A Lesson In Taking Care Of Your Lawn From an MLB Groundskeeper
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Nicole Sherry, Head Groundskeeper at the home of The Baltimore Orioles — a.k.a. Camden Yards — has five tips on how to get your lawn ready for its debut.
#1 Know The Type Of Grass You Have
Yes, where you live matters!
"[In] the upper two thirds of the country, you're growing cool season grasses," Nicole says.
These types include rye, fescue and bluegrass. If you live in the lower third, you have warm season grasses, like bermudagrass or St. Augustine.
Unsure of if you're in a cold season grass or warm season grass area? Check out this handy graphic below and read on to find out how to care for each type.
#2 Know WHEN To Seed
Again, this is based on what type of grass you have!
If you have cool season grass, start in April, May or a little bit into June. (It all depends on when your last frost is, so use your best judgment!)
On the other hand, warm season grasses can be grown in the middle of the summer in the high heat.
#3 Know HOW To Seed
Once you throw your seed down, you want to rake it in, so there's soil coverage on both sides — but don't bury it!
After that, tamp it down, but again, don't overdo it. (Watch Nicole demonstrate in the video above!)
"It's a lot like making a successful espresso," Rach quips.
#4 Know How Much To Water It
Overwatering is very bad for seed, Nicole says, so know your soil!
If your soil is clay-like or holds a lot of water, she says you can ease back and let nature do its job.
If you have an irrigation system and want to make sure you're not unknowingly overwatering your yard, Nicole has a trick for that.
Arrange some pie plates around your lawn and see how much water is collected from the sprinkler — then go from there.
#5 Know Your Soil
Now, what's the *one thing* Nicole suggests that everyone does?
Soil tests! (You can buy them online or in a garden supply store.)
If you are trying to figure out what nutrients your lawn needs, this is a cost effective way to do it.
"It'll give you the potassium, the nitrogen and the phosphorus levels all in the results," Nicole says.
In fact, she likens it to taking vitamins. "You're not going to take vitamins if you don't have a deficiency."