While Christmas was surprisingly moderate for much of the country, it may only be the calm before the storm. The cold, frosty grip of winter will soon hit the lawns of America, particularly across the Northern half of the country. During these frosts and freezes, your lawn may need a little bit of care and consideration to survive and thrive come spring.
Better still, don’t tread on your grass at all. Blades of grass will freeze when it gets cold enough, and the blades will become brittle and snap when stepped on. While this can lead to an ugly lawn in the spring, it won’t necessarily cause long-term harm to the lawn. A break high up on the blade is no worse than we do when we mow it.
That’s not the extent of damage, though. When grass is cold and brittle, the crown of the grass – the area right near the base of the blade, poking up from the soil – can be damaged or crushed. By destroying where the grass sprouts, you destroy any possibility of growth in the spring.
So avoiding walking on cold, brittle grass as much as possible. A little traffic is fine. Don’t drive on it or use tools that may break the grass, even if there is a nice cushion of snow on top of the grass. It’s just better for the lawn.
“No, Man” to Snow Men
Snow men are fun to build, but they can be a bit hazardous to your lawn. The weight of all that snow on one area of the grass can pack down an area of soil and kill off some of the organisms in that patch, creating dead spots in the lawn. We’re not saying to not build any snow men – after all, they are really fun to make. Instead, construct them on hardscaping or the driveway or, if the lawn is the only place to build one, knock it down and scatter the snow after a few days on display.
Pile Snow Elsewhere
Along the same lines, when plowing or using the snow blower, make sure that he snow is spread around and not piled in one particular area. Otherwise, you’ll get the same result as if a snow man had been built there.
Don’t Rake, but Don’t Leave Leaves Either
Leftover leaves from the fall can be damaging to the crowns of the grass, but don’t be in too quick of a hurry to rake them off of your lawn. While these leaves have the chance to cause damage, you are much more likely to damage the lawn through walking on it and possibly tearing up grass as you rake. Once the early freeze or frost has hit, you’ll need to either use a leaf blower, or hope that everything works out well over the winter.
Keeping your lawn in great shape over the winter doesn’t need to be a worry. It merely requires patience and preparation, and a little bit of attention during the nastiest months.
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