There’s no mould like snow mould. Living in Winnipeg, your lawn will almost inevitably get snow mould at some point or another – we always get snow, after all. Snow mould is incredibly easy to identify; if you see grey-whte or pink-white circles in your lawn, ranging in size from a few centimetres to a metre, you’ve got snow mould. Grey snow mould is the least harmful of the two as it only affects grass blades; pink snow mould can kill the roots.
Snow mould is, fortunately, fairly easy to deal with. The first thing you’ve got to do is rake your lawn. Snow mould can cause grass to clump together and hinder growth; when you rake, you give all that grass space to breathe. What’s more, raking can help get rid of excess thatch (more on that later). Once your lawn is raked, you can sow new grass seed if need be. You might also want to use mechanical dethatchers or aerators, but you should be cautious about using these too soon; they can damage young grass. More often than not, it’s best to mow the lawn a few times before bringing in the big guns.
The real cure for snow mould is to prevent it from happening in the first place. There are a lot of preventive care techniques in the anti-mould toolkit. First, lawn maintenance. The thatch we were talking about earlier? It provides a cozy layer of protection for the mould to grow in under the snow. You actually need some thatch for your lawn to stay its healthiest; generally, you want about a half an inch. Dethatching in the autumn will help prevent snow mould.
Moulds can use the same nutrients your grass does in order to grow; snow mould is especially fond of high-nitrogen fertilizers. You don’t want to fertilize too late in the season. If you’re expecting snow in late October, you should apply your last fertilizing treatment sometime in early to mid-September.
Make sure your lawn is cut short before the first snow. Grey mould loves to feast on grass blades so if you keep your lawn short, the mould has less food to eat.
Your winter activities can affect snow mould, too. You might find that most of your snow mould is around your sidewalk and driveway. When shovelling, many people will just dump the snow at a point near the edge of their driveway, sidewalk, or property. That leads to an uneven distribution of snow, and areas that are packed full of snow are more prone to getting snow mould. Try to mix things up when you’re shovelling!
This might seem like a lot to handle; we understand. Lawns are pretty complex ecosystems and there’s a lot that goes into proper lawn maintenance. We’re here to help. We offer full service property maintenance in Winnipeg, which means we’ll take care of your lawn in the spring, summer, and fall, all while clearing snow for you in the wintertime. Snow mould won’t stand a chance!