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How to prepare your lawn for winter

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Preparing your lawn for winter is one of the most important jobs of the year. Though, it’s not just about what you do before the Winter. It’s also how you maintain things during the Winter too. I’ll explain more further down the post.

So, in this article I’m giving you a few things to do so you can fully prepare your grass so it stays strong. Thereby meaning when you get to next Spring, your work to recovery will be absolutely MINIMAL.

The worst thing is, if you don’t do anything, when the next sunny season comes, you’l have LOADS to do in getting it to look great again. Moss is possibly the worst Winter creepers.

If you ignore your lawn during the cooler months, moss will DEFINITELY creep into the undergrowth and destroy your grass.

You might like moss, and that’s okay. But if you want a lush green lawn that your kids can play on or you can admire, then follow these few simple tips to get there.

Always apply a granular Autumn Fertiliser

Out of all the options for preparing your lawn for Winter, this is the one I definitely reccommend you don’t pass up.

Always apply an Autumn Lawn Feed granular fertiliser in either September or October. Remember though, don’t apply it within 8-10 weeks of applying another granular fertiliser such as your Spring/Summer feed.

Optionally Carry out a Full Autumn Lawn Renovation

What do I mean by this? Basically, you can do your Spring Renovation in Autumn too. This will consist of the following

  • Scarification
  • Aeration
  • 1 x Autumn Fertiliser application
  • 1 x overseed
  • 1 x topsoil application at 1-2KG per m2

These are the basic steps to a full lawn renovation, but it’s not always necessary to go the ‘whole hog’. So, take a look at these other optional tasks too.

Optionally apply sand/soil 70/30 mix to improve drainage during Winter

If you have dense ground or clay type soil, then it’s definitely a good idea to help drainage during the cooler, wetter months and in particular Winter. Sand will help massively with drainage and is usually applied at around 1kg to 2kg per m2.

This will also help level out any bumps in that can appear over time.

Optionally apply Liquid Seaweed

Liquid seaweed is one of those products that gets overlooked by many. But it can have sooo many benefits to the soil that your grass grows in. From helping with disease resistance, minimising thatch and even improving it’s colour. I make sure I do at least 2-3 applications per year of liquid seaweed.

Liquid seaweed can be applied at any time during the growing season and when the temperature is above 10 degrees i.e. when there’s no frost.

In the UK, grass tends to keep growing right up until October or even November.

Optionally kill weeds off before the Winter sets in

If you want to use a herbicide before the Winter sets in, you can use either Autumn Weed and feed or a selective lawn weed killer.

DON’T use a 4-in-1 product that’s designed for Spring or Summer because it contains too much nitrogen.

Too much nitrogen is bad for this time of year. In fact, I personally never use a 4-in-1 product because I keep my weeds under control most of the year.

Getting rid of the weeds at this stage will mean there’s a lot less coming through next Spring. That means you’ll have much less need to use a herbicide. Mainly because you can just remove the few weeds that do make it to the surface by hand.

Optionally Apply a soluble iron formula to control Moss before Winter

Soluble iron is designed to kill off moss, while having a green-up effect on the grass itself.

Maintenance Tasks during the Autumn helping prepare for Winter

one of the most important things when thinking about the Winter is to make sure the grass is not covered by anything for any length of time.

Remove leaves immediately

The biggest culprit for covering your lawn is leaves. Be sure to remove ALL leaves almost as soon as they drop.

I understand this can be a big task. Especially if you have a big (deciduous) tree above that loves to drop it’s leaves for what will seem like the whole of the Autumn.

If you’re able to keep the lawn free from debris, you’ll massively decrease the potential for moss to creep in.

Not only that. You’ll also massively reduce the chance for disease to set in under neath the leaves and other debris.

Oh and one more thing – you’ll massively reduce the chance of bugs settling in too.

So as you can see getting the leaves off will save you a huge amount of time when it comes to the following Spring.

Personally, I find it quite nice to get out in the cool weather and clear some leaves, knowing it will have a lot of benefits later in the year.

The picture below shows stripes created using a lawn leveller (aka lawn lute) after removing (or attempting to remove) the leaves.

Preparing Winter Lawn Stripes with Lute

Remove snow immediately

How do you get snow off the lawn? Sweep it up!

Ha, sounds silly but simply sweeping the snow off the lawn will give you just as much benefit as keeping the leaves off the lawn when it comes to Winter time.

The below picture shows our Premium Shade seed after having the snow removed quickly after it landed.

Clearing Snow off lawn in Winter
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This Post Has 10 Comments

  1. Ingrid

    Hi, My lawn was pretty poor this year. Full of weeds, poor yellow growth. It was only laid with turf in 2018 and I think it was a poor job from the start. Not enough soil under and small chippings which are now coming through the grass. Should I give up and start from scratch again and get a new lawn put down or is there hope?
    Many thanks

    1. Matt Adams

      Hi Ingird, If you want a quick win, you could start by overseeding and top dressing what’s there already. However, if you want a brand new lawn, then I’d recommend digging up the top layer, rotovating the soil, topping with high quality top dressing and then seeding from scratch.

  2. Helen Reynolds

    Hi, we have just used your premium seed to repair parts of our lawn and over seed the rest of it. Will it be okay to apply the organic Autumn/winter feed at the beginning of November or can we do it before the seed germinates.

    1. Matt Adams

      Hi Helen, you can apply the organic Autumn/Winter feed anytime as it is designed to help the seed germinate rather than hinder it. Hope that helps. Cheers, Matt

  3. James

    Hi mate, what length is best to cut to ready for winter

    1. Matt Adams

      Hi James,

      Usually 2.5-3 inches should be perfectly fine for the cooler months.

  4. Albert

    Can I weed, feed and apply grass seed at the same time

    1. Matt Adams

      No, you should wait a minimum of 6 weeks after using weed and feed before seeding. Cheers, Matt

  5. Simon

    Hi, what type of sand do I use for top dressing? Thank you

    Regards Simon

    1. Matt Adams

      Hi Simon,

      I’d recommend a 70/30 sand/soil mix at approximately 2KG per m2. Cheers, Matt

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