The weather has been up and down the past month, a few days in the 60’s and a few mornings in the 20’s, but as we head into January, the weather will become consistently cold (as I am writing this, it is 18 degrees out). Winter is probably when people think about their lawn the least, but following a few guidelines will help set your lawn up for success in the spring!
First, make sure your lawn is clear of all debris. Leaves, pine needles, sticks, and other items can be damaging to the grass. A final clearing of the lawn this time of year will help get it to spring free of debris. Try not to use a mower though, as it can do more damage than good with the cold.
If you notice any frost on your lawn, try to remain off it. Obviously, this is easier said than done, but when the grass blades are frosted or frozen, any traction across them can break the blade and leave it damaged until spring. If you have ever noticed footprints across a lawn all winter long, this is because the lawn was walked across when the blades were frozen.
Consider, if you don’t already, early winter fertilization next winter. When we fertilize in December, it adds nutrients to the soil that will be lost due to cold weather. With our soil focus approach, a lot of the nutrients soak into the soil and remain there until the grass is ready to use them and start growing in the spring. You will notice your grass going dormant as the weather remains cold, but once warmer weather hits and the soil temperatures rise, those nutrients will be there for your grass to pull from.
Be careful rock salt does not end up in your lawn. If you are salting your driveway during a snow storm, try to keep the salt on the driveway and not spilling over into the lawn. Salt can be damaging to a lawn as it strips all nutrients in the soil. It also removes moisture from your lawn, making it more difficult for your lawn to get oxygen and water.
Hopefully these tips will help your lawn survive the cold weather. Bundle up, stay warm, and enjoy a smooth winter!