Is it too late to start a lawn care service? Some lawn problems need to get treated well ahead of time and some can get addressed as they arise.
As a maintenance service in Mississauga, ON, we get calls from surrounding areas throughout the year to help with their lawn care needs. The majority of these requests come in April through May, and then a small flurry of activity in September and October. However, people still call throughout the rest of the year inquiring about what they can do to turn an ugly lawn around.
Monthly Start Expectations
December Through March
Way to plan ahead! You may be shopping for prices or just frustrated with your current service; in any case, we can help. We can give you a price on property maintenance options, but it may be hard to diagnose any lawn problems, particularly if it’s covered in ice or snow.
We can still provide you with a program and then have your Account Manager evaluate the lawn when Spring arrives. If you have bare/thin spots, you can plan ahead to get a seeding estimate this coming Spring, but Fall may be a better time to seed depending on the specific issue. After we diagnose the lawn, we will give you our recommendation.
We start treating lawns in early April if the snow and ice have receded. Treatments typically consist of only fertilizer and crabgrass pre-emergent. Even though St. Patty’s Day shamrocks may remind you of the few winter annual weeds popping up in your lawn, it’s best to wait until your next visit to treat these and other weeds.
If you desperately need areas seeded, we can discuss options, but Fall is generally a better time to seed your lawn. Your Account Manager will help you to weigh your options after seeing your property.
No worries, there’s plenty of time to prevent crabgrass. The products of 20 years ago needed to be applied very early in the Spring. However, we have newer materials that allow us to apply crabgrass preventative treatments throughout the month of April and have it still reduce the majority of crabgrass you could get in your lawn.
Sometime in early April is when we typically start spraying broadleaf weeds. If you would also like to have your lawn seeded, it’s getting pretty late to consider that. Your Account Manager will help you decide what to do with those bad spots in your lawn. On some lawn care program options, applications with certain insecticides begin in late April and continue through mid-July for grubs and surface-feeding insects.
Crabgrass pre-emergents in early to mid-May have been shown to still have some result. However, if you’re not getting this material on until this time, you may have diminished protection against crabgrass, particularly if your lawn is thin or you mow too low.
Be sure your lawn program includes post-emergent treatments of crabgrass herbicide later when it starts to show up in late May through the summer. Another weed that starts to emerge in late May is Nutsedge. Some lawn care program options will include a treatment for this weed beginning in late May and continuing throughout the summer.
Broadleaf weeds are still rapidly growing in May, so it’s still a good time to spray weeds in your lawn. Insects like grubs, chinch bugs, and sod webworms should also be addressed in May if you haven’t already done so. If you need seeding done, you’re going to have to wait until fall. This is the month turf diseases could start and persist throughout the summer, so be sure to discuss any options for those treatments if these diseases get bad enough.
July & August
It’s too late to do preventative treatments for crabgrass. You’re going to have to go after this weed with a post-emergent material. Some lawn care programs include this, but just be aware that you’ll have issues for this summer since you’ve missed a pre-emergent treatment.
Early summer is still a good time to fertilize your lawn, but try not to do so later in the summer. Summer annual weeds such as Black Medic and Spotted Spurge may begin to appear in your lawn. If your lawn and these weeds are still actively growing, you can have them treated with a selective weed control.
The dryer and hotter it is, the slower results will be. Keep an eye out for turf diseases as summer is prime time for their appearance. Spot-spray Nutsedge reappearing in your lawn and it should help shape things up. Some formulations of preventative grub control can be applied into mid-July and surface-feeding insects like Chinch Bugs and Sod Webworms are very active throughout the summer.
Some programs can include a maintenance rate of limestone in these months as well. If conditions start to improve in late August, you could even get started on fall seeding or core aeration.
Temperatures typically begin to cool and moisture becomes more prevalent in September. Selective broadleaf weed control can be applied to get rid of weeds for the most part. If you have a large, dense area of Crabgrass, you may need these areas slice-seeded.
If you can address weeds early in Fall, then you can have lawn seeding performed to fill in the voids. Every fall is different, but September through early November is a great time for seeding your lawn.
Fertilizing lawns in September will help to push growth and improve color. If you are noticing grub damage, a corrective material can provide a quick-kill of these pests. You may need to have damaged spots reseeded.
October & November
We typically stop spraying weeds in early-mid October. As temperatures get cooler in late October and November, you may not be able to control weeds as well. This is another ideal time to fertilize your lawn because grass plants use these nutrients to repair root systems plus it will help with next spring’s green-up.
Some seeding performed in late fall actually germinates very well, so don’t discount seeding if it can still be performed. This is a great time to apply soil amendments such as limestone, phosphorus, and potassium if recommended via a soil test earlier in the year. You can still aerate as long as cores can be pulled.
Even though there are better months than others to start your lawn care program, don’t delay! There may be something you can do now to be on your way to a better looking lawn and a better home for your residents. If you need help, please contact us for a free consultation!