The Complete Guide to Organic Lawn Care: Everything You Need to Know Explained Simply

Overview

Your lawn is a representative of you and your home – it shows your neighbors and visitors how much time and effort you are willing to put into keeping your home looking good. But, in these fragile times, many people also want to ensure their lawn care does not endanger the environment or any of the pets or children that might play on that lawn.

Organic lawn care is becoming much more prevalent for many home owners, but knowing how to effectively plant a grow a lawn, keep weeds ...

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The Complete Guide to Organic Lawn Care: Everything You Need to Know Explained Simply

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Overview

Your lawn is a representative of you and your home – it shows your neighbors and visitors how much time and effort you are willing to put into keeping your home looking good. But, in these fragile times, many people also want to ensure their lawn care does not endanger the environment or any of the pets or children that might play on that lawn.

Organic lawn care is becoming much more prevalent for many home owners, but knowing how to effectively plant a grow a lawn, keep weeds away and kill bugs without using chemicals and unnatural law products can be complicated and downright confusing in many cases. This book was written with these things in mind, guiding every lawn care enthusiast through the steps needed to continue caring for a lawn without letting the concerns that develop because of unnatural products overwhelm you or your lawn.

The keys to organic lawn care, starting with how to create a low maintenance lawn are laid out in great detail in this book, providing the essential details you need to enjoy your yard while not endangering the environment, your pets, or your children. You will learn how to keep your lawn healthy with the right soil, seed, sod, and feeding without using any chemically enhanced products and how you can start caring for your lawn by mowing, watering, fertilizing, edging, and trimming with organic fertilizers and tools.

Finally, learn how to change your existing lawn so that it is both environmentally sound and just as beautiful as it has always been. The final step in the process will show you how to deal with pests, disease and weeds in your lawn organically. Lawn experts in every field have been interviewed for this book and their advice has been included to provide specific, top tips for organic lawn care. Anyone looking to maintain their lawn and stay eco-conscious need look no further than this book.

Atlantic Publishing is a small, independent publishing company based in Ocala, Florida. Founded over twenty years ago in the company president’s garage, Atlantic Publishing has grown to become a renowned resource for non-fiction books. Today, over 450 titles are in print covering subjects such as small business, healthy living, management, finance, careers, and real estate. Atlantic Publishing prides itself on producing award winning, high-quality manuals that give readers up-to-date, pertinent information, real-world examples, and case studies with expert advice.  Every book has resources, contact information, and web sites of the products or companies discussed.

This Atlantic Publishing eBook was professionally written, edited, fact checked, proofed and designed. The print version of this book is 288 pages and you receive exactly the same content. Over the years our books have won dozens of book awards for content, cover design and interior design including the prestigious Benjamin Franklin award for excellence in publishing. We are proud of the high quality of our books and hope you will enjoy this eBook version.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781601383679
  • Publisher: Atlantic Publishing Group Inc.
  • Publication date: 3/31/2011
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 1,425,469
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Table of Contents

