Green Team Blog

How Do I Revive My Lawn this Spring?

As the snow finally begins to melt away here in Northern Michigan, you gaze out over your landscape, ready to see the bright pops of tulips and the beautiful green of your grass. But, unfortunately, all you see is brown.

After months of enduring snow, ice, and frigid temperatures, your lawn looks more like a matted, dead mess than the lush turf that shined last summer. But fear not! With proper care and attention, you can breathe new life into your lawn and have it thriving again in no time.

Let’s look at a few essential tips to help your lawn rebound this Spring.

HELP! My Grass Looks Dead

While your turf may not look its’ best, it doesn’t necessarily mean it is dead. Grass in Northern Michigan goes into dormancy over the winter months. Just like bears hibernate, your grass goes into a dormant state to protect itself during the harsh winter.

As temperatures start to warm, your lawn should begin to bounce back. If your grass is only struggling in small patches, you have a disease or pest problem and it may be time to call in the professionals. If your entire grass looks brownish yellow, it is likely just dormant.

Start with Early Fertilization

The first fertilization application in Northern Michigan can be tricky to time. The ground is often still frozen well into early Spring, meaning fertilizer will do nothing to help your grass as the nutrient’s fertilizer provides cannot sink easily into the soil.

You want to ensure that your grass is in the process of coming out of dormancy, which can be tricky. Fertilize too early and your grass misses out on the benefits fertilizer provides. Fertilize too late, and your lawn is in for a battle against crabgrass (which germinates in the early Spring) and other weeds.

Mother nature gives us a handy tool to tell when to fertilize if you are unsure! If you begin to notice the bright yellow blooms of the Forsythia plant, it means it is time to get that first application of fertilizer applied!

The first application of fertilizer holds vital nutrients to help your lawn feed itself after a long winter and typically is packed full of a pre-emergent herbicide, which helps to prevent weeds from germinating at all.

lawn care expert applies granular fertilizer on ride on machine

Address Any Trouble Areas

Unfortunately, there are several lawn problems that can pop up in the Spring. Both lawn diseases, like snow mold, and pests, like voles and moles, can cause issues in the winter months for your lawn. If you notice any areas that look more damaged than others, it’s time to call in the professionals.

Focus on Early Morning Watering

Even though Spring is rainy, you want to be sure your lawn is getting enough water. Morning is the best time to water your grass to prevent disease and allows your lawn to absorb as much water as possible. Use this watering guide to learn more about how to water your landscape.

In addition to watering, we advise trying an application of Hydretain on your turf. Northern Michigan is notorious for sandy soils that drain very quickly. Hydretain is a lawn and plant treatment that helps utilize moisture that would otherwise be lost to evaporation. Not only does Hydretain help your grass look better, it cuts down on the amount you need to water in hot temperatures, helps plantings survive, and is environmentally friendly. A Spring application of Hydretain can really help your grass and your budget this growing season.

Let Your Grass Grow Before Mowing

Just because the snow is gone, it does not mean your grass is ready to meet the lawn mower. Wait for your grass to start growing actively before getting back on a normal mowing routine. Mowing your grass causes stress to the plant itself. Begin by setting your lawn mower on a higher setting, so you are only removing a small part of the blade the first few mows.

Before mowing, be sure to sharpen your blades for a clean cut. Stressed out having to mow frequently in the beginning? Robotic lawn mowers are an awesome solution to help lawn health. They only cut a tiny clipping each time they mow. Your lawn looks freshly mowed 24/7 as your little helper goes out to cut everyday.

professional lawn mowing company cuts lawn with ride on mower

Think Ahead

While it is several months away, it is important to remember that your lawn may be struggling this Spring because it did not get the final fertilization application. The last application is often called a winterizer application as it helps your grass prepare for dormancy and the cold winter months ahead.

Adding a reminder into your phone to fertilize in the fall or signing with a landscape professional that is committed to fall fertilization can make a big difference in your turf next Spring.

lawn care expert pours fertilizer into walk behind spreader

Partnering with Lawn Care Experts to Help Your Lawn Bounce Back

Sometimes, you may follow all of these steps and still have an ugly, struggling lawn. Consulting with a lawn care professional can be helpful if you have tried traditional methods with little success because they have access to more effective fertilization and weed control products and are carefully trained in how and when to apply them.

Lawn care professionals who apply any form of fertilizer must be licensed in the state of Michigan. That means they have to initially pass several challenging tests and each following year complete continuing education credits. This licensing helps protect the environment and you as a customer.

Your lawn is like the welcome mat to your home. You want it to be a safe place to play and something that makes you proud when you pull into the driveway after a long day at work. Investing the time to care for your turf as it emerges from dormancy can help your grass to have a strong growing season this year!

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