Yard Winterizing Tips

Knowing proper lawn winterization techniques and methods are vital to keeping a yard in tip-top condition, even despite frigid outdoor temperatures.

Grass is grass, right? Wrong. There are number of different types of grasses, all which need to be treated and fertilized differently to accommodate their individual needs.

Cool Season Grasses

  • Cool season grasses should have traditional lawn winterization fertilizer applied beginning in late summer through fall. The nitrogen in these fertilizers can be applied in two separate applications. The first is recommended at the end of summer and the second application is recommended mid-to-late fall.
  • The reason different types of lawns should be fertilized and cared for in a different way is because cool season grasses contain Fescues, Bluegrasses, Bentgrasses and Ryegrasses. Other cool season grasses may include Orchard, Brome and Timothy grasses.
  • Cool season grasses grow best in temperatures ranging between 65 to 75 degrees. Maintaining a vivid shade of green well into the winter, they only loose their striking color during extreme periods of cold weather. These types of grasses grow best in the northern two-thirds of the U.S., but are also found throughout Canada and in other European countries where cool weather dominates. These grasses do not fare well in high temperatures and typically require additional watering, or the grasses will turn brown and become dormant in summer months.
  • Cool season grasses absorb the majority of their nutrients during the fall months, which is why fertilizing during this time is vital to growing a healthy yard. As much as 75-percent of their annual nitrogen is obtained during these months, which is why fertilizing during this time is important to having a healthy yard year-round.

Warm Season Grasses

  • Warm season grasses should not be treated with traditional lawn winterization techniques. It is recommended to apply a potash (K2O) fertilizer that contains low amounts of nitrogen and high amounts of potassium.
  • Warm lawn grasses typically include Zoysiagrass, Bahaigrass, Bermudagrass, Centipedegrass, Buffalograss and St. Augustinegrass. These types of grasses typically grow better in warm southern locations that have mild winters and hot summer temperatures – typically those averaging between 80 to 90 degrees.
  • Warm climates cause seasonal grasses to become dormant in the fall, as temperatures drop. Once the soil begins to warm up again in the spring months, the grass will become active once again.
  • Warm grasses should not be given fertilizer with high levels of Nitrogen, especially in the late summer or early fall. Alternatively, Potassium should be applied in the late summer, as this helps suppress diseases, provides stress relief and protects the grasses from long winters.

Professional landscapers, such as Utah landscaping companies, Salt Lake City landscaping and Park City landscaping, know the importance of maintaining lawns in peak condition. They employ experts that advise homeowners which types of lawn fertilizers are best for their individual yards.