Reduce Salt Damage to Build Healthy Soil

Salt damage! Heavy snows are often blamed for winter kill to lawn grasses and garden plants. Salt damage from caustic ice melter can be the real culprit. Where snow piles up around patios and driveways salt based, residues are concentrated by repeated use. These heavy salt concentrations will damage turf grass and a variety of landscape plantings. Wherever the snow has been repeatedly thrown up on the curb by city snowplow trucks, a border of dead grass will appear. All grass varieties can be affected. Some like buffalo grass are particularly sensitive while, perennial rye and tall fescue are slighty more salt tolerant.

Salt ice melters applied in late winter, and early spring are likely to damage vegetation. This is because there is less time for winter snow and precipitation to leach salt from the root zone before growth resumes in the spring. Reduce the side effects from salt damage. Apply Grass Pad's pelletized Lawn CAL before the ground freezes in November and again in early spring. The calcium in Lawn CAL displaces salt residues which helps to reduce the uptake of damaging salts through the plants root zone. For best results, use pelletized Lawn CAL in your lawn spreader making two passes (full open rate) around street curbs, driveways, sidewalks or wherever ice melter will be repeatedly used in winter.

Calcium is one of the most misunderstood nutrients. Calcium plays a major role in plant physiology by strengthening the physical structure of the plant and helping with disease resistance. Grass Pad's Lawn CAL is all natural and safe for kids and pets.

Lawn repair! Lawn edges around sidewalks and driveways have also been damaged by snow removal equipment. Chunks of grass have been stripped up by snow blades and shovels. Tire tracks have plowed up turf areas once hidden under the snow. Here turf grass sod is the quick and easy fix and will repair the damage in an afternoon.

Grass seed first aid can also be used for patching and repair.  Buy the seed first so you know it will match your existing lawn.  Fine bladed grass seed mixes like Estate Mix Stadium Special or Macho Mix will sprout and blend well.  Coarse bladed field grasses like annual rye or K-31 should be avoided no matter how appealing the picture on the bag.

PrimeraFC, field dressing, makes an excellent weed free top dressing for these spring seeding repairs. It helps keep the seed in place and speeds germination as well as drying up muddy areas around the patio or dog run. It has been used for many years on outdoor sports fields and is an inexpensive problem solver for home lawns as well.

Brown mud mush? In early spring, at the Grass Pad, we receive plenty of phone calls on lawns turned to brown mush by dogs and children running on waterlogged backyard soils.  Big German Shepherds and energetic ten-year-olds seem to do the most damage. In these situations, the first aid fix is the same one used on sports fields that must be played in wet, cool weather.