CONTINUED FROM PAGE 39
appear. Sometimes it’s simply bad luck; other
times weeds indicate an imbalance in pH.
Grass needs a neutral pH of between 6. 5
and 7. An imbalance in either direction can
result in weeds, moss or poor growth. Some
homeowners reach for lime or sulfur to adjust
pH, but it’s not wise. “Across the United States,
there are a variety of soil types: clay, sandy and
those that are in between,” says Hamza.
“Getting a pH reading is highly recommended before making any additions to your
soil.” Do-it-yourself kits will give you an
approximation, but they aren’t as accurate or
detailed as professional tests. You can also
check with your state university extension
office or a local lawn-service company.
When it comes to using herbicides or
pesticides to eradicate weeds, Hamza says it’s
critical to follow label directions. “The recommendations are very specific,” he says.
“And not following them can do more harm
Proper watering and mowing techniques
help prevent weeds. MacDonald recommends
giving lawns a deep watering once a week.
One to two inches of water is ideal.
Finally, cut wisely. For the first cut of the
season, Hamza recommends lowering the
blade just a little to remove debris, leaves or
mats from the previous winter. After that,
however, bring the blade back up and avoid
cutting short. Grass that’s 2 to 3 inches high
develops a healthier root system, is better able
to withstand drought and will more easily
crowd out weeds than grass cut shorter. C
Laura Langston is a novelist and journalist who is quite content with the green grass growing outside her Pacific Northwest home.
WE ARE LOOKING for the most inventive
ways that Costco members have used
Costco in remodeling a small backyard
space. This could be an outdoor kitchen, a
play space for the kids, or a quiet retreat
in the corner of your garden.
Just send before-and-after photos of
your small-space backyard remodel and
a brief description of your project.
Winners will be selected by a panel
of judges whose decisions will be final.
The first prize winner receives a $500
Costco Cash card. One second-prize
winner will receive a $250 Costco Cash
card; one third-prize winner will receive
a $100 Costco Cash card. Submissions
may be featured in a future issue of
The Costco Connection.
All entries must be received by
September 1, 2011. Send your photos and
write-up along with your Costco membership number to: Backyard Makeover, P.O.
Box 34088, Seattle, WA 98124-1088, or
“Backyard Makeover” in the subject line.
No purchase necessary. Open to legal residents of the
U.S. (except Puerto Rico) who are age 18 or older at
the time of entry. One entry per household. Employees
of Costco and their families are not eligible.
What will the neighbors think?
They’ll think you hired a professional to maintain your enviable landscaping.
But with your premium, built-to-last Solo professional-grade sprayer, it’s
all you — and the results you expect from the top-of-the-line sprayer.
Solo sprayers are available now at your local Costco® warehouse.
40 ;e Costco Connection MARCH 2011