You’ve seen the lush lawns on the glossy pages of garden magazines, and perhaps you feel this perfection is unattainable, but with the right advice and the best equipment, you can make these dream lawns a reality in your garden too.
With summer on our doorstep, now is the time to get out into the sunshine and embark on a summer lawn care regime. This is what the experts are doing to ensure a carpet of green this summer:
1. Chuck out the old, bring in the new
The first step to getting your lawn looking great is to scarify. Using a strong, but affordable rake, remove old, dead grass to make way for new growth. Getting rid of this dead matter allows water, air and nutrients to get through to the roots. This can be done on kikuyu and cynodon lawns, which have runners, but not evergreen, shade-loving lawns.
Step 1: Loosen dead grass with your rake or scarifier. Tip: renting a scarifier is often the most efficient and most affordable solution!
Step 2: Cut your lawn using the lowest height setting on your lawnmower.
Step 3: Remove the clippings using a rake and add them to your compost heap.
If you’re in the market for a good quality rake that won’t break the bake, check out the Rolux range of rakes and garden tools for a quality option that will last season after season.
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2. Breathe life into your lawn
The next step is to aerate your lawn. Aeration allows air to get to the grass roots, which aids in drainage, making available all the minerals and nutrients needed for lush growth. It also reduces soil compression and increases the water holding capacity of the soil. Ensure the job is done right with a tool that is durable and easy to use. Regularly aerate your lawn using your spike roller, and it will greatly improve the quality of your lawn for months to come.
Tip: If your ground is firm, water generously before using your spike roller to ensure proper aeration.
3. Dress for success
Once your lawn is aerated, it’s time to apply lawn dressing. This is a mixture of garden soil and a soil enricher, such as compost. Usually applied in spring and early summer, it improves the quality of your soil, levels out uneven bits and stimulates the grass to produce new shoots. Depending on your lawn type, the general recommendation is a 1.5cm layer of lawn dressing. Note that buffalo grass, LM and all cool-season lawns do not tolerate lawn dressing.
To apply lawn dressing correctly, first place small heaps of dressing on your lawn, being careful to apply more in any small depressions. Then spread the dressing evenly over your lawn, creating a level surface. You can use a smooth roller if your lawn is very uneven, but don’t overdo it, so you don’t compact the soil underneath.
4. Keep it fed
Next, it’s time to fertilise. Lawns love to eat and drink – and require a good dose of TLC to look their best. A good general fertiliser for all lawn types is 5:1:5 (36). Apply this fertiliser during the growing season at a rate of 60g per square metre at least once every three months. Alternatively, use a specialised fertiliser for established lawns available at your local garden centre. Repeat this process every four weeks throughout the season, or alternate with a high nitrogen fertiliser like LAN. Importantly, you must water after fertilising to avoid burning your lawn.
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5. Make the cut
The final step is to mow. One of the best ways to get the best out of your lawn is by mowing it – properly! We tend to cut our lawns short, increasing the time between mowings. However, cutting it too short can damage and weaken your grass and decrease its drought resistance.
Adjust your mower blades so that you don’t take off more than a third of the grass length – especially for the first cut in spring or early summer. Regularly cutting your grass helps thicken up your lawn and keep weeds at bay, so keep mowing! As a general rule, keep kikuyu at a height of 4-6cm, finer grasses such as cynodont at 3-4cm and shade lawns at a height of 6-7cm.
If you’re in the market for a new lawnmower then look at investing in the best brand of lawnmower you can afford to ensure your lawn stays in tip-top shape all year round. A well-known brand like Rolux offers a wide choice of petrol and electric mowers to suit any budget and need. The popular Rolux Magnum range and the new, improved Magnum X range offers extra strong steel chassis, extra-strong wheels with sealed steel ball bearings, extra strong steel axles and an extra-long three-year warranty on the chassis. If you need a tough tool to tackle the job then consider investing in a lawnmower from the Magnum or Magnum X range.
Take time out in your garden this summer. Let your garden tools lighten your load by investing in high-quality garden equipment, so you can do it right the first time, and have more time to enjoy your garden with friends and family.
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