Gardening: Give your lawn a boost

Lawn boost.
Lawn boost.

There’s still time to give your lawn a spring boost to help it survive the worst of the British weather.

Gardeners who didn’t want to venture out in the freezing weather at the beginning of the month may now be looking at a moss-ridden, lumpy lawn with scatterings of bald patches – a world away from the velvet carpet of grass they desire.

But there’s still time to give your lawn a boost, even if it might look a bit forlorn now, or consider re-seeding or turfing if you think it’s beyond hope.

If you have loads of moss, it’s worthwhile applying a moss killer before you scarify, and wait a few days before raking it up.

Improve badly draining soil by aerating the lawn, driving a garden fork into the ground all over the lawn when it is moist, making holes to a depth of 10-15cm (4-6in).

Others use hollow-tine lawn aerators which remove plugs of soil from the ground, but they are hard work and aren’t very good on stony soils or heavy, dry soils.

The holes you make allow air and water to get into the grass roots and should then be filled with a mixture of sharp sand and organic soil conditioner to stop the holes from closing up.

Feed the grass with lawn fertiliser available at most garden centres. This can be done by hand, applying approximately two grams per square metre, and water it in.

Some lawn dressings incorporate a slow-release fertiliser but if this isn’t the case, add a little amount of general lawn fertiliser (not containing weed or moss killer) before applying it. Make sure you brush it evenly over the area or it will become patchy when the fertiliser kicks in.

A few weeks later, if your lawn is still patchy, oversow it lightly with a quality lawn seed.