Are you feeling pangs of the winter blues because your precious turf is looking more brown and dry than its usual lush, green and awesome?
In our modern society of instant gratification and creating a picture perfect lifestyle, thanks to social media platforms like Instagram and popular home renovation shows, the sight of a less than lush lawn can leave many people feeling less than satisfied.
Not only is a brown lawn aesthetically unappealing, but the lack of ‘green’ at this time of year can actually affect us physically and mentally in many different ways.
It’s scientifically proven that spending time outdoors in green spaces can significantly improve our mental wellbeing but did you know, even just the colour green, is said to have healing powers?
According to an online article by the Bourn Creative, the colour green is understood to be the most restful and relaxing colour for the human eye to view.
“Green is a colour that helps alleviate anxiety, depression and nervousness. Green also brings with it a sense of hope, health, adventure, and renewal, as well as self-control, compassion and harmony.”
It’s no wonder the lack of green, combined with these cold, dark days and extended periods of time indoors can put us all in a bad mood during winter!
What’s wrong with my winter lawn?
At this time of year we get lots of calls from disappointed lawn lovers, worried that their usually well manicured lawn looks dead, and desperately seeking advice on how to retain that healthy green colour all year round.
You may have noticed a neighbouring property looking lush and green and thought - why doesn’t my grass look like that? But before you get all ‘green’ with envy, the reality is they are probably just growing winter weeds, which will turn dry and crisp once the warmer weather arrives.
If you have a drought tolerant turf grass, otherwise known as a warm season grass, we understand that this time of year can cause you to feel confused and concerned by the current lacklustre look of your lawn.
But we are here to tell you this is just a phase…
Winter dormancy is normal
Just like we tend to hibernate inside to avoid the big winter chill, our warm season grasses; most commonly found in Victoria due to our temperate climate, don’t like the cold either and go into a state of dormancy. This allows the grass to minimise metabolic activity which helps the plant to conserve energy.
So what are warm season grasses and should you consider installing a different type of turf to avoid winter dormancy?
Cool vs warm season grasses
There are two scientific classifications for lawn types grown in Victoria, cool and warm season grasses.
Let’s take a closer look at some of their key characteristics, why winter dormancy is a good thing and how it can actually save you time and money in the long run.
Cool season grasses
As the name suggests, cool season grasses are best suited to cooler climates, ideally between 15 - 25 degrees celsius, and will continue to grow throughout cooler winter periods.
Examples of cool season grasses include Fescue, Ryegrass, Kentucky bluegrass and Bent grass.
These types of lawns, could still dull slightly in appearance during periods of cold, but for the most part, they will retain a pretty consistent dark green colour all year round.
This may sound appealing but, winter colour retention is the only throne of a cool season turf type.
The big downside of these types of grasses is - they are high maintenance.
To survive our hot, harsh Australian summers, they require more than double the amount of water than most other turf types, which is not only bad for the environment, but can also be bad for your hip pocket!
If they sustain any sort of damage at all (usually from lack of irrigation, dog urine burn, digging dogs or busy sport loving Aussie kids) they don’t have the same capacity to self-repair as many other turf types.
A cool season lawn also requires more frequent fertiliser applications and will need to be mown all year round!
At Coolabah we refer to these cool season lawns as the high maintenance ‘’pommie’’ girlfriend (sorry to all our UK friends)!
So if you don’t want to be a slave to your lawn, you might consider NOT choosing a cool season turf type if you live in Victoria.
Warm season grasses
On the other hand, we like to refer to warm season grasses as the ‘’Greenspace Gods’’ of our lawn landscape ground covers.
Examples of warm season grasses include couch, kikuyu, buffalo and zoysia.
These types of lawn are better suited to warmer regions and grow best in temperatures between 20 - 32 degrees celsius.
To protect themselves during our chilly Victorian winters they will go into a state of dormancy, where they will experience slow or almost no growth.
During this period they will require pretty much zero maintenance, zero watering and zero mowing. Yay!
The bittersweet consequence however, is that these environmental heroes can experience varying degrees of discolouration (depending on the season) during a cold snap.
Benefits of warm season grasses - the Coolabah Promise
At Coolabah Turf we specialise in watersmart, drought tolerant, warm season turf grasses perfect for our Australian climate. The hotter it is…the better they thrive! And all on the smell of an oily rag…so to speak!
Once a new Coolabah lawn is established, it will not only survive, but it will thrive on just a single once a week watering – cutting your water bill more than half!
And at this time of year (winter) – it will require almost no water at all!
The fertiliser requirement is also significantly less costly and time consuming than a cool season lawn – just another way we can save you time and money in your lawn maintenance costs.
However the biggest asset of a warm season turf type is - if they ever get damaged, they have an amazing ability to self-repair.
This means our Coolabah team can guarantee, with every lawn sold that we can help our customers protect their long term landscape investment.
The environmental platform which underpins the foundation of everything we do, is crafted around the production of lawns which need less water, less fertiliser and less mowing.
Because of the types of turf we choose to grow and supply our Victorian markets, we are able to offer product warranties on all varieties and free lawn care advice for the life of every lawn we sell.
This gives you peace of mind to know that if you have a lawn care issue in your backyard – we have a lawn care solution to help revive a damaged area.
Lawn for life is more than just a Coolabah slogan - it’s a promise.
But surely there is something I can do to restore some much needed green right now?
So we’ve convinced you that our warm season turf types are the most cost effective, low maintenance and best suited to our Victorian climate, but you STILL want to know how you can inject some more colour in your lawn right now - in the dead of winter?
Don’t worry we get it.
We love a green lawn too!
That’s why we can happily prescribe your winter dormant lawn a dose of our magic potion - ColourGuard Plus, an all natural turf grass colourant that is environmentally friendly and 100% natural.
Just one application will instantly restore a natural green colour to any turf and will be enough to get you through the rest of winter with a healthy looking lawn!
Then, in just six short weeks, spring will be here and you will be able to reap the rewards of your hardy warm season grass!
A good quality, watersmart, drought tolerant turf grass is a long term investment. So try not to worry about the short term gratification of a green lawn this winter and we promise you will soon be back in the running for the best looking lawn in the street championships title again!
For more tips and tricks on winter lawn care contact our Coolabah Team on 1800 055 515.