Every homeowner loves having a beautiful lawn. It’s just as important, however, that your lawn be healthy for both your family and the environment as well. Organic lawn care helps you attain that goal. There are several benefits to making better ecological choices.[Read more…]
Maintaining a healthy lawn requires work. Sometimes, as homeowners, we don’t have the time required to maintain our lawns ourselves but we still want to keep our yard looking beautiful. That’s why hiring a landscaper can be beneficial. The right professional can keep your yard looking great and keep the neighbors happy. Before hiring a landscaper, here are some tips to help make the process go smoothly
Licensing and Insurance
Before you hire a Lawn Care professional, as them about their license. All businesses should be properly licensed by local authorities. If they aren’t, there’s a good chance they aren’t running a reputable business. They should also be insured. The last thing you want is to have someone suffer a workplace accident only to turn around and sue you because they don’t carry insurance. Any good business will carry insurance to ensure peace of mind.
Ask around before hiring any landscaper to see what type of reputation they have. Word travels fast, especially if a business does sub-par work. The company should be able to provide you with references and a portfolio of their past work so you can gauge if they’re the right company for the job. Ask them how long they’ve been in business as well because typically a business cannot stay open for long if they have a bad reputation and the longer they’ve been open, the more reputable they likely are.
In any business, good customer service is key to keeping customers happy and staying in business. If the company doesn’t interact well with you or you find it difficult to communicate with them, it could be an indicator that they won’t be the best landscapers for the job.
These are a few things to keep in mind when you’re looking to hire a landscaper for your yard. Remember to check with multiple landscapers and get quotes from each before making your final decision.
With the maintenance required for keeping landscape clean and maintained on your property, the last thing you probably want to discover is that you have a tick infestation in your yard. Not only are these tiny arachnids known to bite, but they can also carry diseases and cause allergic reactions that can be harmful to both animals and humans. In order to have effective tick control, following advice from the experts is invaluable.[Read more…]
Most people dream of the nice house in the suburbs with the white picket fence and the beautifully manicured lawn, but while many may end up with that house and fence, their lawn is spotty at best and filled with crabgrass at worst. Lawn fertilization is the missing link when it comes to having the yard of your dreams, but it can be a hassle trying to figure out the right nutritional balance and the proper maintenance schedule. For that reason, you should hire a professional. Pros understand the steps to natural fertilization, nutrition and whether synthetic or organic fertilizers are best for your situation.
Most people cut their grass on their mowers lowest setting and bag up the lawn clippings, but that is the worst thing you can do. For a healthy and naturally fertilized lawn, you should cut your grass on your mowers highest setting, and leave the clippings, as they will help to feed your yard.
However, lawn fertilization is about more than mowing and the benefits of clippings. Your yard depends on a balance of several chemicals to be lush and pristine.
All of these chemicals are usually present in every fertilizer in different balances, meaning that you need to pick the best option for your lawn. You can choose between synthetic or organic, and while each has benefits, there are distinct differences.
Synthetic versus Organic
Synthetic fertilizers as referenced in the name are manufactured, and as a manufactured product it can be harmful to the environment and yourself. These products will help your lawn develop, but they may not be the most efficient.
Organic fertilizers alternatively, are entirely natural, providing minerals and nutrients from elements like limestone. The other benefit of organic fertilizers, aside from being better for you and the environment, is that they work by slowly releasing the chemicals into the soil, which makes for healthier and stronger grass roots.
Lawn fertilization is key to a beautifully manicured and lush yard. However, the upkeep of fertilization can be difficult, which is why a professional should be hired.
Many homeowners don’t want to invest in harmful chemicals when it comes to lawn care. If you have pests, you shouldn’t have to choose between harmful chemicals and dealing the unwanted guests. If you’re worried about the process, there are options for you. You don’t have to be an expert in lawn pest control to be able to handle pests effectively without the chemicals. With the help from a specialist, you can maintain your lawn the healthy way.