Introduction: The Time Is Right for Organic Lawn Care 13

About This Book 14

How to Use This Book 15

Chapter 1 What Is Organic Lawn Care? 17

Brief History of Organic Lawn Care 19

Problems with Traditional Lawn Care 20

Benefits of Organic Lawn Care 24

Getting Started 27

Chapter 2 Healthy Soil 31

What Is Soil Made of? 32

Why is Healthy Soil Important? 34

Testing to Determine Soil Health 36

Compost 40

Do-It-Yourself Compost 44

Compost Tea 54

Vermicomposting 57

Case Study Liz Johnston 62

Chapter 3 The Right Grass 65

Types of Grass 66

Case Study Jeff Swano 77

Chapter 4 Organic Fertilizers 81

Basic Nutrients Required for Healthy Soil and Grass 82

Nonmineral Macronutrients 83

Primary Mineral Macronutrients 84

Secondary Mineral Macronutrients 85

Micronutrients 86

Types of Organic Fertilizers 87

Plant-based Fertilizers 88

Mineral-based Fertilizers 94

Animal-based Fertilizers 98

Inoculants 100

Chapter 5 Easy Organic Lawn Care 103

Equipment and Supplies Needed 104

Six Steps to Easy Lawn Care 111

Can Xeriscaping Work for You? 117

Chapter 6 Starting an Organic Lawn from Scratch 125

The Right Time 126

Prepping the Soil 127

Grading the Soil 129

Permanent Edging 133

Selecting Organic Grass 134

Watering After Installation 138

Tips for Lawn Installation Methods 141

Case Study Darin Brockelbank 147

Chapter 7 Rehabilitating a Lawn 149

Evaluating the Situation 150

Preparing the Soil 150

Improving Soil Quality 152

Replacement Grasses 154

Planting Grass 156

Tips for Successfully Patching the Lawn 157

Rehabbing Your Lawn 161

Case Study Jason Cook 161

Chapter 8 Transitioning a Lawn to Organic 165

Preparing for the First Year 168

The First Year Plan 170

Initial Evaluation: Springtime 171

Maintaining Your Lawn During Summer 177

Fall Maintenance and Care 179

Preparing and Maintaining During Winter 182

The Second Year of Transition 186

After the Second Year 189

You Can Bridge the Lawn, But Beware 191

Case Study Mark Borst 193

Chapter 9 Water and the Natural Lawn 195

Various Factors Affect Watering Needs 197

The Quality of Your Water 206

Should You Invest in A Filter System? 211

Other Water Options and Concerns 212

About Watering 219

Case Study Adrienne Stauffer 220

Chapter 10 Getting Control of Weeds and Pests 223

Understanding Weeds and Reacting to Them 224

Saying Goodbye to Weeds 228

Pests in the Lawn 233

Fighting Pests by Species 237

Fungal Infestations 241

Those Bigger Pests 243

Chapter 11 Mowing Your Lawn The Right Way 245

Mowing Tips 247

Edging Your Lawn Properly 252

Removing Thatch 253

Chapter 12 Going for Less Lawn 257

Types of Additions to Your Lawn 258

More Options to Consider 261

Conclusion 263

Is it Worth the Work? 263

Appendix A Commercial Organic Herbicides 265

Appendix B Reference Guide for Organic Lawn Care Throughout the Year 267

Appendix C Homemade Organic Pesticides 269

Soapy Spray 269

Garlic Spray 270

Buttermilk and Flour Spray 270

Hot and Sweet Pepper Spray 270

Appendix D Homemade Organic Herbicides 273

Citrus Vinegar Solution 273

Glossary 275

Bibliography 279

Author Biography 283

Index 285

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  • Posted March 11, 2012

    A comprehensive map for the would-be beginner and a fantastic reference book for the experienced organic landscaper.

    As spring begins to show signs that it’s right around the corner, stores ready themselves for the influx of customers looking to buy their lawn care essentials. But what do you do if the prospect of spreading poisons and dangerous chemicals on the same ground your barefoot children and pets run around on doesn’t exactly appeal to you? Then it’s time to start thinking about lawn care in terms of organic standards. And author Sandy Baker has exactly what you need to get started in her book, “The Complete Guide to Organic Lawn Care: Everything You Need to Know Explained Simply” “The Complete Guide to Organic Lawn Care” is a comprehensive book, details a myriad of steps, organic options, and common problems inherent with transitioning a lawn from ‘traditional’ to ‘eco-friendly’. Baker begins with the various reasons why people may want to switch and then gets into the actual concept of what organic lawn care entails. Later, she explains how to get your soil tested so you know what nutrient deficiencies you are up against and how to overcome them. She gives helpful hints for getting rid of weeds, pesky insects, fungus, and other unwelcomed infestations. There is even a section on how to mow your lawn the correct way. Chock full of ideas and possibilities, the book is a map for the would-be beginner and a fantastic reference book for the experienced organic landscaper. Baker is thorough in her explanations, ensuring that her methods are understandable for any reader regardless of skill level. Well-organized, the book flowed from one section to another with ease. I only noticed one small issue with the editing: page 230 discusses weeds and some various ways to stop them. Baker notes, “Instead of digging the weeds up individually, use the vinegar and citrus oil method for that small area.” However, this ‘vinegar and citrus oil method’ had not been discussed prior nor is it addressed after this reference is made. It wasn’t until I got to the end of the book that I found an appendix. Appendix D (page 273) explains this method and details the recipe. Had I not browsed the appendices, I would not have found this recipe and the ‘vinegar and citrus oil method’ I’d read about on page 230 would have remained an irritating, unanswered question. This issue could be easily fixed with the addition of a short notation, like “(see Appendix D, page 273)” immediately following the first mention of this new method. “The Complete Guide to Organic Lawn Care” is a must-read for anyone looking to leave behind the traditional, unnatural way of caring for their yard. Sandy Baker’s safer, eco-friendly steps allow for a healthier – and eventually even easier – way to maintain everything underfoot! Reviewed by Vicki Landes, author of “Europe for the Senses – A Photographic Journal”

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