Late summer is the best time for planting seed and improving your lawn’s thickness.
In New England, late summer is a welcomed time - and not just because the kids are heading back to school. During the latter part of August and into September, the climate begins to change in the North East. Although day time temperatures can still be unbearably hot at this time, late summer usually brings cooler night time temperatures along with shorter days (and photoperiods). The combination of cooler temperatures and shorter days creates optimal grass growing weather.
Many homeowners feel that spring time is the right time for lawn care, and we can’t blame them as it is a common misconception; however, if you focus planting and seeding efforts in the fall, you’ll be rewarded with improved results.
Grass seed excels in the late summer and early fall because it has less competition than it does in the spring. In warmer periods like spring and early summer, crab grass thrives and actually out-competes turf for space in your lawn. Long days and hot temperatures present problems for turf growth; however, crab grass will have no problem in these conditions. As temperatures cool and the photoperiod shrinks, crab grass cannot survive and eventually dies off. This creates a competition free growing period for turf. As temperatures become too cold at night, you will see crab grass beginning to turn purple and die – this signals the start of prime turf growing conditions.
Every year there is a three to four week window that presents optimal turf growing conditions and it usually falls between the last week of August and the last week of September. This period of time is ideal for lawn renovation, and gives turf seed the best chance of thriving.
If you have any bare spots in your lawn, we recommend raking them out and spreading some seed in the late summer and early fall. When the conditions are right, the seed will “pop” in just a few days. It will also be beneficial to over-seed your entire lawn at this time, which will help create a thicker turf.
Late summer can be a great time for DIY lawn care, but for complete lawn renovation, we recommend consulting with a professional.
If your lawn looks like this, late summer lawn care can help revitalize it and create thicker turf.