Caring for Your Lawn
When your lawn begins to look untidy it is probably time to mow – this should usually be 2 – 3 weeks after installation in the warmer months. Mow often, generally removing no more than 1/3 of the leaf. To keep lawn looking its best we recommend the use of a reel mower especially for Wintergreen and to keep your mower blades sharp.
The first year your lawn may require extra water during the hot summer months. Generally once established, three watering days a week will suffice (two allowed + one hand water)
This should be done every 6—8 weeks throughout the year to maintain growth and colour. This is especially important with Zoysia as it takes 12 months to fully establish.
Pesticides & Herbicides
Seek advice before spraying turf less than 6 months old. Make sure with Buffalo lawn that you use a product that is suitable for Buffalo lawn.
Long Term Maintenance
Lawn is a long term investment, therefore it is important to understand what your lawn requires on a regular basis. The following information should be helpful to keep your lawn green and healthy.
Thatch is a layer of stems and roots that have not decomposed yet. It accumulates near the soil surface at a rate which is determined by the vigour and type of lawn. Some lawns are more prone to thatch than others and an example of this is couch grass. Thatch is a normal part of any lawn and to some degree can be regulated by the amount of water and fertiliser you apply. When thatch becomes excessive, the lawn may begin to root into the thatch layer instead of the soil. This is a problem as thatch does not hold water or nutrients.
One way to tell if your lawn has thatch issues is to look at the colour of the lawn after mowing. If it has burn-like strips or is spongy to walk on, your lawn has a thatch layer. If thatch has become a problem, Vertimowing is the answer.
Vertimowing in cooler weather can significantly slow the rate of recovery but if done in the warmer seasons, watered and fertilised adequately, your lawn should recover within a couple of weeks.
Compacted soil can restrict grass roots from growing and receiving vital nutrients. Aerating your turf is the process of removing plugs from the soil, also known as coring. This will allow the roots to penetrate deeper and reach vital nutrients and moisture.
Compaction is generally a result of excessive foot traffic and is typically in areas that are close to the front or back door, on road verges and under swings or clothes lines. Aeration can be done manually by wriggling a garden fork back and forward to open out air passages.
For larger areas a motorised coring machine can reduce labour time and as the cores are removed from the soil, will have greater results. Within a short time the holes that you created will be filled with actively growing roots.
Aerating for most lawns should be done annually.
Lawn needs a wide variety of nutrients, many of which are present already in your soil. Three nutrients that are not readily available however, are nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium also known as NPK. Nitrogen helps to make your lawn lush and green, phosphorus helps to grow stronger roots and potassium helps to make the plant cope with a variety of weather conditions, pests and diseases.
It is advisable to use a fertiliser that contains NPK at a fairly balanced ratio. We recommend Eco Prime NPK Red.
Apply NPK Red at the maintenance rate every 6 – 8 weeks throughout the year. A heavier rate can be used just prior to Winter to keep the colour in your lawn. For a “quick” greening effect, Eco Prime EMERALD can be used, but it is not advisable to be used exclusively, as the high nitrogen will promote growth of the leaf but will not contribute to a healthy root system.
Good watering habits will benefit your lawn and also help you avoid the many problems associated with over and under watering. The best time to water your lawn is in the morning when the humidity is at its highest. This enables water to remain available to the lawn throughout the day. It is not recommended to water your lawn at night because the water will not be absorbed, leaving the lawn susceptible to fungal diseases. Hydrophobic soil is when the water cannot penetrate the surface and cannot be used by the lawn. One way to combat this problem is to use a good quality wetting agent as part of your maintenance regime.
One indication that your lawn is stressed due to lack of water is a grey blue tinge, or the leaves will roll or fold vertically. Measuring how much water your sprinklers produce, is a good way to make sure you are watering at the correct rate. After fertilising it is recommended that extra water is applied to dissolve the fertiliser so that it can be used by your lawn.