Showing posts with the label 2020 lawncare

Mulching Leaves Into The Lawn - Fall 2020

By the time the middle of November comes around, I've been doing leaf clean-up in our yard for at least four weeks.  We get early drops (Walnut), constant drops (Catalpa, Maple, Kentucky Coffee Tree) and late drops (Oaks) and it lasts more than a month.  If I waited until they all came down, it would be a huge mess.  Not that it isn't a good idea.  It just isn't how I address the situation.  When I started this year, I spent time using the mower and bagged up all the leaves as they dropped - by mowing about once per week.  I filled our compost bins pretty quickly.   But, with our bins filled, what do I do with leaves still on the grass?  I decided to try something new this year:  I just mulched them in the lawn.   You can see it below - this is mostly a lot of oak leaves (which are hard to break down) that have been mulched up and left behind.   I don't love this look, but I wanted to try it.  Here - below - is a close-up look of the mulched in leaves.   And here's

Year Two - Soil Savvy Soil Test Kits Arrived - 2020

I recently ordered the pair of Soil Savvy test kits that you see above and am going to turn around the soil samples to get my results right away.  I did the same thing last year - ordered two kits in June .  And, in July, I had the results - for both the front and backyard(s).  You can buy the kits directly from Soil Savvy and they give you a little break if you order two of them.  I'm interested to see what has changed in my soil over the past year - and to see how much impact that I have had with my soil amendments and fertilizers.  For those keeping track at home, #4 on my 2020 to-do list this Summer was to test the soil again .  So, I'm on my way to crossing that one off. Below, is a look at what is in the package.  You get a little soil scoop, a screw-top container that you deposit the soil sample, a registration card and a padded envelope with pre-paid postage to send the sample in.  In the little container, there's a little bit of (what I think is) water an

Early July Milorganite Spoon-Feeding - July 2020

The hot, hot heat has hit the Chicago Suburbs.  We've had 90-degree temperatures for the past few weeks and it has NOT been a good environment for anything living outside - including our grass.  Lawns in our neighborhood are struggling.  Even ones with built-in irrigation.  Ours is no different.  I've been cutting it VERY LONG (setting #5 on the mower - all the way up) and watering it as frequently as I can - typically in the very early morning.  Here's how it is looking right before I feed it the usual "4th of July" application: It is green, thick and lush - which I'm happy with for the most part.  I'm almost 100% certain that the reason for the partial success this season is due to the tall cutting height.  I have other parts - like in the back where the Automower cuts - that are cut shorter that aren't as healthy and other parts where the grass appears to have gone dormant.  As for the timing of this post and the lawn schedule, I'm j

First Milorganite Application - Memorial Day 2020

This post is now two weeks in the coming.  It is being published in the first week of June, but the photo above is from Memorial Day weekend when I put down two bags of Milorganite on the front yard.  I applied to the main yard, the south side yard, the parkway and the strip of grass on north side of the driveway.  My 2020 scheduled called for Milorganite application to the yard on Memorial Day with five bags (2 in front, 3 in rear).  In the photo, you see only 2 bags - and that's because I only applied the fertilizer to the front yard.  Of note, though.... #9 on my 2020 to-do list was to work the turf - and apply the work that I have done on the main yard on the parkway and the north strip.  I've been cutting those other sections high - like my main yard - and now the fert application is continuing that trend of hitting #9 on my list.  Why not the backyard?  Well...I don't have the backyard automower wire set up, so I held off on the back application because I d

2020 - First Mow

I broke out the mower and hit the (entire) front yard including the parkway and *just* the high spots (thanks, Lizzie) in the back yesterday with my first mow of the season.  I mulched it, but with all the little debris on the lawn, the next time, I might bag it to see what I can get up before the grass grows too quickly this Spring. So far, I'm seeing some good green-up and what appears to be a healthy lawn.  The biosolids on the parkway haven't worked their magic just yet, so it remains to be seen if I can replicate the success we had with the test patch .  My goal for the coming week(s) is to get the Automower boundary wire reset and get it going on the backyard with the new configuration.

Lawn Lime - Application #1 - Spring 2020

Our Home Depot is doing curbside pickup with online orders, so I put through an order for some lawn care products including pelletized lawn lime and (wait for it....) ten bags of Milorganite. seems like they've figured out their supply chain issues this year?  Our local Home Depot is showing over 600 bags in inventory right now.  Based on my 2020 plan , I need 18 bags for the season, so perhaps I should buy the balance and store them (hoard them) for a few months.  Also, based on the 2020 lawn plan , I outlined a 4 bag application of lawn lime to the back in Mid-April.  You can't get any *more* Mid-April than April 15th, right?  That's a bag of the stuff from Home Depot (curbside FTW.) in the Chapin spreader that I was sent last Fall.  Mark it down.  Lawn lime applied.    #5 on the 2020 to-do list was to continue to wage battle against the Wild Onions .  This lawn lime is *supposed* to help do just that.    I'm going to go at the lawn with a small spad