It is after Labor Day, your grass is still green (Bermuda or Zoysia should be, at least), the temperature is tolerable, and life is good! .. Now what?
Winter and the first freeze of the year is on its way and with that, so is WINTER DORMANCY for your warm season grass.
Let’s do some things now for a happier, greener Spring!
Mow - But not too Low!
Let’s mow our grass a little higher, around 2.5″ to 3″ and let it go dormant at this height as a “scalped lawn” is more prone to winter damage and letting your grass stay a little taller helps to decrease Winter damage.
Get a Fall Fertilizer down.
We use a 15-0-20 but the goal is to feed the grass roots here and not put down a lot of nitrogen for leaf growth.
The number 20 you see there is for potassium, and we like to see that number higher than the first number in that series which stands for nitrogen.
There is always a battle going on with weeds. Applying a good pre-emergent weed control will help to drastically cut down on the weeds you will see germinating in the Spring.
I know what you’re thinking… “Water? – Why water when the grass is dormant?”
Well, the grass is still alive – it is just sleeping. Don’t water as if it were green and growing but if we have a dry spell and then a real bad cold snap then the roots can desiccate resulting in Winter damage and dead spots when your lawn is ready to green up in the Spring.
Usually, there is enough rain to keep this from happening but if we have a dry spell of several weeks, your grass will appreciate a drink.