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Going Green. . . . . . . Lawn Care

Healthy Soil and Healthy Lawns Use Less water, chemicals, fertilizer and your time.

    • 1) Mow high, mow often and leave grass clippings. Set mower to 2.5 -3 inches, longer grass has longer roots, help crowd weeds. Remove only 1/3 of grass length at each mowing- try to mow weekly in spring. Leave clippings / use mulching mower.

    • 2) Fertilize with an organic lawn fertilizer, we like Dr. Earth with beneficial microbes. Follow directions on the package- generally 2-3 times a year- May and September. Apply Lime in spring or fall if soils are acidic (ph 5), calcium deficiency or moss.

    • 3) Water deeply, less often. More frequent, short watering promotes thatch, and shallow roots. Aerate if the water won’t penetrate. Water one inch per week during July and August, less in spring thru fall. Newly planted lawns may need daily watering if planted in late spring or early fall. Watch the weather – don’t water if it’s going to rain.

    • 4) Improve poor lawns- aeration, over seeding and soil amendments. Aerate in spring or fall to improve drainage development. Weed ID indicates soil type. Add compost, lawn fertilizer, and soil amendments. Overseed in April/May or September, use a blend for PNW. ” of thatch is ok, more than that, dethatch and overseed to choke out weeds. Thick, lush grass can out compete the weeds.

    • 5) Use Less chemicals. Think twice before using “weed and feed” these products ruin the soil, pollute our waterways. Allow some weeds, target problem weeds (clover-ok). Hand remove or use a spot spray for broadleaf weeds (won’t hurt grass). Crane fly larvae- birds eat for you- count larval populations in early spring before using a control method.
Call 1-888-860-LAWN for a brochure on crane fly control.

    • 6) Consider reducing lawn size, replace with lawn substitute ground covers. Steep slopes, shady areas or near streams and lakes (buffer zone) – use low growing shrubs, groundcovers, natives and perennials. Right plant = Right Place.

    • For more information go to:
    www.drearth.com
    www.metrokc.gov/hazwaste/house
    www.ci.seattle.wa.us/util/rescons
         Reference: Natural Lawn Care for Western Washington guide