One of the best ways for yard owners to help the environment is also one of the easiest to try. Since lawn dominates most landscapes, they can simply limit the lawn inputs they apply.
This can include hand-weeding, rather than controlling weeds with herbicides.
Mowing correctly can go a long way toward keeping weeds from gaining a foothold. It helps keep lawns thick, strong and healthy.
With Kansas’ favorite turfs -- tall fescue and Kentucky bluegrass -- that means mowing as often as necessary to get the lawn back into recommended height range without having to remove more than a third of the on-growing grass blades’ height.
To increase the ‘green’ value of lawn mowing, also keep your mower well-tuned and sharp-cutting.
Watering the lawn only when it’s actually thirsty not only cuts back on inputs but also conserves a natural resource. Watering in the morning including before sunrise is best. But, finishing evening irrigations at least 2 hours before dark will also limit the water lost to evaporation – without creating conditions that foster diseases.
Fescue and bluegrass will show you when they’re thirsty. They’ll get darker – almost bluish-green. They’ll also retain the shape of your footprint for a while after you’ve walked on them. Delaying the first watering until you see these “signs” will trigger the turfgrass to grow more roots and reduce the amount of watering needed the rest of the season.
Kansas lawns typically need about an inch of water per week. A rain gauge or smart-irrigation sensor can help homeowners keep track of when irrigation may become necessary.