Lawn Care Tips: Organic Vs Natural Vs Other Options

Many homeowners are overwhelmed by the vast choices in lawn maintenance. While chemical fertilizers and pesticides offer quick solutions, organic lawn care encourages healthy lawns for years to come.

Because there are so many ways to cultivate and maintain a lawn, homeowners sometimes become overwhelmed at the choices. Should I just cut the grass every week or so and hope that will take care of weeds? Should I buy expensive and quick acting pesticides, or should I try organic methods of fertilizing and pest control? These are just some of the questions homeowners might ask themselves and others.

Of course, many homeowners resort to just mowing their lawns once a week or once every two weeks during growing seasons. They don't really worry if there are weeds growing along with the grass. As long as everything is green, why worry, right? If this basically describes your kind of lawn care, there are some simple habits you can develop to make this type of lawn maintenance work for you.

Once the growing season is virtually over, take some time in the fall to overseed your lawn to ward off bare spots that might show up in the spring. Overseeding also helps to control weeds. When you do start to mow your lawn in the spring, don't make the mistake of setting your blades really low. Many homeowners do this with the mistaken idea that the lower their blades are, the less amount of mowing they have to do.

While this might be true to a point, the shorter your grass is, the more sunlight can penetrate it, and that abundance of sunlight encourages weed growth. Don't cut your grass less than two or three inches. The key is to create an environment that doesn't leave a lot of room for weeds to grow.

If you do have weeds growing among your grass, you can deter weed growth from developing by bagging any thatch that has begun to grow. This can reduce if not eliminate it from germinating over the year and allow grass roots to become thicker.

Many people resort to chemical lawn care either by hiring a lawn maintenance company or taking a do-it-yourself approach. Many homeowners believe that the best way to care for a lawn is to apply chemicals in the form of pesticides and fertilizers. What happens all too often, however, is these chemically dependent lawns become highly susceptible to diseases and pests.

The lawn becomes more and more dependent on the chemicals. Thatch often becomes an increasing problem, and a lawn's root system is many times weakened, leaving it vulnerable to drought. Soil doesn't receive necessary nourishment from chemicals. While chemicals are generally a quick fix, they don't encourage a healthy lawn that will continue to grow and mature in the future.

Organic lawn care, though it has been around for centuries, has become increasingly popular in recent years. With all of the focus on the harmful ingredients found in chemical pesticides and fertilizers, more and more homeowners are searching for alternative methods to use in maintaining their lawns.

There are several simple but beneficial organic methods that homeowners can practice to encourage and maintain a healthy lawn. Lawns need to be watered deeply to encourage a good root system and ward off problems when a drought period occurs. Make sure you water in the early morning or late evening hours.

Set your mower's height to about three inches to discourage weed growth. Because torn grass blades leave the lawn open to disease and pesticides, make sure your keep your mower's blade sharpened.

While you want to remove thatch by raking up as much of it as you can, your grass clippings are a natural fertilizer that are loaded with nutrients. Best of all, it is free! Another important point to remember, however, is you don't want your grass clippings scattered in clumps all over your yard. Be sure and mulch them so they are distributed evenly over the whole yard and can decompose quickly.

Fertilize naturally in late summer or early fall and in the early spring using seaweed and well-aged manure. Compost piles are a great source of fertilizer and easy to maintain all year long. Throw in extra grass clippings, rotten vegetables, egg shells, and fruit peels, etc. You can mulch your compost pile for easier distribution.

Remember to overseed every year to compensate for grass that has died. You may also need to aerate your soil if it is tightly packed. You can hire a lawn care company to do this, or you can rent an aerator or use a manual one yourself.

Yes, there are many alternatives to taking care of your lawn. Just remember-You not only want to have a great looking lawn today, but also for years to come.

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