Outdoor Backyard Ideas

5 horticulturalist tips to revive your lawn in autumn

Take your lawn from lacklustre to lush.
Loading the player...

As autumn approaches, it’s a great time to think about caring for your lawn. A season of hot weather, backyard barbecues, cricket matches as well as drought and water restrictions can leave even the healthiest lawn looking a little lacklustre by the time autumn leaves start falling.

Luckily, autumn is the best time to rejuvenate your lawn and get it looking healthy again.

Horticulturalist Adam Woodhams shares his top five tips to show your lawn some TLC and prepare it for the season ahead. 

Healthy lawn
(Credit: Photography: Sue Stubbs | Styling: Bree Oliver)

1. Feed your lawn

Putting extra love into the garden in autumn will result in a garden that is healthy all year ’round, and your lawn is no different, says Adam. “Feeding your lawn now helps with both summer recovery and winter preparedness,” he says.

“As the days are getting shorter this becomes more difficult for your lawn as it needs sunlight to generate and store energy. Feeding allows your lawn to create energy more efficiently, it gives it the extra boost to both recover and to build its winter resilience.”

heritage home Melbourne garden
(Credit: Photography: Armelle Habib / Photography assistant: Sara Wilkosz / Styling: Julia Green / Styling assistant: Jade Lee Martin)

2. Let there be light

“You need to maximise your lawns exposure to sunlight so keep any falling leaves at bay and keep an eye on any overgrown shrubs that may be shading your lawn too,” says Adam.

“Try running your mower over your lawn at a setting higher than your normal mowing height. Your mower will act like a vacuum cleaner. And all those leaves you catch? They make great garden mulch. Or better yet, use a leaf blower for a fast and easy tidy-up!”

Rear of home with healthy lawn
(Credit: Photography: Louise Roche | Styling: Kylie Jackes)

3. Aerate, aerate, aerate

“At this time of year you may also notice bare patches in your lawn where soil is compacted. The quick and easy way to combat this is to use a garden fork to aerate,” says Adam.

“Drive the fork in a few centimetres and rock gently back and forth. Repeat over the entire area at roughly 5cm spacing before finally raking some dry, clean river sand over the area to fill the holes and keep them open for air and water circulation.”

An arbour with views to the vineyards.
(Credit: Photography: Karl Rogers)

4. Keep mowing as required

“It’s important to give your lawn a light trim this time of year,” says Adam, who acknowledges there is plenty of confusing advice about exactly how high to cut your lawn at this time of year.

“The fact of the matter is it’s important to find the right height and just stick with it year-round. The actual height will vary with your lawn type, but I like to aim for what is known as ‘foot feel’ – walk on your lawn barefoot and it should be nice and comfy. Not too hard or too spongy.”

Southern Highlands NSW garden with neatly mowed lawn
(Credit: Photography: Abbie Melle)

5. Make the most of water

“If conditions have been dry, you can reduce the loss of water by applying a quality soil wetter – this will help ensure any rainfall is soaking in and not running off.”

Related stories