University of Maryland Extension

December and January Lawn Tips

healthy soil

 (More tips from HGIC)

  • Get a headstart on spring lawn projects by having your soil tested now. (Refer to (PDF) HG 110 Selecting and Using a Soil Testing Lab, see last page for soil testing labs).  Keeping the soil pH in the 6.0 - 7.0 range is very important in maintaining healthy turf.
  • Hand pull winter annual weeds now to keep them from going to seed this spring. Some common annual weeds include chickweed, henbit, hairy bittercress and dead nettle.
  • Try to avoid excessive walking on your grass when it is frozen this winter to avoid damaging the crowns of your grass plants.
  • Leaves that fall on turfgrass can be chopped up with a mulching mower and allowed to breakdown over the winter.
  • The Fertilizer Use Act of 2011 prohibits labeling and using lawn fertilizers as a deicing product.
  • Agricultural limestone can be applied to raise soil pH during the winter when the ground is not frozen or covered with snow. Pelletized lime is slightly more expensive than ground limestone but is easier to apply.
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