The summer heat and drying winds can be tough for our lawns to handle. On top of that, we sometime get very little rain so it is no wonder that our grass starts to go dormant and brown. Everything from how you mow your lawn to watering can make big difference in how your lawn will look this summer.
Mowing – first thing is to make sure that you have sharp blades on your mower. Sharp blades will make clean cut rather than tear at your grass which can cause water loss. Torn-up grass is also more susceptible to lawn diseases. As a rule for summer, mow high keeping your lawn at about 3″ tall. Mow often enough so that you are removing only about 1/3 of the blade of grass. Infrequent mowings are not good for the lawn because too much is cut off and there are a lot of clippings to remove.
Keeping your lawn longer provides several benefits. First you have fewer weeds because less light reaches the soil making it harder for weed seeds to germinate. Taller grass means less maintenance too since the roots are deeper where they can get more water and nutrients from the soil.
Now on to watering. Infrequent, deep watering is best for our lawns. Watering deeply will help create long, deep roots on our grass. When you water, you want to wet the soil about 5″ down. Watering for short periods several times a week will do more harm than good. It is a good ideas to test how much water your sprinkler puts out. Water over a period of time and set containers out in the area being watered. Anytime you water and it starts puddling or running off, turn off the water, let it soak in and start again.