If you missed the Spring Maryland Home and Garden Show last weekend, you can still attend this weekend, March 7-9, 2014, at the Maryland State Fairgrounds in Timonium. Along with the region’s most talented landscapers showcasing 15 vibrant backyard designs and more than 300 expert exhibitors showcasing the latest innovative indoor and outdoor products, services and solutions for homeowners, Orioles’ Head Groundskeeper Nicole McFadyen headlines an all-star line-up of expertly-led seminars and workshops.
To help homeowners (and show attendees!) prepare for a winning season in growing good grass, here are a few expert tips on producing and maintaining grass like a lawn MVP from one of only two female head groundskeepers in Major League Baseball.
Removing the clippings from your lawn after regular mowing is a good habit to form. A continued build-up of clippings on your lawn can promote disease, block sunlight from reaching the growing turf bed and begin to decompose the grass underneath.
Maintaining a good turfgrass can be as simple as regular, consistent cutting, watering and fertilizing. Although it depends on your type of grass, mowing should take place once or twice per week during the growing season. An irrigation system is best for watering, but rain (unless in a drought) can be sufficient enough for your grass to thrive.
Performing a soil test can tell you a lot about your lawn and help diagnose how you should care for it. It allows you to determine any deficiencies in your soil or an overabundance of a particular nutrient, which can be helpful figuring out the proper balance of water and fertilizer. Affordable soil test kits and directions can be ordered through your local department of agriculture.
Healthy root systems are key to keeping a lush, green lawn. Annually aerifying your lawn helps incorporate healthy amounts of oxygen into the soil and promotes deep, strong roots. You can use anything that can puncture the top ½ inch of the grass layer—a spiked shoe, a drill with a ½ inch drill bit, an aerifying machine rented from a local garden center—to help air movement in the soil.
Improper mowing techniques are by far the most damaging practice to home lawns. A home lawn cut height of 2 ½ to 3 inches is ideal because it’s not too tall or too short. Higher cut grass could start to lay over and block sunlight and lower cut grass can die easier. Mower blades should be routinely sharpened, too. Clean-cut blades of grass limit the pathways for disease and fungus to enter your lawn.
More expert advice from local home professionals in landscaping, heating and ventilation, home organization, roofing, and floors and carpets await visitors at the Maryland Home & Garden Show taking place at the Maryland State Fairgrounds, 2200 York Road in Timonium. The Show will be packed with the products and inspiration for homeowners as well as educational seminars covering topics from pruning to eco-friendly backyards and square-foot gardening.
The Show will be open Friday, March 7, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Saturday, March 8, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sunday, March 9, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Tickets are $12 for adults, $10 for seniors, $3 for kids ages 6-12, and free for children under 6 years old and active military, police and fire employees with ID. Admission to the Maryland Spring Craft Show is included with regular ticket price or $6 for Craft Show admission only.
Ticket discounts are available online at www.mdhomeandgarden.com/spring and from participating M&T Bank locations. Online purchases come with a free full-year subscription to one of four lifestyle magazines.
Free parking is available onsite and a free shuttle is available between buildings courtesy of Chesapeake Home and Living.
The Maryland Home & Garden Show is sponsored by M&T Bank.
For more information on the Maryland Home & Garden Show, visitwww.mdhomeandgarden.com/spring or call (410) 863-1180.