Easy Ways to Maintain a Healthy Lawn in the Summer

Learn a few tips on feeding, watering, mowing, and seeding to help your lawn thrive in the summer.

4 Ways You Can Help Your Lawn Beat the Heat

As you well know, hot, dry days are just an inescapable part of summer. Many lawns seem to bake in the heat. But, look around and you'll see one or two in the neighborhood that look as green as can be. No reason to wonder how to make your grass thicker and greener—and ultimately healthier. Just add these steps to your summer lawn care routine:

1. Feed Regularly

Within 6-8 weeks of feeding, microbes in the soil have processed most of the nutrients for your lawn to absorb. You need to replenish these nutrients with another feeding. A well-fed lawn grows in thick, crowding out weeds and cooling the soil, which helps it handle the heat. Also, if you feed your lawn with your preferred Scotts® Turf Builder® Lawn Food, you don't have to worry about the temperature. However, if your lawn has gone dormant, hold off on feeding until rain revives it.

If summer heat stress has your lawn looking rough, Scotts® Turf Builder® Healthy Plus Lawn Food is the answer. This product for healthy lawn care contains fertilizer to grow thicker, greener grass with deep roots to assist in stress recovery. Making summer lawn maintenance even easier, it also contains a grass fungicide to control 27 lawn diseases, including summer patch, brown spot, rust, and other summer lawn diseases. 

2. Mow High

If you cut your grass short, you're short-changing your lawn. Longer grass allows the growth of longer roots, which can reach down for moisture even on hot, dry days, resulting in happy, healthy grass. Mowing high also helps crowd out weeds so they can’t move in while your grass is stressed from heat and drought. Just set your mower on one of the highest settings. You'll be surprised what a difference this simple step can make. Don’t forget to leave the clippings so your lawn can recycle the nutrients.

3. Watering

Watering seems like the most obvious part of summer lawn care, but the way you water may not be helping your lawn as much as you think. If your grass has been cut short all season, you're going to have to water more frequently. But even longer grass needs moisture. So if you choose to water during a dry spell, be sure to water deeply and infrequently. Frequent, shallow watering encourages grass to grow short roots, causing the grass to stress out during droughts. An inch of water a week serves as a good rule of thumb for keeping your lawn green during the hot summer. Just be sure to water as early as possible in the morning, between 6AM and 10AM, to help reduce wasteful evaporation.

Let Scotts make it easy for you. Sign up for our monthly email and we'll tell you what to do each month. Or, download our My Lawn app and have the convenience of Scotts' expert lawn care advice right on your smartphone.

4. Reseeding and Renovation

Older lawns may have grass varieties that just can't handle the heat. The grass may grow in bunches or have thick, ugly blades. Also, a hot summer can leave bare spots and thin areas around the lawn. New grass varieties have been developed to be able to handle scorching heat and still look good. Scotts® Turf Builder® Grass Seed Sunny Mix with Bluegrass 3-1-0 is the ideal product for open yards with high sun exposure and stays green even in scorching heat and drought. The best time to reseed lawns is in the fall or early spring for northern regions, or spring to early summer for the south when conditions are optimal for grass growth.

Or, consider overseeding your existing lawn with Scotts® Turf Builder® Clover Lawn which is specially formulated with strawberry clover to establish quickly. Adding clover to your existing lawn is a great way to create a green, low maintenance lawn that doesn't need a lot of water. Its deep roots help your lawn stay greener, longer during short-term drought, and when you return the clover clippings to the lawn after mowing, it self-fertilizes – meaning a healthier lawn and less work for you.

And there you have it. With just a few simple changes to your routine, you can beat the heat and maintain your lawn during summer. 

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