Although some (okay, most) of us don’t want to admit it — winter is just around the corner, and that means it is time to make some necessary preparations when it comes to your grass, lawn, and/or landscaping. Failing to make a few key adjustments can leave your lawn dry, wilted, and sometimes growing unwanted fungi. Avoid these common mistakes for a lawn that looks great year-round, even during and immediately after winter.

Mistake #1: You Don’t Water Grass In The Winter

Yes, Kansas and other Midwestern U.S. states are likely to get some (if not quite a bit of) snow. That doesn’t mean you should neglect to water your lawn all winter. When it is possible to water your lawn — i.e. when it’s not covered in a thick blanket of snow — you need to do it. Lawn care services reveal that grass needs approximately one-and-a-half to two inches of water all year, even during winter months. Homeowners can use sprinklers to automatically water lawns at set times — and a set amount — each day.

If you use a sprinkler, don’t forget to winterize lawn sprinkler systems. Without taking this crucial step, underground irrigation systems may freeze and crack and become unusable. The process can be a safety hazard (the most common method involves compressed air and potential flying debris), so it is often wise to hire lawn care companies and leave it to the professionals. Every year, U.S. households spend $30 billion on lawn care; winterizing sprinklers is a relatively cost-effective service and accounts for just a small portion of that.

Mistake #2: You Let Melted Ice And Snow, Dead Leaves, And Other Debris Pile Up All Winter Long

Putting off clearing away debris until the end of the winter is another critical mistake. One of the best lawn care tips is to stay on top of any ice and snow, dirt, dead leaves, and debris removal — and year-round, too. If you neglect to do it, bugs, insect, mold, and fungi may grow in and/or under the wet, soggy patches left behind. Moreover, it may trap or block water that would otherwise go to your lawn and trees, leaving you with dead grass and dead tree removal costs in the spring.

Don’t make common lawn care mistakes and pay for it. Water grass year-round, winterize lawn sprinkler systems, and always pick up dirt, leaves, and debris, especially if it’s cold and wet outside.