How to Take Care of Your Houston, TX Lawn
Houston, Texas is a fantastic city, and urbanites are flocking to the area in search of nice weather and an abundance of activities. The climate is warm almost year-round, with temperatures dipping as low as the 40s. That means lawn care is frequently on the radar for Houston homeowners.
Houston residents face particular difficulties. The Texas heat can be suffocating, and hurricanes can wreak havoc. Also, the metro area is so large that finding a local lawn care service may sometimes be a challenge. With this in mind, here is your essential guide to lawn care in Houston, TX.
Lawn Mowing in Houston
Lawn mowing is a regular lawn maintenance task that you should plan to do weekly. During peak growing seasons, you may be grass cutting up to twice a week!
In the summer months, raise your mowing blade height to the highest recommended length, around 3 to 4 inches. Increasing the height of the blade protects your grass from the extreme heat that Houston has during the summertime. Taller grass retains moisture better, so you will quickly notice your grass is greener. Continue at this height until September.
The right summer height depends on your grass type, which we provided below so you won’t have to search the answers by hiring a lawn service professional. Here are the recommendations.
- Augustine – 3 to 3.5 inches
- Zoysia – 1.5 to 3 inches
- Bermuda Grass – 2.5 to 3 inches
- Ryegrass – 1.5 to 2.5 inches
At the same time, you don’t want to let the grass get too long. Heat and drought are stressful, and grass cutting more than 1/3 of the blade height can damage your grass.
Always remember to sharpen your mower’s blades before the growing season begins. Dull blades tear and shred your grass rather than cleanly slicing it. Shredded and torn grass is more susceptible to disease and pests, and it’s more likely to turn brown.
Core Aeration in Houston
Core aeration opens up compacted soil, allowing air and water to penetrate easier. Spring is a great time to hire lawn care service for lawn aeration. It is an important preventative step because core aeration loosens up compacted soil that leads to fast evaporation. Loosen, less-compact soil allows for water to seep into the ground further, accessing the roots faster.
Fall is also a good time to aerate your Houston lawn. Summertime means backyard parties, kids playing in the lawn, and more foot traffic than other seasons. Foot traffic compacts your soil, and your roots need access to water, nutrients, and oxygen to survive the winter.
Many people hire lawn service professionals to aerate their lawns, but you can do so at home as well. Some options include using:
- Garden Fork with Tines
- Gas-Powered Garden Fork
- Walk-Behind Aerator
Overseeding in Houston
Fall time is also one of the best times to overseed your lawn. During the fall in Houston, the air is cooler, but the soil is warm enough that seeds easily germinate.
Overseeding is when you spread grass seed over bare or sparsely grassed lawns. It is important to overseed before the winter strikes because thickened lawns can withstand the wide variation of temperatures. Thicker grass handles colder temperatures as well, including a random frost or two!
Damaged areas in your yard should be raked before overseeding to remove the dead grass and loosen the soil. Grass seed must come in contact with the soil to properly germinate. Raking also provides aeration and water drainage. Make sure you apply the seeds as evenly as possible and stamp the seeds into contact with your soil.
Grass Types in Houston
Houston residents have four main grass types that grow well in the area.
St. Augustine grass is the most popular choice for Houston, TX homeowners. When properly maintained, it creates a thick, dense, lush grass that is cold tolerant. St. Augustine does well in sandy soil with ample organic matter.
This grass type has a few negatives as well. It is prone to a fungal disease called brown patch, and chinch bugs particularly love it. Make sure you don’t plant it if you have shade, because St. Augustine grass isn’t shade-tolerant.
Lawns with shade should consider Zoysia grass. It is one of the few shade-tolerant grasses that grow well in Houston. Zoysia goes grow slower than Bermuda Grass, but it is disease and pest resistant!
Zoysia needs more maintenance than other grass types. You need to make sure you the lawn water often.
