In Early Summer
Fertilize Warm-Season Grass
Fertilizing in the early summer can give your warm-season grass, which grows best at about 70 degrees Fahrenheit, a boost to grow thick and healthy. Fertilizing at the right time can make your grass more heat- and drought-resistant.
However, if you apply too much, you run the risk of burning your lawn. Grass already gets stressed during these months, so maintain caution when applying it. Use a fertilizer formulated specially for summer feedings, and follow the instructions exactly.
If you have cool-season grass, do not fertilize in the summer. The best time to fertilize cool-season grass is in the spring and the fall.
Mow the grass high to encourage strong root growth and heat tolerance. Taller grass provides more shade, keeping weeds from germinating and competing with your grass. Start by sharpening your mower blades. Dull blades will tear and shred your grass instead of giving it a clean cut, making the grass more susceptible to losing moisture. Mower blades typically stay sharp through 10 hours of mowing.
Set your blades higher in the summer months, and cut the heights according to grass type. Warm-season grasses should be cut to 2–3 inches tall, while cool-season grasses should be mowed at 3–4 inches. As a general rule, try not to cut more than ⅓ of the grass blade each time you mow.
When you mow, be sure to grasscycle, or leave the clippings on the lawn. They will decompose and help feed your grass.
Treat For Pests
Insects may come out in full force in the summer—just keep in mind that not all of them will hurt your lawn. But if you see bugs like Japanese beetles, June bugs, and European chafers that will munch on your grass, causing wilting and bare patches, you’ll want to act. If left untreated, Japanese beetles will feed on your grass and lay eggs, which will hatch into grubs and start feasting on your grass.
Head this off at the pass by applying a preventative grub control product. Use according to directions.
If you act fast in the summer, you can kill established weeds before they can bloom and spread seeds. Use a targeted post-emergent herbicide designed to eliminate broadleaf weeds but leave your grass unharmed. Be mindful that even these herbicides may hurt your grass, so use them sparingly. If you’re able to hand-pull the weeds, consider going that route instead.