If you want to improve your lawn by adding more fertilizers, or changing the grass, you should not proceed immediately. Instead, analyze your lawn profile first and then let the results guide you in choosing the right type of grass, fertilizer, insect control and mowing schedule appropriate for your lawn. Consider these tips:
Inspect your lawn. Visual inspection of the lawn can give a lot of information, like are there bare patches of land? Are these caused by a shady spot, or is constantly stamped on by people and pets? Do insects breed in the lawn? Is there more weeds than cultured grass? Are there water accumulation in some areas? Is there over growth of plants? Have the grass discolored into yellow or brown? These observations should be noted to pin point the cause of the problems.
Examine the characteristics of the turf and soil. Shovel out a wedge of turf and take a sample of the soil. Observe the root growth of the grass, since a poorly developed turf is an indication of either nutrient depletion of a disease. A healthy turf shows growing shoots and green colored leaves. The roots should reach a length of 4 to 5 inches, and should have new growing roots, for it to be considered healthy.
The thatch layer should also be examined. It should not exceed ½ inch in depth, and should have a spongy feel, otherwise, there is a need for de-thatching. This is to allow air to flow freely and for water and nutrients to be taken in adequately.
Inspect for presence of insects. While earth worms are a welcome sight, insects become pests when they populate and eat up the lawn.
Next, inspect the soil type and depth. A good lawn has to have a minimum of 6 inches of sandy loam soil. If the soil is too compact, then there is a need to break it up to allow root growth and water penetration.
Test the soil. It is good to have the soil tested for possible nutrient depletion. A soil test kit can be bought, or you may have someone test your soil. This will help you determine what kind of fertilizer to use, if needed, or whether another type of soil needs to be added to your lawn.
Repair the drainage system. If needed, repair the drainage system. Water accumulations in spots that should be dry are an indicator of a broken pipe. There might be a need to replace old pipes or repair connectors. Stagnant water should be cleaned up to avoid the breeding of mosquitoes and other harmful insects.
After taking all of this information, determine whether there is a need to put another layer of soil and renovate the lawn. Or whether the turf needs more nutrients and a fertilizer should be added. Insect presence should be dealt with by applying the appropriate amount of insecticide. Natural ways of getting rid of insects include planting bushes that are insect repellents.