Posted on 24th May 2021 at 15:45
Simple steps to keep your grass green all year round!
Here are 5 rules to caring for new turf!
1. Water regularly, never let the ground dry out.
2. Keep off the grass until it has taken root.
3. Mow little and often once the grass is growing well.
4. Top up soil nutrient levels to encourage strong root growth.
5. Do not allow fallen leaves or debris to accumulate on your new lawn.
Until they do get established in your soil, those roots will struggle to find enough water to support the whole plant. Which is why it is vital that you make sure water is freely available. That means that the soil beneath your turf must NEVER be allowed to dry out. Even if that means irrigating twice a day in hot weather.
We would recommend that you water newly laid turf twice a day for at least the first week. Then, once it has started to bed in, about 2-3 times per week. After about 6 weeks, you can then drop it down to once per week. If the turf has been laid in wetter months, then watering may not be necessary, you do not want to waterlog the grass. Always use common sense in the watering process as the weather in this country tends to be very wet.
Please note that it can take around two weeks for shallow roots to start to embed.
If the lawn isn’t watered enough, you may see shrinkage with gaps appearing between the strips of turf. You will see that the leaves become flat and floppy as they wilt. They lose colour, becoming yellow and then brown. The edges of the lawn will most probably die first. Can it be saved? Sometimes – but it will take a long time to regain the look of new turf.
What to do with newly laid Turf
Lawn grass is durable and can quickly outgrows damage. But still:
• Try not to walk on your lawn at all for the first 3 weeks after laying turf.
• Avoid heavy traffic for the first 3 months so that the roots can become really well established.
• Never walk on newly laid turf if it is frosty.
Once the roots are working their way into the soil, you will see that the grass starts to grow. Now it is time to start mowing!
Mowing grass does more than keep it looking neat. It encourages the plants to grow new leaves from the base of the lawn so that the sward stays thick, velvety and good at suppressing weeds.
The last thing you need is for your mower to pull up and rip your new turf. So, before you start, test the lawn’s establishment in several places. Simply grab a handful of grass and pull upwards. If the blades come away in your hand, that is good. You can start mowing. If you feel the earth move ie the turf lifts slightly – then wait a couple of days and test again.
Blunt mower blades rip at the grass leaving a jagged open wound that takes a long time to repair and could let in disease. Your mower blades must be spotlessly clean and super sharp. The aim is to make a clean cut that heals almost immediately.
All the care and attention you paid to lay your new turf can be undone in a single pass of the lawnmower. The key thing to remember when mowing new turf is patience. You must not even try to cut it really short in one go because you will stress the plants and endanger their health.
For the very first cut, have your mower on its highest setting and only remove the tips of the grass. Choose a mild day when the grass is dry (not easy in autumn, you might need to compromise and mow when the grass is slightly damp). Make sure the mower blades are super sharp and put the grass box on. Clippings must be removed from a young lawn. This first cut will make the lawn look neater and encourage the plants to grow more shoots from the base.
What to avoid
Throughout the year many things will go on the lawn but the most important factor is to keep it clear afterwards. Autumn leaves are the worst culprits for hampering lawn growth, followed by toys, furniture and blow up swimming pools. So try as much as possible to keep the lawn clear.
We do offer a regular maintenance package and can maintain your garden for you. Please call 01932 943043 if you wish to discuss further.
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