The Lawn Association realises that the only way to deal with nature …is to work with nature! But what exactly does this mean?
Working with nature to get the best you can possibly get from your lawn, means providing lawn care that is as sustainable as it can be. But how can this be achieved?
Redefining our need for a ‘perfect lawn’
Most of us think of the ideal lawn as one displaying lush green grasses and British stripes neatly running up and down. But is this really the ‘perfect lawn’? The truth is we all have our own ideas of perfection, and it is the ‘condition’ of the lawn which really counts. A lawn with a limited amount of thatch and no bare spots – just healthy grass, is one that has had sustainable and sensible care given to it. Of course, lovely stripes are the icing on the cake and can be mown, but ensure your lawn is the healthiest it can be first!
The botanical perspective
From a botanical perspective, the soils in a sustainably managed lawn are usually of amazing quality, and full of bacteria and microbes. This means that the soil itself is controlling (digesting) the thatch produced by the native grasses (hence little need for scarification). And those grasses – a mix of native bents and fescues – are lush, green, and healthy. And what does that mean? Quite simply that weeds have no chance of becoming a problem – there just isn’t room for them.
Talking of thatch
Thatch can be a friend or foe …on the one hand, it is great for acting as a cooling canopy in hot weather and retaining soil warmth when it is cold. But on the other hand, if you have too much of it your grass can starve and moss can take over. And this is when scarifying your lawn comes into its own. It will allow you to manage your thatch and this in turn will probably mean you never have moss.
Re-thinking our ideas about lawn care and managing it to co-exist with the change in weather patterns, extreme heat in summer, and flooding in winter, is the answer to maintaining our lawns sensibly and your lawn will thank you for it!