Care and Attention is the Key to a Great Lawn

Using a garden roller is just one stage of maintaining a healthy lawn - there are plenty of other tasks which need to be carried out regularly to ensure everything looks its best all year round.

It may be more enjoyable and relaxing tending your lawn in the fresh air on a warm summer's day - but if you want it to look great throughout the year you'll also need to give it care and attention in the run up to winter.

Proper nutrition, aeration, and dethatching are annual activities while watering and mowing are part of a daily lawn maintenance schedule.

Spring and summer are the ideal time to get down to some serious and rewarding work on your lawn - but there are other tasks that can be undertaken in autumn to keep your lawn, and the rest of your garden, in good shape in the months ahead.


When it comes to properly maintaining a flat and healthy lawn, the best time to get out the garden roller, aerator and edger is in the spring. These tools are essential for keeping a lawn properly aerated, tidy and level. 

Rolling on an existing lawn should only be undertaken after a fall or rain when the ground is moist - you should not use a roller when you lawn is very dry.

A garden roller also comes into it own when you want to re-turf or seed a lawn - the ideal time to do this is also in spring or early summer when the ground is desirably warmer than earlier in the year. 

Some gardeners prefer to sow a new lawn in late-summer to mid-autumn when the level of weeds if falling off and the soils is damp and still holding plenty of warmth.

If you decide you want to lay a complete new lawn then you will probably need to add a layer of top soil to your existing ground. This topsoil is extremely beneficial because it adds plenty on new nutrients to the ground for the seed or sod to thrive on.

Gardeners have two options when choosing to lay a new law - whether to seed or sod. A lawn spreader is the ideal tool for allowing you to distribute seeds evenly across your lawn. Laying turf can be carried out fairly quickly and firmed down with a garden roller, but many dedicated gardeners opt for seeding as it generally results in a higher quality lawn.

Seeding may take more effort and time but any conscientious gardener will gain pleasure from knowing they have raised the new lawn themselves from scratch. Seeding is also considerably cheaper than buying turf.

As mentioned, seeding can be fairly time consuming and required total commitment and dedication to the job in hand - you need to protect the seeds from being eaten birds, as well as ensuring that they are properly watered every day. This is often the choice of people who have retired or those who have plenty of time available to tend their gardens.

Laying a lawn using fresh turf is more expensive, but once the initial hard work of laying it has been done, you have an instant lawn. If you have a career and limited amount of free time, then the 'instant' appeal of turfing my be right for you. Also, sodding can be carried out pretty much at any time of the year, providing the ground is not bone dry after a hot spell. 

Maintaining Lawn Quality in the Summer Months

When you are mowing your lawn in the summer months you should always raise the height of your manual, petrol or electric mower for cool season grass and lower the height for warm season lawns. 

You should also get out your lawn edger and got those tatty lawn edges looking neat and tidy, to add the finishing touches to your flat and level lawn.


Lawn watering should be carried out early in the day to keep evaporation from the sun to a minimum and limit the risk of fungal growth. Keeping your lawn moist in the summer months is vital if you are to maintain the quality of your grass and avoid the risk of dry patches developing.

You should also avoid the temptation to cut your grass too short, simply to reduce the number of times you need to get the mower out during the summer. This is definitely not a good thing to do as the summer heat can quickly cause significant scorching and damage to low-cut grass.

Feeding your grass is essential during the summer time to keep the nutrients level up and nurture a healthy lawn. You should add liquid feed to the lawn every three or four weeks until October.

Weed and moss killer should also be applied to your lawn during the summer - there are plenty of excellent spray products available to buy which do a great job of controlling weeds.

After mowing your lawn, it's good practice to use a scarifier to remove any excess thatch or any dead organic matter that has built up. This handy device features knife blades on a cylinder which penetrate into your lawn and gather up rotting weeds, dead grass and moss, along with any other unwanted debris.

Your lawn and soil will dry out when it is exposed to a lot of heat in the summer, so it is essential that you water it regularly and extensively during extra warm spells.

Proper watering - ideally in the morning - will encourage your grass to produce a stronger root system. If your lawn requires some fertiliser to be added, then again, the best time to apply this is in the early morning.

Excessive heat in the summer can also make many lawns prone to fungus disease. If you think your lawn has this problem you should cut out a piece of sod and get it tested by an expert. If you are unfortunate enough to have a lawn fungus problem then you need to get on top of the problem as a matter of importance and get your lawn treated as quickly as possible. There is plenty of advice online for dealing with lawn fungus and you made need to call on the help of a local expert.

During the autumn months your lawn should be cut at a lower height and any weeds and thatch which has built up build up will need to be removed. The best way to do this is with your lawn scarifier. You also need to consider adding a top layer of sand to your lawn and fertiliser if necessary. When choosing a fertiliser, it's a good idea to buy one that contains a wetting agent in it.

