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Easy ways to look after your lawn

Autumn is the perfect time of year to give your lawn a bit of TLC. Whether you choose to rip the whole lot up and re-sow your lawn, or you just want to repair some patches after heat of summer, read on for lawn care tips. Plus - see what they do in California to keep their lawns looking great - it's a little weird, but definitely something to think about!

  • If you are starting from scratch, and want to re-sow all your grass, you need to spray with an all-purpose weed killer. Wait until the grass and weeds have browned off, then dig over the soil well - adding a bit of extra topsoil if you need it.
  • The lawn seed you choose will depend on how you use the area - does it need to be hard-wearing, or is it more of a show-lawn? Your local garden centre will help you out.
  • When you sow the grass-seed, broadcast it in two directions - from north to east, then west to south. This will ensure an even distribution.
  • Lightly rake to make sure the seed is covered with soil, then water lightly.
  • Make sure you keep the soil moist by watering lightly on a daily basis. Once it has germinated water deeply, but less often. This will create a lawn that is relatively drought resistant with a good root system.
  • Don't mow your lawn until it is well established, and has grown to at least 5cm.
  • To keep your lawn strong and weed-free, feed every 2-3 months with a lawn fertiliser that's high in nitrogen Always apply the fertiliser after watering or rain, and water again afterwards to prevent the fertiliser burning your lawn.
And here's one out of the box: In California, lawn care companies have come up with a new way of dealing with brown grass in the heat of the summer: painting your lawn! Apparently the products they use are 100% natural and completely safe for pets and humans, and will last for 6 weeks. And it actually looks pretty good. See for yourself…
Before grass painting

Before grass painting
After grass painting - what a difference!

After grass painting - what a difference!
There's more fascinating before and afters here. This could be an option for when droughts strike Central Otago in the summer heat!