Lawn care schedule

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RobLyons
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Re: Lawn care schedule

Post by RobLyons » Sun Mar 17, 2019 2:06 pm

serbeer wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 2:24 pm
RobLyons wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 12:19 pm
I've been a lawn care fan for a while and the bulk of my learning came from

Lawn Care nut - Youtube


Pre emergents
seed and water (fall best time to seed, spring 2nd best)
milorganite
sun

These are the main keys to success

I've completely replaced my backyard, i've had weeds, patches, issues with dog urine, etc. You won't ever have a perfect lawn with dogs or kids but it can still look great
I am curious about yours (or other knowlegeble BHs') opinion regarding importance of Core Aeration for the lawn. I am offered one in my lawn care package for several hundred dollars (big lawn) and not sure whether it is worth splurging on. If it is indeed a good idea, how frequently does it have to be done, every year or not necessarily?
Thanks!


Depends on your amount of soil compaction. Do you have clay soil? Areas where grass isn't growing well?

I personally LOVE core aeration. I do it every year in the fall. It's an excellent, cheap way to open up your lawn. It's about $60 from Home Depot and I find somebody with a truck and ramps and have a good ol time.

Use the screw driver test. Stick a screwdriver into your soil in several placed. Does it stick in easily? Or is it difficult? Can substitute with a pencil.


I aerate in multiple directions, then seed, fertilize, and water 2-3x per day. It's a lot of work if you like that sort of thing or just pay a company to do it.
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Trader Joe
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Re: Lawn care schedule

Post by Trader Joe » Sun Mar 17, 2019 5:25 pm

dalbright wrote:
Tue Mar 12, 2019 11:30 am
For reference i'm located in Northern IL. I feel like i need a plan in advance for caring for/treating my lawn. I have two active dogs so its a bit rough to weed/treat/grow the lawn well. I tried bluegrass and thought it was going great and then boom crabgrass overtook and now i'm back to a nice bare middle 1/3 of my yard. We get dandelions pretty bad as well which i have tried spraying and manually pulling with a tool but we appear to live in a part of town that views dandelions as flowers...

Does anyone have good advice on when to seed/overseed/feed, then spray/pellet for crabgrass and (same or different time) dandelions, and so forth? i hate to put down seed and then kill it by being too close to spraying etc. Need to try and schedule in advance otherwise i'll miss the window this year! At least the crabgrass is tougher for the dogs to tear up but the mud spot every season is awful! I found a page by the univ of IL about the monthly timing roughly between april-sept but i would hate to wreck the seeds and spray to early/late etc. Any tips would be appreciated or products that worked well for you.
I would ask my lawn care service provider.

prairieman
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Re: Lawn care schedule

Post by prairieman » Sun Mar 17, 2019 6:20 pm

strafe wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 6:52 am
Proper mowing is by far the most important thing. It's been mentioned a few times above but cannot be emphasized enough.

For a northern lawn, that means using the HIGHEST SETTING ON YOUR MOWER. That will be somewhere around 3.5" or (ideally) 4".

A taller lawn also has a side benefit of not needing to be mowed as often. Longer grass will choke out the weeds and won't need as many chemicals or fertilizer. It will look great once all the grass reaches a uniform length.
Agree. I have done this for three years now and allow white clover to stay (to fix nitrogen). I used no chemicals or fertilizer the last two years and mowed at the highest setting. My lawn looked pretty good last year and had few weeds and so I’ll do the same again.

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dalbright
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Re: Lawn care schedule

Post by dalbright » Thu Apr 25, 2019 7:14 am

Quick follow up question. I'm planning to use weed and feed pellets soon (menards brand was on sale). For the timing of this product, how long should it be rain free after use to still kill the weeds? I understand that it should be somewhat wet to allow the product to stick to the weeds, but how long should there be no rain in the forecast? Seems like every other day is a chance of rain in the 10 day forecast...Has made my summer re-roofing project more fun to plan out and squeeze in!

I also have some concentrate to spot treat with in the future and have been pulling about a bucket of dandelions a day while playing with the dogs. I did the crabgrass preventer about a month back as well as was recommended based on soil temp. I think its working?

livesoft
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Re: Lawn care schedule

Post by livesoft » Thu Apr 25, 2019 7:45 am

Weed-n-feed supplied in our area needs to be watered in since the herbicide is soaked up through the roots.

