A healthy, dense-growing lawn will do a better job of minimizing weeds and reducing erosion compared to a lawn that is thin and weak. For a variety of reasons, lawns can be challenging to grow in Maryland’s transition-zone climate. Turfgrass requires regular maintenance. Here are some steps you can take in the spring to keep it healthy, without resorting to “weed and feed” products. This series of videos is presented by Geoffrey Rinehart, Lecturer in Turfgrass Management at the Institute of Applied Agriculture, University of Maryland.
Yard and Garden Tips and Tasks for July
Spotted lanternfly adults may be found feeding on many hosts, especially tree of heaven (Ailanthus altissma). Report any finds to the Maryland Department of Agriculture immediately, collect a sample or take digital photos of what you have found.
Bagworm caterpillars are now very active. Look for little bags crawling around on evergreen trees and shrubs and be prepared to spray infested trees with the microbial insecticide, Bt by mid-July. Mature bagworms are not well controlled with Bt They are best collected by hand and destroyed or sprayed with insecticides containing spinosad.
Proper lawn mowing is critical to help it survive the summer. “Mow ‘em high and let ‘em lie” should be your mowing strategy. Cut your cool-season turf (fescues and bluegrass) to a height of 3-4 inches and leave the clippings on the lawn where they will naturally decompose.
Sow seed for fall transplants of broccoli, kale, turnip, and cauliflower in flats or containers by the 3rd to 4th week in July. Late crops of squash, beans, and cucumbers can be direct sown into your garden through the end of July.
Lawn Tips for Summer: Don’t Overmanage!
With summer right around the corner and gardening season in full bloom, many homeowners have been spending more time outdoors with yard maintenance activities. One temptation is to “want to do something’’ to make your lawn better since it has been a long, cool spring and it has only been in the last few months or so that things have really started growing. However, it’s important to remember that “doing something” for the sake of just “doing something” can have negative consequences, especially as we enter the hot months of summer.
Fall Tips for Lawn Renovation: Next Steps
Warm early October weather has extended the “overseeding window” for fall lawn care. While the first week in October is usually the traditional cutoff for establishing new lawns or rejuvenating existing lawns, the warm early October weather has extended the window by 1-2 weeks.
You can read my September blog post for more information on overseeding and you can still do it, but this follow-up post will deal more with a question that has been coming into the Home & Garden Information Center as of late: “I established a new lawn (or overseeded) in September and some weeds are starting to come up — now what?” Continue reading