There’s a lot that goes into creating a great lawn, but let’s just get started with the lawn care basics. The bread and butter.

Water – Your lawn care service will not do you any good if you are not watering your grass. Grass needs water deep and infrequently. See, we have to make the roots of our grass stretch for water deep beneath the surface in order to develop a strong root system that will withstand Florida’s intense summer heat. Frequent shallow watering encourages a shallow root system and a weak lawn. The way to develop a healthy, thick lawn, is to have the roots buried deep into the ground, and they will only do this when they need to find water. Don’t over water!

Mowing – A professional lawn care service will tell you that your grass really needs to be cut at least once a week during the heavy growing season, and it’s true. The reason they say you are not supposed to go longer than a week or so is because we don’t want to be cutting down more than 1/3 of the height of the grass. Cutting more than 1/3 off the grass stresses it out, and instead of funneling nutrients to the root system like it should, your grass will be in constant recovery mode trying to cope with all of its growth being cut.

Fertilizer – Unless you have been gifted with healthy organic soil on your property, you will most likely need to subsidize with fertilizer. The best approach is to add organic material to your lawn, such as compost, which will gradually cause the underlying dirt to become more nutrient rich. However, this is not an easy undertaking, and spreading compost over a yard can be very labor intensive. Enter fertilizers. It can not be stressed enough that fertilizers will only provide an aesthetic boost to the yard and will not solve any underlyling issues of improper PH balance or solve any issues with your lawn’s ability to absorb nutrients. Think of fertilizers as a pill for a medical ailment. The pill will cover up a symptom, but it is only a short term fix. To really be healthy we have to find the underlying cause. Fertilizers work much in the same way, nevertheless, they can be a powerful addition to your lawn care service program if implemented correctly. Your lawn should be tested by a professional who specializes in PH and nutrient testing, or you can contact Santa Rosa County property appraiser and they can send out someone to do a test… for free! Either way it is important to know what a lawn is lacking before adding chemicals. Without diving too deep into fertilizers, here are a few things to remember:

The 3 numbers you see on fertilizer bags are Nitrogen, Phosphorous, and Potassium.
Think of these 3 numbers as growth for up, down, and all around respectively.
Less is more when applying fertilizer; Apply responsibly and keep out of sewers.
You will get better results on your lawn by using a criss cross pattern at half the recommended spreader rate.

In closing the three most important things you really need to understand about lawn care are how to water, how to cut, and how to apply fertilizer. These are the very basics to get your lawn on track to being thick, green, and weed free. If you have any questions on tips to get your lawn beautiful, feel free to email us at floridaturfpros@gmail.com, or call 850-572-9196.