How to Winterize Your Lawn

Properly winterizing your lawn in the fall can help to ensure a thick, green landscape in the spring.

Instructions

  • Step 1: Pull weeds and rake leaves Tour your lawn. Pull any remaining weeds, and then rake away leaves and other debris. If you have a sprinkler system or other automatic irrigation system in place, shut it down for the winter.
  • Step 2: Apply fertilizer Apply a winter lawn fertilizer with a high potassium ratio to stimulate root and rhizome growth.
  • TIP: Don't fertilize later than September or early October. Your grass will keep growing instead of entering dormancy and be susceptible to frost damage.
  • Step 3: Aerate Aerate your lawn in the fall. Soil compaction prevents your lawn's root system from getting the oxygen it needs. Core aeration opens up spaces in the soil and allows the grass to more efficiently complete its metabolic processes.
  • TIP: You can rent a core aerator or hire a lawn or landscaping service to do it for you.
  • Step 4: Overseed Overseed your lawn after aerating it to thicken sparse areas. In the fall, warm season weeds will die off and leave space for new grass to grow. Overseeding in the fall will give you a denser lawn the following spring, with more grass and less room for competing weeds.
  • Step 5: De-thatch De-thatch your lawn to prevent disease and fungal problems. While a thin layer of thatch is beneficial, more than half an inch can be harmful. You can de-thatch your lawn with a thatching rake or a power de-thatcher.
  • Step 6: Store your mower and tools Put your lawn mower and gardening tools away for the winter and look forward to a lush, healthy lawn in the spring.
  • FACT: There are about 10,000 species of grass in the world.

You Will Need

  • Rake
  • Fertilizer
  • Aerator
  • Grass seed
  • De-thatcher
  • Lawn or landscaping service (optional)

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