What are the active ingredients in the product you bought? What do the instructions that came with the product say?
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Kenkat
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Re: Lawn care schedule

Post by Kenkat » Thu Apr 25, 2019 7:56 am

It is probably 2,4-D. That should be applied to damp grass so that the herbicide sticks to the leaves; it does not work if watered in. This contrasts with pre-emergent herbicides (crabgrass prevention) which should be watered in.

I would try for a minimum of 24 hours before it rains after applying the weed and feed. 2-3 days is even better.

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Re: Lawn care schedule

Post by livesoft » Thu Apr 25, 2019 8:03 am

Kenkat wrote:
Thu Apr 25, 2019 7:56 am
It is probably 2,4-D.
We don't have to guess. We can read and follow the instructions.

If one is going to use chemicals, then one should use them responsibly, knowledgeably, and follow the instructions.
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GMCZ71
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Re: Lawn care schedule

Post by GMCZ71 » Tue May 07, 2019 9:08 am

jimmo wrote:
Fri Mar 15, 2019 5:49 pm
Some basics...

Things to Do . Yes +1
1) Mow high...higher than you think is normal. This might be the most important tenet of lawn care, and definitely the easiest. In the heat of summer, I set mower height at 3.5-4 inches. 3 inches in spring and fall. The taller your grass is, the more it shades the soil achieving two key goals - moisture retention and keeping weed seed from germinating (seed needs sunlight to germinate)

2) Apply nitrogen fertilizer in the fall (not the spring). Applying in the spring really feeds the weeds. Applying in the fall benefits grass root development and helps with early spring green-up without feeding new weeds. I've found that organic fertilizers like Milorganite work best. Menards has something similar called Ideal EQ. Yes and no, you should do a soil test. Milo tends to push "P" above recommended levels if your soil has it already. Do a spring "n" app a month before the heat starts, to make the grass grow and help block out the weeds.

3) On watering...either accept that your lawn will go dormant (turn brown) in late summer or be prepared to water. But if you do irrigate, follow the rule of 0.7 - 1.0 inch of water a week ALL at once. This is deep watering that promotes your grass to grow deep roots. Do not water multiple times a day or every day of the week, you're just promoting shallow roots that become dependent on regular watering. I've stopped watering...seems silly and wasteful. By mid-September it greens back up and looks just fine.

What NOT to do:
Only bag to get rid of seed heads on the unwanted, mulch the rest of the time.
1) Bag clippings. That's free nitrogen your taking off your lawn if you bag them up and throw them out. Not sure when this trend started, but it makes no sense. You'll need an extra nitrogen application to make up for it. I guess it works well for TruGreen and the like. I also mulch almost all of the fall leaves right into my yard. Adds great organic matter to the soil. And by mulching, I just spread out the leaves if they are piled up, then run the mower over them a couple times which shreds them nicely and before long they compost nicely in the soil beneath the grass.

If just starting to fix the lawn I would do the weed and feed the 1st yr/spring. After that just spot spray, you should have the soil right by now and the grass should be blocking out most weeds.
2) Weed n Feed products. Do not use them. Not only is it bad for your pets and kids using yard, it's also bad for your soil. It's a blanket herbicide that kills pretty much everything in the soil and your grass becomes more and more dependent on chemicals and synthetic fertilizers to stay green. Soil health is important, as are the earthworms and good bacteria to keeping a healthy yard. If you have a weed problem, spot spray the problem areas with a liquid application. TruGreen over-applies herbicides and then has to way over-apply fertilizer to save the grass...it's a vicious cycle, not to mention terrible for the environment.

This is the general strategy I've learned from reading around from the experts and it's worked pretty well for me. Sure I still get some weeds here and there, but that's fine. We don't all need golf course lawns.
John

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tainted-meat
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Re: Lawn care schedule

Post by tainted-meat » Tue May 07, 2019 7:41 pm

I have a lawn service do the fertilizing. I mow and leave the clippings. If they clump I take my blower out and spread them around. In the fall, I spread leaves in grass and run my mower over them. I spot spray for weeds. Had a nasty violet problem last year but my hard work in the late summer/fall has greatly weakened them this year. Hoping to dominate the neighborhood with my lawn this year.

