September Lawn Care - 4.5 Top Tips for Success
Lawn care success in September is vital. Your work now not only sets up the lawn for the coming autumn, but it is the foundation for next year. If a fantastic lawn is desired in the spring, then now is the time to raise the bar with great conditions to work with and time on your side. This article explores 4 and a half big considerations for this month to getting the very best from your lawn care...
Lawn Care Services and September!
September is an action-packed month for the lawn as a lawn-loving homeowner, or as a lawn care service. Lawns continue to require the maintenance processes of summer, but also with an eye on autumn, winter and even spring!
I love this time of year not only as it's my birthday(!), but because we can make a huge difference to lawns ready for the following year. Some of the work that we carry out now has been in the planning for months, so it's a great feeling to have it completed to the best of our abilities.
Below are my 4 and a half tips for lawn care success this September.
1 - Keep Mowing Frequently
August continued to provide us with great grass growing conditions! The wetter than average summer has allowed for green lawns, and many in need of cutting twice per week all summer long.
With this, the best thing that you can be doing for your lawn is mowing regularly. Even with the daylight starting to shorten a little, this is likely to be once per week - maybe even twice still if it were me!
Remember, by mowing 'little and often' with a sharp blade, very little stress is placed on the grass and therefore it is encouraged to fill out and thicken up. Taking off too much grass at a time puts your grass into survival mode so it will not look it's healthy, green best.
If the grass is a little damp, run a broom over the lawn to knock off dew before coming back to cut a little later.
2 - Increase Your Height of Cut
With the shortening days, shady areas may be starting to develop on some lawns - this is common with smaller lawns and newer properties. Increase your height of cut if you have yet to do so. This:
- Gives the grass more leaf to work with to produce its food
- Allows the grass to grow thicker, deeper roots - required if crane fly are present due to future damage from leather jackets
A thick lawn means less opportunity for weeds and moss across the autumn period, and means the grass can make the most of the sunlight hours that it gets. This height of cut increase only needs to be a single notch on your mower (5-10mm) to make a big difference to the autumn / winter health of your lawn.
3 - Remove / Reduce Sources of Shade
With bird nesting season over, you may also consider a final trim of hedges, trees etc - this removes sources of shade for the lawn and reduces the job of leaf clearance later!
This goes hand in hand with the above point of maximising the light that your lawn is able to get across September, and then further into the autumn and winter. We will soon be seeing conditions which suit moss development if compacted, clay, shady areas of lawn are left unaddressed now.
The pictured garden looks amazing on a warm late-summers day, but you can see the shade starting to encroach on the lawn. Reducing this when possible and raising the mower blades will be a huge help.
4 - Scarification, Aeration and Overseeding
Finally, September is a golden month for scarification, aeration and overseeding. We are now fully booked for these calls for 2023, but you may be tempted to lightly scarify yourself, and overseed bare areas.
Aeration is a much tougher one to achieve from home, as the consistency of depth, tine pattern and heave from a machine will far outweigh a manual tool or a garden fork.
We can accommodate final standalone lawn aeration calls this autumn, however time and space is limited as we get these completed before many lawns become too soft during November.
Lawn aeration is all the more important in our local areas due to the predominant clay soils that our lawns grow in. These soils compact easily, and stay soft for longer, suiting moss development. The combination of leatherjackets, shade and moss doesn't make for the lush healthy lawns that we desire! Seek to address these causes now while there is still warmth in the soil this autumn.
These images are of the same lawn on the same morning undergoing our lawn renovation process. The first (left) is on arrival - a thin, thatchy lawn with bare areas.
The middle image is following aggressive scarification, clearance of debris (more scarifying and more clearing), mowing for a detailed clear up, and a double solid-tine aeration.
The final image (right) is the completed lawn renovation following seeding and brushing. As can be seen we use leading machinery and professional seed mixes. The dumpy bag shows the volume of thatch removed from this lawn - we also filled half the green bin!
4.5 - September Lawn Care Products?
As part of our lawn care programme, it is very rare that we are applying lawn treatments during September with the occasional exception for leatherjackets applications. This is due to the above mechanical work taking priority at this time of year, and our summer treatments being recently completed. As we use controlled-release fertiliser products, we don't need to start our autumn treatment calls until October.
However, If your didn't get around to feeding your lawn this summer, then it's not too late. I would suggest that any mechanical work is completed first this month before applying a fertiliser so this feed isn't partly lifted out by any scarifying.
If you are overseeding also, you may consider a pre-seed fertiliser or waiting 2-3 weeks before applying an autumn product without iron. This will help new seedlings. High nitrogen or iron within days of seeding / germination may cause harm to the new grasses.
Can We Help?
September, October and early November makes for our busiest time of year outside as a lawn care service. With the above labour intensive mechanical work considered we can see far less of our customers each day, but can make a huge difference to gardens with our knowledge, experience and machinery!
In October we will be starting our autumn lawn care treatments. Given a 4-week wait to see one of our technicians hasn't been uncommon this year, we would recommend getting in touch now to be sure you don't miss out on an October visit. You can do this via 01827 826 123 OR you can head complete the form below for a call-back.