Taking care of grass clippings is one of the things that others might consider a challenge to deal with after mowing their lawn, especially if you have a large lawn to work with. Most of us have gotten used to simply sending it in a landfill for disposal. But some landfills don’t allow it. There are times that we don’t have the time to transport them for proper disposal. But what if we can provide you some ways of handling your grass clippings that will also benefit your lawn in the long run? If this catches your attention, then read on.
Below are the 8 ways that we can think of on where you can get away with your grass clippings that will not only benefit your lawn but yourself as well.
1. Do not bag them, just leave them from where they came from
We have mentioned this a few times already but we really do not mind if we keep on telling people repeatedly 😊. Grass clippings do contain nutrients that your lawn needs in order for it to thrive. They will eventually break down and once that happens, it will release the nutrients that it holds then those nutrients will find its way back to your lawn. Study shows that this process can back up to 25% of the nutrients that growth removed from soil. They also encourage helpful microorganisms and earthworms that digests this grass and maintain a healthy soil for your lawn. Just be mindful that clippings that are too long won’t break down, making your lawn unsightly. To prevent this from happening (and as we have mentioned on our previous blogs), the proper way of mowing your lawn is to mow higher and more often.
Please do note that if your lawn is showing disease or has weeds then you will need to sort these issues first before leaving the grass clippings on your lawn because this will only worsen the problems.
2. Can be used for animal feed
Grass clippings can be used to make silage for cattle feed. Test shows that silage made from grass clippings has a protein content of 18.2% and a digestible matter content of 68% which is much higher than hay on which typically averages a digestible matter content of about 59%. Grass clippings can also be a suitable supplementary food source for sheep as per the several studies conducted. You can ask your neighbors or anyone nearby that you know of that has a cattle or sheep if they are interested in your grass clippings. But remember not to offer your grass clippings if your lawn was chemically treated (like for lawn fertilization or weed control).
3. Use them as compost
Grass clippings do organically come from grass. This fact itself makes it a good candidate for compost in our garden. Once you prepare and treat the clippings in the right manner, you’ll be able to recycle the nutrients and take them in the other areas of your garden.
A proper compost should have a mix of green and brown materials. Grass clippings is the “green” part while dried leaves, branches or twigs is the “brown” part. Just make sure to turn the grass into a pile to enhance aeration and prevent compaction. As an alternative to the brown part of your compost, you can also leave the clippings to dry out to make it the brown part of your compost.
4. As a… tea
Yep, you read it right. We know it sounds surprising and unusual but this is a great way to suppress disease, give yourself the nutrients that you can get from the grass clippings, speed up the breakdown of toxins in your body and improve the nutritional quality and flavor of vegetables.
To brew a lawn clipping tea, put your freshly cut grass into a bucket of water and allow it to steep. This process will release beneficial nutrients like potassium, nitrogen, phosphorous, chlorophyll and amino acids into the water. After three days or so, strain off the liquid and use it to feed your plants by pouring it to the roots or spraying it on the leaves.
5. As mulch
The definition of mulch is that it is a type of material that you can use to cover the surface of the soil as a covering. Organic mulch has a lot of benefits to the soil like helping it to retain its moisture, suppress weeds, keeping the soil cool and improve its fertility. High amounts of nitrogen can be found on grass clippings, either fresh or dried and this is one of the nutrients that plants need to grow and flourish.
As a mulch for your garden, you can start by laying a ¼ inch layer of fresh grass clippings around your garden bed. If the amount is thicker, it might take a while for the grass to break down, resulting in an unpleasant smell as it decomposes. While dried clippings can be used for vegetable crops can be spread on thicker amounts.
6. As an ingredient in your soil mix for your garden with raised beds
You can mix the grass clippings with your soil to improve soil quality and boost the yield of your garden raised bed. In the lower regions of the bed, spread one part of grass clippings with two parts shredded leaves – these will turn into compost to enrich the soil. This should be spread thinly to prevent matting. Once the bed is full (within six to twelve inches from the top), add a barrier that can also serve as compost (like a cardboard) and fill the remainder with your chosen soil mix.
7. As a natural dye
They can also be used as a natural green dye that you can use for decorative purposes. Some examples are using it to dye Easter eggs or as an organic fabric dye. Try to search online to know how.