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abuss368
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Re: Lawn care schedule

Post by abuss368 » Wed May 08, 2019 5:55 am

We have been using the new Scott's all in one application. Twice a year it is put not he grass and includes crabgrass and weedkiller with fertilizer. This appears to be replacing the Steps and Turf-builder. I also noticed that both the Steps and turf-builder no longer have insect control (as the third bag in the cycle).
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abuss368
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Re: Lawn care schedule

Post by abuss368 » Wed May 08, 2019 5:55 am

As yes, we pick up grass clippings.
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dalbright
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Re: Lawn care schedule

Post by dalbright » Wed May 08, 2019 6:18 am

Just as an update to this thread since I was the OP, the crabgrass preventer seems to have done a good job. I may have to do a second round of a weed killing product as it does look like the weeds are a bit "sadder" and ragged but still popping up and I have end up pulling a fair amount (definitely less though) grown dandelions before they go to seed and create the same issue next year. The grass is coming in really strong which is ideal (and actually making it hard to even find the dandelions to pull!) but I feel like the weed and feed product with trimec as the active had little effect on the clover population, some started to wilt and then we got a ton of rain and it perked back up it seems. Although many seem to like clover, it puts up these white flowery things that are bee magnets in the summer which aren't ideal for my dogs who run through it playing ball and me who is allergic to bees...(we have plenty of flowers for them to hang out in and pollinate instead).

Would another round of trimec weed and feed granules be good? I also have a pump concentrate mix of 2-4d i picked up and some season long bayer i had sitting in the garage for a hose end sprayer i could switch it up with if that would help. I got sidetracked with re-roofing my house over the past few weeks which sucked most of the life out of me...not a project for the faint of heart! T


Thanks all!

Grt2bOutdoors
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Re: Lawn care schedule

Post by Grt2bOutdoors » Wed May 08, 2019 6:44 am

The general recommendations from the herbicide manufacturer is to apply broadleaf herbicide no more than two times per year, typically in a two week interval from time of first application - that ought to take care of most of your weeds. If you suffer from strong infestation of clover, chickweed or oxalis - i would use a spot treatment with a hand sprayer, add a drip or two of Dawn dish detergent as a surfactant and add the triplcor (active ingredient- 8%) as required, add water and spray away. The 2,4D combo with Dicamba and other stuff like Mecrocorp will take care of most broadleaf weeds. It takes some time but it works, should start seeing results in a week with completion in 2 weeks.
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GMCZ71
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Re: Lawn care schedule

Post by GMCZ71 » Wed May 08, 2019 6:49 am

I think the Bayer season long kills everything, you want weed be gone that only kills weeds and not the grass. How long since the weed and feed app?
John

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dalbright
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Re: Lawn care schedule

Post by dalbright » Wed May 08, 2019 6:52 am

It has been about 2 weeks since i did the weed and feed so the timing seems about right for some type of re-app. Interesting about adding the dawn!

BobTheTerp
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Re: Lawn care schedule

Post by BobTheTerp » Wed May 08, 2019 7:20 am

I feel the extra work you are thinking should come this fall. A lot of spring weeds will die off from summer heat and whatever grass is left will survive as long as it has established roots. The fall is the time for getting the yard ready for the next season. Apply weed treatment in the latter part of August and then overseed in mid to late September. Highly recommend spreading leafgro (or any organic matter) over the yard's most bare spots and apply seed on top. Would spread straw over seed and keep wet. No mowing for as long as you can stand it!

I live near the Chesapeake Bay in Maryland and this has worked well for me. Tall fescue is my grass type......

Bob :beer

livesoft
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Re: Lawn care schedule

Post by livesoft » Wed May 08, 2019 7:22 am

As BobTheTerp noted about temperature, the few weeds in our grass are now gone because the weather is warmer and their growing season is over. Sometimes people are faked out that "weed killer" worked, but it was just the normal life-cycle of dandelions and other weeds that made them "disappear."
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Grt2bOutdoors
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Re: Lawn care schedule

Post by Grt2bOutdoors » Wed May 08, 2019 8:06 am

livesoft wrote:
Wed May 08, 2019 7:22 am
As BobTheTerp noted about temperature, the few weeds in our grass are now gone because the weather is warmer and their growing season is over. Sometimes people are faked out that "weed killer" worked, but it was just the normal life-cycle of dandelions and other weeds that made them "disappear."
I'll tell you, the two weeds (depending on how you view it) that doesn't disappear with increased temperatures is clover and plantains. They stick around all season and spread too. I hit it two weeks ago with the Bayer product, but have to hit it again (second application) because it refuses to go easily.
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jimmo
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Re: Lawn care schedule

Post by jimmo » Wed May 08, 2019 8:36 am

Grt2bOutdoors wrote:
Wed May 08, 2019 8:06 am

I'll tell you, the two weeds (depending on how you view it) that doesn't disappear with increased temperatures is clover and plantains. They stick around all season and spread too. I hit it two weeks ago with the Bayer product, but have to hit it again (second application) because it refuses to go easily.
I have some clover in the yard I let go. May be time we rethink what are weeds. If you go back a few decades, clover seed was included with regular grass seed mixes and considered part of a healthy yard. It returns nitrogen to soil, stays green year-round, is low growing and needs very little water. I suppose at some point Scott's or Bayer convinced us that it was a weed that needs removed and we all need to have monoculture yards like a golf course.

