Summer months are often jam-packed with vacations, BBQ’s and long days in the sunshine. Through all the busy activities, it’s important your yard gets the attention it deserves. Beyond your time, taking care of the yard can also cost you lots of money. An article on Bankrate.com found that Americans spend around $40 billion annually on lawn care. Beyond the cost, the average lawn owner spends more than
3 days of the year taking care of their lawn on average.
Here are six tips that you can use to trim your yard care costs:
1. Don’t be afraid to overseed. If you want a heartier grass, overseed – sprinkle new grass over your existing lawn – to create a drought-tolerant grass bed without having to replace existing turf. This will also add a healthier, fuller look where grass is thinning or brown.
2. Mow tall. Setting your mower to the highest setting will mean a taller grass, and less watering. But don’t forget to sharpen the blade, and have your mower tuned up once or twice a year to ensure a cleaner cut and healthier grass.
3. Integrate other groundcover. Replace patches of your turf with low-maintenance groundcover, native perennials, shrubs, trees or rock beds. This will minimize runoff, reduce your water use and also your maintenance time.
4. Go organic. We’re not just talking in your salad. Traditional fertilizers create chemical runoff, and also typically increase the amount of water your yard requires. Utilize organic waste, like grass clipping and vegetable scraps, to make compost and add nutrients to your lawn. Compost can also add vital nutrients to your trees and garden beds.
5. Check that sprinkler system. Irrigation systems are great timesavers, but they can also make it easier to overwater, and drive up your water bill. Hire a professional to examine your irrigation system and give advice on ideal watering times. Many local water departments offer this service, some free of charge.
6. Fall = Time to aerate. By adding small holes to the soil below your grass, or aeration, you are loosening up the soil and improving water distribution. This technique also reduces runoff and promotes better water and nutrient absorption. Professional aeration tools are available at most home and garden stores.
Follow these six steps and you’ll have a lush yard, and hopefully be saving time and money.