8. Bring them to a recycle center
Bringing them to a recycling center disposes the grass clippings in a green and clean manner instead of simply disposing it to a landfill.
Lawn Care Pueblo Colorado is strongly against burning of grass clippings or leaves. This process creates thick smoke which is a health and environment hazard.
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Avoiding a few common mowing mistakes can make your yard look beautiful again in just a few weeks. Believe it or not, the way you mow your lawn makes a huge impact on the overall health of your lawn. Some people do spend a lot of time and money to maintain their lawn. But by simply applying a few sound mowing techniques, you can be on your way saving and maintaining your landscape without spending a dime.
1. Mowing with dull blades.
This is the most common mowing mistake. Dull blades tear the grass instead of slicing it clean. In return, the tips of the grass become damaged and turn brown. So instead of having a green lawn after mowing, you’ll get a brown one in a few days. The brown tips of damaged grass can make an entire lawn look dry and staving for water. But in reality, it is only the tips of the grass that are brown, not the whole lawn itself.
Lawn mower blades should be sharpened on a regular basis. For a sizable yard of ¼ acre or more, a once a month schedule should be okay.
Tip: Keep an extra set of blades on hand and change out once a month in season. While the spare one is used, then you can sharpen the other set.
By the way, sharp mower blades not only decrease the stress to your lawn when mowing, it also maintains your lawn mower operating in good shape.
2. Cutting the grass too low.
This practice makes you think that it can save you time because you do not need to cut often. But this creates all kinds of long-lasting negative effects to your lawn. One of them is by drying up your turf quickly because there is no adequate cover for your bare soil to block the sun. And this also allows weed seeds a place to settle and sprout.
The proper way is to mow higher and more often. Grass length that are high puts less stress to your lawn because the additional height and thickness serves as a shade to the soil below and keep the weeds out. A typical height for a traditional lawn is somewhere between 3.25 and 4 inches.
Tip: Never cut more than ¼ length of grass on a single cutting. Removing too much grass at once puts a lot of stress into the lawn and also creates a mess of clumped dead grass that can kill the lawn below. So, mow higher and mow more often. This is a great way to keep your yard looking fresh and clean.
3. Bagging the lawn clippings.
Just leave the clippings on where they came from. They contain valuable nutrients that feed your lawn and this is the most natural way to fertilize your lawn. Lawn clippings contain nitrogen (this gives the healthy green hue on your lawn) and other important minerals that lawn needs. Do not worry if this makes your lawn look dirty because it will break down over time. You may evenly distribute the clippings to somewhat mask your lawn from looking dirty.
4. Mowing wet grass.
Some of us do believe that a wet grass is soft, hence it’s easier to mow. But this damages your lawn blades and in the long run, the mower itself. Wet grass dulls the blades quickly plus it works more harder as the grass becomes bogged down and clogged underneath.
This technique produces a tear cut instead of the slice cut on which as we have mentioned in tip number 1 creates the brown tip issue with cutting your lawn using dull blades.
In addition, clumping from a wet mowing can snuff out the good grass as it lays in the yard and dries out. This in return creates unwanted bare spots and thatch.
So do not mow on a wet grass. Let your lawn dry out whenever possible before mowing.
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Make no mistake. We are not going to cook something with sugar to get a beautiful green lawn. So why sugar got involved in this blog. Keep reading.
Doing lawn care and keeping it green is not easy and in fact it costs money. You might be spending around $300-$500 a year to keep your grass looking green – and that’s for fertilizer and weed killers only. And that amount itself could at least be used to buy something else.
One time I was looking on my lawn and I remembered my mother in law putting sugar on a pot of soil before she planting something that happened a few years ago. I did not ask why on that time because it might sound disrespectful. Then I asked my dad the possible reason why. Then my dad said that sugar can act as a natural fertilizer on soil. So, I did some research and found out that it was true. Now, we are not saying to throw your chemical fertilizers and weed killers away. Sugar fertilizes your lawn using a different approach. So, you’ll still need those fertilizers and weed killers.
Below are the reasons how can sugar can fertilize your lawn and its benefits that it can give when applied to your lawn.
