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The Grass is Greener

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The Grass is Greener

Spring has sprung, and so have those brand new grass blades. alive will show you that you can have a golf-course-calibre lawn without the fuss and worry of chemicals. Fostering a healthy environment in which your lawn thrives provides many returns, for a healthy lawn sustains itself.

Spring has sprung, and so have those brand new grass blades. alive will show you that you can have a golf-course-calibre lawn without the fuss and worry of chemicals. Fostering a healthy environment in which your lawn thrives provides many returns, for a healthy lawn sustains itself.

A major drawback of using chemical solutions for landscaping is that they tend to target one specific problem (for example, chinch bugs). In fact, these unwanted guests are messengers relaying an important message about your soil. Chinch bugs indicate dry soil with excess nitrogen content.

Take a new-found bug or weed to a garden centre, and have them identify it and its purpose in your lawn. When you improve the condition of your soil, the new guest will move on, leaving your lawn a healthier and more complete ecosystem. A self-sustaining ecosystem means less work for you, so thank your pesky visitors!

Lawn Alternatives

A healthy lawn depends not only on a variety of insects but also on a variety of weather-appropriate grasses. Cold weather grasses include fescues, ryegrasses, and Kentucky bluegrasses. While a Kentucky bluegrass can provide a thick dark lawn, it tends to be vulnerable to disease, insects, shifts in soil composition, and extreme weather. More often than not, Kentucky blues are brown in drought. So when in drought, use ryegrasses and fescues, instead.

Low-maintenance rye/fescue seed mixes are extremely hearty against drought, cold, insects, weeds, and disease. To be truly revolutionary, throw clover into the mix. Clover adds useable nitrogen to soil, so on top of being an attractive, hearty, soft-green groundcover, it will promote the growth of your grass. As an additional bonus, you never have to mow clover, and it rarely needs to be watered.

Water Wise

On average, any lawn should only be watered once a week. Give it a good deep soaking, about one inch (2.5 cm) of water. The best time to water is early morning before the sun is too strong. Avoid watering at night, leaving the climate among the blades dark and wet–a playground for fungus and disease.

It’s best to hold off adding compost to your lawn until fall. This allows grass to survive longer into the cold season and provides reserves needed to endure winter. If you don’t make your own compost, mushroom compost is quite effective, especially when mixed with mulch or soil amendments. Liquid kelp also serves as an effective amendment to add to your lawn in the fall.

DIY or Hire Help

If you have used a lawn-care service in the past, ask them if they offer a regimen that uses natural alternatives to pesticides. If they don’t, there are plenty of lawn-care services that do. Ask your local garden centre to refer you to such a service. Whether you use a lawn service or do it yourself, you’ll find that with natural methods you can easily maintain a lawn that is alive, healthy, and vibrant!

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