Lawns

Turf can still be laid, provided the soil is not too wet or frozen. Work from planks, to avoid compacting the soil. Do not walk on newly laid turf, and leave it undisturbed for several weeks to allow the new roots to establish.

Newly-turfed areas can be mown with the blades set to the highest setting, as soon as the grass reaches 5cm (2in) in height.

Mow the established lawns if the weather is mild enough and the grass shows signs of growth. Ensure the first cut of the season is light, raising the blades 0.5cm (0.25in) higher than the usual cutting height.

Where lawns are to be grown from seed, prepare the ground for sowing by cultivating, levelling and then firming the soil. Doing this now will allow the soil to settle prior to sowing later in the month, or in April.

In late March you can apply a high nitrogen spring/summer lawn fertiliser to encourage good, strong growth to help the lawn recover after the winter. However, it's important to know that fertilisers use a lot of energy to make, so using the minimum required to keep your lawn in shape is best for the environment.

Straighten lawn edges using a half-moon turf iron and a board, or use sand to mark out a curve, which can then be cut out with the iron.

Sow a wildflower meadow.

Troubleshooting

Disperse worm casts (left) with a hard brush once they have dried out.

Bare patches can be re-sown at the end of the month in mild areas.

Molehills can be a problem in spring, as the creatures tunnel in search of food. Tolerate moles if possible; however should the activities of a mole be considered too disruptive there are several steps which can be taken encourage them to move elsewhere.

Fusarium patch, or snow mould, and algae may continue to be a problem. The best way of tackling these is to improve airflow and light over the lawn by pruning back any overhanging trees or shrubs. Alternatively it may be much easier in the long run to plant shade-tolerant ground cover plants instead.

Gardeners' calendar

Find out what to do this month with our gardeners' calendar

Advice from the RHS

Get involved

The Royal Horticultural Society is the UK’s leading gardening charity. We aim to enrich everyone’s life through plants, and make the UK a greener and more beautiful place.