December is here, and that means areas with mainly cool-season grasses should soon see the first frost of the year and begin to experience snowfall. This time of year is light for lawn maintenance needs—the cold weather leaves cool-season grasses dormant during the winter season. There is no longer a need for mowing, watering, or soil mending—so now what? There isn’t much to do, but there are some things to keep in mind during the winter months.
Maintain Lawn Mower & Tools
One thing you can do during December is clean and repair your lawn mower and other lawn care tools. Sharpen the blades, give everything a deep clean, and make sure everything is working properly. Apart from your lawn mower, you can maintain your weed whacker, seed spreader, machete, and other tools you often use while doing lawn work. Once these have been carefully cleaned and maintained, store them away safely for the winter to keep them from becoming damaged before next spring.
Be Careful with De-Icing Salt
De-icing salt is important during the winter months. It prevents damage around your property from freezing, and it can also help to prevent falls. Whenever you’re using de-icing salt, be very careful around your lawn. A buildup of de-icing salt will leave areas of your lawn damaged. If you’ve spent time having your soil tested and carefully amending it for the perfect balance, don’t let de-icing salt throw off that balance. Spread the salt around areas that need it very slowly and carefully to avoid accidentally getting it on your lawn.
Keep Off the Lawn
Most people who carefully maintain their lawn don’t let anyone park their vehicle on it, and for good reason. During the winter months, it’s important to keep both vehicles and foot traffic off of your grass—frozen grass is very fragile and will easily be crushed and damaged if it is parked on or walked on. This will leave bald, damaged areas of grass that will require a lot of care next spring. Foot traffic can actually leave entire paths of damaged grass in their wake!
Plan for Next Season
December, and other winter months, is a great time to think about any changes or adjustments you want to make to your lawn or garden during the next growing season. It might be time to lay down new sod, rearrange your garden layout, or add some landscaping. All of these things will affect your lawn, and the winter months are a good time to plan and decide what changes you’d like to make. It might even be time to have an irrigation system installed if you don’t have one already, and find other ways to make your lawn care even easier so you can spend more time enjoying it.
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