How Do I Make My Lawn Greener?

A green lawn-the ideal for any homeowner. How do you achieve a beautiful, cushiony stretch of green lawn from your front door all the way to the street? There are a combination of factors that go into it.

Grass Selection

The type of grass affects how green your lawn is. Grasses with finer textures tend to look ""greener"" up close, because the cut edges are not as large and noticeable. Annual ryegrass appears much greener than St. Augustine.

Warm-season grasses such as Bermudagrass, St. Augustine, and Zoysia, go dormant and turn brown during cooler winter months. If you want a green lawn during the winter, you have to overseed with annual ryegrass or another annual cool-season grass. There is no amount of water and fertilizer that will green the grass during the off season.

Cool-season grasses turn brown and go dormant to some extent during hot and dry weather. Additional water can prevent some of this, but grasses such as Kentucky bluegrass and fescues aren't going to look their best during hot weather, regardless of what you do.

Grass Health

The overall health of your lawn makes a big difference in whether your grass is green or not. Keeping the lawn free of diseases, pests, and concentrated foot traffic helps the lawn stay green.

When mowing the lawn never remove more than 1/3 of the grass blade at once. Taking more will stress the grass and can lead to a less green appearance.

When grass is dry, it will start to take on a grayish appearance. The lawn will look like it has a dull sheen on it. The answer then is not fertilizer, but water. Your grass will need between 1-3 inches of water per week in order to stay green.

Equipment maintenance

Dull mower blades are another cause of grass that is less green than you might want. Dull blades end up ripping the grass, which puts a raggedy edge on the grass blade. When viewed together, these raggedy edges also give the lawn a grayish look.


If your watering program is solid, you're being vigilant about pests and diseases, and your equipment has been properly maintained, the last thing to examine is whether you lawn could use more fertilizer. Nitrogen will cause the lawn to ""green up,"" but excess nitrogen will run off and cause pollution. Before applying fertilizer to your lawn, it's a good idea to test the pH of the soil and get a soil test. If the pH is too low or too high, any fertilizer you put down won't be available to the plants-causing you to waste your money.

By looking at all of the different factors that can cause the lawn to be less green than you'd like, you will discover the best way to restore it to your desired appearance.

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