There’s plenty to love about South-Central Texas. You know its iconic historical landmark, the Alamo. But it also has vast landscapes and beautiful waterways such as the San Antonio and Comal rivers. These natural, lush environments thrive without much help. But if you’re living in this part of Texas, you’ll have to put in some work to keep the landscape around your home looking as nice. Here’s a guide to lawn mowing and maintenance in San Antonio.
Water That Lawn!
The human body is made up of about 60 percent water. The grass is made up of even more — 85 percent. Just like the human body, grass doesn’t do well when it’s thirsty. That’s why it’s crucial to water once or twice weekly and make sure you’re giving your lawn plenty to keep it healthy.
Heat? We get it. San Antonio averages 116 days above 90 degrees Fahrenheit. You’ll want to water in the morning, when it’s cool, before the heat can set in and evaporate that moisture.
Watering will depend on what type of grass you have, the time of year, and how much sun it’s getting. St. Augustine and Zoysia are some of the more popular grass types in the San Antonio area and require about 3/4ths of an inch of water each week. You can measure this by placing a shallow, straight-edge can or pan on your lawn as you water. It is better to give the lawn a good soaking once a week than to a shallow watering more often. Deep watering encourages the roots to grow deeper, enabling them to grow stronger.
Your trees and shrubs need watering, too. Trees should be watered once or twice a week during the growing season if rainfall is limited. How often you water shrubs will vary, depending on how young or mature the plant is. New shrubs need water two to three times a week. As they get older, watering every six to 10 days should be enough to keep them looking vibrant and fresh.
Don’t be that eyesore on the block. Trim your yard on time because an overgrown yard both looks bad and attracts pests. It’s also healthier for the grass and helps keep weeds at bay. Most lawns need mowing about once a week. (You may be able to get away with trimming the edges every two weeks.) Don’t forget to follow the one-third rule: Never cut more than one-third of your grass height at a time. When you cut your lawn too short, the grass weakens and is more susceptible to diseases and pests. Keep mowing your lawn until you notice a slowdown in growth.
The soil becomes compacted and dried out, thanks to the warm, dry weather in San Antonio. Compacted soil makes it tough for water and fertilizer to reach the roots. Aerating — creating holes in the soil — improves the drainage and increases the lawn’s resistance to pests and diseases.
You should aerate twice a year: once during spring and again in the fall.
Don’t skip out on giving your lawn proper nutrition. This is one way to shrink its life-span and turn your turf from gorgeous green to yucky yellow. But don’t fertilize too soon. Once winter is over, give your grass some time to grow before adding fertilizer to the ground.
Control Your Weeds
A lush, healthy lawn will crowd out weeds before they have a chance. Bare spots give the invaders room to sprout. Whether it’s dandelions or crabgrass, weeds will compete with the turf for room and nourishment. They are infamous for hogging water, sunlight, and other nutrients your lawn needs to thrive. A natural vinegar and water mixture is a great organic solution for ridding your yard of these nuisances, but store-bought weed-fighting chemicals work great too. Just make sure you read the label, so you know what you’re putting in your yard. Keep in mind, some weed killers will also kill the grass.
Set aside time for the basic lawn care tasks in the early spring. Then set a weekly schedule for mowing and watering and you’ll soon reap the rewards of a lush, green lawn.
Have more questions about lawn care in San Antonio? Visit our San Antonio, TX lawn care page for more information.