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Each month, receive tips on the top jobs needed in your garden as well as a wealth of information on a range of gardening topics. From sowing seeds to picking fruit, each month get access to information on the care and maintenance of your flowerbeds, vegetable plot and lawn. As with your own gardening diary, the journal is split into separate sections, each covering a different area of garden care.

Friday 1 April 2022

The Lawncare Guide - April

My neighbour asked if he could use my lawnmower and I told him of course he could, so long as he didn’t take it out of my garden.’ – Eric Morecambe

Mowing is going to be more frequent from now as rain and warmth promote growth and the aim is to maintain a constant height through the rest of the year. The lawn will be healthier with the right height of cut, ideally taking no more than a third off in any one mowing. You will have, of course, gradually reduced the height with successive cuts since the first mowing of the season. 

The lawn can be lightly raked with a spring tine to rid it of old debris and scarified if there is an accumulation of thatch and moss. Weeds will be starting to proliferate and if these and moss become a problem, applying a combined weed and feed treatment will deal with them efficiently. Moss usually occurs because the soil is poorly drained, inadequately fertilised, or the lawn is in shade or compacted.

After treatment, raking out or scarifying, it will pay to aerate the lawn thoroughly and break up compaction. This can be done with a garden fork in small areas or by machine or garden tractor attachment over large areas. Aeration helps the soil warm up, allows it to drain more freely and gets oxygen to the roots which is essential for healthy growth. 

Where there is compaction, soil particles are squashed together creating minute spaces which hold water and lead to waterlogging on the lawn. In turn, this becomes the ideal environment for moss to develop and in spring, the plant produces hundreds of thousands of spores which, if the moss is raked before it dies off, spread over the lawn. By aerating the soil, large pore spaces are opened up, allowing water to reach the plant root and provide good drainage.

Other lawn jobs this month include repairing lawn edges using a half moon edger or spade. Creating a 7.5cm (3in) gutter around the lawn helps to prevent grass growing into borders. Hollows and bumps can be dealt with by peeling the turf back, adding or removing soil, and firming the turf down.   

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