Season 2 • Episode 18 - September 25, 2023

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We have been telling you fall is the time for planting, and we aren’t just talking about fall perennials, we’re also talking about your lawn. Tom from Bonide joined us to talk not just about fall lawn care, but also how to deal with other fall problems in your lawn and garden. If you are thinking about planting a new lawn or overseeding to fill a few bare spots, now is the time to get that grass seed down. Right now, the ground is retaining all that heat from summer so the grass seed will grow better. In the spring the air may be warm, but the soil remains cold so germination is a lot slower. The first thing you need to do is to get rid of any moss and weeds that you may have in your lawn. Tom had a couple products to help you get rid of your old turf. Captain Jack’s Deadweed Brew is a natural product that can eliminate your turf naturally, or you can try the synthetic product ‘Kleen Up’ to do the same thing. Remember to read and follow all label directions for the best coverage and effectiveness.

Next, you should mow your lawn to its shortest height without doing too much damage and then you can thatch, level and aerate your lawn. This will remove the dead thatch and moss, and allow for greater contact with the soil for your new seed. Then you can apply a garden lime to ‘sweeten’ the soil. Our native soils tend to be a little acidic. Finally you apply your new seed. Be sure to pick a seed that will work for your conditions. Consider how much light your lawn will get and then pick the appropriate sun or shade mixture. Once your seed is down, cover it with a light layer of top soil and then keep it moist, but not soaking wet. This will allow the seed to germinate and grow. If your seed starts to grow and it dries out, you may have to apply more seed since the younger plants may have died.

Another autumn chore: Fertilizing! To keep your lawn healthy in the winter and give it a boost for the spring, now is the time to apply a good fall and winter fertilizer. The numbers on the bag can be confusing, but what you are looking for is a well-balanced slow-release fertilizer. Your lawn is slowly fed all through the winter and then gets a jump start when the temperatures warm up in the spring. Keeping your lawn well maintained in the winter helps to prevent problems later.

Fall is also the time to think about and look for pests and diseases in your lawn. This fall we have seen a lot of grub activity. If you have a brown patch it could be that there are grubs eating away at the roots of your lawn. Another sign is patches of turf being torn up in your yard. This is usually a sign of other animals like raccoons, skunks and even crows digging up your lawn to look for those grubs to eat. Bonide has a product called ‘Grub Beater’ that you can apply to your lawn to reduce and eliminate those little guys. If you had a problem this year you can look at applying it now or in the spring to cover you through the new growing season. If you are seeing other problems with your lawn like rust, it could be a sign of a disease problem. For that you can apply ‘Infuse’, a systemic disease control product. This will help to control pesky diseases in your lawn AND your landscape. This product also works the best in the spring or early summer.

If you are having problems with some of our larger lawn pests you may want to apply ‘Mole Max’. Moles and voles are looking for those grubs, too, and while they are looking for dinner, they can leave a torn up lawn in their wake. Mole Max is another natural product that drives these critters away from your garden and lawn without killing them. Another natural Bonide product for deterring your garden pests, like rabbits, skunks, deer and squirrels, is Repels-All. This is an irritant that makes your garden an unwelcome place for these foragers. It comes in spray and a granular applications.

If you would like to learn more about Bonide products or need help identifying a garden problem and finding solutions, check out their website for lots of helpful tips, retail locations and other great information.

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