Another awesome choice is Bermuda Grass because it fares well in droughts and hot temperatures. It’s a rapid grower, making it a good filler to mix with St. Augustine, which takes longer to germination.
However, some people don’t like Bermuda Grass because it is hard to eliminate. It spreads and ends up everywhere, but that makes it a good choice if you have bare spots in your lawn. Bermuda Grass is a popular choice for overseeding because of how fast it germinates, but then you’ll be hard pressed to get rid of it if you decide you don’t like the look.
Ryegrass is a seasonal grass that you can add to your lawn to add color during the offseason. It is considered a seasonal ground cover that you have to plant by seed, but it does have a patchy appearance.
If you decide to overseed with ryegrass, make sure you only plant in areas with full sun. Using ryegrass as a seasonal ground cover prevents weeds from taking over, limiting how much herbicide you need to use. One downside is that you need to mow ryegrass every 10 to 14 days once the temperatures are below 50 F, and every week when the temperatures are above 50 F.
Taking Care of Your Lawn in Houston
Taking care of your Houston, TX lawn doesn’t have to be complicated! Picking the right grass for your lawn is the first step. The wrong grass won’t grow correctly in your yard. Using proper lawn mowing techniques, overseeding, and using core aeration all ensure the grass grows into a lush, green yard that your neighbors envy.
Landscaping Ideas & Trends for Houston, TX
*All photos on the Wikilawn website are free for commercial or non-commercial use. Visual attribution is required.
Trend #1: Squirrel-friendly
Trend #2: Lawn is the Staple
Trend #3: Clay & Frost Tones
Hiring a Houston Lawn Care Company
Houston is one of the hottest and humid cities in Texas. Many kinds of grass, particularly Kentucky Bluegrass and Fall Fescue, struggle to thrive under these unfavorable weather conditions. Also, routine grass cutting can be an unpleasant chore, but a regimented lawn care routine is needed so your lawn retains its green color. For example, you either have to water your lawn early in the morning or in the evening, so you avoid evaporation from the sun. But many Houston residents don’t want to put up with this and instead choose the next best option: hiring a lawn service professional.
Beyond just cutting your grass, professional lawn care services offer important lawn treatment services, such as pest control, weed removal, aeration, and fertilization. It’s also a smart idea in general to have an expert evaluate how much lawn maintenance your property needs. Additionally, there are several tips to keep in mind when choosing a lawn care service in Houston.
The first one is to hire an actual lawn service professional, not your neighbor’s broke teenage son or anyone who only provides a truck and a mower. Although hiring amateurs may seem frugal, their lack of expertise will result in a neglected and unprepared lawn in the long-term, such as failing to identify diseases and pests early. The second tip is to hire a fully-insured lawn service professional. This will free you from any anxiety in case a pro causes property damage.
Finally, you should consider organizing your neighbors together and request a bulk discount from a lawn care company. Landscapers usually offer lower prices if several jobs can be finished with just one trip to a neighborhood since they generate more profit from the time saved on their schedules. Additionally, landscapers are held to greater accountability for their quality of work since you and your neighbors will be able to compare lawns afterward.
Top 10 Lawn Care Companies in Houston
Now you might wonder: where to find a Houston lawn care service near me? Since finding a top-rated lawn mowing service can be tough, we offer a list below that ranks the best Houston lawn care services based on our review of online customer satisfaction. WikiLawn.com is in no way affiliated with these, nor have we used them ourselves.
1) The Lawn Service Experts
Houston, TX 77084
2) Jose Cruz Lawncare and Grounds Keeping
Houston, TX 77084
3) GEW Management
Houston, TX 77015
4) Superior Green Lawns of Texas
Houston, TX 77069
5) Hernandez Lawn Service
Houston, TX 77095
6) 360. Works
Houston, TX 77065
7) Ramirez Lawn Care
Houston, TX 77075
8) We Only Cut Grass
Houston, TX 77057
9) John Smith Lawn Service
10) C Appeal Landscaping
Houston, TX 77009
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