In this video, This Old House landscape contractor Roger Cook and host Kevin O'Connor discuss best practices for keeping a lawn lush and green.
1. Every autumn, run a core aerator over entire lawn to relieve compaction and allow water and nutrients to penetrate into the soil.
2. Spread an even layer of compost over the lawn to improve the soil.
3. In early spring, run a power dethatcher over lawn to remove dead grass and leaves.
4. Rake up the thatch and dump it into a compost pile.
5. Rake new grass seed over bare spots in lawn.
6. Use a soil tester to evaluate health of soil and to how much lime and fertilizer to add.
7. Use broadcast spreader to add lime, and then fertilizer to lawn.
8. Mow the lawn, making sure to raise or lower the mowing deck to the optimum height. It's best to cut off no more than ⅓ of the grass blades with each mowing.
9. A mulching lawnmower blade will chop grass clippings into very fine particles and blow them back down into the lawn. If using a non-mulching mower, be sure to bag the clippings.
10. Use a lawn sprinkler to apply 1 inch of water per week. Apply the inch of water during two or three applications per week.
11. Use an automatic timer to water the lawn in the very early morning, some time between 4am and 6am.