Spring is here and summer is just around the corner. It is imperative that you strengthen your lawn for the brutal heat we will likely experience this summer! There are several ways to go about doing this, and all of them are things you as a homeowner can accomplish or if you don’t have the time or desire you can contact us and we will take care of it for you. There are three simple steps you can do this spring to have a healthy green lawn this summer.
Step 1: Ensure that your sprinkler system is working properly.
Get out the shovel and run through your sprinkler system. Replace any broken sprinkler heads and sprinkler pipes. A broken sprinkler head or pipe can cost you the homeowner hundreds of dollars in wasted water.
Clean out or replace clogged nozzles. When we do sprinkler repairs for customers we like to go ahead and replace all clogged nozzles with adjustable nozzles. The primary reason we do this is because they work fantastic and can cover any areas within reach. The secondary reason is how easy they are to clean out in the future. Just open the nozzle completely and the larger opening will allow whatever is clogging (within reason of course) the nozzle to come out. Check the water pressure from each zone to be sure you do not have a sprinkler valve that is not opening up all the way.
Often when a homeowner has not run the sprinkler system for a while the valves will become stuck and not open up all the way. The easiest thing to do is to change out the internals of the valve but depending on the type of sprinkler valve you have this might not be possible because of limited parts availability at the local home improvement store. If you must change out the valve, we suggest using the Hunter SRV valve. Home Depot recently started carrying Hunter products, this is great for the residential consumer because previously only irrigation/sprinkler repair companies had access to products from this fantastic company.
Finally set your sprinkler system to run for approximately 40 minutes per zone for full sun areas and 15-30 minutes per zone for shady areas. You do not want to over water full shade areas because you will likely get root rod and have to do sod replacement. Make sure you check the latest water restrictions. We have these posted on our website on the Irrigation/sprinkler repair page.
Step 2: Fertilize your lawn and landscape plants.
Right now is an excellent time to put down an application of weed and feed, a lawn that is well fed will be better prepared to handle the hot florida summer, drought, insects and diseases and other causes for lawn stress. For St Augustine we like to use a 16-0-8 with Atrazine. Scotts Weed and Feed for St Augustine is another excellent fertilizer.
Step 3: Plug or replace sod in dead areas
The final step to having a healthy green lawn is to kill off and replace sections that haven’t responded to the regular watering and fertilization. Now is a great time to put down new sod. The new sod will respond well to the warm days and cool nights. Make sure that when you put down the new sod you put down an application of potash on the bare soil, this will speed up the root growth of the sod. If you have been considering making the investment in new grass, we would love the opportunity to provide you with our services.