A lush green lawn provides a cool respite in the heat of our Phoenix summers. Bermuda grass is the grass of choice for summer lawns. It can take the desert’s hottest weather if it has enough water. This type of grass goes dormant, turning brown, in the fall when the night time temperatures start to fall below 55 degrees. The best growing time for Bermuda grass is when daytime temperatures exceed 80 degrees Fahrenheit with nighttime temperatures above 65 degrees, around April or May.
Some people choose to overseed their lawns with Ryegrass each year in the fall to keep their lawns green during lower winter temperatures. Unlike winter Rye grass, Bermuda grass only needs to planted once. The Bermuda grass will come in more fully and quickly if Ryegrass is allowed to dry out in early May. Two weeks without watering is usually enough to kill the Ryegrass. Once the Ryegrass turns brown, resume lawn watering to encourage the Bermuda grass to come out of dormancy.
Over the winter, your lawn’s soil will probably have become compacted beneath a layer of thatch. Thatch is a layer of dead and living grass shoots, stems and roots that are visible between the soil and the green grass blades in your lawn. Thick thatch layers can cause root damage and can be a haven for disease-causing organisms and insects. Thatch can also hold too much water, resulting in root rot. Lawn aeration is the best way to address this problem. Aeration works best when a mechanical core aerator is used. This machine removes small plugs of soil and places them on top of your lawn, leaving holes that allow nutrients and water to reach the root system. The process strengthens and invigorates the roots, resulting in a thicker and healthier lawn. For best results for your summer lawn, aeration should take place around May.
Once your Bermuda grass begins to turn green, regular fertilizing and watering during the growing season in order to maintain growth and color is recommended. Make sure your irrigation system is properly working to ensure the best summer lawn possible.
Let Goodman’s Landscape Maintenance help you manage your summer lawn including aeration, fertilization, ongoing maintenance and irrigation system checks/repairs. We can also help you with ryegrass overseeding in fall.