Unfortunately my mum passed away on 16th October so the desire to think about blog articles has been reduced somewhat.
Whilst the temperature is relatively mild for the time of year, the light levels are reducing significantly and temperatures are dropping for grass growth.
Just two cuts during October so far, I might get a light topping in before the end of the month but there again it might wait until early November.
Sunday October 8th, 12:30:
- Air temp: 16.0C
- Soil temp: 10.6C
- Grass height: Mostly 70mm
- Clippings removed: about 1/3rd of a box
- Lawn edged afterwards
Damp and surface moisture (dew) throughout most of the day.
The edging shears are ready for a sharpen. Having gone all year on one sharpen with a hand sharpening stone in the spring, it’s probably fair to say it could have done with an other one or two sharpenings.
This picture of a squashed earthworm cast is typical of a mower wheel, or roller, running over a damp cast. Ideally these will have been brushed or knocked about before any mowing takes places as this helps to disperse the soil in the cast over a wider area.
Friday October 20th, 2.00:
- Air temp: 16.3C
- Soil temp: 13.6C
- Grass height: Mostly 80mm
- Clippings removed: about 50%-60% of a box
Damp ground conditions; leaves raked off the lawn before mowing, as well as hand picking of just 3 mushrooms.
Overall there is good ground cover, mostly grass, but with elements of moss creeping in over some areas. A key action over the winter will be to make sure the lawn is hand forked to open up the soil to help it drain quicker (hand texturing in spring indicated a clay loam soil).
There are a few weeds that can still be hand weeded, plus a few earthworm casts.
Overall, the lawn has stood up well to the weather and wear this year; improvements for next year will require a good level of aeration, continued light scarification and light sand top-dressing, along with just one main fertiliser application in late spring – probably May time.
A review of the activities undertaken this year will be carried out shortly and a summary and insight provided in a not to far in the future blog article.
Chris Gray, 24th October 2017