In comparison to the Slip ‘n Slide, other water-based toys just don’t cut it. What is jumping through a sprinkler when you can glide through them at (seemingly) break-neck speeds? What is splashing in the pool when you can create a tidal wave of water as you careen across the grass? Bar none, the Slip ‘n Slide is the best summertime toy.
Unfortunately, one thing you absolutely need for a successful Slip ‘n Slide is plush grass, and if yours is like most lawns in America, you probably need some quick solutions to get your grass healthily luxurious enough to facilitate slipping and sliding. Here are a few tips to ensure your lawn is primed and ready during Slip ‘n Slide season.
1. Mow High for A Comfortable Cushion
There are several reasons you should set your lawn mower’s blades to a higher setting. For one, taller grass provides more cushion on your chest when you dive onto the Slip ‘n Slide. However, more importantly, taller grass is easier to maintain.
As a general gardening rule, you never want to remove more than a third of a plant when you prune, and the same is true with grass. Grass wants to have longer blades, so when you cut it short, it devotes all its energy to re-growing up top ― which weakens its root system and leads to weeds, pests, and ugly dead patches that are terrible for slipping and sliding. At the very least, you should allow your grass to grow three inches tall, which ultimately means less time mowing for you.
2. Sharpen Blades to Prevent Disease
You know the pain of trying to shave with a dull razor. Your grass experiences the same discomfort when you mow with dull blades. A dull lawn mower tears grass instead of cutting it, creating gaping wounds that invite infections and disease that result in dead, crunchy lawns.
Plus, torn grass requires as much as 30 percent more water to repair itself, which means devoting more of your budget to your water bill and less to your summer bucket list. You can file your mower’s blades at home, or you can pay for the service at a home improvement store.
3. Water Early and Deeply to Add Thickness
Your lawn is thirsty, especially during the warm-weather months, but that doesn’t mean it needs a drink every day. When you water your lawn is just as important as how much water you give it. During the summer, as much as 25 percent of your lawn’s water can evaporate if you schedule your sprinklers to run during the daytime. Meanwhile, if you water at night, the long hours of wet soil tends to encourage the growth of fungus. Instead, you should give your lawn a drink between 4 and 8 a.m. Most experts suggest providing an inch of water for every foot of soil in your lawn, which is usually running the sprinklers for about an hour every three days.
4. Hire A Professional to Diagnose Spots
It might look and feel like dead grass, but that doesn’t mean it is. Lawns can suffer from nearly as many maladies as people, and only a professional can understand the symptoms and provide an accurate diagnosis. Sometimes, crunchy grass is merely dormant and waiting for the right climate to reinvigorate.
Sometimes, you have a pest infestation that only specialized treatment will cure. If your lawn has spots of any color besides healthy, vibrant green, you probably should call a reputable lawn services provider to give you some help.
5. Fertilize in the Fall to Grow Good Roots
Fertilizing is one of those weird yardwork necessities that most people misunderstand. You don’t need to fertilize your plants often; once a year is definitely good enough for your lawn.
However, you shouldn’t fertilize as soon as your grass wakes up in the spring. Instead, you should give your lawn a good meal in the fall, right before it goes dormant for the winter season. Then, it allocates the nutrients to its roots, creating a strong foundation for the future.
Bonus: DIY Slip ‘n Slide Instructions
Now that your grass is healthy, you need to get yourself a Slip ‘n Slide. Fortunately, if they are already sold-out from every nearby store, you can use household items to craft your own.
- Step 1: Cut along the side seams of a few heavy-duty trash bags so that they will lay flat on the ground. Make enough sheets to create a sufficiently long slide that fits in your yard.
- Step 2: Use landscape anchor pins to secure plastic sheets to the ground. Ensure the pins don’t protrude above the plastic because they can tear at sliders’ skin.
- Step 3: Lubricate the slide with some baby soap. The branded slide doesn’t tell you to do this, but trust us: It helps you go five times faster.
- Step 4: Drench the slide with a hose, and get to sliding!
Featured photo credit: shutterstock via shutterstock.com