When you hear the word “organic”, you usually think of the produce section at the grocery store. Or of the expensive skincare line your mom swears by. Maybe you go organic with your fruits and veggies…but what about your backyard?
Yes, organic lawn care is a thing. And it’s a thing you should probably consider, if you want to do what’s absolutely best for your yard especially now that spring is just around the corner. Below is everything you need to know about organic lawn care, and how to do it the right way for the greenest grass in town.
To put it simply, organic lawn care means avoiding fertilizers or pesticides with harsh, harmful chemicals and being conscious of your watering and planting habits. And with almost 70 million pounds of pesticides and herbicides being applied to lawns across the country each year, going green (and clean!) is more important than ever.
Ready to try it for yourself? Here are a few simple steps to get started:
1. Water the right way. Most lawns need about one inch of water a week. And in the summer, the hot temperatures dry your yard out faster through evaporation. The key is to water deeply and at the right time, preferably the early morning. Remember too that over watering can be more damaging than under watering.
2. Try “grasscycling” by leaving your grass clippings on the lawn after you mow–they essentially act like a natural fertilizer and return nutrients (made up of nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium) back to the soil.
3. Use a different kind of grass seed. There are grass seeds like eco-lawn grass that are low maintenance and require very little care or fertilizer to thrive. All you have to do? Cut your current yard super short, then over seed with the eco-lawn seeds.
4. Kill weeds…with corn. Did you know that almost 70 million birds in the United States die from pesticide poisoning every year? Fortunately, you don’t need harmful pesticides to keep your lawn free of weeds! You can use corn gluten (a nontoxic alternative to chemicals that is produced during corn processing) to kill those pesky intruders before they sprout. Plus, corn gluten adds nitrogen to the soil.
5. Employ professionals. If you aren’t sure how to get started, turn your backyard over to the people who know exactly what to do. Try a google search for companies in your area (“organic lawn care round lake”, “organic lawn care cary”, “organic lawn care arlington heights”, for example) or ask neighbors and friends for referrals.