How to repair your lawn after the winter

What happens to the lawn during winter?

The amount of sunlight decreases dramatically during the winter months. And when buildings, trees, and hedges restrict sunlight, shaded areas remain damp for months at a time. As a result, the individual grass plants begin to die off, causing bald patches that considerably thin out your lawn.

However, a mild winter can do as much damage to your lawn as a harsh, cold winter. Moss loves a cold, humid, shady climate, especially where temperatures are between 2- and 10-degrees.

A cold but dry winter offers your lawn the greatest chance of survival.

 

In 5 steps, you will enjoy a beautiful lawn again this spring:

  1. Start by removing leaves, branches, and any moss; a fertiliser with iron works wonders
  2. Aerate the turf by combing or scarifying the grass
  3. Sow new grass to fill in the gaps and keep weeds out
  4. Fertilise with a spring fertiliser with high nitrogen content
  5. Keep the grass seed moist for 3 weeks. New grass should germinate within 10 days.

 

Which grass seed do you use?

The choice of grass seed depends on your type of lawn.

 

Timing is of the essence when sowing seeds!

The optimal time for sowing seed very much depends upon the conditions in your garden.

If hedges or buildings throw shade on parts of your lawn for most of the year, the soil’s temperature will be lower than in the rest of the garden. Therefore, you should avoid sowing too early in the year. Wait until the ground has reached at least 10-degrees before you start sowing!

Grass that grows around trees is best sown as soon as the temperature permits. That way, the lawn has enough time to establish itself before the trees’ foliage becomes dense, limiting the available light.

 

Lawn care doesn’t have to be difficult

Fertilisation

Your lawn needs food, just like us.

Fertilising your lawn three times a year helps provide all the nutrients your grass plant needs – not just to survive, but to thrive.

You can fertilise a 500-square-metre lawn in half an hour. So, for just 90 minutes of work each year, you can enjoy a beautiful, robust, and hardy lawn that requires very little else.

Fertilising nourishes the roots of the plant and promotes a vibrant green colour. Offer the nutrients your grass needs, and enjoy a hardy, moss- and weed-free lawn all year round.

 

Overseeding

Golf courses and football fields are regularly overseeded, and that’s what gives them that flawless look. So, if you’re looking for pitch-perfect grass, you need to overseed. 

Overseeding is nothing more than just throwing grass seed over your existing lawn. This helps replenish bald spots and keeps the lawn lush and full. 

Old grass plants grow slowly, while newer plants grow steadily and evenly. New grass plants establish themselves each time you overseed which helps inhibit weed- and moss growth. It also increases your lawn’s reproduction capacity, giving you a stunning, thick lawn all year round. 

 

Renovate by scarifying

Scarifying? 

It sounds like something you might do at Hallowe’en, doesn’t it? 

But, this process will rejuvenate your lawn like no other. 

Fertilising and overseeding brings great results, but – eventually – your entire lawn will need renovating (removing old, dead grass and wild growth, and replacing it with robust, newer grass plants). 

Scarifying is one of the more challenging lawn-maintenance jobs – and it can be a little – well, scary. 

At first, it will look like you’ve totally wrecked your lawn. But give it a week or two, and your lawn springs to life: stronger and more vibrant than ever before. 

You could scarify a 500-square-metre patch in a morning, but you’ll need the right tools, fertilisers, and grass seeds. {Link to MOOWY scarifying kit here}

 

What can you do now?

First things first: assess your lawn. If there are bald patches and lots of moss or weeds, then you could consider scarifying. Otherwise, just fertilise three times a year, and overseed once a year. 

Scarification, fertilisation AND overseeding takes less than a day’s work (spread over a year). But it’s time well spent: just think of the fantastic lawn you’ll have in return.

 

Why mow your lawn?

It’s vital to mow your lawn correctly.

I see mowing as my favourite pastime: I’m a grass fanatic.

Mowing is my meditation: I don’t think about anything else for a while, and just live in the moment. I put on my favourite music and make the most beautiful, straight lines.

That really is my thing.

And the smell of freshly cut grass?! There’s nothing better.

Each time you mow, you encourage new growth. And over time, regular mowing fills out the lawn and makes it look neater.

Mowing promotes hardiness: each time you mow, you damage the grass, forcing the plant to repair itself. The cutting blade’s damage triggers a hormone within the grass plant that encourages growth and healing, creating a deeper green colour and more vigorous growth.

Mow with sharp blades, and only once a week; that’s more than enough. If you skip a week now and then, don’t mow shorter than you did before – that can be very stressful for the grass.

If growth has gone too far, do a little renovation: fertilise well and restart the regular mowing regime.

 

Three secrets for a beautifully lush lawn

Does your garden lawn look more like a 1970s football pitch than those pristine examples you see in the modern Premier League?

Muddy, thinning grass that lacks colour and resilience is avoidable. And we’re about to share the secrets with you right now.

Secret #1

Most of us don’t even look at our lawn-mower blades, but the health and vitality of your grass relies heavily on your mower blades.

Think about it: cutting with a blunt blade results in a tear. And a tear produces a larger surface area on the grass blade, creating a breeding ground for diseases and bacteria that give the grass’s tips that familiar brown tinge.

Our first #TopTip is to mow with sharp blades only – that way, damage to the lawn is minimised.

It’s possible to sharpen your existing blades. Or you could buy a new blade; you don’t need to replace the entire mower.

Either way, for Premier League lawns, use decent, sharp mowing blades.

Secret #2

Eventually, most of us end up with bald spots. But thankfully, a balding lawn is easier to solve than a balding head.

Maybe you have high-traffic areas on your lawn that seem to thin out by the end of the summer? Perhaps you notice little paths worn into the grass from your pets who seem to favour the same journey to the end of the garden?

The solution?

Overseeding – a process that replenishes the bald spots and helps your grass remain young, healthy, and hardy.

Overseeding gives your lawn a much higher reproductive capacity, helping those bald spots grow more densely.

And overseeding is super-easy:

Simply mow your lawn, then sprinkle grass seed over the top. That’s it!

If your lawn suffers from shady areas, overseed with our Shade & Sun grass seed for the best results. If you have soggy patches, try our aerating sandals to improve drainage.

Secret #3

Most people think that rain and sunshine are enough to nourish a lawn. Unfortunately, this couldn’t be further from the truth.

For a beautifully lush and resistant lawn, you should fertilise the grass THREE TIMES each year.

Many of us fertilise the lawn in the spring, but that’s not really enough.

Our slow-release fertilisers usually last for around 90 days (that’s three months). So, for a stunning year-round lawn, fertilise with a high-quality granulated fertiliser at the beginning of the spring, during the summer, and in the autumn.

The autumn feed is probably the most important: it helps strengthen the grass for its winter dormancy. A weakened lawn develops weeds and moss over the winter, while a well-fed lawn is more resistant.

Fertilise three times a year with our slow-release fertilisers and you’ll maintain a beautiful, lush green lawn all year round.