When it comes to hibernation, you probably think of bears. But did you know that your grass hibernates in the winter too? This is more commonly referred to as the dormancy of your lawn. While it is easy to assume that hibernation and dormancy means sleep and “being left alone,” there are some things you need to do for your turf during this cold weather season.
Georgia doesn’t typically experience snow or frozen tundra for days on end. However, we do get much cooler temperatures in the south and an occasional hard freeze during this time of year. Even the somewhat mild Georgia winter can be rough on certain grass types, such as Bermuda, Zoysia, St. Augustine, Bahia and Centipede. While these turfgrasses go dormant in the winter, they are extra vulnerable. Here’s what you can do to help protect your lawn.
Why Does My Grass Go Dormant?
When your turf decides to hibernate or go dormant, it is a survival strategy. Dormancy allows your grass to temporarily shut down to conserve energy, water and nutrients. During this stage of the year, you’ll notice that your lawn turns brown and doesn’t show much growth.
What you may not realize, however, is that dormant lawns are also vulnerable. Grass is meant to handle foot traffic and large amounts of water during its growing season of spring and summer. However, frosted dormant grass can become easily damaged.
Tips for Winter Turf Protection
To protect your turf this winter, try to adhere to the following:
- Avoid walking on it as much as possible, especially in the early morning when there’s a layer of frost.
- Don’t overwater it. Your lawn won’t absorb (or evaporate) nearly as much as it does during the hot summer months. Adjust your sprinkler system accordingly.
- Keep grass clear of leaves, sticks and other dead plant matter. Removing plant debris from your yard not only makes it more attractive, but it also protects your grass from suffocation and diseases.
Need more help on how to care for your landscape during the winter? Give us a call. GLM Landscape and Supply has a team of highly knowledgeable lawn care experts who are dedicated to providing the advice and resources your grass needs to survive all seasons of the year.