Taking care of your lawn is an inescapable responsibility when you own a home. You’ll have to conduct maintenance on your lawn periodically to keep it in tip-top shape. Thankfully, caring for your lawn isn’t too difficult. Especially when you have the right products to keep it healthy and expert advice from Decker’s Nursery!

Importance of Lawn Care and Maintenance

Making use of quality lawn care products will keep your yard in great shape while increasing the curb appeal of your home. At a basic level, lawns serve an important function because they help prevent rain from landing on, and washing away, raw topsoil. The roots of the grass planted in your lawn hold topsoil in place to prevent it from eroding away. A well-maintained lawn that consists only of grass can also prevent your home from becoming a target for harmful bugs or certain types of animals that are attracted to wild underbrush.

In many situations, city governments or homeowner associations force you to maintain your lawn to a certain community standard. If you fail to take care of your lawn in accordance with these set standards, you could face fines or other legal consequences. 

However, lawn maintenance is also highly beneficial to you and your family because it gives you a comfortable and safe place to play. People who see a picture-perfect lawn from the street will be eager to visit, and exceptional yard maintenance and landscaping can significantly increase the value of your home.

Basic Elements of Lawn Maintenance

The basic elements of lawn maintenance can be boiled down to 3 essentials:

Mowing Mowing Description
Adequate Water & Sunlight Adequate Water & Sunlight Description
Weed Removal Weed Removal

The most fundamental element of a well-maintained yard is regular mowing. You have to keep up with mowing because doing so kills most types of weeds and keeps wildlife away. Mowing is a responsibility that you simply cannot do without. Even if you go on vacation for a month, you need to contact someone who can mow your yard while you are gone.

The next element of lawn maintenance is adequate water and sunlight. The vast majority of homes do not require artificial watering for grass to grow properly. Extra water can help to give your grass a luscious green appearance that looks great, but watering is not a requirement unless you live in a very hot and dry climate. Grass also requires sunlight, so some types of grasses have a hard time growing under groups of tall trees that leave the ground shaded for most of the day.

You will also need to weed your yard either manually or with a modern herbicide. There are tools available that you can use to pull weeds out of your yard one at a time. Manual weed removal consumes a significant amount of time, but some property owners enjoy doing so. In most cases, you will want to use herbicides that you simply spray on any weeds that emerge.

The best way to fight weeds is to prevent them from cropping up in the first place with the help of fertilizer. If you apply fertilizer at the right intervals, it will prevent most weeds from germinating and spreading. At the same time, fertilizer will also help to give your grass a consistent and healthy look. There are many types of fertilizers designed for different use cases, so you will need to do your research to decide what product is most suitable for your yard.

Lawn Care Products for a Healthy Yard

Grass seed is the foundation of a healthy yard, and you will need to apply it regularly to keep your yard looking its best. When you find bare spots, simply applying some grass seed to the affected area will usually be enough to correct the problem. It can help to put some straw on top of the grass seed, and you will want to water areas that you recently planted on a periodic basis to give new grass the best chances of survival.

You will want to buy at least a portable sprinkler that can distribute water across your lawn. Portable sprinklers are especially helpful for new grass and watering gardens or flower beds. You will also want to aerate your yard on a regular basis. Once aeration is done, you should apply a thin layer of compost on top of your grass to improve the quality of your soil.

Frequently Asked Questions

Lawn Care & Maintenance Frequently Asked Questions 

  • What does lawn care mean?

    Lawn care is the practice of keeping landscapes healthy and attractive. Professional lawn care will handle parks, estates, commercial properties and more in addition to private yards and gardens. 

    While lawn care requires a great deal of mental know-how, it also requires physical skill and exertion. A lawn care specialist must learn how to use the proper tools in order to plan and perform planting, harvesting, maintenance and more. 

    Many lawn care specialists also maintain paths, driveways, swimming pools and more. In addition to these services, lawn care may include knowledge of drainage, irrigation, and local wildlife. In North America, lawn care maintenance is a booming industry worth more than $77 billion while employing more than 1 million professionals.

  • What is the difference between lawn care and landscaping?

