What’s up y’all? Is it cold where you are? I’m seeing all kinds of reports on the news about the cold snap hitting everyone across most of the US. I’m hoping this email will help warm you up and light a fire in your belly because spring is almost here!
That said, it’s been pretty cold here too. Night time temps getting into the high 40s, which, I know most of you would LOVE to have right now… but here, with our warm season turf, it’s wreaking havoc on my ability to Enjoy The Mow.
I’m only having to cut every 14 days right now, although I do give it a charity mow here and there (credit terminology: Connor Ward). But that’s cool because with all this free time I have, I’ve spent hours and hours re-writing all of my guides for the season. All the free guides and the paid guides… all of them.
In fact, last week I was in Mexico on vacation and was able to solidify the direction I’m taking the tips this year. As you know, pretty much everything I do is focused on the tips and 2019 will be no different. The strategic thinking I share with you today will serve as the cornerstone of my YouTube videos this year, my new Podcast, these emails and my paid guides.
This year will be about these numbers:
These numbers will have significance for all of you, no matter where you live, or what your grass type. If you learn these 3 numbers early, and learn them in direct correlation to your own lawn, you will be ahead of the game before it starts. With that, let’s get right into it:
Temperature Tips - Lawn Care in 2019
55F - 65F - 70F :: Milestone Temperatures
One of the biggest challenges I face as a content creator is giving out a consistent message to you guys knowing that I am speaking to lawn care nuts from Southern California to Maine and everywhere in between north and south. With that, when I use terminology like “start in March” it can mean something totally different to a guy in Texas than it does to a dude in Michigan.
But there is a way to unite us all - there is a universal language and that language centers around soil temperatures, let’s explore them.
55 Degrees F
In spring, this is the target soil temp we look for to signal that it’s time to apply our first application of Pre-Emergent. Doesn’t matter if you live in Georgia or New Jersey, this is the target temp. Same for preventing GooseGrass… 55 degrees F. Get your prodiamine down just before that time and you will be off the the best start possible. (new pre-emergent guide coming soon, details below)
This temperature is also an indicator that your good turf will start coming out of dormancy now. Once again, this is universal. Kentucky Bluegrass in Wisconsin and Palmetto St Augustinegrass in Louisiana - both start to slowly wake up from winter slumber when soil temps hit 55.
65 Degrees F
When soil temps hit 65F, no matter what your grass type, this is when you need to prepare to mow weekly and probably, if you are on my plans, get ready to mow every 4-5 days soon thereafter. Not required, but mowing every 5 days is one of the best things you can do to encourage your turf to throw more roots, rhizomes and/or stolons and generally thicken up overall.
Yep, that’s the big secret - the more you mow, the healthier and thicker your lawn will grow.
65F soil temps are also your clue that it’s ok to really start throwing down your fert hard for the season.
70 Degrees F
We will talk more about this temperature in upcoming emails and videos. Just know there is more to come!
For now, 55 and 65 are the numbers to concentrate on so you know how to plan the start of your season. Let’s run a scenario and see what that looks like for our friends in Tulsa, OK (you should run this same exercise in for your area and record your dates in your lawn journal.) As always, I am using THIS TOOL to get the data you see.
If you live in Tulsa, then soil temps at 55F typically come the middle of March. (1-4” depth)
So if I were you, I’d prepare to throw down my first application of pre-emergent herbicide sometime just prior to that. Keep in mind, not ALL of the crabgrass or goose grass seed in your lawn germinates immediately on that date. That’s just the opening of the window. Hit that as close as you can.
Just about a month later and we can see Tulsa’s soil temps are already up another 10 degrees and have hit the second of our milestone temperatures. I’ve already mentioned that this is the time when you should have to start mowing weekly. Of course, outside temp swings can stop and start the turf even from day to night -- so it’s not a perfect science… but it’s close enough to let you know that the “growing season” has officially begun.
Warm season friends, this is also the time when you have the green light to start throwing down fertilizer for the year. In fact, if you want to know the perfect time to get started throwing down fert for pretty much any grass type, it’s right within this window of 55F and 65F. When the lawn is coming out of dormancy and heading towards a pattern of weekly mowing, that’s when you throw down. Looking for a Milorganite alternative where you live? Check out this “success test” I performed on a new “clone” I found recently.
If you want to know more about what do throw down and when to throw it down, then make sure you pick up my Hybrid Organic Lawn Guide for the season. But before you do, hang on! Listen to this pitch:
The guides linked here, these are the old ones, from last year. Once we take them down and put up the updated guides in early/mid Feb, they will be gone forever. But wait, there’s more:
ANYONE and EVERYONE who purchases the old guides automatically gets the new guides, free, for life. Every time I update the guide, you get it emailed to you fresh for no additional cost. (it’s an e-guide - not a physical guide)
However, once we retire the old one, it’s gone forever so if you want to see the old one first, then compare to the new one, NOW is the time to buy.
New guides will be released in the next couple weeks starting with Warm Season which is already going to come in at well over 100 pages compared to the original which is 46.
Nice pitch eh? Hope you can appreciate that and take action :)
Like I mentioned earlier, the free guides are also being re-written and those are the “Pre-Emergent” guide and the “How To Kill Weeds for Beginners” guide as well as the “Bio-stimulant” guide. We have a complete email drip campaign we run for new email subscribers that sends out a series of articles I wrote linking to those guides and providing more context. I want all of you to get those free, updated guides as well so when those are ready to get sent out, I’ll be letting you know so you can pick them up too.
Prodiamine -- if you have some leftover from last year, all good. However, if you need to restock, I will be carrying my own prodiamine this year that I am paying to have made, bagged and shipped and you can purchase directly from me if you so choose. Last year’s supplier kept running out and didn’t do much to work with me so I’ve made other arrangements for this season. I have warehouse space and everything and will be shipping bags direct to you guys via my store. That should be available around Mid-February right about the time we are also getting our shipments of CarbonX.
That’s where we stand today. The emails will start up again full force in Feb along with my new podcast, Lawns Across America.
Get it on Itunes here.
Get is on YouTube here.
Get it everywhere else here.
Thanks, happy winter, and if you can see your lawn, then I’ll see you in the lawn!