The warmer weather of spring is here in Florida, and that means that your lawn will once again begin growing in earnest after likely going more dormant during the winter. As it fills back in, it will restore its lush fullness that you love so much. However, all that new growth also means that you’ve got a bit of work to do to help your lawn be at its best. Here’s a look at a few of the most important lawn care maintenance tasks for the spring season.
Clean the Area
Before you can truly get to work on your lawn, you’ll first need to clean it. This includes clearing away any branches, leaves, pet waste, and other debris that has accumulated over the winter. You’ll gain a clear view of the overall condition of your lawn, which can guide you in making decisions regarding fertilization, pest control, and disease treatment.
Once the area is clear, go over your entire lawn with a rake. Be sure to press the rake all the way down into the grass to reach the soil underneath. As some of the grass dies off in the winter, the dead blades can accumulate underneath, often clumping together to form thatch. The goal of raking your lawn is to remove the thatch so it doesn’t block water and air from reaching the soil.
Aerate the Soil
Over time, the soil underneath your lawn can become compacted due to foot traffic and gradual settling. Aerating involves pulling up small plugs of soil to break up the density. This will allow more air and water to penetrate down into the soil and reach your lawn’s roots. It also improves heat tolerance, which will be essential when the hot Florida summer rolls around.
Fertilize to Spur Growth
Spring is a time of rapid growth for grass and other plants, and fertilizer can help to encourage that growth even further. Keep in mind that there are many different types of fertilizer available, so you’ll want to ensure you make the right choice. Take into consideration the composition of your soil, as well as the specific grass species that makes up your lawn.
Recalibrate Your Sprinkler System
Many areas change their watering restrictions along with the change in seasons, so this is the perfect time to make any necessary adjustments to your sprinkler system settings. Be sure to follow any requirements for your local area while also doing your best to accommodate your grass type’s specific needs.
To help keep weeds at bay, it is best to keep your lawn at the longer end of its healthy range during spring. Each grass type thrives best at a different height, so check what your grass needs before mowing. Although it helps to prevent weeds, a taller lawn will also need to be mowed more frequently, typically about once a week, to keep it from looking overgrown.