The Q&A Archives: Lawn Drama

Question: My husband and I just moved into our first home and have found the yard to be more work than we had anticipated. Particularly the lawn. I went away on vacation for a couple of weeks and came home to a brown, dry, dead looking lawn. My husband works long hours and has no time to take care of the dying yard. I suspect that the cause is not enough water and too much Utah summer heat. Even still we don't have a sprinkler system so watering is a bit of a task. I know the owners before us took excellent care of the yard and I don't know what to do to try to save the beautiful outdoor utopia they left us. I'm pregnant and am not in the spirits for hard labor. Do you have any advice on what else to do (aside from the obvious of watering frequently) to bring my lawn back to life?

Answer: As lovely as they can be, lawns are quite labor-intensive and I don't think there is an easy way to have a beautiful, healthy lawn. They need lots of water throughout the growing season. Depending upon weather, you may need to water a minimum of once or twice a week. In order to provide a deep soaking, a sprinkler system is highly recommended. If your husband is handy, he can install one himself in a weekend. If he'd rather not do-it-yourself, there are landscape contractors who can install one for you. Deep but infrequent soaking will encourage deep rooting so your grass won't dry out and brown up too quickly, even during the hottest months of summer. Aside from watering regularly, your lawn will need to be fed in April, June, September and December. If you visit your local home improvement store you'll quite likely find special fertilizer blends on sale at just the right time to apply to your lawn. Keep your lawn mowed regularly, watered and fed, and it will be thick and lush enough to crowd out most weeds. Most importantly, a green lawn will cool your yard, provide a wonderful place to play or sit to absorb all the beautiful plants in your new yard.

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