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Caring for your lawn – Autumn & Spring

16:26 Fri 09th Jul 2010 |

A lawn can be a tricky thing to look after. Too much or too little water, using the wrong height mower blades and adding a bit too much fertilizer can completely destroy your garden. Here we have constructed a guide that will allow you to get the best out of your grass all year round.


As the weather cools around autumn time, raise the cutting height of your mower and reduce the frequency that you do cut the lawn, preferably only when it needs cutting rather than once a week or fortnight. This gives the grass a chance to grow out, but from late November to March you might not need to mow the lawn at all. You may need to cut it once or twice, only if we have some unseasonably mild weather conditions during that period of time, but knowing the British weather we won’t be experiencing any of those days, so don’t hold out!

Replace lost nutrients by applying lawn fertiliser with a low ratio of nitrogen, this will prevent the grass growing too much and too softly. Scarify (scratch out dead moss and grass) your lawn to remove the layer of matter that will have built up over the summer. This will stop the old layer from choking new grass growth in the spring. You can do this by simply using a splayed-head rake, or you can hire a motorised scarifying tool if you have to tend to a larger garden. But before you do this, check that you don’t have a problem with moss on your lawn, scarifying will spread the moss and encourage increased and widespread growth. Also, aerate your lawn by making holes about 10cm deep into the surface. This will bring in fresh oxygen, improve drainage and stop compacting.

After your lawn has been aerated and scarified, use a mixture made from six parts medium-fine sand, three parts sieved soil and one part peat to dress the top of your lawn. Try to use about 3kg per square metre as this will keep the drainage in good condition, create a flatter surface and stop the holes you made from closing. This should lead to denser grass growth overall.


Moving into spring as the weather improves; your lawn will begin to grow rapidly. Lower the cutting height of the mower and begin cutting the grass when necessary, after a while you can step it up to once or twice a week.

Apply a spring lawn fertiliser, which is a mix of nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium – this will encourage a mix of both healthy and steady growth for your lawn.

If you have a moss problem then apply some lawn sand or other moss killer before you carry out anymore lawn care, after it has been treated then lightly scarify the lawn to keep on top of the moss problem.

In the next article we will cover tips on weed removal, watering worms and how to keep on top of those all important edges.

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