Steps to the perfect lawn

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Step One: Choose your green

There is no single perfect grass to suit every lawn, climate and soil type, which is why there are so many varieties available. See my top five picks below to get you started.

Most turf suppliers will have a turf selection tool available to help you choose.

Your key questions are:

● How much sun or shade do I get?

● What are the water and soil requirements?

● What look am I after? Soil types, aesthetics?

● Is this suitable for pets and active children?

Talking to a licensed landscaper or turf supplier will help you make the right choice.

You can even visit the turf farm and physically see them to better understand what they will look like.

At Home’s lawn expert Dennis Scott. Picture: Tim Hunter.

At Home’s lawn expert Dennis Scott. Picture: Tim Hunter.

Step Two: Choose your timing

Once the type of grass has been selected, we need to get it on the ground and growing. Timing the laying of your turf is your secret to success.

Spring is without doubt the best time to lay turf in your garden. Good, moderate temperature, and enough rainfall to promote new growth. But, never fear, Spring is by no means the only time you can lay your new lawn.

Winter depends on your local area, if you see temperatures regularly in the lower single digits it’s best to hold off until Spring. In the colder weather patterns, grass normally goes dormant and if it is not established, it may not be strong enough to survive.

Autumn is a good time to be laying turf in these areas, but aim to have it laid and established before the frost and colder weather hits.

Mowing is crucial to keeping your lawn healthy.

Mowing is crucial to keeping your lawn healthy.

Summer is all about adequate water. Water the grass every day to help establish the root development and prevent it from drying out and dying.

Step Three: Keep it healthy

The best piece of advice I have been given for lawn maintenance is to be proactive and not reactive. Most people only act when they see something going wrong. I encourage proactivity! Create a schedule to fertilise, treat for common pests and disease and water.

Add a regular mowing schedule and you have the basics covered. I recommend minimum twice weekly during the warmer months and three times a week during the cooler months. Make sure your mower has sharp blades and you are not taking more than 1/3rd of the grass leaf off during the mow.


1: It’s best to water in the early morning

Watering in the late afternoon can leave the grass wet for too long creating fungal issues. To ensure each drop of water counts it’s actually best to water in the early morning as this also helps prevent evaporation during the day.

2: It’s better to cut your grass short

Different lawn varieties perform best at different heights. Ask your lawn supplier what best suits your variety. Whichever height you have chosen it is recommended not to take more than 1/3 of the blade off in any one mow. Sharp blades on your mower are a must!

Chances are you’re probably not watering your lawn enough.

Chances are you’re probably not watering your lawn enough.

3: Watering daily is best

Grass will perform better with longer deeper watering sessions. This helps encourage deeper roots and stronger stem growth. Watering in shorter more frequent sessions will result in the grass expecting water and making it lazy and not establishing deeper roots to source the water deeper in the soil.

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