FRT15
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Re: Lawn care schedule

Post by FRT15 » Wed May 08, 2019 8:49 pm

For those of you who put down pre-emergent crabgrass preventer , do you do it every year Even if you don't have a crabgrass problem?

I have been but wonder if it's Overkill.

BobTheTerp
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Re: Lawn care schedule

Post by BobTheTerp » Thu May 09, 2019 6:11 am

I put down crabgrass prevention with fertilizer every year. It covers two areas of yard care at one time. You may not have crabgrass this year, but your neighbor's might and like to share!

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Re: Lawn care schedule

Post by Nowizard » Thu May 09, 2019 6:54 am

You are dealing with a challenge. For example, if you have crabgrass, it means you did not put down pre-emerge in the Fall and early Spring (Unless you just have a little here and there). Nice yards are difficult unless you put in a great amount of time. For example, we have a service but lots of early weeds this year. Our guy says heavy rains have washed away the residual of Fall pre-emerge and, possibly, the Spring as well. In order to kill the Poa Anna and Crabgrass, he has had to add another herbicide that costs $1,400 a gallon in concentrate and mixes with 1,500 of water, and that is not enough to do the trick quickly, and runs up his cost. Another addition is considerably more expensive but more effective. In other words, the time spent doing it ourselves is often ineffective due to weed removal being more than just spraying.
Tim

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GMCZ71
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Re: Lawn care schedule

Post by GMCZ71 » Thu May 09, 2019 7:25 am

dalbright wrote:
Wed May 08, 2019 6:52 am
It has been about 2 weeks since i did the weed and feed so the timing seems about right for some type of re-app. Interesting about adding the dawn!
2 weeks for feed app is too soon, should wait for 4-6 weeks. On the weed killer side 2 weeks is the time for another app.
John

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Re: Lawn care schedule

Post by Grt2bOutdoors » Fri May 10, 2019 1:52 pm

jimmo wrote:
Wed May 08, 2019 8:36 am
Grt2bOutdoors wrote:
Wed May 08, 2019 8:06 am

I'll tell you, the two weeds (depending on how you view it) that doesn't disappear with increased temperatures is clover and plantains. They stick around all season and spread too. I hit it two weeks ago with the Bayer product, but have to hit it again (second application) because it refuses to go easily.
I have some clover in the yard I let go. May be time we rethink what are weeds. If you go back a few decades, clover seed was included with regular grass seed mixes and considered part of a healthy yard. It returns nitrogen to soil, stays green year-round, is low growing and needs very little water. I suppose at some point Scott's or Bayer convinced us that it was a weed that needs removed and we all need to have monoculture yards like a golf course.
When you've spend thousands sodding a yard that was in poor shape, you can see why I'm not inclined to let clover or any other weed take over the lawn. The clover and other weeds are an "unwanted donation" of neighbors who let their lawns go to the weeds.
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dalbright
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Re: Lawn care schedule

Post by dalbright » Sat Sep 21, 2019 10:30 am

I wanted to update again and thank you all for your tips for my lawn. I just over-seeded the backyard as it looks like we have a fair amount of rain coming this week. The clover was still resilient this year but it seems like I made considerable progress with the weeds and crabgrass since the original post. I think the contractor blend i started with did a good job helping to get things moving in the right direction with the higher annual and fast growing content to resolve the large bare spots (and keep mud levels down with the dogs), and the over-seed sun/shade mix i just used with high perennial content will hopefully help come spring as well. I also mowed at 4" all season and let it grow out more if i saw a large dry spell or high heat in the forecast. Very please with the progress since the original post. Once the town finishes replacing a water main in the front yard this year i get to start the process again ha!

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abuss368
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Re: Lawn care schedule

Post by abuss368 » Sat Sep 21, 2019 10:35 am

We just applied the Scott’s all in one for the fall. This was the first year of applying it and overall we are pleased. It is doing the job and I believe after a few seasons the lawn should look even better.
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