worth it when you don’t have to worry about fighting off an infestation!
Control your foot traffic
Summer is the season you want to spend the most time in your garden, but it is also the time when excessive foot traffic causes the most damage. Wear and tear breaks down the grass, leading to thin or bare patches, and can make your lawn appear tired and patchy.
Fortunately, there are solutions which don’t require staying inside all summer! Try and spread footfall out as much as possible, moving children’s play equipment and outdoor seating areas regularly. You can also add stone to high-traffic areas, such as in and out of the house. Regular, thorough watering can also make a big difference.