Since we last wrote about the brutal summer weather conditions and their effect on our Lawns we have had some useful rain and a helpful drop in temperatures. We have not all had equal rainfall, but across most of Suffolk, Cambridgeshire and Essex we are finding that the soil under most Lawns is now damp enough to support some re growth and recovery.
Recovery is happening on most Lawns to some extent. The variation in rates of recovery remains large. As we suspected those that went into the hot/dry weather mown short have fared the worst. Lawns with high levels of soil compaction and grass areas with little shade are also recovering more slowly. This latter group is the one where we are finding the highest instances of Persistent dry patch. These are areas of soil which have become hydrophobic and have so far not absorbed enough moisture to allow grass recovery.
Climatic conditions for most lawns in East Anglia have been extremely challenging since December 2017. During the first week of December we had the first big drops in temperature, heavy frosts and snow which were to be a feature all the way into March this year. The periods of very low temperature and heavy frost were only interspersed by periods of heavy snowfall or rain. Many lawns were to some degree either waterlogged or frozen solid for months on end.