Spring lawn care tips

Updated: May. 21, 2021 at 5:38 PM EDT
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PRESQUE ISLE, Maine (WAGM) - They say the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence, but that may not be the case for many this spring.

Early in the spring, you may be frustrated by the look of their lawn. Randy Martin of the Central Aroostook soil and water conservation district, says insects are one of the reasons why grass may look the way it does.

“If you are one of the many people who had trouble with chafer beetles on your lawn and you have big dead spots that’s something that has only come to our area in the last 3 or 4 years. Chafer beetles are a type of June bug in that family. June bugs aren’t the ones chewing up your grass roots it’s the chafer beetles.”

Martin says knowing your soil pH can help to determine what your grass needs.

“Lawn grasses like a pH of 6.5 to 6.8 and if you have that range then you don’t have to add lime. If you’re lower, 5.8 to 6, you should add lime. It’s best to add lime in the fall because we get a lot of rain in the fall and you’re not able to till that into the soil so it has to wash down in.”

If you put lime down in the fall, Martin recommends fertilizer this time of year.

“You can hit it with a very light 10-10-10 fertilizer. That’s 10% nitrogen, 10% phosphorus, 10% potassium. You might want to put a little bit on there just to give it a jumpstart in the spring.”

If you add lime now, “It’s going to wash in eventually, but it takes about a year to receive the effect of lime because of soil chemistry and it being slow. So what you’re putting on for lime now is basically going to be benefitting next year.”

Martin recommends testing your pH through a soil sample to figure out what chemicals you need. He adds the process may take some time, but it will be worth it in the long run.

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