Most Aussies love their backyards and take great pleasure in keeping their lawns green and healthy. When you have kids or pets however, you also need to keep your lawns and backyards safe for them, as well as keeping it all looking stylish and well maintained.
After all, when you have family and friends over for a weekend BBQ, you don’t want bare patches of lawn and dead bushes to be on display. So to help you have the perfect backyard, here are our top 10 tips for keeping your gardens looking good, whilst at the same time being a haven for all members of your family.
- Choose the right turf: The best turf for a garden that gets lots of use, particularly if you have a few dogs, will be determined by your location. So if you constantly have bare spots, you can either try using patch seeds or talk to your local turf company about replacing your turf with a type that is hardier and longer lasting.
- Choose the right plants: With young children and pets, you need to be careful with the types of plants in your garden. In particular, you need to avoid Brunfelsia (Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow), Liliums, Wandering Jew, Madagascar Jasmin, Oleanders, Daffodil and Tulip bulbs, Toadstools, and Tomato plants, as these are all toxic to either dog or cats.
- Pet business: Dogs often use the garden as their toilet, especially if they don’t go for a daily walk. So for everyone’s health, you need to always be vigilant and make sure that you keep the lawns and garden beds clear of faeces at all times.
- Avoid toxic chemicals: Many fertilizers and herbicides are very toxic, so always read the accompanying paperwork thoroughly before buying and using these type of preparations. Talking to your turf supplier is a good idea, because they can recommend the best fertilizers for your lawns to keep them healthy and green all year round and safe for your kids and pets.
- Aerate the soil: Pets and children can cause tracks to form in your lawn and bald patches to appear, due to constant use that compacts the soil and prevents the grass from growing. If you have noticed this occurring in your lawn, make sure to aerate the soil to reduce the compaction (using s garden fork or commercial aerator) and top dress in spring for a lush, green summer lawn.
- Consider garden fences: Many homes have more than one lawn at the rear of the house separated by garden beds. In this case, you might find that it’s a good idea to fence off one of these laws from the dogs, so that you keep one lawn absolutely perfect, whilst the dogs can run around to their heart’s content on the other lawn.
- Cover compost: Compost can be full of pathogens, particularly if it is mouldy. If you have a compost barrel aerator, then you should have no problems, but an open compost heap in the garden can be a health hazard to both children and dogs. Always keep it covered and if possible, buy a barrel composter to keep everyone safe from infections.
- Don’t forget shady spots: Everyone need some serious shade in the summer, but it’s also necessary for most of the year in Australia. So make sure that you install some large shady trees or big bushes in your garden for your dogs to lie down for a nap and get some well-deserved relief from the direct sun.
- Taking care with sandpits: Many parents love the idea of a sandpit for their young children, but if you have dogs or cats then it can turn into a pet’s toilet. Even the neighbour’s cats will jump over the fence to take advantage of your sandpit, so by all means have one installed for your kids, but make sure that it has a cover that can’t be circumvented by dogs and cats.
- Water deeply: To keep your lawns green and healthy they will need to be watered deeply, but not more often than once a week. Short, shallow and frequent watering will lead to shallow roots and a lack of nutrients, resulting in poor quality and unhealthy grass. So encourage deep roots with deep watering and enjoy lush grass all year round.
For quality turf on the Sunshine Coast, call us on 1300 781 175 or complete our online enquiry form.