September Lawn Care
If you’re trying to get your lawn back into good condition before winter, what steps do you take to do so? Here is the sequence:
• Continue mowing at the recommended height for the rest of the season. Tall grass is not stronger in the winter. Just the opposite. Tall grass soon becomes weak grass.
• After you mow, apply a high-quality, all-nitrogen or high-nitrogen lawn fertilizer. Water deeply. This could be done in the morning of your designated watering day.
• That evening, apply either Halts or Dimension pre-emergent weedkiller granules to prevent germination of grassy weeds (annual bluegrass, rescuegrass, ryegrass, etc.) and Gallery for broadleafed weeds (clover, dandelions, henbit, chickweed, etc.). These are not sold as a combination product, so you must make two separate applications to the lawn. Do not try to mix them in your spreader. Water lightly to disperse the granules across the soil surface.
• New bermuda seedings or St. Augustine sodding should be planted by mid-September to allow the grass adequate time to become firmly rooted. Bermuda, zoysia and buffalograss sod can be planted until the end of the month, but earlier is better.
• If you intend to overseed your lawn, choose perennial rye. As with annual rye, it will die with the heat of May (not truly perennial in Texas), but it is much easier to manage in the meantime. It costs more, but it’s worth it. Seed on a day that is your water day. Hopefully fall rains will kick-start it and get it growing. Otherwise, you might need to water it one more time. DO NOT apply pre-emergent weedkillers if you intend to overseed.