The best lawn requires the best care, including the knowledge of how to prevent various types of damage to lawns. Whether hiring residential lawn care services, or doing it yourself, being aware of how damage to lawns happens is important for a homeowner to protect their lawn between lawn service visits. Following are some of the most significant causes of lawn and grass damage as well as some tips on how to avoid it.
Injury to Grass Plants
Physical injury to grass plants is one of the main causes of lawn damage. Residential lawn care services say this can happen in a variety ways. Chemical burns or reactions can result from fertilizer, weed killer, pesticide, gasoline or other chemical spills, and even dog urine. Heavy foot traffic can damage some lawns to the point where grass dies off in excessively worn areas. Soil that is too compacted prevents good root growth and injury to the plant. Another important yet common practice that causes widespread damage to lawns is cutting grass too short as well as mowing it with a dull lawn mower blade.
Experienced residential lawn care services say the above listed types of physical damage can be avoided by preventing or stopping the practices that cause such damage. For the proper lawn service, a homeowner should take the appropriate measures to prevent chemical spills and provide “Fido” a specific place such as an out-of-the-way potty patch to do his or her business. Compacted soil should be aerated and reseeded in thin areas. More durable grass should be planted where the lawn is worn, or consider creating a pathway in the problem area. Most importantly, always use a lawn mower with a sharp blade, and never cut closer than 2.5 to 3 inches high, depending on the species of grass.
High Stress Conditions
Lawn stress can be caused by many things, including extreme heat or cold, too much or too little water or fertilizer, or too much weed killer. There isn’t much a homeowner can do when stress is caused by extreme heat or cold, although the other stressful conditions can be avoided. Monitor rainfall and supplemental watering. Water when necessary, but only as much as it takes to keep soil moist. Over-fertilizing causes excess growth, which stresses lawns due to extra nutrient consumption Under-feeding does not provide enough nutrition for good growth. Use care with the lawn mower and ensure grass is cut when necessary, not by the calendar.
Deficiencies in Important Nutrients
Nitrogen, iron, and calcium are all nutrients that occur naturally in the soil and are required for a healthy lawn. Certain grass species require more of certain nutrients, and many types of soil are deficient in certain nutrients. Grass will turn yellow, fail to thrive, or die off in brown patches when there are nutrient deficiencies. Residential lawn care services say a soil analysis can provide a good point of reference to determine whether any of these vital nutrients should be added to promote strong, healthy grass growth.
Disease and Insect Infestations
Lawns can also contract a variety of plant diseases or be damaged by insects. Disease caused by fungus, bacteria, and similar conditions leave dead patches of grass. Black, brown, yellow or red spots; rings; a dusty lawn appearance; and other signs can indicate a problem. Insects like grubs, chinch bugs, mole crickets, mites, and other burrowing or chewing insect species cause damage to roots or to the plant leaf. In all of these situations, diagnosing the problem is essential to determine the proper treatment. Experienced residential lawn care services can diagnose such issues and provide the appropriate treatment.
Preventing lawn damage, whether a result of physical, stress, disease, or lack of nutrients, is important to grow healthy, green lawns. Ensure the lawn mower blade is properly sharpened and discuss poor lawn conditions with an experienced lawn service. Proper diagnosis and correction of any problems is essential to prevent further damage, so the lawn can recuperate and grow into a lush, healthy, and beautiful landscape!
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