At this time of year, the lawn is actively growing and how you look after it depends on what you want to achieve. To encourage wildflowers for pollinating insects, it's time to stop mowing and enjoy the visits to the flowers that appear. To create a short, green sward, however, we need to look at the range of tasks as explained below.
Mowing regularly keeps the lawn in good health, deterring weeds and encouraging thick grass.
Moss is a problem in damp, poorly drained lawns. Spring is a good time to remedy moss problems.
In mid-spring (often late March to April), use a proprietary spring or summer lawn fertiliser at the manufacturer’s recommended rates. Feeding the lawn will increase vigour and help prevent weeds and moss from establishing. Apply fertilisers when the soil is moist, or when rain is expected. However, it's important to know that fertilisers use a lot of energy to make, so using the minimum required to keep your lawn in shape is best for the environment.
If grass loses its vigour and freshness between late spring and late summer (often May to August), repeat the application of spring or summer lawn fertiliser or apply 15g per sq m (½oz per sq. yd) sulphate of ammonia mixed with four times its weight dry soil. Mixing with soil ensures even distribution and avoids scorching the grass. Apply this mixture in cool, moist conditions and lightly water it in. As an organic alternative, use chicken manure pellets. Repeat fertiliser application a third time if needed six to eight weeks later.
Do not apply spring or summer lawn fertilisers, chicken manure pellets or sulphate of ammonia after August. They contain too much nitrogen for autumn use, encouraging green leafy growth at the wrong time of year, when it could be damaged by winter cold or pests and disease.
After moss or weeds have been removed, or where grass is growing sparsely, over-seeding may be necessary. Early autumn is the best time for this job, but mid-spring is also suitable.
Break up the surface with a fork and rake it to make a reasonably fine surface
Sow grass seed at half the recommended rate or, where there are no recommendations, at 10-15g per sq m (½oz per sq yd)
Lightly rake to incorporate the seed into the surface
Where birds are a problem, net the area
If the weather remains dry for two or three days water gently with a sprinkler
Grass should sprout seven to 10 days after sowing
In heavily used areas, choose a hardwearing utility mix containing ryegrass. Most lawn grasses do not thrive in shade, so for these areas choose a shade-tolerant mix.
If you have any questions or concerns about your lawn, then please do
Contact us for help and advice.