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« When and how to water your lawns | Main | Wetting Agents and Dry Patches on Lawns »

Lawns burning to a crisp

Grassclippings - Burnt BritainA fortnight of sunshine has taken its toll on the British landscape, with alarming results.

Some of London’s landmarks are among areas that have suffered most. The image is of Blackheath Common taken by photographer Jim Bennett from The Daily Mail.

At Hampton Court Palace, the once lush grounds and adjoining golf course have turned brown and now look more like southern Spain.

In Kensington Palace Gardens, the pond has become covered in algae that has thrived in the heatwave. Hyde Park and Greenwich are other places left looking parched by the hot spell.

In Hyde Park, much of the grass has died as a result of being trampled by tens of thousands fans attending the ten-day British Summer Time music festival.

If you thought it couldn’t possibly get any hotter, you are wrong.  Today is on course to be the hottest day of the year so far, soaring past 30C (86F) in many parts of the country. 

Forecasters say temperatures could reach 33C (91F) in London – hotter than Athens, Hawaii and even Jamaica. 

The scorching weather is already taking its toll. Train services were severely disrupted in London yesterday as rails buckled in the heat at Waterloo.  But while the hot spell has seen the usual rush to buy suncream, barbecues, paddling pools and electric fans, one phenomenon associated with a long, dry spell is missing – a hosepipe ban.

Authorities say a ban is unlikely this year even if the unusually hot weather continues.

Today’s predicted 33C would beat Saturday’s 31.9C (89F) and make it the hottest July day since 2006.  Much of the South will bask in temperatures higher than 30C while the North will stay slightly cooler, at 28C.

Yesterday saw a sweltering St Swithin’s Day – which, according to legend should ensure a further 40 days of hot weather, with 30.9C (87.6F) recorded at Heathrow .

At Waterloo Station, thousands of commuters were left stranded after four platforms had to be closed as the heat caused a 2in kink in the track. South West Trains was forced to cancel services during the evening rush hour.

Some of those affected took to Twitter to complain, with Christina Martin writing: ‘Do not come anywhere near London Waterloo. Hot as Hades and no trains.’  Engineers were working through the night to try to repair the damage.

Read more on The Daily Mail

Should you be keen to water your lawn, we would not bother to be honest unless it is a newly seeded or turved lawn.  Grass will naturally go brown to conserve water at the crown  and roots.  Watering will only encourage shallow roots.  If you have healthy desirable turf grasses in your lawns they will cope with the drought and the worst case scenario is a bit of over seeding maybe.  You will be amazed how the grass weeds always appear to stay green which is surprising as you should not have nay weeds in your lawn!!


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