I’m a gardening expert – here are 7 ways to maintain your lawn in winter so it doesn’t look messy and yellow by spring
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As temperatures continue to plummet into a frosty climate, it’s tempting to abandon our lawns until the the warm weather returns next spring.
But although we venture into our back garden less and less during the winter months, one expert has warned not to abandon your lawn and even advises to keep mowing it.
Samantha Richards, a garden expert at Gazeboshop in Oxfordshire, has revealed her top tips for protecting your lawn in the cold weather, as well as advice on the best time to stop mowing it.
She explained: ‘As a general rule of thumb is you should avoid using your lawnmower when the temperature consistently drops below 10C.
‘This typically happens in late October or November. When the temperature dips below this point, the grass will enter its dormant stage and stop growing’.
Samantha Richards, a garden expert based in Oxfordshire, has revealed seven essential tips for keeping your lawn healthy in the winter (Pictured: Stock image of someone clearing away dead leaves from their garden)
Here, Samantha reveals seven essential tips for keeping your lawn healthy in the winter, according to our expert.
1. Pack away garden furniture
If you are yet to hoist your summer furniture and barbecue equipment back into the shed, now is the best time.
Our expert explained that the longer you leave your furniture laying on grass, it is likely to turn a ‘yellowy’ colour, due to sunlight and rain water being blocked from the soil. It is also a tell-tale sign of poor grass health.
If you do have space in your shed or have access to a sheltered patio area, it’s best to store your garden furniture there: ‘It will do wonders for the health of your grass as well as the durability of your furniture’ said Samantha.
2. Remove weeds
To keep your lawn looking tip-top, the next piece of advice on our list is probably best heeded all year round.
Our expert suggests removing any and all weeds as soon as you spot them growing on your lawn.
She added: ‘By digging out these unwanted growths as soon as possible, you limit the weeds ability to spread throughout your turf and prevent a bigger job usually involving weed killer further down the line.’
3. Trim lawn edges
The harsh winter weather is hardly beckoning, so it’s understandable that people might want to put off popping outside to trim the edge of the lawn if it means they have to don several layers of clothing.
Our expert advises keeping your garden furniture inside a shed until the summer months (Stock image)
However, during the summer months, your grass will most likely have experienced accelerated growth, causing it to appear untidy.
Samantha says autumn is actually the perfect time to trim back overgrown edges as it will provide a barrier for plant roots, and stop flowers or weeds from growing into your lawn.
4. Sweep away leaves
No doubt a mundane task, it is still a mandatory one, explains Samantha.
The worst thing you can do is allow the leaves to become too overstacked as layers of dead grass, leaves and moss will prevent water from reaching the soil and roots.
Our expert revealed the art of raking: ‘You should aim to feel as though you’re lightly brushing the top of your grass to remove the debris as raking too deeply can damage the turf’.
Though typically associated with the picturesque greenery of spring, fertilisers are also designed for the colder seasons too.
Using an autumn or winter fertiliser will strengthen your grass and put it in a strong position to endure harsher weather.
However Samantha has warned not to fertilise your lawn when the grass is dormant, as it won’t be able to benefit from the fertiliser’s nutrients.
She also warned not to abandon your lawn and said to keep mowing it (Stock image)
Allowing your lawn to properly ventilate will give it a chance to freshen-up.
This can be done via spiking – a process that involves creating small channels of air to seep into your lawn.
This action also creates a passage for rain water and nutrients to reach the roots.
‘Consistently aerating your lawn will put it in good stead to survive the more extreme conditions that will be approaching in the coming months,’ explained Samantha.
‘You don’t need any fancy tools for this, a garden fork from the shed will do.’
7. Treat bare patches
Bare patches are areas of your lawn that expose bits of brown soil and dirt, and can be caused by a wide range of things including heavy toys and pet urine.
Samantha added: ‘Luckily autumn is one of the best times to fix any of these spots.
‘A bag of compost, seed and fertiliser will go a long way to help fix the issue and with persistent watering, you should see some growth within a couple of weeks’.
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