- Remove debris that may have accumulated on the lawn, e.g. leaves and dead twigs/branches. Use a ‘spring tine’ rake that will also help to rake out dead organic matter at the base of the grass.
- Lawn repairs: Carry out surface levelling. To repair a bump, peel back the turf to a depth of 25-30mm + half as much again around the area and scrape away sufficient soil. Replace the turf so a level area is created. For a hollow, peel the turf back as for a bump and add soil to raise the hollow so that the area is level once the turf is replaced, or leave the turf in place and apply small amounts of topdressing taking care not to suffocate the grass by burying it. Using a ladder as a straight edge will help ensure the finished surface is level with the surrounding grass.
Bare areas can be repaired using bought turf. Dig out the patches and level up to the thickness of the turf. Lay the turf and tamp down using the back of a rake or wooden plank to ensure contact with the soil.
Edging: Reinstate the lawn edges with a half-moon (edging iron) or edging shears as necessary.
- Weeds: Many troublesome lawn weeds can be handpicked to avoid the overuse of chemical herbicides. Use a flat bladed screwdriver or ‘daisy grubber’ to help dig out deep rooted weeds such as dandelions.
- Tools & equipment: Have your mower serviced by a professional garden machinery mechanic. You may be able to change the oil on a petrol engine driven mower, but the blades, whether rotary or cylinder blades, will require to be sharpened and balanced by a professional mechanic. Also clean the mower thoroughly and oil all moving parts. Hand tools need to be cleaned and lightly oiled, with edging shears sharpened.
Watch out for:
- Disease: Look for signs of disease, particularly Fusarium Patch (Microdochium nivale). Severe infestations may require the use of a turf fungicide to control. Regular applications of TurfSolv© will help to prevent disease by strengthening the grass.
- Frost: Keep off the lawn when it is covered in frost. Walking on grass when covered in frost can damage the frozen plant cells and leaves black footprints when the frost has melted. The plant will recover from this damage, but it looks unsightly.
- Pets: Dog urines can be an issue at this time of year due to the dormancy of the grass plant. Heavy watering of the affected area just after it has occurred is effective but can be a tiresome, regular job.