We spend a lot of time trying to keep weeds out of our lawn and garden. They are easy to identify in the garden – they are well out of place amongst the flowers that we know we have planted. In the green grass of the lawn, however, it can sometimes be difficult to pick out weeds. Once you find and figure out what kind of weeds you have, you’ll want to remove them and reclaim your lawn, returning it to green grass. Here is are 7 steps to taking your lawn back from weeds:
1. Identify and Remove Weeds – Find out what weeds are making their way into your lawn, and the best way to remove them. For this, check out our recent and upcoming articles regarding invasive species and common lawn weeds.
2. Aerate the Soil – We’ve discussed the uses and benefits of soil aeration in the past. In order to give your lawn a chance to root further down and outpace the weeds, aeration is no longer an option. Consider aerating by hand so you can give a little more attention to the specific parts of your lawn with more weeds.
3. Choose the Right Seed and Spread it Correctly – To help choke out the weeds and provide them with little room to grow, choose the right grass seed for the areas you are treating. You’ll want the grass to thrive, so consider the geography of your lawn and the surrounding plants – near trees, look for grass that does well in the shade.
When you sow the seed, don’t sow too much of it in one place, or you could face an issue where the seed is competing for moisture and nutrients for growth. Too much seed in one spot will, at best, cause some of the seed to be wasted. At worst, all of the seed could get limited nutrients and moisture, leaving it week should poor conditions arrive. This would result in all of the newly-seeded grass being killed off.
4. Top-Dress – Whether you’re using your own compost, a purchased mix, or a simple spread of manure and alfalfa, you’ll want to lightly spread the mixture over the top of the new seeds. A top dress like this is rich in organic matter and nutrients that will improve the quality of the soil. This will encourage the seeds to germinate and grow.
5. Fertilize – Use an all-natural bio-solid fertilizer – you won’t have to wait for the seeds to take and germinate before using it. This won’t necessarily help the seeds and grass immediately, but it will keep them growing strong for a few weeks after seeding. It can also help more than just your new
6. Water – With new seed, you will need to water it once or twice a day to improve its chances of survival. Light watering early in the morning and late in the evening will keep the seeds moist and viable. You’ll also need to water with a light spray, to avoid washing the seed away or causing it to move. After two or three weeks of light watering, you can change over to the less frequent, heavier waterings that are good for your lawn over the long term.
7. Keep Watch – Stay alert for the re-emergence of weeds, as well as keeping an eye on your new grass. Even if you’ve followed all of the previous steps, there’s still the chance that the weeds may return. In the case that this should happen, simply attack the weeds as suggested and continue to feed your grass to try and fill in over the weeds.
So don’t despair when you see thistle and dandelion popping up amidst your blades of grass. You can take care of it and take your lawn back, simply by following the seven steps we have gone over.