Your yard says a lot. If it is messy, outsiders assume the owner doesn’t care. If stays neat and tidy, the assumption is that the owner puts a priority on it. The truth is, there are things that happen in our yard that are beyond our control. Looking ahead and anticipating problems can go a long way toward preserving what’s best about our yard.
No Trucks or Heavy Equipment
Your yard’s top soil is precious. One truck rolling through it can disturb the topsoil and ruin the grass growing there. If the ground is wet, the yard will end up torn up. Patching these problems is never as easy as it is to just prevent them.
Every time a contractor of any kind arrives to do work. Smart home owners should talk to them immediately about whether they intend, for any reason, to drive on the lawn. If so, you should require them to lay down industrial crane mats. These act as a temporary roadway for trucks and tracked equipment, such as bobcats. You are much less likely to have your lawn torn up. The grass underneath will generally bounce back despite the abuse.
Likewise, you should make it clear to family and friends that parking on the grass is never permitted. Instead, make sure they know what to do if the driveway is full.
In addition, when any type of contractor arrives at your home, you should immediately question them about digging. They may trample through flowerbeds or dig up part of the yard without warning you. That makes it imperative that you ask questions before they start their work.
While it can be difficult to avoid digging if new gaslines are needed, new pipes are a different story. These days there are ways to restore pipes with liquid liner that turns hard as it dries. If this can solve your problem, it will be worth the extra money to avoid tearing up your lawn.
While your lawn may look like the place for football, ultimate frisbee or soccer game, think long and hard before you allow it. Sports tend to tear up the grass. That’s why some stadiums have artificial turf. You should find out the nearest greenspace and insists that all big games are held there. Otherwise, you may be stuck with reseeding a lawn that was once green.
Too Much Water
Lawns can also be washed away by overwatering. Sometimes this happens by accident. Other times it is due to a poorly designed irrigation system. If you have sprinklers that leak, this is a waste of water and potentially destructive to the very plantings you are trying to save. To avoid this, you can get a timed sprinkler system that is carefully calibrated to avoid overwatering.
A more difficult version of this problem comes with frequent rainfall. Poorly drained areas will start to turn marshy. The mud left behind is not good topsoil. You can invest in french drains to route the water and get rid of the overflow in a drain or on the street.
If you have a hilly lawn, the slopes are subject to erosion. This may be from too much water as previously discussed or it may be due to other causes. For instance, many large mowers scrape up topsoil when encountering dips and rises. The result is small bald spots that may not come back from the abuse.
Planting native grasses is one way to take care of these uneven areas. Once the plants take hold, they are more likely to thrive. There are other options, but be sure to use noninvasive species. Vines, such as ivy, are pretty, but they have a tendency to take over. This would create a new problem.
If you remain proactive, you’ll protect your lawn from unnecessary abuse. This will, in turn, prevent you from spending money on restoration or from having a yard that is suddenly an eyesore.