As we head into the first week of November, things are starting to change a bit.  The temperature is starting to drop with frost on its way…

We are still appreciating the last of the brilliant colors sparking from the trees. Pumpkin spice lattes abound as we break out the fleece jackets and hats. But pretty soon it will be winter and with that, the leaves will be gone, the cold wind will be howling through the empty space they have left and most likely your lawn will soon be covered with snow.

To ensure your lawn is prepared to hibernate during the winter months and grow healthy in the spring, there are several steps you can take right now.

In addition, we have included a handy infographic on Lawn Care from Season to Season.

Here are our 6 tips for preparing your lawn for winter:

  1. Evaluate your lawnIf you haven’t already you should evaluate your lawn conditions. Look for problems that may need to be addressed such as broadleaf weeds or thin and bare areas. A summer such as this year has taken a toll on our Northeast lawns and lawn renovation could benefit greatly. Fall is the best time to get control of many of the stubborn weeds we see throughout the summer. Seeding your lawn with a high-quality grass seed can help fill in some of the areas damaged by summer drought, disease, and insects.
  2. Pick up leavesIt is important to keep up on leaf pickup during the fall and into winter. We know that to most people this is not a fun job but it is necessary to keep leaves from smothering grass over the winter season. Mulching the leaves regularly will keep debris small and allow you to keep from raking and in heavy leaf drop locations pickup may be necessary to keep leaves from becoming a huge mess to deal with. Smothering leaves can also promote disease issues to deal with later on.  A little bit of work and preparation now will ease many headaches come Springtime.
  3. Continue mowingJust because turf growth slows heading into winter, it is still important to still have your lawn mowed at proper intervals and a gradual drop in your mowing height as you phase out mowing altogether. The shorter turf will minimize outbreaks of snow mold that favor higher, matted down grass. People often stop mowing too early.
  4. Fall fertilizationFall is arguably the best time to fertilize one’s lawn. The grass will be reserving energy to store for the winter. A proper late fall fertilizer will provide essential nutrients for the turf and provide a stronger root system without causing rapid growth. A good fall/winter fertilization will also allow for a nice green lawn in the springtime.
  5. AerationCore aeration is often overlooked as a major contributor to turf health. This practice of mechanically pulling “plugs” of soil from the ground can relieve oxygen depriving compaction, allowing for improvement in air, water, and to get down into the soil and root system. Core aeration, recommended by the experts will go a long way into the long-care health of your lawn. By combining the spread of grass seed after core aerating you will provide a better yield of grass as the seed falls into the holes left by the aerator.
  6. Hire A Professional, You Will Be Glad You DidIf you have lawn struggles, as likely was the case this year, then there may be some issues that need extra attention. Perhaps a soil test may also indicate soil deficiencies that may need to be addressed. Grass is not just grass so your situation may be totally different from your neighbors. Allow our professionals here at Swazy to assist you in all of your lawn care needs. And remember, we live in New England because of our spectacular seasons.

Embrace the change and the weather. Snowmen, sledding, and snowball fights are the way us hardy New Englanders enjoy our winters and before you know it you will be complaining of the scorching temperatures again. That’s what we do right!?

Seasonal guide to lawn care