By Robert Lucke
With water restrictions moved and many people busy working on lawns and gardens, the Hill County Health Department has come up with a list of suggested tips that will improve the look of homes and help the environment, too.
Never remove more than one-third of the grass blades at any one mowing.
Only mow dry grass.
Always mow with a sharp mower blade. Shredded grass cuts from dull mowing blades open the ends of the grass which increases moisture loss and invites disease agents to grow there. An indication of grass cut with dull blades is the lawns that will have an overall whitish appearance.
Mow during the early part of the evening to avoid browning of the grass.
Change mowing directions each time you mow. This prevents permanent ridging, ruts or compaction in mowing traffic areas.
Leave your grass clippings on the lawn when you mow. Not only does this nurture the soil, but it also saves time, money in bags and landfill space. This practice is called "grasscycling," termed by the Professional Lawn Care Association of America. A misconception is that thatch will build up because of grasscycling.
The ideal time to water your lawn is early morning.
Never water at night as this increases insect habitation and disease occurrence.
High angle sprinklers are the least efficient method of watering as only a small fraction actually reaches the lawn due to evaporation and wind loss.