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Ron Calhoun

Ron Calhoun: Fall is best time to prepare lawn for next spring

Ron Calhoun talks with Kirk Heinze on WJR

Ron Calhoun is an environmental turf grass specialist at MSU and one of Michigan’s foremost lawn care experts.

Fall is a great time to get your lawn ready for next spring.

“Labor Day and Thanksgiving are the two most important times to fertilize your lawn,” says Calhoun.  "We can do more now to impact how the lawn will look next year than at any other time of the year.

"With these cooler temperatures the grass is going to be focusing on root growth. We want to build up the density of the grass and encourage the most vigorous, healthy turf we can."

Unfortunately, most people have lost their enthusiasm for yard work this time of year, Calhoun says. Most people think about lawn care in the spring.

"If you can get out there and do something now and a month from now, you’ll be really farther ahead for next year."

"Just as the grass is getting ready for next year, so are the weeds." Calhoun says. "Now that our soil temperatures are continuing to drop, the root growth will increase as those temperatures continue to drop.

Calhoun says we can do more for weed control by attacking it right now than we can with two or three applications in the spring or summer.

Calhoun advises that we keep the lawn mower active this time of year, too.

"I recommend you continue mowing, not so much for the grass, but for the leaves," Calhoun says. "I’d like to see you keep all the leaves on the turf; they don’t contribute to thatch.

"They’re beneficial to the turf and act almost as another fertilizer application for the turf," Calhoun says.  “Mow high, and let it lie.”

Mowing is the single most important thing we do to manage the vigor of the turf and its competitiveness against weeds, says Calhoun.

Calhoun and his colleague Kevin Frank have 16 videos available at Lawn Care University that address the lawn care questions they get asked most. 

Click on the arrow above to hear Calhoun’s September 10 Greening of the Great Lakes conversation with Kirk HeinzeGreening of the Great Lakes airs Friday evenings at 7 on News/Talk 760 WJR.

Please “like” Greening of the Great Lakes on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.


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