Living in the southeast portion of the United States, caring for your lawn and yard is much different than in other portions of the country. Birmingham is one of those places where the temperatures get quite warm in the summer and although winter isn’t as harsh as northern states, there are situations when a deep freeze can occur, so you will definitely need to prep the lawn in anticipation of that harsh temperature change so that you won’t have long-term damage to your lawn. Most residents in the Birmingham area usually have warm weather grasses so there is some special care that should be used. Here are some tips that will help you succeed in caring for your lawn in the winter months so that you have a healthy lawn all year long!
Know Your Lawn
In order to truly care for your lawn throughout all seasons, you should know what type of lawn you have. If you have a warm weather grass like St. Augustine, then it will flourish in the summer and go dormant in the winter. On the other hand, cool weather grasses such as Bluegrasses will survive during the winter but seem to struggle during the warmer summer months. Now, this may not seem like a big deal, but in Birmingham, there is a chance that you may have either warm or cool weather grass so you should know which season is the best for the growth.
Prepare Your Sprinkler System
If your home has a built-in sprinkler system, then you may already know that there is some preparation that needs to be done. There are professionals that can be hired to help you ensure that your sprinkler system is ready for winter. When spring arrives, you may find that sprinkler heads that are loose or broken and if the weather does dip down to the extremely low temperatures, the underground plastic pipes may crack which would prevent even further problems when you try to turn them on in the after winter. Marking your sprinkler heads with a plastic or wooden stake may also be a good idea so that way they won’t be damages throughout the winter if they can be seen.
Mow the Lawn
This may not seem like something that would be done, but mowing your lawn to a very short, not non-existent, level is a great idea for residents with warm weather grasses. In particular, Bermudagrass is one type of lawn grass that needs the sun to help it to grow, so if you cut it short then this will stimulate the soil and allow new growth spurts in the lawn. This mowing should be done around late January into February, or when the cold weather seems to really break in the metro Birmingham area. This mowing should be the first one of the season since your last mows would have taken place in October.
Ridding your lawn of weeds in the late fall and early winter will give your grass, most importantly a warm weather lawn grasses an opportunity to have new growth without the weeds in the way preventing healthy blades from popping up. There is also a designated Winter Fertilization product that you can use to protect your lawn from winter damage. Luckily in Birmingham, the weather doesn’t get too harsh in the winter, so potential damage can be kept to a minimum. However, it is always a great idea to help your grass bounce back from any type of dormancy that will occur when the weather begins to change.
Have additional questions? Visit our Birmingham lawn care page for more information!