How to have a beautiful lawn
Here are some top tips on how to have a beautiful lawn from Which? Magazine
Mow your lawn
As long as the ground isn’t wet or frozen, it’s a good idea to cut growing grass, no matter how early in the year. It will keep your lawn looking tidy and avoids the grass getting long and difficult to cut. Collect the cuttings and add them to the compost heap, or put them in your green waste bin if your council provides one. We’ve found that adding a shovel of soil every time you add a batch of grass cuttings to your compost heap will help to stop composting grass clippings becoming slimy. We also had success with a product called Complete Rot for Grass.
Once the growing season starts in earnest in March, it’s time to starting mowing your lawn once a week. Begin with the blades at the highest setting and gradually lower them over the coming weeks. Most people give their lawn a last mow at the beginning of November. For a perfect finish, trim the lawn’s edges with long-handled shears or a grass trimmer.
If you need to buy a new lawn mower:
- For small lawns, up to 50 sq m, an electric lawn mower with a 30-33cm cutting width or a hand cylinder mower is suitable.
- For medium lawns, up to 150sq m, go for an electric lawn mower with a 35-40cm cutting width.
- For larger lawns, up to about 250 sq m or if your lawn is a long way from a power socket, a small petrol lawn mower is the best option. They start at about 40cm wide.
- For lawns larger than 250sq m, look for a petrol lawn mower with a cutting width of 46cm or more. If you have a large lawn and find pushing a petrol mower too hard work, opt for a self-propelled version. Some come with a self-start version too, which means you don’t have to struggle with a starter cord.
Feed the grass
While the grass is growing, give the lawn a feed. Do this four times during the growing season for lush grass that will crowd out weeds. If your lawn does contain weeds or moss, treat these at the same time with a feed & weed or mosskiller.
Spring and autumn lawn care jobs
Aerate your lawn
Use a good garden fork to aerate your lawn
If the soil surface is hard and compacted, it can impede drainage and prevent air getting to the grass roots. Twice a year, make holes with a garden fork every 20cm across your lawn to help water drain away. Alternatively hire a powered lawn aerator machine.
Scarify your lawn
Lawn rakes or scarifiers rake through the turf, pulling out moss, thatch and other debris so they can be collected. You’ll be amazed how much material is removed and may be worried that the lawn looks awful immediately afterwards, but your grass will recover within weeks and be denser and healthier as a result. You can give your lawn a gentle rake every couple of months during the growing season. Scarifying is a more rigorous job, so it’s best to do it just once a year, in the spring or autumn.
Resow bare patches of lawn with grass seed
Lawns can look in a sorry state after the winter. Generally, though, as the weather warms up, the lawn will perk up and start to grow through any problems. Any bare or thin patches of grass can be thickened by raking over the surface and then resowing with grass seed.
Tackle moss and weeds early
Once the weather has warmed up, the weeds and moss will start to grow as well as your grass. The easiest way to kill them is with a feed, weed and mosskiller treatment.
Remember that moss will reoccur if you don’t remove the underlying causes such as compacted soil, shade and hungry lawns.
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