How Do I “Winterize” My Lawn?

How Do I “Winterize” My LawnAt Turf Shield, we offer a variety of lawn and yard care services that can help keep your yard looking its best all year round, and each season poses its own individual challenges.  With summer coming to a close and winter waiting eagerly in the wings, many of our clients ask us how they can best go about “winterizing” their lawns or gardens to prepare them for the colder months.  Although Georgia and the Southeast may not get the severe cold and snowfall that are so common in other regions of the country, there are a few things that you can do to keep your lawn healthy and protected.

Many lawn and garden professionals will tell you that a good winterizing fertilizer treatment is the key to avoiding cold-season damage, and some suggest that overseeding cool season grasses in early fall can be particularly beneficial.  Unfortunately, this advice does not necessarily apply to all lawns.  Winterizing fertilizers (or simply “winterizers” as they are sometimes called) have a higher concentration of potassium than other lawn fertilizers, which helps strengthen and harden plants from top to bottom and make them more tolerant of cold and stress.  Our Turf Shield team can tell you the specific type of grass that you have and recommend a fertilizer treatment that is right for your lawn’s specific needs.

Autumn is also a good time to protect your fruits and flowers from the winter cold.  Ideally, you should have your perennial garden beds cleaned up, removing old stalks and leaves, and then mulched as part of your winter preparation plan.  However, if you do not have the time to properly mulch, than leave the stalks and leaves where they are, as they will afford a small degree of protection to the roots of your perennials.  Small deciduous shrubs with fragile branches can be protected with a lean-to or some other sort of structure to keep heavy snows off their limbs or to protect them from cold and frost.  Avoid watering trees in late summer or early fall before the leaves fall, as this will give them a chance to “harden off” for winter.  Then in late fall, after the trees have dropped their leaves but before the ground has frozen, give both evergreen and deciduous trees and shrubs a final deep watering to last them through the winter.

Last but not least, don’t forget to take a few moments to do some end of the year maintenance on your lawn tools.  Improperly stored gasoline can get thick and gummy, so be sure to drain the gas from your lawnmower in the late fall before storing it away.  Bring in the garden hose and go down into the basement to turn off its water source to keep your pipes from bursting if the temperatures fall into the teens.  A little care and attention now can save you a lot of trouble down the line.

The needs of your lawn will change over the course of any given year, which is one of the reasons why it is a good time to get a little bit of professional help.  Our expert lawn care specialists can work with you to determine exactly what measures you should take to keep your yard looking its best.  If you have any questions about any of your landscaping needs, or about any of the customized lawn care treatment packages that we provide, please contact Turf Shield to get more information.  Don’t forget to follow us on social media to get all the latest updates and lawn care tips.