How to apply sugar on your lawn
It could be helpful if you have a hand-spreader or a broadcast spreader to be used to apply the sugar. But to be honest, it is not required. In fact, you can use your hand for it. There is no required or recommended amount of sugar that a soil will need. Plus, it is chemical free. So, you do not need to worry about the possibility of harming your lawn because of too much sugar.
Here are some tips for applying sugar by hand.
Please give us a call or fill up our form if you need further assistance on making your lawn green again.
One of the ideas of lawn edging is by raising your garden bed.
Beautifully raised garden beds that are made from prefab kits may look like a million dollars. I mean, having an idea of raising a garden bed will make you think that you initially need a landscaper to have that neat look. But here in Lawn Care Pueblo Colorado, we always come up with ideas that has the potential to save money and provide value at the same time.
With a little bit of creativity, you can raise a vegetable garden bed using inexpensive, or free, materials. Below are some of the things that you can use to raise your vegetable garden bed.
Not only do logs provide support to raising your vegetable bed, it will also give it a rustic barn look on it. Fallen logs or newly cut wood can be used to make an appealing vegetable garden bed. Cut the logs to the desired length and secure them to the soil to form the borders of your vegetable bed. Then fill it with soil.
Rock and stone
Using rocks and stone will make the borders of your raised vegetable garden bed look natural. The key is to look for rocks that are similar in size then line them up on the perimeter of the bed. To make it look more natural, take the time to seat the bottom of the rocks on the soil. Fill in the stone with soil around its base first to secure them in place then fill the remainder of the vegetable garden bed with soil
You can find these from old pieces of wood or lumber left over from construction projects. There is no standard size for a raised bed. But experts say it would be best to keep the width of the raised vegetable bed up to 4 feet or less so that plants can be accessed easily. This helps you reach the center of the vegetable garden bed with ease from both sides. Cut the wood to your desired size and build a rough box. Then place it in a sunny location and fill it with soil. Remember to line the bottom with landscape fabric or canvas to create a weed barrier
Try to look for any unused wooden crates from your attic. You can also find them on yard sales and flea markets. Wooden crates are usually small. Try to combine several sizes and shapes to create a rustic barn look. Then use them as is by putting them in a sunny location and filling it with soil, or carefully remove the bottoms to expose the soil underneath.
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Myths doesn’t exist in story books alone. Lawn care has its own share of myths are well. But these common myths will cause harm than good in the long run and unfortunately, homeowners still practice them even today. On this topic, we have busted 6 common lawn care myths that we hope can be helpful to you.
1. Using spiked shoes to aerate your lawn. While it’s true that spike shoes does the same thing as using a lawn aerator, the former does more harm than good because walking on your lawn with solid spikes will further compact your soil and the spikes itself will suffocate the grass roots as it puhes the grass and dirt deeper into the soil. Remember that common lawn core aeration tools have hollow tines and these remove the soil plugs instead of pushing them down.
2. Shorter grass equals to lean looking lawn. Lean looking lawns like the one you see on golf courses or football fields are the best example of a well-maintained lawn to most homeowners. While it looks good to have the same on your lawn, please try your best not to do the same on your lawn. Cutting your lawn shorter than the usual length helps unneeded weeds survive by exposing them to sunlight and other nutrients that should be for your turf resulting for them to spread further. Shorter grass also develops shorter roots, making it harder for them the necessary water for them to survive specially on dry conditions. As a rule of thumb, do not cut more than a third of the grass blade length when lawn mowing.
3. Disposing your grass clippings – Yes, you are right. Your lawn will definitely look dirty if you left it on your lawn. But believe it or not, they provide benefits for your lawn by giving back vital nutrients that help fertilize the soil and even lessen the amount of thatch. It would help if you can distribute the clippings evenly on your lawn to somewhat mask your lawn from looking dirty.
4. Water your lawn every day – This myth is wasteful indeed. Remember, the key to better water your lawns is by doing it for longer periods and thoroughly. This will allow your lawn to develop longer and deeper roots so they can be more resistant to heat and drought.
