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Winter Lawn Care in Atlanta

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Winter Lawn Care for residential turf grass in Atlanta GA

Atlanta Area Lawns in Winter

Whether you’re a do-it-yourself person or have a professional landscape service this article can help you to understand why winter lawn care is important.

Winter lawn care is important. Even when your grass looks dead or dormant it needs care. Keeping your lawn turf in tip-top condition comes from developing and managing a year round maintenance plan. Winter lawn care tasks should be part of that plan.

Temperatures in the Atlanta planting zone make it possible for lawns to use several types of turf grass. Popular turf grass choices are Fescue, Burmuda, Zoysia, and St. Augustine. Each of these types of grass for lawns has it’s own ideal temperature range. As you may have anticipated, the proper care for these grass types is not exactly the same

Lawn Care and Real Estate Value

In spite of the money invested in construction, kitchen appliances, carpeting, comfort and safety systems, your lawn has a big impact on the value of your real estate. A recent article on the HomeLight.com website stated the following, "Over 75% of top real estate agents across the country say that well-landscaped homes are worth anywhere from 1% to 10% more than homes with no landscaping, according to our research at HomeLight." The article further stated that, "The more attention you put into the landscape, the more value buyers attach to your home — anywhere from roughly 5% to 12% more, depending on where you live."1

Because turf grass is the mainstay of residential landscaping it playas a critical role in curb appeal. Anyone with a discering eye knows that a property with a lush, green lawn is incredibly appealing. Although a lawn will be at its peak with a year-round maintenance plan, this article focuses on the most neglected part…winter lawn care.

Warm Weather Turf Grass

Warm weather grass in the Atlanta area becomes dormant in the winter months. Proper fertilization and watering can help to sustain these types of grass through any Southern winter. When nightime temperatures dip below 70 degrees it is advisable to cut the grass slightly higher, and not cut it short until after the first frost of the new season. The Clemson University’s College of Agriculture website has the following tips for care of grass in the colder months:

Winter Care for Bermuda Grass

"Do not apply nitrogen at this time. Lime or sulfur may be added if recommended by a recent soil test. Potassium, commonly known as potash, may be applied to enhance winter hardiness if a soil test indicates insufficient levels of potassium. In the absence of rainfall, continue to water to prevent drought stress. After the lawn has become dormant, water as needed to prevent excessive dehydration." 2

Winter Care for Zoysia Grass

"Do not apply nitrogen at this time. Lime or sulfur may be added if recommended by a recent soil test. Potassium, commonly known as potash, may be applied to enhance winter hardiness if a soil test indicates insufficient levels of potassium. In the absence of rainfall, continue to water to prevent drought stress. After the lawn has become dormant, water as needed to prevent excessive dehydration." 3

Winter Care for St. Augustine Grass

"Do not apply nitrogen at this time. Lime or sulfur may be applied if recommended by a recent soil test. Potassium, typically known as potash, may be applied to enhance winter hardiness if a recent soil test indicates low to medium levels of potassium. In the absence of rainfall, continue to water to prevent drought stress. After the lawn has become dormant, water as needed to prevent excessive dehydration." 4

Cool Weather Turf Grass

In Atlanta, the most popular cool weather grass is Fescue. There are several varieties of Fescue grass including tall fescue, creeping red fescue, Hard fescue and Chewings fescue. Fescue grass is started with aeration and overseeding done in late mid to late fall. A fescus lawn will remain green all year, however; it will be at its peak in the cooler months of the year.

Winter Care for Fescue Grass

"Mow lawn at 3 inches and keep it clear of debris including leaves. Fertilize with 1 pound of actual nitrogen per 1000 square feet in February. Water, if needed, to prevent excessive drying. About 1 inch of water per application each week is adequate." 5


From mowing, fertilizing, and weed control a healthy and attractive lawn is the result of proper care. Contact us at 770-509-0355 to sign up for professional lawn care services.

CREDITS and FOOTNOTES

  • 1 Valerie Kalfrin, "Adding Value Through Landscaping: The Homeowner’s Green Thumb Guide", March 31, 2020, Available from Homelight.com
  • 2 Trent Hale, Chuck Burgess, "BERMUDA GRASS YEARLY MAINTENANCE PROGRAM", November 2, 2018, Available from Clemson College of Agriculture
  • 3 Trent Hale, Chuck Burgess, "ZOYSIA GRASS YEARLY MAINTENANCE PROGRAM", November 2, 2018, Available from Clemson College of Agriculture
  • 4 Trent Hale, Chuck Burgess, "ST. AUGUSTINE GRASS YEARLY MAINTENANCE PROGRAM", Aug 31, 2018, Available from Clemson College of Agriculture
  • 5Chuck Burgess, "TALL FESCUE MAINTENANCE CALENDAR", Sep 28, 2005, Available from LINK SOURCE
  • Photo by mschiffm, available at Pixabay
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