restore a thin lawn

How to Restore a Thin Lawn

More than likely, you’ll need to restore a thin lawn this spring to breathe new life into your outdoor space, transforming it into a lush, vibrant carpet of green. As winter fades away, many lawns emerge with patches of bare soil, thin grass, or areas overrun by weeds.

Fortunately, spring presents an ideal opportunity to rejuvenate your lawn and encourage healthy growth. By employing a combination of techniques such as overseeding, fertilization, aeration, and weed control, homeowners can effectively restore their lawns to their former glory.

With proper care and attention, spring becomes a season of renewal for your lawn, setting the stage for months of enjoyment and outdoor activities.

Follow these steps for a greener, richer lawn.

Clear away dead grass and debris

  • You can do this with a leaf rake or by renting a power rake if you have a rather large yard. When you’re done with this step, your shoulders might ache and your lawn will actually look worse. But don’t worry – it’s all part of the plan.

Choose some grass seed

  • Be sure to get a high-quality weed-free seed blend. Choose the best one for your yard based on how much sunlight and traffic your lawn gets.

Over seed your lawn

  •  Most of this project will require the use of a lawn spreader. A broadcast spreader throws the seed from the hopper in a circular pattern. A drop spreader works just as it sounds; a 20-inch drop spreader will drop a 20-inch wide path. You generally have more control of where the contents goes when using a drop spreader, but for covering rather large areas, a broadcast spreader makes the most sense. Cover the thinned-out lawn with the seed mix you chose.

Use a starter fertilizer to help new seeds grow healthy

  •  Check the label to apply at the recommended timing  after over seeding.  After the fertilizer has been spread, sprinkling peat moss over the lawn can help keep the seed moist and also keep the birds from eating all the seed. Spread it by hand or use a lawn spreader.

Try to keep new seed moist to help it germinate

  •  As the new grass takes hold, deep, infrequent watering with a sprinkler is more effective than short, daily sprinklings. That’s because the roots of weeds grow only in the first two to three inches of soil.

Within about two weeks, you’ll begin to see the new grass coming up. You’ll also see some bare spots, which you’ll want to add seed to by hand and cover with some peat moss to fill in. After about a month the new grass will be able to stand up to mowing. Set your mower to a higher setting, leaving about 2 to 3-inches of blade height on the grass. After this initial cut, you can go back to your usual mowing height.

restore a thin lawn, lawncare products watsonville gilroy salinas ace hardware

To maintain your healthy lawn, follow a four step fertilization schedule:

  1. Early Spring (Feb.-April) – Use a “Step 1” product or fertilizer with crabgrass preventer. This will help your lawn with early growth and root development.

  2. Late Spring (April-June) – Weeds are most actively growing around this time. A weed and feed fertilizer helps prevent weeds off your turf.

  3. Summer (June-Aug.) – Lawn food helps your grass stand up to drought, traffic, heat stress and disease.

  4. Fall (Oct.-Nov.) – A winterizing fertilizer helps grass store up nutrients and gives roots a little boost. This will help your lawn be even healthier and easier to care for next spring.

As always, stop by or call your local Central Coast Ace Hardware store for product availability.

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