Redefining how we look at lawns!
The role of lawns in our communities has long been an important one with urban green spaces providing important public health benefits including the promotion of an active lifestyle, stress reduction and community creation. At Manderley, our goal is to green up our communities!
Although in recent years much has been made of the wastefulness of maintaining a “perfect’ lawn. This view often overlooks the positive attributes of turfgrass including oxygen production, removal of carbon from the atmosphere, reducing the heat island effect, preventing erosion and filtering rain water.
Here are 6 key things to consider if you want to enjoy all the benefits of a grass lawn but also want to make an environmentally sustainable choice.
- Plant Selection: Not all grasses are created equal! Choose a sod or seed blend designed to consume less water or that requires less maintenance. Manderley’s Less Water line of sod and seed blends are a first of it’s kind in Canada – qualified drought-tolerant. These products can cut irrigation requirements in half and can go between 4 to 6 week longer without water than conventional Kentucky Bluegrass lawns.
Manderley is a proud partner of and worked closely with the Turfgrass Water Conservation Alliance (TWCA) – an independent organization leading in the research and development of grass varieties that require less water.
- Don’t Over Irrigate: As a rule of thumb, most conventional lawns require approximately 1” of irrigation per week, including rain. This is by no means of an exact science as it doesn’t take in to account factors like temperature, plant genetics or even timing and maintenance.
- How green should a lawn be?: Ask yourself does your lawn need to be 100% green? Can you tell the difference when it’s 80% versus 100% green? Even when your lawn isn’t entirely green, it’s still producing oxygen, cooling your property and promoting a healthier lifestyle. Answering these questions could save you even more time and water.
- Water at the right times: Water only when it’s most effective to do so! Watering in the early morning is the most efficient way to maintain your lawn, as there will be little evaporation loss and less moisture build up, compared to watering at night which can lead to the development of mushrooms and other moisture related problems. Watering in the daytime during the warm summer months is the most wasteful thing you can do, as much of the water will be lost to evaporation.
- Consider Mowing Alternatives: Mowing is always important in maintaining a healthy lawn but following mowing best practices can help to ensure you aren’t mowing to frequently. You could also consider a sod or seed blend with a high proportion of fine fescues which can be left to grow longer than Bluegrass. Manderley Less Water Low Maintenance grass seed or Blue+Fescue sod are great options. This could help reduce time spent owing and they perform well in shaded areas.
- Weeds aren’t really a problem!: Weeds like dandelions and white clover help to improve your soil through aeration, nutrient accumulation and even nitrogen fixing. Redefining our outlook on weeds could go a long way to helping our lawns become more sustainable.
The combination of selecting products that require less maintenance and changing our maintenance habits will allow you to take full advantage of the environmental and social benefits of a grass lawn while minimizing the negative impacts.