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Fall Lawn Care  RSS feed

 
Dan Harlow
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I just purchased a house and would like to improve the lawn using organic methods. I live in MA and its starting to cool down a lot. Is there anything I can do now to get a jump start next spring?

I've read that fall is a good time to aerate, top dress the lawn, and apply organic fertilizer. However I also read elsewhere that doing those things in fall will stress the lawn.

Thank you!
 
Chadwick Holmes
pollinator
Posts: 618
Location: Volant, PA
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Here is an article that was written by a wise but crazy overall wearing fellow......http://richsoil.com/lawn-care.jsp

So what type of grass if you know and what issues are you trying to improve?

Sometimes it is easier to decide what needs fixed before starting, and I don't want to tell you something and waste your time if you need to accomplish something else.

Welcome to permies!
 
Dan Harlow
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Thank you for the link. I will check it out. I'm not sure how to describe the lawn so I took some pictures. Some of the grass is new because they recently did some construction and what not before we purchased the house.

Front yard...






Back yard...







Thank you!
 
Chadwick Holmes
pollinator
Posts: 618
Location: Volant, PA
27
forest garden fungi goat trees wofati woodworking
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Ok I see!

Does the ground seem compacted? You mentioned aeration.

Is it all getting equal sun and water?

Is grass really all that useful to you?

So, it really looks like unequality in your yard, either the ground is unequally: compacted, watered, shaded....because some looks really good.

So if yes to question three, then I would recreate the conditions of the good patches as the results there are good from whatever it is getting/not getting.

Now, here is the sell! If no to question three, or if I can convince you at all.....

What is the grass giving you?

What do you have to do for the grass?

Seems a little out of balance huh?

Do you eat veggies and fruit?

Veggies and fruit plants don't need to be mowed, raked, bothered very much at all.

Veggies a pond fruit plants give you something in return, awesome health and yumminess!

Here at permies there are all kinds of folks that can help you stop mowing and start eating fresh healthy food from your lawn!

Welcome and I hope I got you thinking about replacing at least the poor lawn with food producing areas!

 
Bryant RedHawk
gardener
Posts: 2290
Location: Vilonia, Arkansas - Zone 7B/8A stoney, sandy loam soil pH 6.5
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hau Dan, first I have a few questions, then I will go ahead and give you a short version of ideas to help the lawn along over the winter and some spring things to consider at that time.
I am assuming you live in an area that restricts what you can do yard wise, since you aren't asking about what veggies or trees to plant.

Now the questions: 1.) Sun light, is this north facing property or south facing property or a combination? you need to know what varieties of grass will thrive in your space.
2.) Have you tried poking a stick down into the soil to see how compacted it is now? compaction will tend to be hard to push a stick into or it will break the stick. This will tell you how much aeration you will need to do.
3.) Are you concerned with having a nice green space through the winter? If you are in one of those areas with lawn regulations. Nothing beats having the greenest lawn on the block, it will drive your neighbors crazy or impress the hell out of the lawn snobs.

Now for some ideas and suggestions for lawn care.

1.) You will want a soil test, this will tell you the health of the soil acid/ base wise and give you a current mineral profile. You need to know what you have before you start amending.
2.) You can get air into the soil and also de-compact it with a broad fork, go lightly here before winter. In the spring you can get more heavy footed with the broad fork. An English garden fork will work almost as well.
3.) Find some good quality, known to be poison free, compost and spread a light layer of this over your just aerated lawn and water it in.
4.) I liked to over seed for winters with rye grass, it gives you a nice looking green space all winter and when you cut the lawn in the spring the rye grass will help with new seeding sprouting.
5.) Get a spreader, it really helps get seeds and green sand where you want it. Green sand is a very nice amendment for most lawns and gardens.

Now on the chance that you can and want to create a wonderland of food growing plants, a good drawing of what you have currently is a great way to be able to plan garden areas blended with lush paths. Over lapping gardens, layered low plants to tall plants can give depth and add drama.
Feel free to Moosage me.
 
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