NDSU Extension - Ramsey County


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August 16 Horticulture Column


Well the weather has been warm and very, very muggy.  I have never been one for liking humidity, heat never seemed to bother me much.  I watched Tom move some grain bins, in the wind on Sunday, and it did not seem to bother the bin mover much.  The bins were sure swaying, in the wind, but they all got put in place.  The third bin they moved I “COULD NOT WATCH” as the wind seemed to be moving it more than my comfort zone so Deb and I drove down to mom and dad’s house and looked for more clinkers.  To our surprise I was able to locate another bunch of the stone and will make a great addition to our landscape design.  It is really too bad there are not some of these rocks closer as they are very much different and pretty looking, all shapes and colors. 

I was mowing grass the other day and could not help but notice how different homeowners have different qualities of lawns.  I am not suggesting they are taking poor care of their lawns but to mention a couple of suggestions to those that do not like watering.  The first method in moisture retention is mulching.  This process leaves the grass clippings behind and does do two things; first they cool the soil as the soil is shaded from the mulch left behind and secondly by shading the lawn it also conserves moisture.  What a better way to conserve moisture than by letting mother nature do it for you.  The second thing accomplished is it does cut down on the amount of weeds that make their presence every year. Weed seeds like the very top of the soil profile to germinate and by being covered more deeply does not allow for germination until something disturbs the soil and mulch.  The last thing to remember about your lawns is to cut the lawn with sharp blades.  Dull blades leave the grass leaf more jagged on the end and this creates more water usage as the fresh cut needs to heal and secondly cut your grass a minimum of three inches.  I know that most of you will say that is way too high and creates more mowing but what difference does it make if you cut your grass a inch high or three inches high as the grass grows the same amount, right?  Well the answer to this the taller grass will grow faster because of the reasons I mentioned earlier and your lawn will look more like a carpet than a short lawn with more weeds growing.


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