Feel lost when it comes to Florida lawn care? No need to worry! Even in Florida’s hot and humid climate, it doesn’t need to be confusing or difficult to keep your grass green and healthy. You just need to keep a few tips in mind to ensure your lawn has everything it needs to thrive.
In this beginner’s guide to lawn care, the experts at Florida Pest Control break down exactly what you need to know to grow lush, healthy grass:
How to Water Your Lawn
With how much sun our area gets, proper watering is one of the most important aspects of maintaining a healthy lawn. Without enough water, your grass will turn brown or die off. On the flip side, too much water can cause rot, fungus growth, and mold.
Watching for wilt is one of the best ways to determine how much you should be watering your lawn. If you start to notice long-lasting footprints or blades that are folding lengthwise, your lawn likely needs more water. Meanwhile, excess runoff or a spongy texture are both signs that you’re overwatering.
It’s also crucial to keep these watering tips in mind as you devise your irrigation plan:
- Avoid fungus, evaporation, and other issues by watering between 3-9 AM.
- Change your watering frequency based on the season and weather conditions.
- If there is a water restriction, always comply with local ordinances.
Tips for Mowing Properly
If you want to keep your lawn looking tidy and uniform, it’s important to know how to properly mow your grass. Mistakes during mowing could damage your lawn and prevent the grass from growing healthily. To get great results when mowing your lawn, follow these three tips:
- Regularly sharpen your blades: If your grass is dented, bent, or torn after mowing, your mower blades are likely dull. Sharp blades will create a neat, clean cut that is easier for the grass to heal. For most lawn mowers, it’s recommended to have the blades sharpened after roughly 20-25 hours of use. Remember to always follow the manufacturer’s instructions or get professional help when sharpening the blades.
- Don’t cut the grass too short: Short grass blades may not be able to photosynthesize properly, which could inhibit growth and even lead to death. Generally speaking, taller grass grows faster and has a healthier root system. While each type of grass in Florida has different needs in terms of height, most need to be at least 2 ½” tall to stay healthy.
- Find the right mowing frequency: Mowing too frequently will not only waste your time, but it could even damage your lawn by keeping your grass too short. Most fast-growing lawns only need to be mowed once per week, but you should keep track of your lawn’s growth rate to find the right frequency.
Weeds are more than just an unsightly problem. They can also prevent your lawn from getting enough water or nutrition, which will make the grass more susceptible to death or disease. Though at-home weed control can be time-consuming and ineffective if you’re not experienced, identifying a weed problem early on can help you get timely treatment. Watch out for these common Florida weeds:
- Bull thistle
Watch for Pest Infestations
A pest problem can cause serious and long-lasting damage to your lawn. By feeding on grass roots and blades, they can ruin existing grass while inhibiting new growth. Additionally, lawn pests can be incredibly difficult to eradicate once they’re fully established. Here are some common signs of lawn pest infestations to look for:
- Dirt mounds or burrows
- Dead patches or strips
- Damaged grass blades
- Eggs or live insects
If you notice an infestation in your lawn, don’t hesitate to get professional help. Attempting outdoor insect control on your own can be time-consuming, expensive, and ineffective. A pest control expert will be able to provide customized solutions to get rid of the pests quickly while preventing future infestations from targeting your lawn.
Aerating for Stronger Grass
Aerating is a great way to promote healthier growth throughout your lawn. By using special equipment to poke small holes in the surface of the grass, you will reduce soil compaction while exposing the roots to oxygen and other nutrients. While it’s typically best to aerate in the fall or spring, each yard has different needs. A professional can help you determine the best timing for aeration.
Lawn Care Tips for Each Season
Florida lawn care means adjusting to the changing weather throughout the seasons. When you take the right steps to adjust for more sunshine or rain, your grass will continue to look green and healthy. Try implementing these seasonal tips:
Spring marks the start of the growing season, so you will want to make sure your grass has everything it needs to flourish. Now is a good time to:
- Aerate and fertilize
- Sharpen your mower blades
- Adjust your watering schedule as needed
Florida summers are hot and humid, which can stress your lawn if you don’t take the right steps. To keep your lawn healthy through the heat, keep these tips in mind:
- Increase your watering frequency as needed.
- Keep an eye out for pest infestations.
- Stick to a regular mowing routine.
- DO NOT fertilize during the heat.
It’s also important to note that June 1st marks the beginning of hurricane season. Should a storm hit, your lawn will likely sustain a little bit of damage. To increase the safety of your yard and limit damage, be sure to prune nearby trees and store your tools indoors.
As fall approaches and temperatures drop, your lawn’s growth will begin to slow down. Now’s the time to prepare your grass for winter. Try following these steps to keep your lawn healthy during fall:
- Cut down on your mowing and watering as needed.
- Regularly rake away leaves or debris.
- Aerate and apply a layer of topseed.
Most Florida lawns do not become fully dormant in the winter, because the weather is still warm and sunny. However, their growth rate will slow significantly. For this reason, you won’t need to water or mow as frequently – if at all, depending on the weather. In order to protect your lawn at this time of year, prevent trampling by reducing foot traffic.
Benefits of Professional Lawn Care
Taking care of your lawn can become a pretty time-consuming task, especially if your yard is large, but it doesn’t have to be overwhelming. Lawn care professionals have the tools and expertise needed to keep your grass looking green and healthy all year long. That way, you can enjoy a gorgeous lawn without having to spend hours toiling outside.
If you want to see how professional lawn care can transform your yard, turn to the experts at Florida Pest Control! From insect and weed control to pH balancing and fertilizing, our Lawn Care Program is designed to keep your grass healthy and beautiful through each season. Our experienced technicians are committed to providing you with exceptional services and outstanding results. Just contact us today to get your free quote!