How to remove weeds and moss from lawns
Taking care of lawns on a daily, weekly or monthly basis can be a real pain, especially for those who are out of practice.
In fact, turning tired lawns into the perfect plot could be as simple as cutting out a few common mistakes – some of which will be the reason for moss and weed growth.
Pol Bishop, a gardening and landscaping expert at Fantastic Services, has shared a few lawn “mistakes to avoid” that allow moss and weeds to “kill your grass”.
He said: “Moss and weeds are one of the most common lawn problems that homeowners face and it’s often due to improper lawn care, which encourages their growth and spreading. These are the most common lawn mistakes that can lead to them taking over.”
1. Choosing poor-quality soil
If the soil in the lawn isn’t good or suitable for proper grass growth, it can backfire and instead “create a beneficial environment for moss and weeds to thrive”.
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Gardeners need to make sure to have their lawn soil tested every spring and supplement it with nutrients if necessary.
The expert said: “The right pH level of lawn soil should be neither too acidic nor too alkaline. Once you’ve found what the problem is, it’s easy to fix it. Sprinkle a bit of lime or sulphur.”
Overwatering a lawn can create a damp environment, which “moss typically likes and thrives in”. Instead, gardeners need to water their lawns thoroughly but infrequently and avoid doing it during periods of high humidity.
3. Lack of proper aeration
Having compacted soil can prevent proper water and nutrient absorption, because of the lack of air spaces between the soil particles.
Pol warned: “This causes the soil to hold onto the air and prevents proper water drainage, which will make it easier for moss and weeds to grow.”
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To fix that, aerate the lawn to promote “healthy grass growth” – do this by spiking regularly with a lawn spiker, aerator shoes or even a fork.
4. Improper lawn mowing
Mowing grass too short can “weaken it”, make it “easier for weeds to take over” and hinder the grass’ proper functioning and food production.
Besides that, it can also lead to “damage to the growth crown”, which can result in “slow recovery or even death”. The expert said: “This naturally clears more space for weeds and moss to grow.”
To prevent that, keep it at a healthy height and avoid removing more than one-third of the grass blade at a time.
5. Not mowing regularly
For those who cut their grass less frequently, for example, every two to three weeks, they’ll likely be more inclined to cut off too much of the grass, which can “cause it to go into a state of shock”.
Pol warned that doing this can “stunt its growth” and “allow moss to take over”. To prevent that, it’s recommended to mow the lawn once a week.
6. Neglecting proper lawn care
Forgetting to take care of a lawn’s basic needs, such as fertilisation and weed control, can also create a beneficial environment for weeds and moss to thrive.
That’s why gardeners will need to regularly fertilise and weed their lawns to promote healthy grass growth.
7. Using chemicals incorrectly
Overusing or misusing chemicals, such as herbicides and pesticides, can “harm the grass on your lawn” and make it “easier for moss and weeds to take over”.
To prevent that, always read and follow the label instructions of the product being used carefully.
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