Lessons Learned from Florida's Frost

March 10th, 2018


Lessons Learned from Florida's Frost

Many areas throughout the United States have been gripped by strange and unexpected weather patterns during the first three months of 2018. Florida is no exception; northern Florida even saw snow in January! Much of the Sunshine State experienced freezing temperatures this winter as well, which led to adverse effects on the warm season turf grasses covering the yards of most Florida homeowners.

Now that winter has lifted its shadow and spring has arrived, here are the most important lessons learned from the Florida frost of 2018.

Browning Is Okay, But Remain Cautious

Your warm season turf grass most likely turned brown when frost arrived. This looks alarming, but it simply signals that your turf reverted into a dormant state. Browning is normal for this time of year and to be expected given the low temperatures recently.

Your lawn should automatically rebound and begin producing new green growth this spring, but be sure to keep on the lookout for signs of permanent damage. If temperatures suddenly fell below 30 degrees Fahrenheit over the winter, your lawn could have suffered significant damaged. The grass may initially appear wilted, and then turn to a whitish grey or brown color. It may even mat to the ground and smell putrid.

Play the Waiting Game

Excess foot and vehicle traffic may worsen the effects of cold damage, so stay off damaged turf until the soil and plants have completely thawed. Wait for the sun to rise high in the sky and the temperature to increase before stepping on your lawn. Frozen blades can be identified by their brittle nature and easy bruising and breaking.

In order to nurture your lawn back to health, water grass to the depth of 1 inch over a day or two, as it dries out. Freezing crystallizes moisture that carries the carbohydrates produced by photosynthesis in the leaves. Hydration plummets because those crystals sit on leaf surfaces and evaporate in the warming morning air.

Finally, give your lawn some time to recover before mowing. When you do mow, be sure to cut the grass to the highest recommended height for your specific type. Cutting the grass too short could make it harder for your lawn to recover from cold weather damage.

When in doubt, turn to the team of experts at Green Solutions Lawn and Pest Control for professional turf services. Call (813) 684-7336 today to get the help you need protecting and nurturing your lawn.