Brown Spots in Lawn

new lawn no brown spots

This is what a brand new lawn looks like from hydroseed. To keep a lawn looking this good, what’s required is: healthy soil, good drainage, consistent mowing, consistent watering especially during drought periods, fertilizer 3-4X per year, and sunlight.

Wondering what’s up with the brown spots in your lawn?

Even if your lawn has irrigation, it’s common to see brown spots this time of year. They occur for a number of reasons. Here are some examples we’ve encountered at maintenance clients’ sites over these hot and dry summer months:

  • An irrigation head is watering an area covered in thatch, and as a result, water doesn’t absorb into the soil.
  • The irrigation system was mapped in such a way that coverage is low in areas that are now brown.
  • The nozzle shoots water out too far and lawn areas closest to the head aren’t being hit.
  • The nozzle is clogged or a head is misaligned.
  • The lawn is on a slope and water drains too quickly.
  • Droppings from nearby trees create acidic conditions in the soil, causing the lawn to brown.
  • If a lawn is over a drain field, there may be too much sand in the soil causing water to drain too quickly.

Some solutions to fix the brown spots in your lawn are easier and less costly than others. Give us a call or send us an email for an estimate to rehabilitate your lawn.

Thanks for reading our blog. Northwest Construction & Landscape, LLC is a Kitsap County landscaping company that offers landscaping, decorative concrete and lawn maintenance services to homes and businesses across Kitsap and Pierce counties.Subscribe to our monthly newsletter here.

Lawn Renovation in Silverdale

In late June we completed a lawn renovation and landscape clean-up for clients in Silverdale. Mom and Dad both work full-time, and the whole family is active in community theatre. With little free time to spare, the lawn was neglected, shrubs had overgrown, weeds had taken over the beds, and the irrigation system needed repairs.

topdressing lawn with compost

The lawn had already been aerated and de-thatched when this photo was taken. Juan spread a topdressing of compost while Josh applied grass seed.

After the clean-up was complete, our first course of action to renovate the lawn was to aerate. Aeration, also known as core aeration, is the process of pulling up small plugs of underlying soil that had compacted over time. This creates a healthier root system because it allows proper circulation of air, water and nutrients to the soil below. Aerating results in better water and fertilizer absorption, key to a healthy lawn.

new lawn growing in from seed

This photo of the front yard lawn was taken only 3 weeks later.

After aerating, the next step taken was to de-thatch the lawn. Thatch is a dense layer of dead grass and other organic material that accumulates over time and does not decompose. It sits atop the soil surface, smothering the grass, causing shallow roots and inhibiting growth. De-thatching, or thatching, with a power rake removes this dead layer of thatch between the grass base and native soil, and encourages lawn to spread by allowing for a better exchange of air, water and nutrients.

topdressing and overseeding lawn

The back yard lawn took longer to fill in due to less sunlight. This photo was taken 3 weeks after aeration, de-thatching, topdressing with compost, and overseeding.

The lawn was now ready for a topdressing of organic compost, which we get from Vern’s Organic Topsoil. Topdressing is the practice of spreading a thin layer of compost over the lawn. Since we had already aerated and de-thatched, the compost was able to easily penetrate below the superficial layer and reach the native soil below. This is an important step in lawn renovation. Topdressing with compost enhances the quality of the soil by adding nutrients and improving soil structure.

new lawn from grass seed

This photo of the back yard lawn was taken approximately 8 weeks after aeration, de-thatching, topdressing with compost and overseeding.

One of the final steps of this lawn renovation was to spread grass seed atop the compost, also known as overseeding. We use a grass mixture that is formulated specifically for the Pacific Northwest and a spreader to apply it evenly. Overseeding reinvigorates a lawn by encouraging thick lawn growth. Bare or thin spots should always be overseeded to discourage weed growth.

lawn renovation in silverdale

This photo of the front yard lawn was taken approximately 8 weeks after aeration, de-thatching, topdressing with compost and overseeding.

With the help of a repaired irrigation system, the seed received sufficient water throughout the germination process, despite long stretches of 80-degree weather. Grass seed needs to be moist in order to germinate and grow, though you don’t want to drown seed in water. The photo above shows what the restored lawn looked like in August.

After this summer’s record high temperatures and drought, your lawn could likely benefit from lawn renovation services. Give us a call at 360-697-3215 or 253-530-0788 for a free quote!

Thanks for reading our blog.  Northwest Construction & Landscape, LLC is a Kitsap County landscaping company that offers landscaping, decorative concrete and lawn maintenance services to homes and businesses across Kitsap and Pierce counties. Subscribe to our monthly newsletter here.

