12 Things to Do to Prepare Your Lawn for The Winter

Winter season poses several problems for your lawn, including grass dormancy or even death of your grass bed. Oakville sees good snowfall each winter, meaning less moisture for your grass to sustain itself through the season. While some people plant winter grasses that go dormant during snow, all types of lawns require basic winter preparation to equip them better to survive the season.

In this blog, you will learn about 12 handy ways to prepare your lawn for the winter season. Your lawn will be ready to face the snow and come out greener when spring arrives.

12 Tips for Lawn Care Oakville Before Winter Sets In

Even if you have cared for your lawn diligently throughout the year, the arrival of fall and winter will make your grass look dull and tired. Grass around this time of the year usually uses most of the soil’s nutrients and requires extra upkeep to thrive again.

The 12 tips below will help you understand how best to prepare your grass for the cold season.

Prior Prep: Ready Your Equipment

Autumn sees severe leaf-shedding by the trees in your landscape, so your lawn must be teeming with dried leaves by now. You would need equipment like rakes and forks to manage these leaves. Also, ready your gardening gloves and lawn mower and see if new gloves are required or if your mower needs maintenance before it can be used.

Remember that October and November are the best months to start winter lawn prep. If you are planting new grass, it needs to get at least four weeks in the soil before winter sets in.

  1. Adjust Your Mowing Height

If you have warm-season grasses planted in your lawn, you need to raise the height of your mower by at least half an inch. This is because taller grass blades provide more leaf area to the grass, enabling them to produce and store more food for the winter. It improves the chances of survival for your grass.

More leaf area also makes your grass denser, enabling them to fight off weeds.

Especially if you have St. Augustine, zoysia, Bermuda, or centipede grasses planted in your lawn, you need to be careful not to mow over too much of your grass.

However, you must also take care not to keep the grass too high that it prevents sunlight from reaching the base; in this case, the grass will likely die.

  1. Rake the Leaves

Begin by removing all the fallen leaves away from your garden. You need a good quality rake that does not damage the grass but effectively sweeps the leaves away. Leaving the leaves lying on top of your grass damages the grass blades. It also prevents sunlight from reaching the grass. If winter is around the corner, these conditions could pose a high risk of killing off your grass during the cold season as it can’t produce and store enough food for the winter.

Again, October and November are the best times to start winter prep for your grass.

  1. Stay Off Wet Grass

If it has rained in your area and your lawn is wet, it is best to put off winter prep until it dries up again. This is because when you step on wet lawns, you risk compacting the soil, which could result in loss of aeration. Additionally, you risk pulling your grass out by the roots if you rake when the soil is wet.

Let the soil dry before starting your prep.

  1. Aerate the Lawn

Aeration is one of the most important preparations you will do on the lawn to prepare it for the winter. Aeration involves upturning the topsoil in your lawn to allow oxygen to get in so that the grass roots can breathe. It also helps incorporate surface-level nutrients into the soil to make them available for the grass during winter.

The best time to aerate is at least four to five weeks before the frost sets in.

  1. Switch Your Lawn Feed

No matter which weed and feed for lawns you have been using up until now, you need to switch it with a special autumn feed for lawns. This feed consists of ingredients that help strengthen the roots of your grass and help manage mossy conditions.

Autumn lawn feeds ensure your lawn comes back green when spring arrives.

  1. Overseeding with Ryegrass

If you have zoysia grass in your lawn and you plan to keep it looking green throughout the winters, consider overseeding with ryegrass. However, remember that while it will definitely keep your lawn looking green throughout the winter, it will continue to grow in the summers as well (especially if it is perennial ryegrass).

It is really a question of wanting a green lawn through the winter or wanting more mowing chores in the summer.

  1. Replan Irrigation

For those owners who have installed automatic lawn irrigation systems in their homes, it is important to revisit the watering schedules. You need to remember that once your grass goes into dormancy, there will be no requirement for irrigation. Additionally, colder temperatures reduce the need for frequent watering.

Consider talking to professionals from landscaping in Oakville to have the irrigation adjusted.

  1. Treat the Bare Patches

October- November is the best time before winter to treat all the bare patches in your lawn. You may have gotten them because of lawn use or prep activity – they can be easily treated. You can purchase patching kits that contain everything you need, like fertilizer, seed, compost, etc., to treat the patch. Or you can simply get some good-quality topsoil and grass seed to sow it yourself.

  1. Keep Off the Grass

If you have sown new seeds or newly prepared your lawn for the coming winter, it is best to keep off the grass for the time being. This allows all the treatments you have done to set in properly. If required, create signs that say “Keep off the grass” or put temporary fences around the area to keep your pets and children away.

Also, keep a keen eye on how your lawn responds to the treatments you have administered.

  1. Readjust Your Mowing Height Before Snow

Oakville generally sees good snow during the winter months, which means that immediately before it snows, you would need to prepare your grass for the snow load. Lower your mower height to about one inch so your grass stays low enough to avoid catching snow mold during the winter. Consider using a grasscatcher to collect all the debris.

Also, remember to readjust the mower height before you store it away so that you don’t accidentally scalp your grass when mowing in spring.

  1. Remove Weeds

Several perennial cool-season weeds may decide to show up on your lawn, like dandelion and henbit. Consider getting a pre-emergent herbicide for your lawn. Spreading such a herbicide on the lawn ensures that seeds lying dormant in the soil since summer do not sprout when the temperatures cool.

Doing this also helps reduce the number of emergent weeds the following spring.

  1. Fertilize the Grass for Cool Season

If you ask lawn care professionals, they would recommend that you fertilize your lawn at least once a year in the fall if you have cool-season grass. You need to do this before the air gets cold enough to discolor the blades of your grass.

Feeding your lawn during the fall season helps develop more blades in the grass, which then helps produce more food storage to last the winter.

Dependable Lawn: The Best Lawn Care in Oakville

Oakville winters can get pretty harsh. It is important to prepare your lawn to face the imminent snowing so that when spring arrives, you don’t have to make your lawn from scratch. Follow the 12 handy tips discussed above as a DIY solution for winter prep.

Alternatively, you can contact Dependable Lawn – the best lawn care in Oakville – to help you get your lawn ready to face the winter. At Dependable Lawn, our experts apply their years of lawn care experience to provide you with the best services in the niche.

Contact us today for winter lawn solutions.


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