Itís Not Dead, Itís Just Sleeping: Dormant Lawns

Does your lawn have “yellow fever” – unsightly yellow or brown patches that tarnish the look and health of your turf?  Despite your feelings of failure as a gardener, rest assured that brown patches during the summer are perfectly normal.  When the temperatures rise and the rain ceases, most grasses go into a dormant state – hence the ugly shade of burnt yellow.  Not to worry, your lawn can safely stay in that dormant state for 3-4 weeks without concern.  However, since this summer is shaping up to be a scorcher, here are some ways to tend your dormant lawn and bring it back to life.

Nutri-Lawn Burlington Lawn Sprinklers Can Aid in Aeration
Preventing a dormant lawn starts in the spring.  Including an aeration treatment as part of your spring lawn maintenance helps fight thatch and soil compaction. 

Over time, built-up thatch and tightly packed soil can choke off nutrients from the grass.  If you let things get too thick, your lawn can become diseased, insect-infested, and dehydrated.  All of this will contribute to an unsightly yellowing of your turf.

Soil aeration will allow air, nutrients, and water from your lawn sprinkler systems to enter the soil and keep the lawn nourished.  Nutri-Lawn’s Burlington Lawn Sprinklers have provided tips on How to Loosen Up Compacted Soil.

More Preventative Measures: Seed and Fertilize
After you have aerated your lawn, it’s time to give your grass some grub.  Ask our lawn sprinkler systems experts about the best grass seeds for your area.  When overseeding, you’ll want to use plenty of seed to ensure lots of coverage.  Spread it in a criss-cross pattern using a seed-spreading device to ensure even coverage.

After you’ve seeded, it’s time to fertilize, as this will provide your grass with the nutrition necessary for optimal growth.  Once you’ve fertilized, give your new grass a good watering with your Burlington lawn sprinklers.  Establishing a good watering routine with your lawn sprinkler systems is a great way to prevent dormancy.

Dealing with Dormancy: How to Fix It Once It’s Arrived
Once you’ve noticed that your grass has gone dormant, there are a few ways to minimize the length of this "period of rest" and improve overall turf health. Bring back your green lawn with these simple tips:

  • Stay off the grass: once your grass has gone dormant, the roots are at risk of being damaged.  So cut back on the mowing and minimize heavy foot traffic.
  • Go shaggy: learn to leave your grass on the long side.  Longer grass blades will create more shade near the roots and prevent moisture from your lawn sprinkler system from evaporating rapidly.
  • Do not fertilize it: when it comes to feeding your lawn, too much can be a bad thing.  A dormant lawn isn't able to take in as many nutrients as a healthy lawn, as such, fertilizing could do more harm than good.
  • Ignore the weeds: yes, this is a painful tactic, but right now herbicides will only do more damage.
  • Use your lawn sprinkler system sparingly: it just seems so intuitive to use water to revive dormant grass.  However, good watering practice state that you should water your lawn deeply and less frequently.  Water in the early morning to prevent the water from evaporating in the heat.

Keep the yellow fever at bay this year with good lawn practices.  For more information or a complimentary quote, contact Nutri-Lawn today!