I have to rototill my lawn to make it grow better
While rototilling your lawn can help level out very uneven soil and open up air spaces, it is not necessary to sustain a healthy lawn. Tilling can bring buried weed seeds to the surface and cover up essential topsoil. Microbes, essential for breaking down thatch and organic material, reside in this top layer. Top dressing with compost or topsoil, as well as aerating and seeding will give you good results with much less effort.
If I use sod rather than seed, the lawn will be better
Sod may look better when initially laid down, but the health of the soil is what determines the long term health of the turf grass. You can choose the optimal seed blend for your location and you’ll not have to deal with transplant issues. Developing stronger roots when planting, increases the likelihood you’ll have healthier and deeper roots over time.The effort put into healthy soil preparation is the most important determination.
If I add extra fertilizer, my lawn will be healthier
Turf grass will only use what it needs. Too much fertilizer applied at the wrong time can burn your turf. Excess fertilizer can wash off lawns into storm drains and local waterways causing BIG algae problems. Always test your soil first to see what it actually needs to support healthy turf.
I always need to put down lime when I add seed.
Don’t guess. Soil test. Lime raises the pH of your soil. You only know if soil pH is low by testing the soil. Soil test kits can be picked up at your local Cooperative Extension office.
Once I remove these weeds they will never come back
We wish this were true! Weeds are opportunists, and will rapidly colonize any thin or bare areas. Commonly overlooked ways that weed seeds move into yards is by birds, animals, and vehicle tires.
Many backyard birds eat weed seeds and ‘deposit’ them. New weeds are frequently seen sprouting below tree branches, along fence lines and on the ground under roof gutters. House sparrows for example, weave nests from dried grass seed stalks and line them with fluffy dandelion seeds. New dandelions can sprout up on the ground below the nest or perch.
Dandelions may be more abundant as birds drop seeds while moving in and out of their home. Additionally, crabgrass and other weed seeds may be picked up on the road where they routinely sprout in pavement cracks. These are carried home in tire treads and wash into lawn edges during rain storms.