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Raking for a healthy lawn

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Leaf removal isn't the only reason to rake your lawn. Raking keeps your lawn healthy and healthy looking. You mow weekly. Why not rake weekly too? It'll get you out of the house, give you some incidental exercise and keep your lawn in tip top shape. Here are just a few reasons you should rake your lawn throughout the year, not just in the fall.

Why isn't raking leaves in fall enough?

Leaves block sunlight. Remember, fall isn't the only time leaves and debris block your grass from catching sun. Debris is present in your lawn all year. Keeping it raked gives sun a clear path to each and every blade. That means your grass grows taller and stronger, even in a drought. Just be sure to keep grass properly watered too.

Is it smart to expose grass to intense sunlight?

Newly raked grass catches more rays. Raking straightens out blades of grass that have become flattened. This allows more of their surface to catch the rays of the sun. While it's true that intense sun can burn grass, that's less likely with proper watering. Water at night so water isn't standing on grass when intense afternoon sun is present. Rake weekly so grass gets all the sunlight it needs to grow.

Weekly raking lets more than the sun in.

When grass is not regularly raked, standing water can be an issue. Raking to let water in is a smart strategy. Regular raking also allows nutrients from fertilization seep into soil too. If you use chemical fertilizers, they can burn your grass without regular raking. Even natural fertilizers shouldn't sit on grass. The quicker they get to the soil, the better.

Raking makes for more effective seeding.

Raking gives grass seeds a place to hide. How frustrating is it when birds eat your just sprinkled grass seed? If you rake before seeding, seeds fall deeper into the grass. They'll be harder for birds to pick up and closer to the soil. That means more will sprout. Feeding before you seed is even better. So, for best results, rake, feed, then seed.

Keep up appearances by raking regularly.

Raking the lawn makes it look greener. That's true, even if you don't have the best yard on the block. Regular raking removes dry, brown grass. It leaves the green to shine through. Your neighbors will appreciate your diligence in raking weekly. It keeps your lawn and the whole neighborhood looking clean and green.

Portions of this article were previously published by this author on a now closed Yahoo property.

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