Keeping your lawn healthy in winter

Although your lawn probably isn’t actively growing and requires less mowing this time of year, there are still things you can do to ensure your lawn survives winter and is ready to start growing quickly again in spring.

Increase Sunlight

In winter your lawn needs sunlight and cool air to keep healthy. Make sure you prune back any trees that may be shading your lawn. Pick up leaves, grass clippings or anything that could be between your lawn and the sun. In spring when the weather starts to warm up, you can leave leaves and lawn clippings on the lawn to provide nutrients.

Change Mowing Habits

Most lawns go dormant in winter, meaning they grow slower and you don’t need to mow your lawn nearly as often. You also do not need to mow it as low – keeping it on the long side will keep your lawn healthier and keep out winter weeds. Increasing the mowers height and the height of the lawn will also allow the grass to better absorb sunlight and nutrients.


Depending on the condition and type of lawn, you may not need to fertilise during winter. If you find your lawn needs some help, use a slow release fertiliser during winter. Find a good fertiliser by checking the waterwise endorsed products from Smart Approved Watermark.

Spray Weeds

Winter is the time when weeds may appear, as the growth habit of your lawn won’t be as tight as it is in the warmer months. Spray weeds during winter, because if they seed they will return as a bigger problem the following year.

Switch off Sprinklers

Rainfall and lower evaporation rates means your garden does not need irrigation in winter. From 1 June to 31 August, all irrigation needs to be switched off. If your lawn is dry (leaves curling) you can lightly hand water, however be careful of putting excess moisture into the soil as this will encourage compaction.

Seek Advice

If you do not know what your lawn needs, contact a waterwise garden centre, landscaper or garden designer for expert advice.