It’s that time of year again here in Camas, Washougal, and Vancouver, Washington: Springtime! Spring is when most plants come out of dormancy and begin to grow vigorously. It is also the time to assess and cleanup the messes that fall and winter have left around your yard. Preparing your yard for the nicer months of spring can seem daunting and overwhelming, but Urban Eden is here to help! In this article, we’ll discuss the best course of action for tackling a spring yard preparation.
Evaluate and Cleanup
The first step, and often the most important, is to evaluate the mess that winter has left behind. Are there leaves strewn about the lawn? Are there twigs and other debris littered throughout your yard? A great place to start is to rake and collect all of the debris and deposit it into your compost pile or take it to a recycling center. Once this task has been completed, you will be able to further evaluate the needs of your yard.
Once all of the debris has been removed from the lawn, mowing can commence. Since an overabundance of debris (especially twigs/sticks) is not good for mowers, it is especially important to remove debris first. For the very first mowing of the season, it is a good idea to mow somewhat shorter than usual to accommodate for the next step.
Dethatching and Aerating
Dethatching and aerating your lawn is a great way to ensure your lawn stays healthy and looks as lush as possible. Dethatching refers to removing the excess buildup of fine bits of debris, including moss and dead grass (also known as thatch). Aerating is the process whereby small holes are punctured into the lawn which allows more air and light to deeply penetrate into the roots of your lawn. Put another way, aerating and dethatching breaks up compacted soil and allows more nutrients to reach your lawn and ensure healthy growth.
Overseeding and Fertilizing
Once the above steps have been completed, it’s the perfect time to overseed and fertilize your lawn. Overseeding refers to adding grass seed to an existing lawn to fill in any bare spots and to, generally, improve the density and diversity of your lawn. After overseeding, organic fertilizer should be applied to your lawn to ensure your grass has the nutrients it craves. Lastly, a top-dressing should be applied to the lawn so that birds do not eat the seed, or the wind doesn’t carry it all away.
Another important aspect to any thorough spring yard preparation is to remove any weeds growing in your yard. At Urban Eden Landscaping, we believe weeds should be removed as naturally as possible. Though chemicals exist that make removing weeds easier, they can be harmful to other plants, animals, and even people. Therefore, we usually hand pull any weeds growing in the yard. If the weeds are extensive, we suggest using a hula-hoe (also known as a roundabout hoe) to remove the weeds.
To make sure that weeds do not immediately return, applying a thick layer of mulch is a good idea. Applying a minimum layer of 2 inches of mulch to your flower beds should help stave off weeds for a longer period of time than leaving the ground bare. There are an abundance of different mulches to choose from, so choose the one that fits your taste the most.
This list, though a good start to any spring preparation, is not complete; there are many more things you can do to your lawn to keep it looking healthy and well maintained. If you would like some assistance with these items or any other landscape maintenance tasks, Urban Eden would love to help! Contact us today, by calling us at (360)567-6399 or by filling out a free estimate request form.