5. Seeding your lawn during spring time – Spring time is always believed to be the start of new life. And most homeowners have the same thing in their mind when it comes to their lawn. Even though its true you can use a fall lawn fertilizer, your new grass have better chances of surviving when you seed during fall season because most weeds go dormant in fall. This means that your grass is not required to compete heavily with the weed for it to grow. Also, temperatures are more modest and steadier at fall season without the threat of extreme heat from the summer season.
6. Dethatching your lawn annually during spring time – While this is a common practice to dethatch your lawn annually, this process should be done once your thatch is more than ½ inch thick, regardless of how fast or slow your thatch develops. Not all lawns are the same, so dethatching your lawn once it reaches the recommended limit helps your lawn absorb air and its needed nutrients efficiently.
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Lawn aeration is the process of punching small plugs, or cores into the lawn turf and the underlying soil structure in order to penetrate the root and thatch layer, thus allowing water and air into the soil to reach the grassroots. This process will allow the grass to consume the water and air efficiently, and as result, letting your grass better absorb the nutrients it needs. Usually, this can be with a motorized machine. Machines that aerate your lawn are mostly rented because unlike lawn mowers that is being used often every time your grass growth is long; your will only need to aerate your lawn few times a year. So, we recommend either you rent a lawn aerator or hire Lawn Care Pueblo Colorado to aerate your lawn for you.
Why should I aerate my lawn?
Lawn aeration is the solution to a heavily compacted soil. Soil compaction happens when your lawn has heavy foot traffic or if your lawn is planted on a soil base that is heavy in clay content. If you experience soil compaction, it is advised that you aerate your lawn at least once a year. You might dislike the appearance of your lawn after lawn aeration is done. If so, you can rake up the soil that got scattered in the process. But they will eventually break up and decompose when left on the lawn.
When is the best time to aerate my lawn?
It is recommended that the very best time to aerate your lawn is in the fall when you have cool temperatures already, when weed occurrence is minimal and when you grass is actively growing.
Spring season is not the ideal time to aerate your lawn, but this depends on the condition of the lawn. Grass cannot grow on compacted soil. If this happens then you will need to aerate your lawn. We highly discourage lawn aeration to be done in spring because this is the same season that weed seeds germinate. Weed seeds germinates best underneath the soil thus making aerated lawns a perfect breeding ground for them. If your soil is extremely compacted of your turf is excessively thin, it would be better to wait until late spring season to aerate your lawn because weeds have already been established but before they flower and go to seed again. This occurs around Memorial Day in most climates.
Please call us or fill up our form to avail our lawn care services.
Watering your lawn with the correct timing will result in the greenest and the healthiest lawn that you can get. You might say that lawns need water all the time but it’s a bad idea in a long run to feed them in a wrong time.
Okay, so what are the times on when we should not be watering our lawn?
Simple answer is when the sun is at its highest or at the middle of the day. Because the water will simply evaporate from the heat that comes from the sun. And if the water evaporates quickly, then there is no chance that the water will reach the root of your lawn. End result is waste of money, water and effort. It’s also worth taking note that some cities prohibit watering a lawn during certain times.
Then what are the best times to water our lawn?
Usual timings are before 10:00AM or after 6:00PM. Yes, the sun is still up but it is not at its highest point anymore. If you will be watering your lawn around those times then the water will have a better chance of reaching the roots of your lawn. If you water by hand, make sure you have enough time after getting up in the morning to prepare and to finish watering your lawn before 10:00AM or to water them after 6:00PM and to be finished before going to bed.
But the very best time of the day to water your lawn is at very late nights or early in the morning before sunrise. Those are the best timings to water your lawn because you don’t have to compete with the sun evaporating the water on your lawn during daytime. Another benefit that you can get from watering your lawn at those times is you will be using less water that you usually consume when you water in daytime. Because virtually all the water will be sucked by your lawn and nothing will be wasted. If this is the case then there is no need consume much more water just to factor in the chances of the water evaporating before it reaches the roots of your lawn.
A water sprinkler will be very useful at this point because anyone will find it inconvenient to water their lawn manually on those times. Simply set the timer of the sprinkler to your desired time within early morning or late at night.
We install and maintain sprinklers for any types of lawn. Just give us a call or fill up our form.
