Dallas Lawn Care Tips Lawn Care Tips

What time of day should I water?

Water when your plants are dry-morning, noon, or night. Daytime watering may result in more loss to evaporation, but waiting until night to water may result in drought damage. Evening watering may promote some lawn diseases, but that's primarily on St. Augustine, and mainly only in the fall, when brown patch is most common. Whenever possible, keep water off plants' foliage during hot, sunny weather. Otherwise, if the plant is dry, water it then, no matter the time!

How much should I water?

During summer, apply 1 to 2 inches of water per week. During spring and fall, apply 1 to 2 inches of water every two weeks. During winter, apply 1 to 2 inches of water per month. (These amounts include rainfall totals.)

What are the best shrubs for shady areas?

There are many, including aucubas, cleyera, fatsia, fatshedera, gardenias, hollies, hydrangeas, mahonias, osmanthus (false hollies), and viburnums. Azaleas and camellias do well with afternoon shade.

How can I get grass to grow in the shade?

All of our lawngrasses grow best in full sunlight. Don't be confused by statements that St. Augustine or fescue need shade. They're simply more tolerant of it than bermudas and buffalograss. If you've tried those two shade-tolerant types with no success, either prune the trees to remove lower limbs, so more light can sneak in early and late in the day, or plant a more shade tolerant groundcover such as monkey-grass, liriope, ajuga, vinca or one of the ivies. Remember that failure of grass to grow in the shade comes from a lack of light. Adding water and fertilizer may help, but they're not the real solution to your problem.

Rabbits keep eating my young flower plants. What can I do to keep them out?

Rabbits are very damaging to young plantings, especially to pansy and other cool-season annual gardens during the winter, when many of their other food sources are dormant. Some garners sprinkle mothballs in the garden, while others soak felt weather-stripping in creosote and lay it on the bare ground at the perimeter of the garden. Commercial animal repellents may work, and you might try sprinkling blood meal over the garden. Its smell sometimes repels rabbits. If all else fails, drape tree netting over the beds until the rabbits move on.

Should I leave the fallen tree leaves on my lawn over winter, to protect the grass from the cold?

No, It may seem like the grass is greener under the leaves, but you run a substantial risk of diseases starting in the dark, humid conditions. Also, if a strong wind should suddenly blow the leaves away, your grass could be left exposed and vulnerable. Rake and shred them, then put them in the compost.

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