What to Know About Lawn Frost in Florida

Grass coated with a layer of frost as the sun rises.

What to Know About Lawn Frost in Florida

Florida is known for having mild winters that draw so-called ‘snowbirds’ from all over the country. But what people who live elsewhere may not realize is that much of Florida gets at least some cold weather in the winter. Sure, it’s not what you’d deal with in the Midwest. It’s still enough to make you reach for your coat or the dial of your thermostat, and it can have major effects on your lawn.

Lawn frost doesn’t sound like a big deal. It gets cold overnight, your lawn gets some frost on it. It will melt later in the day. What’s the big deal, right? If handled improperly, frost can seriously damage your landscaping. We’ll learn how but first, what is frost? 


How Does Frost Form?

Frost typically occurs overnight when the temperature of the air near the ground drops below 32 degrees Fahrenheit. When the temperature gets below freezing, it causes the moisture in and on grass blades to freeze, creating the frosty coating we see when we look out the window first thing in the morning after a freezing night.

Fortunately, Florida usually experiences only light frosts during the winter. A light frost, where the temperature isn’t very far below freezing for very long, will likely only result in mild damage to blades of grass, while the roots are unharmed. This makes it easier for your lawn to recover, compared to a more severe frost, which can harm, or even kill, the roots of the grass. This is especially true for the types of grass that are prevalent in subtropical and tropical areas like much of Florida.


How Does Frost Damage Your Lawn?

Frost might not necessarily damage your lawn by itself but that doesn’t mean that your lawn won’t be damaged during a frost. Impact damage is a common source of damage to lawns in Florida during a frost. If you walk, or for example, drive a golf cart or roll a golf bag, on grass that’s frosted over, it can seriously hurt the turf.

And once the weather warms enough to melt the frost, you should still continue watering and fertilizing your lawn, as usual, to keep it healthy. You may be tempted to mow but you likely won’t need to for a while. When you do, it’s always important to set the blade in the mower to the appropriate height for your type of grass. Cutting the grass too short can damage the lawn even in normal circumstances, it can be even more harmful if it’s recovering from frost damage. If you take these precautions and you still have patches of your lawn that are yellow or brown, you may need help from a professional lawn service.


How Florida Pest Control Can Help

No matter the season or weather, you can trust Florida Pest Control to protect and care for your lawn year-round. We know how important a good-looking yard is and we want to keep your lawn healthy and beautiful. Contact us today to learn how we can help


Fall and Winter Lawn Care Tips

a lush green lawn - keep pests away from your home with florida pest control

Compared to most of the country, Florida experiences relatively mild fall and winter temperatures. Nonetheless, it’s important to learn how to ensure your lawn survives the slightly colder months ahead of us. Without properly preparing your yard before winter temperatures set in, you run the risk of killing off any healthy growth your lawn has seen throughout the spring and summer.

Thankfully, fall lawn care is simple and requires just a few key steps to ensure your hard work doesn’t go to waste. Read on to learn Florida Pest Control’s top tips for winterizing your lawn this fall!

How to Winterize Your Florida Lawn

Most of the types of turf found in Florida naturally go dormant in the wintertime, which means growth nearly comes to a halt. To make sure you still have a decent lawn to work with come springtime, it’s important to winterize your lawn. Winterizing is just a few basic lawn care steps you can take each fall to protect the turf and pave the way for new growth in the spring. Before you begin, it’s important to determine what type of grass you have, consult a local lawn care expert to find out the pH levels of your grass, and carefully remove lawn weeds. From there, you can implement our fall lawn care tips.

Top Fall Lawn Care Tips

To winterize your Florida lawn, there are four things to know.

  1. Don’t fertilize after September. If you fertilize your lawn too late in the year, your grass will grow throughout the winter and become more sensitive to the cold.
  2. Keep your turf longer than usual. By leaving your grass a bit longer than you normally would throughout the rest of the year, you can protect the roots from the colder weather.
  3. Inspect your irrigation system early in the season. A properly running sprinkler system is one of the most important factors in your lawn’s health, and this applies even in the winter. Making sure your lawn has even coverage while the weather’s warm will prevent sections from being irreversibly damaged.
  4. Consider overseeding your lawn. Planting temporary grass for your winter lawn is a popular choice for Florida residents, and these grasses will die off when spring rolls around.

Should I Water My Lawn in Fall and Winter?

When it’s cold and wet, the water you use on your lawn doesn’t evaporate as quickly as it does in the summertime. Because of that you don’t need to water your lawn nearly as often as you would in the warmer season. With that in mind, you may wonder – how often do you need to water your lawn in the fall and winter?

In the early fall, depending on the season, you’ll usually want to water twice a week. As temperatures dip, however, you should be able to cut back and only water once a week. It helps to know when your individual lawn needs to be taken care of. If the grass is wilting or changing color, it needs more water. If you walk across the lawn and your footsteps linger behind you, your soil is retaining moisture and does not need any more water for the time being.

What Time Should I Water My Lawn? And How Much Water Do I Use?

One of the benefits of an irrigation system is that you can set the clock to whatever time you want. You can easily water your lawn after the dew forms and before the sun rises, which is usually around 3 AM. Each zone should receive around 3/4″ of water, which allows moisture to reach 8-12 inches down to your lawn’s root system.

When you take the time to make sure your lawn is watered at the right frequency and to the proper depth, you can avoid wasted water and the growth of fungus, which can harm your alwn. It’s a simple precaution you can take to keep your lawn healthy, appealing, and pest-free*.

Want an Envy-Worthy Lawn All Year Long?

As Floridians, we are blessed with mild weather year-round and, thus, our lawns aren’t as vulnerable to cold temperatures. Nevertheless, it’s crucial to prepare your turf for the fall and winter months. If you’re at a loss of where to start or unsure of how to best take care of your grass, the experts at Florida Pest Control are here to help. For more lawn fall care tips or information on winterizing processes, contact us today!