The beautiful lawns and gardens of south Texas are a great source of pride. You spend hours maintaining acres of grass and a garden full of flowers and vegetables. Would you like to spend a little less time and money working in your yard and a little more time enjoying it? We found four hacks for your lawn and four for your garden that will let you do just that. Check them out.
1. Sharpen the blades on your mower at least once a season. Dull blades rip grass instead of cutting it, which can create an unhealthy appearance and leave your lawn more susceptible to disease and drought. Some lawn care and home improvement stores provide this service, or you can learn to do it yourself!
2. Equip your mower to mulch your grass clippings instead of bagging them. This saves time and provides nutrition to your yard, which could save you money on fertilization. If you've heard that mulching with grass clippings will cause thatch in your lawn, we have good news. Thatch isn't made up of grass clippings. It's a layer of decomposing grass roots. So you can mulch without worrying.
3. Water your lawn early in the morning. When the sun comes out, excess moisture will evaporate so your grass doesn't stay wet too long. Watering late in the day can cause yellow grass or the growth of fungus because the water stays on the grass longer. This is especially true if some areas of your lawn don't drain well.
4. Invest in a quality heavy-duty zero-turn riding mower. It will last longer than a standard riding mower and give you more accurate and professional-looking results. If you spend several hours a week mowing your lawn, this is a necessary piece of equipment that is well worth the extra money.
5. Use coffee grounds or egg shells to prevent pests in your garden instead of chemicals, and you'll save money while you protect the environment. Or while you're watering your lawn in the early morning, spray your garden with a teaspoon and a half of mild liquid soap mixed with a quart of water.
6. Fill a terracotta pot with abrasive sand that's been tossed in mineral oil. When your gardening tasks are done, push your hand tools into the pot. The sand and mineral oil will keep them clean and sharp until you need them again.
7. Don't throw out the water after cooking vegetables. Cooking releases an abundance of vitamins and minerals into the water. Instead of pouring them down the drain, let the nutrient-rich water cool, and use it to water your plants. The extra nutrition will show in healthier and stronger plants.
8. If some of your plants aren't as green as you'd like them to be, then sprinkle some Epsom salt around them. The magnesium in the salt is an essential component in chlorophyll production. About a tablespoon per 12 inches of height once a month should do the trick.
Soft, green grass and a healthy garden are sources of great pride. Spend less time and money working on your lawn and garden and more time enjoying them by implementing the hacks above.