At this time of year, I’m usually on the fence, trying to decide if any more freezes are on the horizon.
Mid-February is when I would like GardenLine listeners to get busy with many things for the lawn, and it all starts with my Fertilization Schedule. But, the idea of putting all that stuff down and getting hit with a freeze a week later can prompt hesitation. Right now, though, there doesn’t appear to be any freezing weather likely through the end of February, so I say it’s time to get busy.
Better yet, it appears we actually have several days ahead when high temperatures will be in the 70s, and that will allow the soil to warm up enough to make everything in my fertilization schedule really work well!
You may have heard me give the green light last weekend on the GardenLine program. And that got a lot of listeners asking about the order of applications. Frankly, I really don’t care what order you follow. I just want you to just get busy … don’t over-think it, become paralyzed, and end up doing nothing.
I’ve been doing this garden-advice thing long enough to know there are a lot of professional procrastinators out there. And there’s a faction of creative avoidance masters.
Maybe this will help: Remember what Bill Murray got everyone to chant in the movie Meatballs. “It just doesn’t matter … It just doesn’t matter … It just doesn’t matter!”
Things we should be doing right now!
Granted, not everyone will need to do all six of these, but most likely three or four should be on your list.
- Early green-up – per my fertilization schedule. And, yes, it’s optional
- Pre-emergent herbicides – It’s on the schedule to block weed seeds in March and April.
- Post-emergent herbicides – To kill the broadleaf weeds that are up already.
- Aeration – If you’ve never done it, do it right away.
- Compost top-dressing – Ultimately, after an aeration, but can also be done without aeration.
- Supplementing – With soil activators, humates, and trace minerals such as azomite, etc.
Now, that would be the perfect order of things. But even if you put out weed preventers and killers first, and then follow up with the green-up, you’ve done nothing wrong.If you aerate and top dress, then fertile, I’m cool with that, too. The order really doesn’t matter!
Well, okay … don’t top dress then aerate. I would hope that just simply stands to reason.
And for those sitting on the excuse that you don’t have to do all that stuff, I’m not kidding when I say that all these things can be done on the same day. Personally, I could do the green-up, pre-emergent herbicide, soil activator and post-emergent herbicide in about two hours.
However, if you can spread them out over a few days, then more power to you!
The post-emergent herbicide application should be especially quick and easy, since it’s simply spot-treating. I think broadleaf weed-killing in February is a painless step.
Except for October, February is the only month in which my schedule calls for general all-around lawn care and doing more than one thing. Just don’t let that be an excuse. I can’t emphasize enough that it’s really just time to get busy!