How to Prepare Your Lawn for Fall and Winter

prepare sprinklers for winter

Have you thought about preparing your lawn for fall and winter yet? The first freeze could arrive in a few months, so it’s important to think about how you can help your lawn survive the cold. Let’s give you some pointers on how to get your lawn ready and be prepared to turn off your sprinker system for the winter to get a head start.

The Greater Austin Metro Area can experience plenty of pleasantly warm days through October. Still, we can also experience unexpected cold spells that won’t harm your lawn but could be fatal to your sprinklers. Though not recognized for its snowfall and cold temperatures, the Greater Austin Metro Area can have wintry events that can impact your property. Six inches of snow fell on the city during the winter storm of 2021, making it the snowiest year since 2004. Use the following tips to ensure the best possible lawn health and sprinkler preservation for your property.

Is Your Lawn Winter-Ready?

Below are several important things to keep in mind when preparing your lawn for the colder season:

  1. Aerate your lawn if you haven’t already this year about three weeks before you turn off your sprinklers. By allowing both air and moisture to reach the roots, core aeration creates a strong base for your lawn’s ability to survive the winter.
  2. Plan to fertilize in the winter. To promote strong roots over blade growth, winter fertilizers include lower nitrogen content and higher phosphorus and potassium content.

You should winterize about three weeks before the ground freezes or in early to mid-October.

  1. Mow your lawn one last time at the height of three inches after turning off your sprinklers. You might need to trim it some more a little later if warm rainfall occurs.
  2. After a few sharp frosts, the lawn will naturally turn brown. Look for color differences at this time of year, such as lingering green patches in the leaves. This might simply be a patch of a hardier seed variety, or it might happen in protected regions, but it might also point to a low-lying portion of the lawn that requires leveling since it is retaining more water.

Winterizing Your Sprinkler System

As the colder season arrives, winterize your irrigation system to guarantee it will survive and be ready for spring and summer. Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Before a heavy freeze, irrigation lines should be thoroughly dried to avoid damaging hoses, heads, valves, and regulators. On average, the first freeze in the Greater Austin Metro Area typically occurs in the third or fourth week of October.
  2. An air compressor should be used to blow out the lines. You can rent a compressor from the majority of rental providers.
  3. Regulators to prevent backflow must be emptied.
  4. Adjust or shut off your timing clocks and controls.

Austex Sprinklers Is Here to Help Make Sure Your Irrigation System Is Winter-Ready!

Austex Sprinklers is happy to winterize and perform any necessary annual sprinkler maintenance on your property. Most services require the homeowner to be present. Call us at (512) 721-8564 to schedule a seasonal adjustment appointment.

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