Common Lawn Damage from Snow and How to Fix It

The winter can be tough on your lawn. No matter how much you prepare for the winter by aeration, good fall watering, and fertilizing, the potential still exists that the snow and ice from winter will damage your grass. As a property manager, the snow removal activities that you undertake to keep residents safe can cause damage to the grass around your property. Snow caused damages can leave grass in and around your condominium complex looking sick and leaving residents to wonder what happened to their property. Here is a look at common damages caused by snow and what you can do as a property owner to remedy these damages in the spring.

Damage from Salt

This kind of damage isn’t really caused by snow, but rather the salt that you use on sidewalks or parking areas to get rid of snow and ice. However, it can have a negative impact on the health of the lawns around your property, especially if it builds up in a pile of snow that is slow to melt. Damage to grass from salt or deicers is usually characterized by brown patches along the edge of sidewalks or driveways. Damage caused by salt is relatively easy to remedy in the spring. Water the grass well and make sure to schedule an aeration service early in the spring followed by a good slow release fertilizer. Watering well will wash the salt out of the grass around sidewalks and parking areas. The rest of the activities will boost new growth, filling in the brown spots.

Crown Hydration

This is usually common in the late winter or early spring. Lawns that have taken in a lot of water, usually from quick melting snow on a warm winter day, can freeze and die, if the weather drops back to freezing again. The result is spots of brown, dead grass. Unfortunately, as a property manager there isn’t much you can do to prevent this. Your best bet is to wait until spring then aerate and fertilize well to kick start new grass growth.

Winter Desiccation

Winter desiccation is caused by the soil in grassy areas freezing hard and causing root cells to burst. This causes the grass to die, and unfortunately, like with crown hydration, this damage is hard to prevent. If your property’s grassy areas should suffer from winter desiccation, the only resolution in the spring is to reseed or re-sod the areas that have died.

Snow Mold

This is the most common problem caused by snow in grassy areas. There are two types of snow mold; grey and pink. Both are a huge nuisance and can cause major damage to grass. Snow mold grows underneath the snow, in places where snow melts slowly. This can be underneath the large piles along the edge of your sidewalks or parking areas, or those shady places around the property where it just takes a long time to melt. The fortunate thing about snow mold is that it generally only damages the top of the grass, leaving the roots undamaged. Snow mold can be seen for a few days after the snow has melted, and eventually turns in to brown spots. To remedy snow mold, dethatch the areas that are brown, aerate and fertilize and start a good routine of watering. It will take a little while, but the grass will eventually grow back. To limit snow mold growth in the winter, avoid making deep piles and make a good aeration and fertilization part of your fall property maintenance routine.

If you are looking for a reliable lawn care contractor for your condominium complex, one that can help you get things looking great in the spring and maintaining that amazing look year-round, the professionals at Fresh Cut Lawn and Landscape are here to help. For more information on how we can help you, please contact us at (586) 739-6646.