LawnMart employee mowing a lawn.

Sustainable Living in the City: Why Toronto Residents and Businesses Choose Organic Lawn Care

Switching to organic lawn care is one of the best ways to live sustainably in the city. By maintaining your turf using natural products and methods, you can achieve a beautiful and dense turf without harming your health and the environment.

What to Know About Organic Lawn Care

Benefits of Organic Lawn Care

Before discussing the perks of organic lawn care, let’s answer the following question: “What is organic lawn care?” Organic lawn care is the practice of establishing and caring for a lawn without the use of synthetic (man-made) or chemical products. The methods underscore the significance of good soil quality as a main factor in growing healthy turfgrass.

Toronto residents and businesses that choose organic over the traditional methods of maintaining their lawns reap the following benefits:

  • Healthier lawns. A well-planned organic lawn care routine promotes healthy soil and allows the grass roots to grow deeper. Hence, the lawn becomes robust enough to withstand local conditions and better defend itself against weed and pest infestation.
  • Healthier environment. Organic lawn care eliminates the use of chemicals that could pollute nearby water sources. Additionally, it reduces your property’s carbon footprint.
  • Healthier you. Quality organic lawn care products do not contain chemicals found in herbicides and other synthetic solutions that could be dangerous to you, your family, and your pets.
  • Money and time savings. This is not a benefit you can enjoy immediately, but as you maintain your lawn using natural methods and products, the soil quality will improve. This means you won’t need as many synthetic products to grow a beautiful, green turf over time.

Organic Lawn Care Practices in Toronto

Ready to switch to organic lawn care? Here are some of Toronto’s best organic lawn care practices for a more sustainable turf.

Choosing the Right Grass

Your best line of defense against weeds, pests, and diseases will be the turf itself. That’s why choosing a suitable grass variety is a good start for organic lawn care.

Learn what grass types grow best in your area by researching or asking an expert in organic lawn care in Toronto. When choosing a type of grass, consider the climate, amount of foot traffic, and sunlight exposure. Also, consider how much moisture your lawn will get from irrigation or rainfall.


The way you mow your lawn can affect its health. Proper mowing methods keep grass in good health and protect against weed growth. The average mow height for organic lawns is higher than that of conventional lawns. But the golden rule still stands: never take off more than a third of a grass blade at a time.

After mowing, bag the clippings and use them for your compost. During their breakdown, the grass clippings will supply nitrogen to your lawn. Also, manual or battery-powered mowers are more environmentally friendly than gas-powered ones.


Composting enhances the structure of your soil and replenishes it with beneficial organisms such as nematodes, bacteria, fungi, and algae. High-quality compost also functions as a sponge, absorbing and releasing water as needed. Compost typically contains more plant material than organic fertilizers.

You can buy compost at your local garden store or make it yourself. The process is straightforward. Collect your garden and other organic waste like kitchen scraps, eggshells, and coffee grounds in a bin to form a “green” layer. Then, add dry “brown” items like wooden branches, straws, and dry leaves to create a “brown” layer. Lastly, add a layer of soil.


Using natural fertilizers is the foundation of organic lawn care. While chemical-laden fertilizers give your grass an immediate nutritional boost, organic fertilizers gradually release a more manageable diet into your soil. Organic fertilizers won’t burn the grass or contaminate surface water and groundwater. This results in a more resilient and sustainable lawn.

Organic fertilizers are available at your local garden store. They’re usually made from natural ingredients like fish emulsion, seaweed, compost, and bone meal. An alternative would be to use typical household waste like feather meal, composted chicken manure, banana peels, and grass clippings. Use organic fertilizers in the late summer or the beginning of fall to raise the organic matter content of the soil and enhance its fertility.

Pest Control

A well-kept lawn can tolerate mild insect infestations, usually without us noticing or needing to intervene. But you can actively help as well. Natural pest control techniques include introducing beneficial insects and using organic insecticides derived from natural sources, such as essential oils.

It is preferable to seek professional assistance for a severe pest infestation before your lawn is seriously damaged. Experts possess the know-how, equipment, and abilities to deal with pest issues quickly and effectively.

Weed Management

Fostering healthy turf is the most effective way to keep weeds out of the lawn. But if unwanted plants begin growing in your lawn, you can use natural homemade solutions like vinegar and dish soap. Other natural products like corn gluten meal work well for specific weeds.

Alternatively, you can manually pull them with a tool like a rake or with your hands. Just make sure when pulling weeds that you remove the roots as well.


Overseeding is usually a solution to thin and bare patches or deteriorating lawns. It makes the lawn denser, which helps out-compete weeds. If overseeding, it’s crucial to match varieties to the grasses currently growing in the lawn to achieve a uniform appearance. It’s also necessary to overseed at the right time and do it properly.

Environmental Impact of Sustainable Lawn Care

Grass lawns are known for soaking up carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. They also improve soil structure, help control floods, reduce noise, prevent erosion, and provide a habitat for wildlife. All these benefits mean that lawns are good for the environment in Canada. However, we should consider everything you do to keep the grass healthy and well-manicured.

Conventional lawn care generally involves using fertilizers and other chemicals that can pollute the environment. Additionally, their production adds more CO2 to the atmosphere. Therefore, the heavy carbon cost associated with traditional maintenance usually outweighs the benefits of lawns to the environment.

On the other hand, sustainable lawn care adopts environmentally friendly practices. For example, using natural ways of getting rid of pests reduces the risk of harming people and the environment. Even the manufacturing process for organic fertilizers is environmentally friendly since it doesn’t contribute to greenhouse gas emissions.

Switching From Conventional to Organic Lawn Care

It’s never too late to switch to organic lawn care, even if you’ve used the conventional method for years. However, there are several steps to prepare your lawn for an effective transition.

First, assess the condition of your lawn and the spread of weeds. If weeds are not rampant and you like most of the growing turfgrass, then you can keep your lawn the way it is. Otherwise, starting over may be easier and better in the long run.

Next is to test your soil to determine if it needs amendment. Knowing your soil’s pH level and nutrient distribution helps determine which organic fertilizer to use. For instance, if your soil is nitrogen-deficient, ammonium-based fertilizers would work wonders.

Additionally, it’s vital to manage your expectations. Organic lawn care is a long game, so don’t get into it while looking for a quick boost of green. It takes some time to produce visible results, and you might have to put up with some weeds and insects in your lawn in the meantime.

Get Professional Help for Organic Lawn Care

Many benefits come from choosing organic lawn care. However, establishing and maintaining a sustainable lawn can be challenging. LawnMart fully understands that, so we offer organic lawn care services you can count on. Our lawn care specialists can implement our tried and tested six-step lawn care process.

Contact us today to find out how we can help you achieve a lush and beautiful lawn in an environmentally friendly way.

Michael Schäfer

President – LawnMart Inc.

Years of Experience: 31 Years

  • Land Class 1 and 3 Licenses Since 1993
  • Pest Control Operator License Since 1995
  • PIC Accredited Pest Technician Examiner Since 2004
  • Biting Flies Control License Since 2020

Michael Schäfer is President and Founder of LawnMart Inc. After training privately under Dr. Larry Whiddell of Ohio State University, he became a Lawn Technician at Barefoot Grass Lawn Services (1993) and leveled up to Tree/Shrub Care Manager before taking over all Canadian operations as Area Manager. In 1996, Michael founded LawnMart Inc., which has since grown into a multi-award-winning company that cares for thousands of lawns in the Golden Horseshoe area.