Spring cleaning with Cobra
Spring is well under way so it’s now time to make the most of your garden. In the last Cobra blog post we gave you some spring lawn care tips to help get your summer garden underway.
Most lawns will now have received their much anticipated and long awaited first mow so it’s time to look at what else you can do to get your lawn looking its best.
Throughout May resilient weeds will be getting well established and settling in for the summer so be sure to get on top of them. Remember to remove the root to prevent it returning. The rising temperatures as summer nears unfortunately encourage moss to grow so, again, keep on top of this. The best way to stop repeat offenders is to have a thick patch of healthy lawn; May is a key time to help establish this through two key methods – scarifying and aerating.
Scarifying is the process of lifting thatch from the lawn, doing so reduces dead grass, roots and moss and helps to stimulate growth of new grass. Scarifying removes debris on the lawn but leaves the grass plants undamaged. It is important to do this as, not only is it unsightly but thatch also acts as barrier to water, air and nutrients and can really hinder new grass growth.
Healthy grass will be strong and green all over. The tell tale sign that you need to scarify if is if there is any dead matter to go through before reaching the surface. Another sign is if your lawn is spongy.
The key to scarifying is to plan. Scarifying requires short, dry grass; to achieve this gradually reduce the cut height when mowing in the weeks prior to when you to scarify. The Cobra mower range is ideal for this with its unique seven stage adjustment feature that will let you increase the cut height in 10mm intervals from 25mm to 75mm. This reduces the shock and impact on the grass when scarifying and allows the air to get deeper.
The best time to carry out the final mow before scarifying is the day before. A further tip is to remove weeds a week before scarifying and, if moss is a problem, to treat it two weeks before.
When scarifying, it is important to protect the healthy grass. To do this, steadily lower the blades so that they only just make contact with the soil. It is also advisable to begin with a test area to ensure that it is only debris being picked up.
Your lawn may need help recovering after scarifying. Having good soil moisture will aid this but the additional help of fertiliser and lawn grass seed will help fight the stress whilst also protecting against disease. Remember to always read the label and follow instructions closely.
Once you lawn has been cleared it may become evident that it needs over seeding with new grass seed. After scarifying is a perfect time to over seed as a thin, clear lawn can give good germination.
Aeration goes hand in hand with scarification as it allows air and rain nutrients to penetrate hard surfaces to improve lawn health which ultimately helps to reduce thatch.
Aerating involves puncturing the lawn with small holes to allow air, water and nutrients to get to the grass’ root to stimulate growth and increase its water holding capacity. Healthy turf should be made up of 50% water and air, and 50% minerals and organic matter. However, a lawn in need of aeration will not have the capacity to hold the water and air and the healthy balance will be thrown off.
The main benefit of aeration is improved drainage. Poor drainage can lead to your lawn looking dry and discoloured but aeration can quickly put a stop to this. By relieving compaction in the lawn, aeration allows long term even growth that also puts a stop to weeds and moss.
The Cobra range offers many simply and cost-effective solutions to aeration. However, if you wish to manually aerate your lawn, simply push a garden fork it in to the turf about 15cm deep, move the handle around and move on. Repeat this every 30 cm across the entire lawn. This will get vital oxygen to the roots and also helps dry out the top-surface of the lawn.
Cobra is designed to make your life easier; because of this the range includes the 13”, 1300W electric S32E which is a scarifier and aerator all in one! Priced at just £119.99 (RRP) it makes the perfect solution for gardeners wanting to make the most of their lawn.
The Cobra range also includes the 14”, 1800W electric S36E scarifier and aerator for £149.99 to help tackle tougher challenges.
Most importantly, enjoy your lawn and garden!