Protect your Lawn from Rock Salt in the Winter
Ask the Doctor –
Your Source For Lawn Care Tips
Kerry Tai - February 25, 2014

Has winter been stressing you out? It is very common to use rock salts to help melt off snow and ice especially to make your daily commute easier, but it is important to understand how rock salt can affect your lawn.

What is Rock Salt?

Rock salt is a type of sodium chloride. Rock salts are mainly used during cold seasons when you want to melt off ice and snow in order to clear off the roads. Since rock salts are corrosive, it can damage concrete, asphalt, and metal surfaces.

The dangers occur when the corrosive nature of the rock salts start to dissolve and leak into your lawn and grass plants. The salt can be very toxic to plants. If it is absorbed into the soil, it can kill the plant’s roots. Once the roots are affected, your lawn and plants have less of a chance of survival for the warm seasons ahead.

Protect your lawn

Although using rock salts help clear up the roads for safety, you need to take precaution to protect your lawn from potential damage. Here are some tips below to help protect your lawn from rock salts.

  • Try to shovel more snow – shoveling snow will help decrease the amount of rock salt needed to clear off the snow and ice
  • Use less rock salt in the areas near your lawn- you want to keep the rock salts from entering your soil to prevent damaging your lawn
  • Find alternatives to rock salt- there are various alternatives to rock salts such as calcium chloride and magnesium chloride
  • Use gypsum if rock salt has damaged your lawn.  Gypsum helps move salt away from the roots of your lawn.
  • Put lawn objects around the corner of your lawn- by putting barriers around your lawn, less rock salt will be dissolved into the grass area

If you are still struggling to protect your lawn due to rock salts and other chemicals, contact your local Lawn Doctor for assistance. Remember, rock salt damages the roots of your plants, so it is critical to take the necessary steps now before winter is over.