The Guide to Greener Grass For Your Pup
Keep your grass nice and lush for your pup into 2021 and beyond. Because new year, new lawn. (OK, that’s not the saying, but you get it.)/
We know you want your pup to live their best life and that involves giving them a healthy lawn to chase their tail in. Green thumb or not, getting your grass under control is pretty easy...especially with this year-round lawn care plan.
Think of winter as the dress rehearsal before the main event AKA spring. Grass goes dormant during cold weather, so the key here is to protect your lawn by limiting foot traffic while also choosing and using ice melt products carefully. Getting too heavy-handed with the rock salt can damage the roots of your lawn.
Consider any grass problems you’ve dealt with in the past and come up with a plan to tackle them in the new year. This can include sharpening mower blades so you’re ready to go in the spring and scheduling lawn feedings appropriately.
Spring cleaning doesn’t just apply to that messy closet! Kick off the growing season by raking out dead grass and picking up sticks that have fallen over the winter months.
Now that your blades are all sharpened, change your lawn mower height so that it cuts grass at the highest setting. By cutting high, your grass will grow thicker with deeper roots. This means your lawn will look lush, but more importantly, will crowd out weeds. If weeds are an issue for you, you can always spot-treat them with a dog-friendly (friendly being the key word here) weed killer spray.
On that note, fertilizer is also important in helping crowd out weeds from your lawn. Depending on where you live, you will have different fertilizer needs, so be sure to research the right one for your grass. Thin lawn? Once all frost damage has passed, you can get a thicker and greener lawn by evenly applying Good Boy™, our 3-in-1 formula available in our BarkYard kit. After using Good Boy™, water daily or as needed to keep the soil surface moist for the first 2 weeks. (Pro tip: The seed will grow strong if it isn’t disturbed, so try to avoid walking or playing on it until grass is about 2 to 3 inches tall.)
Even with the right fertilizer, Fido can still find a way to leave his mark! To repair these bare spots, remove any remaining dead grass and use Bad Spot!™, our Fido-approved grass seed mix also available in our BarkYard kit. However, timing is crucial here. If you live in New England, the Upper Midwest, High Plains, Northern California or the Pacific Northwest, you’re dealing with cool-season grass (e.g., Kentucky bluegrass and perennial ryegrass) that calls for an early spring sowing. If you live in the South, you’ll want a late spring sowing for your warm-season grass (e.g., bahia and bermuda grass).
Next comes the dog days of summer! Encourage deep, healthy grass roots by mowing high and sharpening your mower blades about once a season for a clean cut on individual blades. To stay nice and green, your grass needs at least one inch of water each week whether that’s done with sprinklers or rainfall. If watering yourself, time sprinklers to go off between 6 and 10 A.M. to minimize water loss to evaporation. (And don’t forget to let your pup jump through!)
Grub or beetle problem last year? There are grub products that you can apply in early summer that help prevent these fall dead patches from happening again! Keep in mind if your neighbor has a grub issue, there’s a good chance you might too.
While they’re fun for your pup to dive into, fall leaves can kill your grass. To keep grass healthy, rake up the heavy leaf cover on your lawn or mow over them if the coverage is light. In late fall, be sure to lower your mower and cut your lawn 1 to 2 inches shorter than normal—this will keep leaves from matting down the grass and prevent snow mold from forming.
For cool-season grass, fall is ideal for grass growth! Give your grass a head start on strong root growth by using a fall lawn food twice: Once around Labor Day and then six to eight weeks later. For warm-season grasses, one application in early fall will do the trick. If you live in the North, fall is a great time to thicken a thin lawn by overseeding with Good Boy™, our 3-in-1 Fido-friendly solution that will increase your curb appeal by 1,000,000 points...if we had to guess.
With Fido in the mix, you might (ahem, definitely will) run into unsightly pee spots you’ll want to quickly fix. Spray UnMark year-round onto dog spots to green them for up to 1 month depending on lawn conditions.
Now that you’ve officially mastered Lawn Care 101, your pup can enjoy your yard all year long. Let the backyard play commence!