Angie's List: Winter turns to spring, and shovels into mowers for lawn maintenance

Spring is an important time for lawn maintenance, any neglect now could mean dead or damaged grass for the rest of the year.

Stephen Wiley recently bought his home and has already made big plans for the yard this year.

"There's just a lot that needs to be done from a rearranging standpoint,” said Wiley, “There is some barrier areas, some things that I would like to change; bushes are too close to the house, bushes are too close to the walk, they are overgrown in some areas so I really want to thin out and redo it the way I want because we do plan on living here another eight to ten years so I would really like to be able to enjoy my project for that time."

When it comes to your lawn, you don't have to go over the top with your landscaping, but Angie's List founder, Angie Hicks says you do need to pay attention to the basics.

“First you want to go around your house and take an assessment of how everything looks on the exterior, how does your yard look, are your shrubs in good shape, do you have the trees you want, also how does that deck or patio look? You can make a list of things that need tackled now as you get ready for the spring season,” Angie recommends.

According to Angie, spring is the time to start thinking about grass.

“You want to be sure that you are aerating your lawn, fertilizing and also that you are seeding now. And then get ready that first mow is just around the corner so don't forget to lower your mower for your first mowing and then raise it for the rest of the season.”

Mower technician, Chris Arvin, says homeowners should check the condition of their mower blades to make sure it’s in tip-top condition before spring.

"When it's on its side you can look at the condition of the blade and see if it's dull and most of the time if you mow 25 times its dull. The mower's manufacturer would like to have the homeowner sharpen their blade after every eight mows, but that is pretty excessive. If they get it done once a season they are doing better than most,” says Arvin.

Even though many people think they need to run out and buy a new mower when the blade is dull, Angie says that a simple tune up can be much cheaper, “a mower can be tuned up and repaired for as much as $50 to $100 which is a lot cheaper than buying a new mower."

Wiley says he will hire a pro to apply chemicals to his lawn.

"I hire someone to do the chemicals I would say mostly out of ignorance. I don't really know enough about what to put down when. It's easy enough for me to hire that process out. All the other stuff; the mowing, the raking, the aeration, I do all that stuff myself."

When yard work and maintenance requires more effort than you’re willing to spend, Angie says it is time to turn to professionals, especially if your lawn needs chemical treatment.

"If you are going to need chemicals to get that extra boost this year because professionals are going to be certified in handling the different types of fertilizers and chemicals that might be necessary,” says Angie.

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