    Lawn care primarily focuses on maintenance while landscaping is the development of outdoor spaces. A lawn care specialist rarely plants anything while a landscape designer spends a great deal of time choosing the right plants for the space. Specific lawn care services could include trimming, edging, weed removal, mowing, watering, and fertilization. Landscaping, by contrast, handles planting, construction, reorganization and more. 

    While a lawn care specialist schedules short visits to complete the maintenance, you work with a landscaper over a period of weeks to create the perfect outdoor setting. Obviously, there is a great deal of overlap in terms of experience and expertise, but lawn care generally refers to plant life that is already planted while landscaping works on planting the right fauna and developing attractive outdoor features like fountains, pools, patios, and walkways. It is possible to work with both lawn care specialists and landscapers in order to create and maintain your yard.

  • How can I make my yard healthy?

    To keep your grass healthy, you should first identify what type of grass you have. Different grasses require different maintenance techniques. To look its best, grass should be trimmed with a sharp blade since dull blades damage the lawn and cut unevenly. During the prime growing seasons, set your blade high to maximize your yard's health. In many areas, you should supplement natural rainfall by watering your grass. However, do not water your grass too much. The root system grows better if you spread out the watering. In general, watering twice a week in the morning yields good results. 

    You can also promote yard health by using fertilizer. A fertilizer application is only necessary a few times a year, and it can be used in combination with a weed-killing treatment. This encourages your grass to grow stronger while eliminating the presence of weeds. You should also invest in aeration. Aeration involves churning up parts of the soil to allow oxygen to get to the roots. This is best done in the fall.

  • What nutrients does a lawn need?

    Your yard needs the proper nutrients in order to maintain its color and thickness. To maintain this look, fertilizers can be used to provide nutrients like nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. Nitrogen is probably the most important one, but the balance of nutrients is important. 

    When choosing fertilizers, look for ones with a higher ratio of nitrogen and lower levels of phosphorus and potassium. This information is available on the bag’s outside label. Moreover, each fertilizer may have its own type of nitrogen. Some versions are for faster release while others are water-insoluble, which leads to a slower release over time. Different nutrients are needed at different times of the year to fully protect your yard.

  • What is the best type of fertilizer for my lawn?

    For the best results, you need to use the right fertilizer for your lawn. The right fertilizer will depend on the nature of your lawn. To be confident in your choice, you should test your soil to determine the right balance of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. The ratio of each nutrient will be listed on the fertilizer. 

    Nitrogen encourages blade growth and vibrant color. Phosphorus, on the other hand, focuses on root growth. Potassium gives your grass an enhanced ability to work with the nitrogen. If your soil is weak in one nutrient, focus on supplementing your yard with that nutrient. You may also need to vary your treatment based on the time of year, climate and the soil's acidity.

  • How do I take care of my lawn year-round?

    Your lawn has different needs throughout the year. In the spring, wait for the yard to dry out before cleaning up any winter debris. If needed, you can seed your yard with more grass to fill it out. Spring fertilizer applications can also be used. Mow the grass high in order to promote root growth. In the summer, watch your yard for insects and start watering more frequently. You can protect your yard against water loss by sharpening your mower blades and leaving clippings on the lawn. As fall approaches, invest in fertilization and aeration. During the winter, there is not much to do. However, minimize walking on frozen grass in order to avoid injuring the plants.

  • How do you bring dead grass back to life?

    To restore dead grass, you must first determine why it is not growing. If there are small brown patches, you might have grubs. You can find grubs in the soil and use a simple insecticide to remove them. Small patches may also be caused by dog urine or fungus.

    The fungus can be treated by clipping the dead patches and reducing water flow. Liquid fungicides can also be used. Dog urine spots can be watered and reseeded. 

  • Where’s the best place to buy lawn care products on Long Island?

    Decker's Nursery is located at 841 Pulaski Road in Greenlawn, New York, and it provides service to all of Long Island. As a full-service garden center and florist, Decker's Nursery provides comprehensive options for lawn care products. This includes garden tools, fertilizers, plants, birdhouses, benches, pottery and more. You can shop for the tools you need to maintain your yard while also looking for beautiful items to accent your outdoor living space. 

    Decker's Nursery additionally offers educational resources, special events, and full landscaping design services. With a vast selection and reasonable prices, there is no place better to buy lawn care products on Long Island than Decker's Nursery!