Dakota Gardener: Save money on lawn care | News

The prices of gas, groceries and nearly everything else are rising with no end in sight. Where can we save some money?

Let me preface my comments by saying you can spend your money however you like. There is nothing wrong with spending lots of money on your lawn if you want to.

Start with fertilization. The five-step fertilizer programs sold by some fertilizer companies and lawn care services are not required. You can have a quality lawn by fertilizing once or twice a year.

Fertilize your lawn around Labor Day. This is when fertilizer has its greatest impact because September is when turf roots grow. The key to a healthy turf is a vigorous root system. A fertilization around Memorial Day is also helpful but certainly is not required.

As far as other times go, fertilizing your lawn before Memorial Day has little, if any long-term benefit for most lawns. Fertilizing in summer has very little benefit unless your lawn is regularly irrigated.

Don’t collect your clippings. Clippings contain nitrogen. Recycle the clippings on your lawn and you will be giving it a free fertilization every year. Free! Clippings also shade the soil, reducing the need for watering.

Speaking of watering, residential water fees are rising in many communities. If you want to irrigate your lawn, make every drop count. You can reduce the loss of water from evaporation by irritating in the morning and avoiding windy days.

Read the full story in your Monday, June 13th Times-Record online edition. Purchase your online copy by clicking subscribe in the top left corner of the www.times-online.com home page.

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