Summer Stress

Has your lawn turned brown?

If your lawn has turned brown or straw coloured, there’s no need to worry; pro longed high temperatures and low rainfall is affecting many lawns, turning brown is natural. Established, well-maintained lawns will usually recover once adequate rainfall returns.

The lawn is putting its natural defense in operation to protect its important root structure, reducing evapotranspiration from the root zone. If it didn’t do this the root structure would dry out and the plant would possibly die.

Different grass seed mixes are deeper rooting and tend to be more drought tolerant, hence possible patches of green within your lawn.

What can I be doing?
Here are some simple steps you can take to help your lawn withstand and recover from periods of low rainfall.

The frequency of mowing should be judged by the lawn itself. If the grass is not growing then do not attempt to mow. Once growth resumes, start mowing regularly again. It is good practice to raise the summer cutting height slightly, tidying up the lawn.

Leaving your lawn a little longer, will allow deeper roots to grow and help trap moisture by reducing evaporation from the surface, which will improve drought tolerance. It will also help your lawn to keep a greener appearance by leaving more of the green leaf visible.

Our summer lawn feed is drought safe, it will break down with the morning dew, then stabilises within the soil and will be ready for your lawn when wetter conditions return.

We review lawns for weed activity and spot weed as required, we may decide to carry this forward to the autumn period, don’t worry, we assess this on a lawn by lawn basis.

An established lawn does not need to be watered routinely. In fact, letting a lawn search for its own supply of water will encourage roots to go deeper and seek out moisture. This will benefit the lawn's health in the long term.

Watering - If you have not started ...
Don't start watering, let the lawn go into natural dormancy.

Watering - If you have started ....
It is better to apply two good waterings per week to the lawn rather than frequent light watering. Your lawn will require moistening to a depth of 6" weekly, for a loam or clay soil this will be achieved by approximately by 1-1½" of water. A sandy soil will be moistened to a depth of approximately 6" by ½ -¼" of water, so what does that mean? approx 20-30 minutes.

Don’t play on dormant lawns
Heavy traffic on an already stressed, dormant lawn may damage the grass beyond repair and compact the soil.

When the summer heat gives way to cooler temperatures and regular rainfall, your lawn will be restored to its former glory. Have patience!

Helping with recovery?
If your lawn has been severely stressed by dry conditions, take steps to help water penetrate the surface when water becomes available. Some light spiking with a fork or spiked roller will help, but this should only be done when water becomes available again.

We recommend the following for improved root development:

• Aeration
• Over Seed
• Soil Improver and Biology Booster

More information about watering at watering hints and tips

Hope this helps

The team at Greener Gardens

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About Blog

The team at Greener Gardens offer lawn care and other garden maintenance services. We provide a Free lawn care consultation backed up by a professional service, from our own fully trained staff. We are proud to be a local business.


  • 32 Mowbray Gardens,
    West Bridgford,
    NG2 6JN

Where we work...

We operate both North and South of the River Trent, many of our customers are located in: West Bridgford, Radcliffe on Trent, Bingham, Cotgrave, Tollerton, Keyworth, Ruddington and North of the River: Beeston, Chilwell, Wollaton, Bramcote, Nottingham, Mapperley and Arnold.

Call: 0115 837 8439 or email for a FREE quotation.