For your Pennsylvania lawn, summer is the best time of the year. And keeping your summer turf in tip-top shape is something that every homeowner wants. There are many benefits to having a tidy and pristine lawn. And on the flip slide, having a bad lawn can not only hurt your home’s curb appeal it can also reduce the value of your property. What’s the key factor? Maintenance. So, what is required to keep a well-maintained lawn? Here are 5 simple things we recommend to keep your lawn looking great all summer long.

Mow and Water

Water your lawn deeply, but infrequently. The best time to water is between six and ten in the morning before the sun has reached its maximum intensity. Always mow in the morning too. Grass that has received hot afternoon sun can be damaged and brittle, so if you mow it late in the day you risk fraying the tips. However, be sure to mow on dry grass, foot and mower traffic can compact wet soil and damage new grass shoots. Keep the height of your grass no less than about at a third of the blade’s length.

Let it Grow

It might be tempting to cut your grass short so that you don’t have to mow as often, but it’s better to let it grow tall. We suggest 3” in summer so the grass height helps to shade the roots. The higher the grass blades are, the better they are at taking in sunlight, nutrients, and water. It also helps by acting as its own mulch, preventing moisture from evaporating as quickly as it might with shorter blades. Letting grass grow taller also helps its roots extend deep into the soil, preventing the development of weeds and resisting erosion.

Keep it Tidy

If possible, train your pooch to use a certain section of lawn each time he goes. Pet urination can cause dead spots and create an uneven appearance and likely burn the top of grass and turn it brown. And always avoid parking on the grass to prevent compaction. Pick up any toys, lawn chairs, or tools left on the lawn to avoid damaging the developing grass.

As for those clippings from mowing? Let them be. If you leave them on the lawn, they can help to naturally fertilize and reseed the area. The clippings should be small though and you may have to double cut them to eliminate matting of the cut grass.

Nix the Weeds

If possible, try to weed a couple of times each week. Weeds can destroy the pristine appearance of your lawn, and also affect the healthy growth of your turf. Inspect for weeds regularly and remove them immediately. You can also apply a pre-emergent weed control in late spring if weeds tend to be a problem for you, with a second (optional) application during the summer months. Post emergent weed control may be necessary through Summer and into Fall.

Several consistent landscape maintenance practices need to be done on a fairly regular basis. But, just as your yard has four distinct seasons of growth and rest, it has four distinct seasons of additional requirements for landscape maintenance. And summer is one of the most important ones. In the summer, we want our lawns to look their best.