Moss Control Fertilizer

Our first round of fertilizer is being applied to the lawns of our maintenance clients, and as we do every year, we’ll be applying a moss control fertilizer. This mix contains ferrous sulphate and is the easiest way to eliminate moss using a chemical application. Ferrous sulphate is a form of iron, so it’s an organic chemical compound that is less harmful to the environment than many other synthetic herbicides. It also provides nutrients and is often used as a fertilizer to achieve a lush appearance without encouraging a lot of growth

ferrous sulphate

After a few weeks, moss will turn black. For the DIY crowd, this would be the time to hand-rake or dethatch your lawn. Over time, grass will grow in areas where moss once thrived. To speed up the process, bare or thin areas should be re-seeded after the lawn is mowed as short as possible. We recommend JB Sun and Shade grass seed which requires at least three hours of sunlight. Remember, it’s important to keep the seed wet until germination is complete. Until the seed is well rooted, keep the soil moist at all times with light and frequent watering.

The presence of moss is an indicator that it’s time to make some changes in your landscape. If tree limbs or shrubs are creating too much shade, consider cutting them back or removing them altogether. Lack of sunlight is the most common reason for moss. In Pacific NW landscapes, this is often accompanied by moisture, and mosses love persistently wet areas in which to inhabit.

moss control

Adding lime or ash to your lawn can help if your soil is acidic. Or, it may be the case that your soil is lacking in organic matter and could benefit from a topdress of soil and compost. Soil conditions will also be improved by regularly aerating your lawn to relieve soil compaction and to allow air to circulate around the grass roots.

Taking the time to care for your lawn early in the season will ensure a healthy lawn to enjoy on hot, summer days. That being said, if you don’t mind the moss in your lawn, you’ll have less lawn to mow. Never a bad thing, right?

Thanks for reading our blog.  Northwest Construction & Landscape, LLC is a Kitsap County landscaping company that offers landscaping, decorative concrete and lawn maintenance services to homes and businesses across Kitsap and Pierce counties.

Hints of Winter

The trees are barely hanging on to their leaves thanks to our recent wild and windy weather!  Perennials have yellowed, ready to be cut back, while evergreens show off their steadfast and enduring beauty.

fall clean-up

All signs are pointing towards winter, yet there’s still work to be done to give your landscape the best possible start come spring.

Here’s a quick and handy, though incomplete, to-do list:

  1. Finish planting tulips and other hardy spring bulbs.
  2. Remove fallen leaves from lawn areas.  Thick layers of matted leaves will block sunlight and potentially smother your lawn, especially when they’re wet.
  3. Consider leaving a light sprinkling of leaves or even mowing over the leaves on your lawn, to create a light layer of mulch that will easily decompose, adding nutrients and improving your soil.  Another option is to apply a winterizer fertilizer, the most important fertilizer application of the year.
  4. Blow-out your irrigation system of remaining water to prevent pipes and components from cracking.
  5. Clean drainage ditches and repair if necessary.
  6. Drain, clean, and store garden hoses.

Do you have a task to add to this list?  Log into Facebook and leave a comment below!

Thanks for reading our blog.  Northwest Construction & Landscape, LLC is a Kitsap County landscaping company that offers landscaping, decorative concrete and lawn maintenance services to homes and businesses across Kitsap and Pierce counties.

Note from a Maintenance Client

Here at Northwest Construction & Landscape, we take great pride in keeping our maintenance clients happy year-round.  We do everything we can to let them know we care about how they are perceived in their community.  Here’s a note that we received last week that put a big smile on our faces:

“We want to thank you for all the care that was given to our home yard while we were on our summer adventure.  It was so nice to come home to a well maintained yard!  Our thanks to all!”

lawn care kitsap county

This time of year, we’re focusing on leaf control.  If you’d like to know what we can do for your lawn or landscape, give us a call for a free estimate!

Thanks for reading our blog.  Northwest Construction & Landscape, LLC is a Kitsap County landscaping company that offers landscaping, decorative concrete and lawn maintenance services to homes and businesses across Kitsap and Pierce counties.

Fall Fertilizing

Over the last few weeks, we applied our end-of-summer round of fertilizer to our maintenance sites, a 21-7-14 mix.

lawn maintenance kitsap county

What does this formula mean?  These numbers signify the percentage of each major nutrient included in the mix, and is known as the N-P-K ratio.  N stands for Nitrogen, P for Phosphorus, and K for Potassium.

Here’s a quick rundown of the benefits of each nutrient:

Nitrogen is essential for the growth of grass blades and results in a healthy, green appearance.  If your lawn exhibits a yellow-green color and produces little to no growth, it’s likely nitrogen deficient.

Phosphorous encourages healthy root development and stimulates root growth.  Be mindful of the amount of phosphorus in the fertilizer you use, as excess phosphorus that finds its way into nearby ponds and lakes is partly responsible for the decline in water quality.  One way to mitigate this is through proper application.

Potassium (also known as Potash) helps lawns to resist disease and withstand changes in weather conditions.  Potassium improves a lawn’s overall ability to endure stressful conditions such as drought and excessive traffic.

Fertilizer can help your lawn to recover from summer’s drought-induced dormancy. Give your lawn the nutrients it needs throughout the fall and winter months and come spring, your lawn will thrive.

Thanks for reading our blog.  Northwest Construction & Landscape, LLC is a Kitsap County landscaping company that offers landscaping, decorative concrete and lawn maintenance services to homes and businesses across Kitsap and Pierce counties.