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Mind flex: Tips and tricks for a lush landscape

You may be overwhelmed by the multitude of lawn care services that promise to keep your lawn green all year long. Chances are, they use harmful chemicals for upkeep instead of natural solutions. The good news is that you can maintain a healthy—and green—lawn all on your own without using chemicals. Not to mention, you’ll reduce your carbon footprint at the same time.

Let’s dig into what you can do to create and maintain a beautiful lawn.

1. Aerate at least annually

Aerating your lawn helps loosen the soil so water and air can reach the roots of the grass. This allows the lawn to grow better and stay healthy.

2. Seed evenly

It’s best to spread grass seed after you’ve aerated the lawn. For a densely covered green lawn, you can overseed. Just sprinkle compost over the lawn and gently rake to disperse the compost and seed evenly.

3. Water early in the day and less often

Especially during the hotter months, be sure to water your lawn earlier in the day before the sun rises. This helps the water reach the roots more quickly and minimizes the risk of water evaporation. Also, limit your watering to one inch per week. This will help the roots grow deeper and will reduce the amount of water needed.

4. Cut only when needed

Cutting your lawn on the same day each week is unnecessary. Only cut the lawn when needed, and only trim one-third of the grass height each time you mow. This allows roots to grow deeper and doesn’t cause stress to the grass blades.

5. Leave grass clippings

There’s no need to remove grass clippings as they’re a great natural source of nitrogen that helps fertilize the grass. Clippings will be cut into smaller pieces if you have a mulching lawn mower. If you find larger clumps of clippings after mowing, gently rake them to spread them more evenly.

6. Pull weeds by the roots

As soon as they appear, pull weeds by the roots. Doing this by hand eliminates the need for chemicals and helps prevent weeds from taking over your lawn.

7. Compost kitchen and garden waste

Composting kitchen scraps and garden waste is a natural way to help your lawn grow and a great way to reduce waste. Compost helps release nutrients into the soil and stimulate root growth, attracting beneficial insects, worms and other organisms.

Depending on your climate (and any city or neighborhood regulations), try to participate in “No Mow May.” Not only will you have a good excuse for not mowing your lawn during May, but it will help pollinators thrive and help your lawn become more resilient before the summer months.

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