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Core Aeration View
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Grass Establishment (Seeding and Sodding) View
Insect Control View
Lawn Repair or Renovation View
Mowing View
Thatch Control View
Turfgrasses for Iowa View
Watering View
Weed Control View

FAQs

How can I control violets in my lawn?

Violets (Viola species) are native to Iowa.  Native habitats vary from dry, rocky prairies to moist woodlands.  Violets are also found in lawns, especially in shady areas.  Violets are difficult to control in turfgrass areas.  Digging up the plants is an option for home gardeners with a small infestation of violets.  ....

How do I control creeping Charlie in my lawn?

Ground ivy (“creeping Charlie”) in lawns can be controlled with broadleaf herbicides.  Products that contain 2,4-D or triclopyr are most effective.  2,4-D is an active ingredient in many broadleaf herbicide products.  Triclopyr can be found in Ortho Weed-B-Gon Chickweed, Clover, and Oxalis Killer for Lawns and a few other products.  ....

How do I control dandelions and other broadleaf weeds in my lawn?

In small areas, some weeds can be controlled by pulling and digging.  This method is best accomplished after a soaking rain or deep watering.  Unfortunately, pulling and digging is often ineffective on deep-rooted weeds.  In many situations, herbicides are the only practical method of weed control.  Effective broadleaf herbicides ....

Which turfgrass species grow best in shady areas?

A key to successfully growing grass in shady areas is to select the proper turfgrass species for the site.  Kentucky bluegrass is the most widely grown turfgrass in Iowa.  However, most Kentucky bluegrass varieties do not perform well in shady areas.  The fine-leaf fescues (creeping red fescue, hard fescue, chewings ....

How do you remove thatch?

The most effective way to remove a thatch layer of ½ inch or greater is with a vertical mower or power rake.  Late summer (September) is the best time to dethatch lawns in Iowa.  Late summer dethatching gives the turfgrass several weeks of good growing weather in which to recover.  ....

How often should I fertilize my lawn?

In Iowa, Kentucky bluegrass lawns can be fertilized in spring (April or May), mid-September, and late October/early November.  The number of fertilizer applications is largely determined by an individual’s desires or expectations for their lawn.  Three applications of fertilizer (the first in spring, the second in mid-September, and third in late ....

When should I apply a preventive type insecticide to control white grubs in the lawn?

White grub populations and damage to lawns vary greatly from year to year and place to place, even varying from spot to spot within the same lawn due to variations in beetle numbers, weather, turfgrass vigor, soil conditions, and other factors.  There are basically three approaches to grub management in the ....

What is thatch?

Thatch is the layer of dead and living plant material that forms between the soil surface and green vegetation.  It is composed of shoots, crowns, and roots.  Thatch, to some degree, is present in all lawns.  However, when thatch is present in amounts greater than ½ inch, it is usually ....

How do I control white clover in my lawn?

White clover (Trifolium repens) is a creeping perennial.  It is a common plant in many Iowa lawns because it is a prolific seed producer and adapts well to mowing and other lawn care practices.  Its presence is often a sign of low nitrogen fertility.  White clover in lawns can ....

How can I avoid drift problems when applying a broadleaf herbicide to my lawn?

Before applying any herbicide, carefully read and follow label directions.  When applying liquid formulations, potential spray drift problems can be avoided by following simple precautions.   Don’t spray when winds exceed 5 mph.  Also, don’t spray when temperatures are forecast to exceed 85F within 24 hours of the application.  Since coarse ....

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