First-time homeowner? Here’s a lawn care routine that will set your yard up for long-term success

·6 min read

With a change in season comes a change in routine — and Canadian Tire is here to make sure you’re Ready For Fall. From tips on how to set up a long-term lawncare strategy to the right way to rake those falling leaves, we’re bringing you everything you need to get back into a routine and rest easy.

Family playing in leaves and doing fall yardwork, fall lawn care
Photo via Canadian Tire

The pandemic has given many of us a new perspective on what we want and need in our homes, and for many first-time homebuyers, that means putting outdoor space at, or near, the top of the list.

If you’ve recently moved from a condo or apartment to a house, one of the main selling points was likely a yard and more space for you (and your pet) to roam around. That said, there are many new tasks and responsibilities that come with being a first-time homeowner and you may have never cared for a yard before. It can be overwhelming if you don’t know where to begin.

If you’re new to lawn maintenance, it’s important to develop a seasonal lawn care routine so you can keep your new yard healthy for years to come. Whatever you do, don’t put it off till next spring; by taking proper care of your lawn this fall, you’ll ensure you and your new lawn get off on the right foot.

So where do you start? Check out our tips to help prepare your lawn for year-round enjoyment.

Buy the right lawn mower

Happy little toddler girl and middle-aged father with lawn mower. Family, daughter, preschool child and dad cut the lawn. Portrait of family working in garden, trimming grass. Garden works in summer
Photo via Getty Images

First things first: you’ll need to purchase a lawn mower. If you have a big yard, a cordless lawn mower will help you cover every inch without having to worry about dragging the cord behind. The Greenworks 60V Cordless Lawn Mower has a versatile and lightweight deck which will help make mowing the lawn easy. It provides 60 minutes of runtime on a fully charged battery, so make sure to charge up ahead of time. If you prefer to go gas-powered, the Troy-Bilt 160cc 3-in-1 Self Propelled FWD Lawn Mower is a great option.

Whichever mower you choose, it’s important to make sure you’re cutting your lawn with sharp blades. Dull blades rip through grass, leaving jagged ends and an unpolished look. A tool sharpener is a great option to help you grind, sharpen and hone your blades, making it handy to have in the garage or tool shed.

Give your grass the correct amount of water

Water sprinkler from Canadian Tire, lawn care
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Watering your lawn might seem like a no-brainer, but you’ll need to be careful not to under- or overwater your grass. Tip: Water your lawn early in the morning as opposed to during the day. This ensures the afternoon sun won’t evaporate the moisture away before it can get down into the soil. An oscillating sprinkler is a great option to help maintain a green lawn by providing more even water distribution.

When watering your grass, make sure to look out for areas where water is pooling or the grass is discoloured, and adjust your watering accordingly. If certain areas are pooled with water, it means they’re oversaturated and you should be watering them less. If patches are discoloured, it means the opposite: they’re not getting enough moisture.

Either way, your sprinkler might be the problem—it’s not hitting enough areas of your lawn. The Gardena ZoomMaxx Spike Sprinkler can help fix that, offering up to 2,300 square feet of coverage.

Aerate, then fertilize

Lawn fertilizer and Scotts Turf Builder from Canadian Tire
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Lawn aeration is one of the most crucial tasks for a healthy lawn, and it’s best done in the fall. That’s because it requires making small holes in your lawn to help get more oxygen, water and nutrients down to your grass’s roots. Get aeration done in the fall and your lawn will be fully recovered by spring.

A tool like the Botanica Cultivator is an excellent choice for loosening and aerating soil. It’s also recommended to follow aeration with fertilization, as doing so can allow the fertilizer better access to your lawn’s roots.

Add lawn edgings, mulch and stone

Super Pro Lawn Edging from Canadian Tire
Photo via Canadian Tire

Give your yard a nice clean look by installing lawn edgings using wood, brick or stone. (This will keep grass from growing in areas where you don’t want it to.)

Use Super Pro Lawn Edging to create a space to place mulch, build a garden or add some interlocking stone with an underlay of limestone screening to create a different look. The Technoflex Landscape Edging is another excellent option, as it’s eco-friendly and perfect for lawns, patios or driveways thanks to its flexible fit.

Get rid of weeds

Grass trimmer and weed whacker from Canadian Tire
Photo via Canadian Tire

Dealing with weeds isn’t very fun, and probably isn’t something you dreamed about when you first saw your new lawn, but it’s a necessary step in any lawn care routine. It’s important to pull weeds before they flower, seed and spread everywhere, so any work you do to curtail weeds now will pay off big time down the road, saving you time and effort later on.

Use Greenworks 60V Grass Trimmer to get rid of visible weeds before applying chemicals to the area, or if your back and knees are up to it, you can simply pull the weeds by hand. (Just be sure to invest in a good set of gardening gloves.)

Then use weed treatments like RoundUp Grass and Weed Killer to prevent dandelions and other perennial weeds from growing on your lawn next spring.

Trim bushes and trees

Using chainsaw from Canadian Tire to trim tree branches
Photo via Canadian Tire

Once you’ve mastered your lawn, it’s time to move on to trees, bushes and other greenery. It’s important to trim your trees, bushes and hedges at least once a year to avoid that unsightly, overgrown look, and keep branches from growing dangerously close to your roof and/or power lines. A hedge trimmer makes for a great investment, and saves you from having to hire a landscaper.

The Husqvarna 120 38cc Gas Chainsaw, meanwhile, is great for taking care of any branches that need to be trimmed or removed, while a log splitter will help you take those cut branches and turn them into firewood you can use in your new fireplace.

And, of course, as the seasons change and leaves begin to fall, you’ll need to rake. Fallen leaves should be cleaned up as soon as you can to avoid them becoming a bigger headache, as wet leaves aren’t just harder to dispose of, they also trap water on your grass, preventing your lawn from drying properly.

Luckily, the Yardworks 48V Brushless AeroForce Leaf Blower should help you make short work of those fallen leaves, or, if you have a smaller lawn, you could simply opt for a rake instead. Whichever you choose, don’t forget the yard waste bags. It’s always a great idea to keep a pack ready to go in your garage.

Fall is all about getting back into a routine, and Canadian Tire is here to make sure you’re Ready For Fall. Whether you’re looking for tips on how to prepare your home and lawn for the cold weather or delicious, healthy recipes that will make nights a breeze, we’ve got you covered.

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