Chemical Pest Control
When there’s an insect infestation, it means that your lawn’s ecosystem is off. To get rid of pests, you might think about harmful pesticides. However, this is not a great idea because chemical pest control kills everything, even the safe organisms. This is why natural lawn pest control is the best choice.
What are predatory nematodes? They are simply predatory, microscopic worms. These will kill off beetles, fleas, gnats and weevils. How they work is that they invade the pests and break down the internal structure. What makes these nematodes even better is that they do not harm the good organisms. For instance, they will not harm earthworms and are safe for pets and humans.
Milky spores are a bacterium that infects the host grub. This host will become paralyzed and die. Then, when the host dies, more spores release. After one to three weeks, the host begins to die. With this type of lawn pest control, you do have to use it when the grubs are feeding. Typically, fall and spring are the best times of year to use it. Grubs eat the most during the fall season to prepare for winter.
Keep in mind that while you will see results quickly, it is important to keep up on your pest control. Sometimes it can take a few years for everything to stabilize.
The type of soil you start with is going to determine what plants will thrive in your yard. There are basically five soil types, and knowing what type of soil is in your yard is going to improve your success growing beautiful flowers, vegetables, and ornamentals. Here is a brief primer on all you need to know about soil types.
Chalky soil tends to be slightly alkaline. This type of soil is best for tubers, bulbs, and other plants that prefer alkaline conditions. It can be amended with manure or other organic matter, but chalky soil gets clumpy when wet, so make sure it is thoroughly dry before tilling.
Clay is made of very small particles that stick close together. That’s what makes clay so dense. Clay soil is generally nutrient-rich, but doesn’t drain well. Working in organic material like mulch can help it drain better. All you need to know about soil types, in a sense, is how much organic matter to add.
Sand is comprised of ground rocks. It doesn’t hold nutrients well but it drains readily. Sandy soil needs a lot of amendment, unless you plant things like cleome and crape myrtle that can stand to have their roots dry out between waterings. Sand can be one of the more difficult soil types to work with, due to its poor nutrient content.
Silty soil can be found in areas that were previously riverbeds. It tends to have a lot of nutrients, but can become compacted easily. Plants that can tolerate wet roots do best in silty soil, such as willow, iris, and many vines.
Loamy soil is the preferred type of soil, because it is a balanced mix of the other types of soil. This soil will have good drainage and plenty of nutrients. It requires minimal amendment and many types of plants will thrive in it.
Know Your Soil Types
All you need to know about soil types, really, is which of these types of soil dominates your yard. To determine this, take a soil sample to your local extension office for analysis.
All lawns and gardens are inhabited by various insect and animal life, many of which are not harmful to your plants. However, pests that destroy your yard often make an appearance and can get out of control. While there are many traditional pest control methods available on the market, many people are recognizing the benefits of using natural pest control methods to help their garden and lawn thrive pest-free.
While organic gardening has been popular for decades, more and more homeowners are looking to natural solutions to lawn care as well. In addition to minimizing harmful nitrogen and phosphorus runoff that can pollute groundwater and waterways, going organic helps to improve soil health, reduce irrigation needs and provide long-term nutrition to keep your lawn green and lush year after year.
Even rich soil that’s suitable for turfgrass needs to be fertilized periodically to replenish nutrients absorbed by plants and help lawns to withstand the stress of mowing, foot traffic and seasonal changes. While options for chemical amendments are plentiful, more and more homeowners are looking to organic fertilizer products that aren’t just safer for the environment, they can improve the health of the soil itself for better long-term results.
A beautiful garden is easily ravaged by the bugs and pests that seem to think it’s a new buffet. Finding holes, tares and discolored leaves is a frustrating experience when you have spent hours laboring to produce a thriving plot. While you may be tempted to drop nuclear pesticide bombs as a weapon of mass pest control, there are environmentally friendly and non-toxic alternatives.