Scalping Your Lawn Prior to Green Up
Did St. Patrick’s Day leaving you wishing your lawn was green already? Here is a great tip for you on what you can do to help your lawn green up quickly this Spring.
Now is the time to scalp warm season grass lawns, just prior to spring green-up. It is an excellent practice to remove old, dead plant material and to expose the soil to sunlight to warm the soil for quicker lawn green-up.
How to Properly Scalp Your Lawn
Drop your mower cutting height down to ½ - 1 inch and begin mowing. Scalping creates a good bit of debris, so it will be necessary to haul off all the old, dead plant material that is removed during the scalping process. However, do not bag this material and send it to the landfill. Landfills are not appropriate sites for disposing of yard waste. Instead, use the debris in your own compost pile or send it to a city or commercially owned compost site.
What Happens if I Scalp My Lawn too Early or Late?
Scalping too early may injure the turfgrass by exposing plant parts such as stolons and crowns to frost or extremely low temperatures. If delayed until the grass is actively growing, scalping will result in turf stress and shock the grass plant to the point that it slows growth until it can recover.
Take caution to not overdo scalping on lawns with heavy thatch—especially on St. Augustine grass. If the active stolons (runners) are in the upper portion of the thatch, scalping may cause a tremendous amount of damage to these vital plant parts and result in turf injury and even death. Scalping is a great cultural practice to help produce a strong, healthier stand of turfgrass when done correctly.
So, go ahead and scalp your lawn now so as not to cause any stress or injury to it by trying to wait until later in the season. Not a landscape expert or busy with other spring tasks? Call Waynes 866-WAYNES1, our Field Professional are standing by ready to help! Not only will your lawn be green, but your neighbors will be green with envy when your lawn is the first to become a lush lawn this spring.