When winter arrives, your grass will grow much more slowly and you will need less attention. There are still, however, various tasks which need to be carried out - these include adding light feedings to your lawn of organic matter such as compost and minerals. This is the perfect attractions for earthworms which will help to aerate your lawn naturally.

September is a Key Month for Your Lawn and Garden

September is the month of the year where a lot of work needs to be done in your garden, even if you need to give a bit less attention to your lawn. Having various gardening tools and equipment available at this time of year will be vital - these can include a rake, a petrol or electric hedge trimmer, a lawn scarifier, a wood chipper, a garden vac and a trusty spade.

As the summer comes to an end, temperatures begin to fall slowly and your garden starts to take on a different appearance. Many plants will begin to die, purely due to their life cycles coming to an end, and dead plant matter and rotting vegetation will be all around your garden. 

In order to keep your garden in a reasonable stat it is essential to collect and dispose of as many weeds and dead plant matter as possible. If you have hedges, then you will need to trim them back and also de-thatch your lawn with a scarifier. You can also consider sowing some grass seeds on the lawn.


It's worth checking every area of your garden and pulling up any stray weeds you across - then apply weed killer to the area to stop them re-appearing. Weeds can flourish in the winter months, burdening you with an unwelcome chore to remove them when spring arrives. While you are removing weeds, it's also removing any dead plants as well - obviously be careful not to remove any perennial plants that will bloom again the following year. 

Many gardening enthusiasts own a greenhouse and September is the ideal time to prepare it for winter - this is a good time to tidy up and clean out your greenhouse, so it is ready to use again as soon as spring arrives. Greenhouses can offer refuge for vermin such as mice and rats to nest so keep everything clean and organised and take whatever steps are necessary to keep vermin at bay. If you want to grow your own Christmas plants then this is the right time to plant them so they are ready in time for the festive period. You can also consider planting any bulbs which you need to be ready for the next spring.

If you have trees in your garden, leaves will drop in the autumn and branches may fall onto your lawn - this is the time to get out your electric garden vac to gather them up. If you have a lot of leaves, twigs and branches to deals with a garden shredder is worth having to hand. If you have roses in your garden, then the blooms will begin to wilt in September - this is the time of year when you should cut them back.

By keeping on top of various garden chores during the winter months, you will be able to reduce the workload of garden maintenance which would otherwise be facing you the following spring. Despite the fact that winter has arrived, with a little bit or work you can still have your garden looking pleasantly fresh and visually appealing.

As you can see, keeping your garden lawn looking good requires plenty of hard work and commitment - lawns don’t just maintain themselves, they need care and time to become the stunning carpet of green so many gardeners desire. 

In order to keep the grass on your lawn growing and looking its best you should ensure you invest in a good quality fertiliser. Fertilizer can not only help maintain the healthy green colour in the grass, it can also be used to help to fortify it. 

Fertiliser is used to nourish the root system within the grasses structure. This system needs to be made strong to help it withstand dry conditions and the invasion of insects that often causes problems with lawns. 

Depending on the area of the UK you live in and the weather you typically get, specific fertilisers are developed to assist the grass and its needs. 

Reputable brand names for garden fertiliser include Timothy Green, Westland, Pennington, Miracle Gro, Scotts, Fox Farm, Dyna Gro and Hoffman.

Here are a few simple gardening tips which can help you keep you lawn looking great throughout the year.

  • Try to mow your lawn on a regular basis. Ensure that your lawn mower has sharpened blades and cuts at an even height. Regular servicing of a mower is essential to ensure you get the best results from it.

  • Never mow your lawn when it is wet and don't cut your grass too short during the summer months. The perfect cut of the lawn is when you cut 30 to 40% of the plant tissue off.

  • If you cut your lawn in a vertical direction on one cut, then change this to a horizontal cut on the next cut. Alternating cutting directions is extremely beneficial to the well being of your lawn and can look visually appealing.

  • You should try to rake your lawn frequently. This will remove any dead grass, moss, fallen leaves or other plants that can cause thatch problems for you in the future. Moss and other organic matter can be easily removed by using a lawn scarifier.

  • Levelling your lawn every now and then with a garden roller is definitely a good idea. This will encourage new grass growth and help you to achieve a flat and healthy looking lawn.

  • Your lawn needs to be top dressed from time with a suitable mixture of sand, soil, peat and loam. You should also protect and feed your lawn throughout the year when necessary by adding fertiliser and pesticides as required.

  • Over time soil has a tendency to become compacted which will lead to poor air flow and air intake, as well as poor drainage. To deal with this you need to spike your lawn with a walk-behind or tow along aerator. Using aerator shoes is another option. Doing this will ensure that your lawn in adequately aerated. 

  • Additional watering is always required in the summer months, particular when the weather is very hot. Failure to do this can result in dry patches on your lawn.

As you can see, beautiful green lawns almost never happen by themselves - strong and healthy lawns demand a constant lawn maintenance schedule and a full set of lawn tools. Diligent care and work is essential to make a lawn look its best - but all your hard work will pay dividends in the end.