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Spring Care

Ah, spring in Minnesota. The days get longer, the birds return, and our lawns might be worse for wear after a long winter. But fear not, fellow Minnesotan! With some spring cleaning and strategic care, you can get your lawn looking lush and healthy all summer.

  • Sharpen your mower blade and service your lawn equipment. Dull blades tear grass, making it more susceptible to disease.
  • Clear debris from your yard. Leaves, branches, and other winter debris can smother new growth. Rake lightly to remove without damaging emerging grass.
  • Survey your yard for winter damage. Salt residue near roadways might require gentle watering to flush it away. Look for signs of rodent activity and address them if needed.
  • Mow high! Keep your grass 2.5-3 inches tall to shade the soil and retain moisture.
  • Apply a pre-emergent herbicide. This prevents crabgrass and other weeds from germinating. Follow application instructions carefully.
  • Fertilize after the initial growth spurt. Aim for May or June, and use a slow-release fertilizer to nourish your lawn throughout the growing season.
  • Consider aeration (optional). Aeration helps alleviate compacted soil, allowing air, water, and nutrients to reach the roots. This is more beneficial for cool-season grasses in sandy soil.
  • Water deeply and infrequently. Aim for 1 inch of water per week, delivered in one or two sessions.
  • Leave grass clippings on the lawn. Clippings decompose, returning nutrients to the soil.
  • Overseed bare patches in fall. Overseeding allows new grass to establish itself before winter.

Minnesota’s specific climate can vary depending on your location. Research best practices for your region and adjust your lawn care accordingly. By following these tips, you’ll be well on your way to a healthy, vibrant lawn that will be the envy of the neighborhood. Happy spring!

The University of Minnesota Extension Service offers a wealth of information on lawn care practices specific to our state.