Don’t Trample The Frozen Grass

By Allyn Paul, filed under Lawn Tips.

You have all certainly seen signs in lawns that read “keep off the grass.”

And I can bet many of you have wondered “what’s the point?”

Well, here is a good reason to read and heed those signs during the cold winter months.

Crushed Grass Crowns

During the deep freeze of winter, grass goes dormant. Nothing new there, of course, but let’s look a little deeper. The thing is, dormancy is your lawn’s way of keeping safe during harsh conditions. It happens in the hottest, driest days of July and August, and during the freezing seasons of December, January and February.

When grass is dormant, it it vulnerable to damage. This is never more true than when it is frozen stiff under snow pack.

Just like most living things, when frozen, grass plants become brittle and can literally snap off. This wouldn’t be so bad if just the grass blades were broken, as often happens, but when you walk on frozen grass, you are literally crushing the “guts” or crown. Think of the grass crown just like the crown of your head. If you break your head crown, you will be in a lot of trouble! Same goes for the crown of the grass plant.

A crushed crown can no longer support grass blades and will not recover in spring.

The main place I see homeowners walking on grass during winter is along the edges of driveways. This is because you guys step in and out of your cars onto your lawn. I recommend you back into your driveway so that you step into the middle and not along the edges.

Pretty simple advice, I know, but it will go a long way to preserving your future lawn in 2011.


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