Well we head into the darker days of Autumn , the clocks have gone back and nature seems to be curling up. COP26 is part way through and politicians are making promises as to how they can shape policies to protect our environment for the future .
Garden plants and Grass can contribute to that by absorbing CO2 as well as the benefit we get from exercise and well being by being out in the open.
Autumn is a spectacular season and with global warming we are getting milder weather , frosts are coming later , summer bedding plants are still hanging on, flowering perennials are all looking glorious and the leaves on trees are only just starting to come down.
Most important job in the garden now is to keep the leaves of the lawn – they can quickly become fixed and smother grass. Leaves depending on the species can take a long time to break down and if not removed they will sit on your lawn and kill the grass.
With leaves come worms and worm casts which are also a big problem , with the moist weather and the leaves they can become very active .
Earthworms are not necessarily bad for our lawns as they are an important part of the eco-system. It’s fair to say the ‘pros’ outweigh the ‘cons’ when it comes to worms, as they recycle nutrients, feed on dead plant material and create natural aeration in the soil.
That said, worm casts produced on the surface of our lawns (usually between autumn and early spring) can be a real irritation. The casts can cause turf surfaces to become muddy, slippery, unsightly and can create loads of potential ‘weed pockets’ with each cast, so we have to manage the situation best we can
Moss where grass is thin it is producing a lush green thick carpet, but a timely treatment with an iron based product now will keep it at bay – followed up again in late December / early January. Moss is actually worse this year as we have not had any drying weather through the autumn and it seems to have been emerging since August and so has got a real grip in places. One side benefit of applying Iron sulphate to control moss is that it is acidic and the worms don’t like that so it can keep them from coming to the surface.
I attended first trade exhibition this week for 2 years – held at the NEC. Not as big as in previous years , and not as well attended – but it was good to see others from the lawn care industry. Main topic of conversation amongst manufacturers and distributors seemed to be around the impact COVID has had on the supply chain and rising costs of materials, fertiliser and fuel – unfortunately we are starting to see price increases.
Robotic lawnmowers , I was struck by was the number of companies who were promoting the use robotic lawnmowers, the cost of these has come down from what it was and technology has made them simple to operate. I can see they could now be a real useful gardening tool to help maintain the lawn – I would be interested to hear what you think