How To Make The Most Of Your In-Ground Irrigation System In Spring

Spring seems to finally have sprung and the grass is beginning to grow and green up which means this is the perfect time to give your lawn a leg-up on summer! Your in-ground irrigation system can do more than keep your lawn and garden soil moist. Here are our top tips for making the most of your Burlington irrigation system when it comes to spring lawn care.

How To Tell If Your Lawn Has Grubs And How To Get Rid Of Them

Grubs are the infant-stage for some common bugs in southern Ontario like June bugs, European chafer and the Japanese beetle. These little guys can do a lot of damage to your lawn if left unchecked. You may be tipped off to a grub problem if you're finding dead patches in your once-beautiful and healthy grass. Another telltale sign is seeing holes dug in the lawn in the morning by animals (skunks in particular - not the guys you want hanging around your yard at night) looking for a tasty grub to eat. Skunks go where the food is - they're opportunistic like that and as long they keep finding grubs in your lawn they're going to keep coming back.

The best way to tell if grubs are infiltrating your lawn is to lift up a small section of your grass and soil and take a look.

How To Eliminate Grubs

If you're sure you have a grub problem, even if the problem is currently isolated to a small section of your lawn, you want to address it sooner than laterbefore it gets out of control (or your dog gets sprayed by your nighttime visitors). Grubs and grub-like pests feast on the root systems of your lawn. This means, you have to reseed to get the grass to grow back. Ugh. Who has time for that?

While grub damage, usually, isn't extensive however the dead patches left behind by the grubs can be an eyesore. Here's where you in-ground irrigation system can come in handy!

Lawns that receive consistent deep waterings are strong and healthy and can recover from a small bout of grubs. Lawns that don't receive consistent and deep waterings are vulnerable to pests and disease and the grubs are going to cause far more damage. Grubs do not have to be the cause of your lawn's demise.

Deep root growth (promoted by consistent and deep waterings) is super important. Another important step your irrigation system can help with is delivering nematodes. This is the season for these little microscopic worms to wriggle into the soil and eat those nasty grubs from the inside out - Alien style. Sounds gross, but nematodes are very, very small natural predators that are totally SAFE for pet, pets, child - basically anything except grubs. Once they've exhausted the supply of grubs in your lawn, they'll move on. Everybody wins!

Nematodes need to be applied via a concentrated spray and your irrigation system can provide the necessary moisture to deliver these little wriggly heroes to their proper destination - the root level of soil on your lawn. Don't wait for mother nature to provide the kind of rain you need for nematodes to be effective! Apply them when it's convenient for you!

Fertigation - Another Way Your Irrigation System Can Boost Your Spring Lawn

Do you wish your garden plants looked as good as the ones at the nursery or greenhouse? Do you wish your lawn looked as thick and green as fresh-laid sod? You need to fertilize the way farmers and garden centres do with inline fertilizer using your irrigation system - or fertigation.

Fertigation is the process of adding liquid fertilizer to your irrigation system. While you water your garden or lawn, you can also add the nutrients it needs to perform better and look great! Fertigation can be used in residential or commercial applications and has been used in commercial agriculture and gardening for many years.

5 Benefits To Using Your Irrigation System To Apply Fertilizer

Use Less Fertilizer

Residential irrigation systems require liquid fertilizer that needs to be diluted further before application. This means that to apply the fertilizer in the same concentrations as dry synthetic fertilizers, you'll need to purchase a lot more liquid fertilizer. However, by applying fertilizer each time you water, plants receive less per application but receive it consistently over the season. Used this way, you'll use 70-90% less fertilizer.

More Effective

Applying liquid fertilizer via your irrigation system in smaller amounts over the course of the season means your plants can absorb all the nutrients more efficiently. There's no waste. Fertigation delivers the nutrients right to the roots so there's less chance of incorrect application or damage.

Use Less Water

Applying dry fertilizer on top of the soil requires a lot of water to dissolve the particles for absorption. If insufficient water is used, the fertilizer can burn your plants or make them prone to disease that's very difficult to eradicate. Who has time for that? With fertigation, you're not applying any additional water, only what your irrigation system would normally supply but in a controlled consistent application.

No Fertilizer Run-Off

The dangers of fertilizer run-off are well documented however, if applying fertilizer to hills or slopes, run-off into city water supplies is a risk and environmental hazard. By fertilizing at root-depth in small amounts there is no run off or environmental danger.

Reduce Transplant Shock

You've invested in new plants and want to give them the best start possible. You are sure to give them a little extra water, so why not add the fertilizer to the water? There's less shock to the plant between the container soil and the soil in your yard this way and helps plants send out strong roots.

Spring Lawn Care Tips

Typically, spring lawn care begins in May in southern Ontario. Sure, sometimes April is warm enough for the grass to green up a little, but rushing out to cut your grass too soon often just gives the weeds the head start by exposing bare patches of soil to the sun.

Rake Your Lawn

Isn't raking your lawn something for the fall? Yes, but it's also a great idea to do it in May as well. Why? Breaking up thatch (dead organic material that covers the soil) and moss problems while the soil is still moist can help your grass spread out. You want to create the perfect conditions for your lawn's root system to spread and grow thick to choke out pests and fend off disease.

After a good rake, apply some grass seed to fill in the gaps and make sure grass is what grows up in those bare patches of soil.

Lawn Mowing

Even though in April your grass may look like it's growing, it could just be the weeds getting a head start. You need to give your lawn enough time to awake from its dormancy period before giving the grass a cut. Don't be tempted to cut your grass too short, thinking you're giving your lawn a chance to breathe. You should only be cutting off the top one-third of the grass blade with each cutting. Too short, and you're giving weeds the opportunity to grow, drying out the soil too much and leaving room for insect infestation.


We covered the damage from grubs above, but another potential threat to your lawn is from leatherjackets. These are the larvae of the European Crane Fly. You've seen these guys around even if you didn't know what to call them. They're large mosquito-resembling insects clinging to the outside walls of your home, or hanging off your screen doors. They lay their eggs in the moist soil in the spring and the leatherjackets feed off the grass, chewing the blades down to the ground. Keeping the ground irrigated will force the leatherjackets to move to hard surfaces, making them targets for birds or drying out in the sun.

The sprinkler system experts at Nutri-Lawn Burlington Irrigation can help you take the guess work out of irrigation for your home or business and we offer the major brands with professional expertise. Contact us today for your complimentary quote.