Usually we ignore bumps on our lawn. But as time goes by ignoring these bumps, mowing your lawn will start to become difficult and its usage will be limited. But don’t think that fixing it requires rocket science or a set of specialized tools. And we promise, sorting it out will be easy.
Below are the things that you’ll need to know on how to fix your bumpy lawn.
First, let’s discuss the solution that is pretty much popular - using a lawn roller. But is this method good or bad for your lawn?
Straight answer, it's bad for your lawn. It’s true that it flattens the lawn. But it can only do it on small bumps and depressions. Not on areas that are more uneven. And since its main job is to flatten out the lawn, its side effect is that it will also compress the soil. And doing this on the soil is the exact opposite of aerating your lawn. Soil aeration is important because it will let your lawn breathe oxygen and consume the needed soil nutrients more efficiently.
And we hope this explains why using a lawn roller is a bad idea on flattening a lawn.
Now we proceed on how to smoothen your uneven lawn with your hand. Do not worry as this will be easy. Doing this will save you on renting or borrowing a lawn roller and it will also provide you with an easy, long term solution for lawn bumps and depressions of all sizes.
Here are some answers that you might have in mind before or after doing the steps above to smoothen your lawn.
Will this method fix my sloping yard?
The process of leveling a sloping yard is much more different and in depth than the leveling of a bumpy lawn that we described above. Leveling a sloping yard usually requires re-grading your lawn. And before you re-grade your lawn, you need to find the highest and lowest points then measure the angle or grade between them and correct accordingly. Re-grading your lawn is a considerable project that homeowners choose to address on a DIY basis. It would be better to hire a professional landscaping company to re-grade your lawn if needed.
Will the uneven areas remain level?
Yes. Your lawn should remain level for many years to come as long as you have fixed the cause of the unevenness of your lawn to develop in the first place.
Can I use sand to level my lawn?
Yes, but using sand will not make the leveled parts of your lawn “fully green” again. Because grass cannot draw nutrients on sand. This in turn will result with very pronounced thin spots in your lawn. That is why we recommend using topsoil.
In conclusion, by doing the steps above and using topsoil, you should be able to cover up the bumpy and uneven areas in your lawn with minimal difficulty. But you might consider doing the steps two to three times to get your lawn completely level. Rest assured it will be worth it once you have an even, beautiful yard for your friends and family to enjoy.
Crab grass makes your lawn look ugly and is one of the culprits that steals nutrients that should be for your lawn. Removing crab grass is an easy process if done correctly. But if these are left to its own devices, it can definitely threaten the health and beauty of your lawn.
Other than the usual weed control measures, there are varying methods of controlling crab grass, depending on the scope of its occurrence.
But first, what is Crab grass?
Crab grass is a variety of weed that grows and spreads rapidly throughout the US and some parts of Canada. In a warm season, it can spread over 100,000 seeds.
These weeds take away the nutrients needed by your turf grass and if left untreated, can ruin a lawn or garden resulting in bare patches and dead grass.
What’s the difference between Pre-Emergence and Post-Emergence Herbicides?
Herbicides is an effective method to removing crab grass. It’s purpose is to kill the crab grass without harming the plants on your lawn. Make sure that the herbicide that you will use is specifically formulated to kill crab grass. Using an all purpose herbicide may hurt other plants and your natural turf grass.
Pre-emergence herbicide is applied before the appearance of crab grass in the spring. Post-emergence should be used on already sprouted crab grass. Herbicides in liquid or granulated form are equally effective. Homeowners should refrain from applying pre-emergence herbicides after grass seeding.
How to apply herbicide to kill grab grass
For pre-emergence herbicide:
For post-emergence herbicide:
Issues with herbicides
Possible side effect with herbicides is that an individual may notice their natural turf grass is turning brown. Cause of this issue is over application of herbicide. This can be fixed by frequent, deep watering of the lawn. This washes away herbicide residuals and cleanses the plant roots. Making sure that the herbicide to be used is specifically intended for crab grass reduces the risk of damaging the turf grass. It is preferred to use eco friendly herbicides for the safety of your family and pets.
Another method for killing crab grass.
If the infestation of crab grass is minimal, you may try to manually pull the existing crab grass and allow the roots to dry out. This will kill the crab grass and prevent it from producing seeds.
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