Starting the vegetable garden; spring lawn care

No photos yet–my vegetable plot is just bare soil (dark and well-drained, enriched with homemade compost at least twice a year)–but yesterday I dug out some grass that was encroaching on my plot in the Glen Rock Community Garden and weeded a small area, and today I scattered seeds of a mesclun mix in that area. The gentle rain means I didn’t even have to water them in.

Speaking of seeds, I notice in my walks around towns that many lawn services have scattered lawn seed for their clients. It’s too early to seed a lawn, because the nights are still chilly, but if you are one of those clients, make sure you water the seeds at least twice a day until they have germinated and the new grass is at least an inch tall. Otherwise, you’re wasting both money and seed. Better yet, in future tell the lawn service not to seed unless they do it properly, preferably in early fall And make sure they use a seed mix that’s right for the specific site. Seeding a lawn is quite simple, but it does involve more than scattering seed.

Another thing that homeowners and lawn services like to scatter is lawn fertilizer or a combination product (fertilizer, pesticides, and herbicides). Again, it’s too early to fertilize, so you’re paying for something you don’t need. According to the most recent research on lawn care, lawns need no more than one feeding per year of slow-release organic fertilizer, not petroleum-based chemical fertilizer, and the best time to apply it is around Labor Day. Better yet, stop feeding altogether and rely on lawn clippings and fallen leaves to recycle nutrients back into the soil. The 4- or 5-step lawn care plan that many homeowners follow primarily benefits the chemical companies that manufacture the products and the lawn services that apply them.

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One thought on “Starting the vegetable garden; spring lawn care

  1. perfect timing with this post. My hubby used the ‘weed and feed’ phrase with me just this past weekend and I looked and him as if….we haven’t used that stuff for nearly a decade..Hope I can keep him at bay and find organic solutions to his ‘weed’ issues. LOL

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