Winter may bring a welcomed break from mowing every week, but don’t forget you lawn altogether. Here are some quick tips for keeping your lawn healthy during winter.
- Pick up. Leaving debris, leaves and toys on your lawn during winter is extremely detrimental. It can smother your grass, create conditions for disease, and invite insects, mice and other damaging pests. When an object is left on the grass during cold weather and snowfall it creates large dead spots because of the weight of the object. In the spring the grass in that area will be stunted and thinner than the rest of the yard. Pick up toys and any trash that has blown into your yard. Move furniture and equipment to a shed, garage, deck or concrete slab. Quickly rake away any dead leaves that may have fallen and collected on your yard to avoid wet spots that can become mossy or moldy. If it seems like too big of a job, clean up one section of your lawn for 5 days. It is best to do this before the next rain or snow. Do an occasional sweep of the lawn every couple of weeks.
- Avoid Excessive Traffic. Grass under snow cover or exposed to the elements can tolerate a moderate amount of traffic. However, your grass will have a difficult time recovering and be slower to green up in the spring if a path becomes well worn across the lawn. Avoid walking on wet lawns. This can compact the lawn and kill the grass. Keep your sidewalks cleared of ice and snow so that you and your guests won’t be tempted to cut across the yard. Never allow anyone to park a truck or a car on your lawn. Even the smallest vehicle will leave impressions in the soil and kill off the grass that is underneath the tires. Using the lawn as a parking lot is the fastest way to kill the good grass and make room for crabgrass and other types of weeds.
- Spread Out Snow. When your lawn or portions of your lawn have been covered by snow for an extended period of time, snow mold can attack. The disease also grows under layers of leaves over the winter. You can prevent snow mold and the harmful effects it has by simply spreading out large snow piles. After you have shoveled the sidewalk and driveway, it is easy to leave the snow piled high because the you aren’t using that part of the lawn. Take a few extra minutes and evenly distribute the snow so it will encourage melting.