Ask Burton: Q: My Bermuda lawn was neglected last year, and I need to get it back into order. Where do I start?

A: Our normal recommendations start with applying pre-emergent herbicides in mid-February until the first week of March, but at this point, you’re already late on that one. Put it on your “to-do” list for next year, and we’ll start with what you can do now. Begin with an application of ferti-lome Weed Out to kill broad leafed weeds like dandelions, thistle, chickweed, and henbit in the lawn. These weeds usually make up the bulk of weeds that show up this time of year, and they’re the easiest to control after sprouting. Take care to keep your spray out of landscaping beds and under the canopies of shade trees.

Fertilize the lawn with our Covington’s 21-7-14 lawn fertilizer to get the lawn off to a robust start, and check your mower. Bermuda grass is best cut tight and short – 1 ½ inches as a cutting height – and do your best to avoid letting it creep up consistently higher throughout the year. A short, regular mowing keeps a lawn dense and makes it harder for weeds to get started.

Turn your sprinkler system on manually, and check that your sprinkler heads are all in proper working order. One thorough watering a week will keep your lawn healthy and alive in the summertime. Two waterings a week will keep it nicely green even in a hot summer.

Start with these steps, and you’ll be on the right track.