It may be February, but spring is just around the corner. The days are getting longer, and soon the temperatures will be warmer. It’s still quite early to do any lawn care, but thinking ahead will save you time. Once the ground thaws from the winter, you can begin preparing your lawn for spring. Having a sound plan in place will make the process of cleaning up your lawn more efficient and enjoyable. March is the perfect time to start prepping your Bergen County, NJ lawn for spring. The soil may be difficult to work with if it’s muddy and wet; therefore, it’s important to wait until it’s dry before attempting any lawn work.
Prepping your Bergen County, NJ lawn for spring involves cleaning up your lawn after the cold winter weather and applying soil and grass treatments to ensure your lawn is healthy and green.
Cleaning up your Bergen County Lawn for Spring
- Gather up all types of debris that have accumulated over the winter including wet leaves, dead plants, sticks, and limbs. Check branches and shrubs for winter damage and clear out buffer zones between woods and lawn.
- Remove all protective covers and winter mulch from gardens, shrubs, and other areas of your lawn.
- Begin pruning trees and shrubs once the temperatures become comfortable outside. Flower trees should be ignored because of their new growth and buds. Consider hiring a professional to prune tall trees and shrubs, as they are skilled and equipped to handle those types of plants.
- Scour your lawn carefully for mold and fungus. They pose a risk to a healthy lawn, and often hide in small places.
- Test the pH levels (acidity or alkalinity) in your soil every 2 to 3 years to determine which plants to put on your property. New Jersey soil tends to be naturally acidic (pH level less than 7.0). Different plants require different pH levels to thrive.
- Look for hibernating bugs as they will attack and destroy lawns in North Jersey. If you come across any insects, hire a professional to identify the species and eliminate it properly.
- Prevent animals from eating your lawn and gardens by fixing any problems with property fences.
- Transplant trees and shrubs before they bud, when the ground is soft and thawed.
- Do some landscape planning using the USDA plant hardiness zone map. Bergen County, NJ is located in planting zones 6b and 7a. Zone information helps you choose the right plants for your gardens and lawn.
Lawn care for your Bergen County NJ Lawn
- Seed a lawn in spring, but do so by mid-April to avoid hot weather. Ensure that you water the seed regularly. Although seeding new lawns can be done in the spring, it’s preferable to do this in the fall when weed growth is lower.
- Thatch, also called dethatch, the lawn by using a trowel after the lawn has thawed from winter. This removes dead layers of roots and stems found between the grass and soil.
- Aerate your lawn if you notice bare spots, waterlogged areas, or brown spots. Aerating is a process of putting holes in the grass to allow oxygen, nutrients, and moisture to get to the roots.
- Add mulch to create a protective layer on top of the soil, conserving water, suppressing weeds, and protecting plants.Organic mulch includes bark, grass, straw, and leaves, while inorganic compounds include gravel, plastic, and fabric.
- Put your lawn clippings back into your Bergen County, NJ lawn, adding necessary nutrients and organic matter to soil.
- Fertilize the lawn to promote healthy green grass and avoid weeds, but don’t overdo it. Fertilizer provides nutrients such as nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, and iron which feed plant roots and encourage new growth. A light, slow-release or organic fertilizer works well on Northern NJ lawns. Check pH to determine which fertilizer suits your needs.
- Apply herbicides that prevent crabgrass and weeds from invading your lawn, preferably in March. Once weeds and crabgrass begin to grow, they can be difficult to control.
- Maintain a healthy lawn by mowing, weeding, pruning, and trimming regularly throughout the spring. Only the top one-third of grass blades should be removed when mowing grass.
Whether you require assistance with spring clean-up, fertilization, plant and shrub treatments, or season long lawn care and maintenance, Borst Landscape and Design has the professionals, expertise and services to fit all your landscaping needs.Call and ask us about our yearly organic lawn fertilization and maintenance programs at (201) 785-9400 or via our website, and we’ll be happy to help you begin prepping and protecting your Bergen County, NJ lawn this spring.