University of Illinois Extension
Bruce Spangeberg

These articles are written to apply to the northeastern corner of Illinois. Problems and timing may not apply outside of this area.

Stateline Yard & Garden

Ideal Time for Lawn Care Is Here

August 16, 2001

Thinking about doing some work on your lawn? The ideal time for many activities is just starting. Late August into early September is the time for seeding, fertilizing, and a variety of other tasks. Much information to assist with home lawn care in northern Illinois can be found on a University of Illinois Extension website.

Part of the University of Illinois Extension "Hort Corner," going to the address will get you to the main page for lawn care topics. Included here are 30 Lawn Talk fact sheets, an 8 lesson Lawn Challenge self-study, Lawn Q & A web board with over 1,700 posted lawn questions, and a new feature just started this month called Lawn FAQs. This month features questions on white grubs.

Whether planting an entire new lawn or reseeding portions of existing lawns, now through early September is the ideal time for seeding. Make sure there is good seed to soil contact to assure good results. Water newly seeded areas often to prevent drought stress. Refer to Lawn Talk fact sheets for assistance in grass selection, planting, and renovation.

Another key lawn practice for early September is fertilization. In fact, if fertilizing a lawn just once a year, this would be the time. Choose fertilizers containing slow-release or controlled-release nitrogen. Apply about one pound of nitrogen per 1,000 square feet. Again refer to the Lawn Talk fact sheets, as there is one on fertilizer selection and another on rates and timing.

Early fall can also be a good time for broadleaf weed control. Weed problems such as dandelions, clover, and ground ivy can all be addressed in September. Herbicides are available to control existing weeds, then follow sound lawn care practices to help keep the lawn thick and able to resist future weed invasions. Look again in Lawn Talk for fact sheets on managing broadleaf weeds, ground ivy, perennial grassy weeds, and crabgrass.

The time is here to address a variety of lawn care needs!


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