Lawn + Garden Projects
Your Lawn Care Plan
Whether you’re working with an existing lawn or looking to plant a completely new one, a good plan is essential to success. That plan begins with the actual design of the lawn, which should take into account both aesthetic and pragmatic concerns.
Start with the basic contours of your yard, sketching the outline on a pad. Now consider how you want the lawn to fit within the yard. This will be a simple exercise if you are looking for a fairly basic square or rectangle that sets the stage for foundation plantings and the home’s architecture. But design-wise, it’s always a little more interesting to break up an expanse of lawn with one or more flower beds, trees, a line of shrubs, or other features that create visual variety. Sketch any features you want to add, creating a plant and materials list as necessary, and you’ll be all set to modify the design when you’re ready to start work.
The design will also be affected by features you add out of necessity or to make the lawn easier to care for. For instance, your planning may include installing mowing strips to circumvent the need for edging, replacing grass on severe slopes with garden terraces to make mowing easier and watering more efficient, or adding stepping stones to protect against soil compaction from foot traffic.
Any lawn-care plan is also likely to include more practical modifications, changes you make just to improve the health of the lawn. Adding new drainage and amending soil before you install a new lawn are both examples of pragmatic improvements that might be part of your master plan.
You’ll also want to decide on lawn irrigation as part of your plan. An in-ground sprinkler system is a big investment, but if it’s the best option for you, do it early in whatever plan you have for the lawn. You don’t want to be undertaking major modifications after renovating an older lawn or planting a new lawn. Add the list of all the changes you want to make to the sketch you’ve created. Lastly, you’ll want to schedule those changes, including a calendar of the maintenance your lawn will require.
A plush, perfect lawn like this one is the result of careful feeding, meticulous watering, and mowing to ideal height for the grass species. All should be elements of any lawn-care plan.