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The lawn in October
In October the climate is still pleasantly temperate: in the most sunny days you are still willingly outside. For this it is necessary to guarantee a tidy turf by applying a simple ordinary maintenance, helped by the most frequent rains. These are also an undoubted help in case there were obvious thinning and we wanted to run for cover with a slush.
As the season progresses, however, the arrival of the first cold weather is inevitable and we will also have to take action to better prepare the lawn for the winter to pass undamaged.
Elimination of moss and felt
Moss occurs frequently in shady, wet areas and where the soil has a basic pH. Eliminating it is important because the soil will be freer and more permeable; moreover we will avoid a further diffusion due to the strong winter humidity. We can use an acidifying product or a selective herbicide. In the first case it is advisable to rely on iron sulphate: in addition to acidifying the soil, it gives up a good amount of iron that will become available for the plants over time.
In the case of the herbicide we recommend distributing it when the area is completely dry and rain is expected in the following days: the results will be seen very soon.
Dead moss can be removed manually. You can use a knife in small areas or a rake: it will also help us eliminate the felt.
It is a fundamental operation to always have a vital and dense lawn: it makes the ground more permeable and fights its compaction. Furthermore, by cutting the stoloning roots of some types of lawn, it favors a more dense growth.
For this reason it should be done twice a year, in spring and in autumn. To start, you have to wait until the herbicides or anti-mosses have taken effect (usually two weeks after application). With a special machine (manual or electric), two crossed passages are made: this guarantees the homogeneity of the final result. Finally it is necessary to spread evenly a few millimeters of fine soil, from seeding, which will then be compacted by passing a roller several times, crossing in this case too.
Fertilization and irrigation
To these operations it is important to follow a good dose of fertilizer: it will help the vegetative restart and a deep rooting. It is precisely this that will allow a minimum thinning during the winter months, even in the presence of strong frosts. Generally, for this use energetic fertilizers are recommended, but balanced in the aspect of macronutrients: an NPK 15-15-15 can certainly do for us, especially if the nitrogen has an immediate effect and a slow component release. The ideal dose is 25 gr / m2. In the case of particularly stressed mantles or that we live in cold areas, to safeguard the roots, we can instead more limestone the hand on potassium, using products like K2O.
Irrigations are usually not necessary: in the event of drought we distribute twice a week, in the morning.
Lawn care in October: cutting and cleaning
Thanks to the rains and the lower temperatures the grass starts to grow again with a certain vigor. It is necessary to return to cut with a certain frequency: we give a pass every 3-5 days. In this way we will never eliminate more than 1/3 of the overall height, but the mantle will always look neat. If desired, we can lower the lawnmower a little, even reaching 3 cm from the ground.
At the end of October or beginning of November, however, the last cut of the year will have to be made. The ideal is that it is not too low: we do not go below 5 cm. In this way it will be more resistant to winter weather (the ground will freeze less) and cryptogams will hardly take root.
At the same time it is also important to collect the leaves of the trees: we can do it with a fine tooth rake or an electric vacuum cleaner.