Winter Lawn Care Maintenance Schedule
Theres not much to do during the winter months. The ground is most likely frozen and your lawn hibernating under a heavy blanket of insulating snow. But you can get ready for that day when the last snow disappears and your lawn begins to green up.
- Get your mower ready for another year of hard work. A tune-up now to beat the spring rush will guarantee your gas-powered lawnmower will start on the first pull.
- Get the lawnmower blade sharpened. It took a beating last season and a sharp blade will help keep your lawn looking its best.
- Make sure the rest of your lawn equipment, such as trimmers, edgers and leaf blowers, is ready to go. Check those rechargeable batteries, change spark plugs and replace gas and oil filters as necessary.
- Do some reading. There are many great resources on taking a more environmentally sustainable approach to lawn care. Check out your local lawn and garden extension service as a starter. Theyll share accurate, non-biased information specific to your area. Some communities and local colleges may offer lawn care classes during the winter.
Magnolias Natures Alarm Bell
This title might sound strange, but it makes sense. We love magnolias in our lawn care services in Annapolis- theyre everywhere, theyre beautiful, and they serve an extra purpose. Magnolias bloom when the soil is at a perfect growing stage. So when magnolias are blooming, theyre actually saying, Hey, things are starting to grow again! Its lawn mowing season! Your lawn has woken up from its long winter nap, and its ready for you to start cutting.
Prepare Your Equipment Ready
If you are anxious to get mowing but the weather isnt cooperating, take the time to make sure your lawnmower is tuned up and ready for the season. Change the spark plug as well as the oil if it has it. Change the fuel filter and spark plug in your line trimmer as well.
Make sure your mower has a sharp blade! Grass cut with a dull blade will have tattered ends that are ideal places for fungal diseases to enter the grass plant. The tattered ends of the grass plants can give the lawn an overall brownish cast if the blade is exceptionally dull. Revisit this during the season as well. Again, a close look at your grass will tell you when the blade needs to be sharpened.
And it is beneficial to leave your grass clippings on the lawn as they decay and turn into organic nutrients for the grass roots to absorb. Clippings can over time thicken up the thatch layer so aerating your lawn once a season to break up that thatch is usually recommended.
If you have a lawn mowing service, they should know all the dos and donts on your lawn and should be able to work around other lawn care service schedules like fertilizing and weed control. If not, it may be time to find someone new!
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Lawn Management Through The Seasons
To obtain optimum performance from your lawn it is important to employ the appropriate management practices at the correct times of year. This publication serves as a calendar guide for turf management practices and when to look for pests that can damage turf. Be aware that this guide is based on environmental conditions that occur in a typical growing season. During years in which severe drought, heat, or cold occur for extended periods or at unusual times during the season, some management practices should be delayed until more favorable conditions return.
Navigating The Mowing Season In A Nutshell
Once again, there is no set date when it comes to the beginning or to the end of the mowing season.
These tips are mere guidelines that a homeowner can use to gauge the intervals to help protect and keep the lawn happy.
Remember, keeping all these tips in mind will ensure that you and your lawn are not left out in the cold when it comes to being the envy of the neighborhood.
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Understanding Climate Zones And Plant Hardiness
A large part of successful landscaping is understanding your climate and choosing plants that will thrive. If you plant something that is meant for a cooler or warmer, dryer or wetter climates than where you live, the plant will ultimately fail.
The US Department of Agriculture provides a map of zones that are defined by the coldest winter temperature. The zones are separated by 10° increments. However, there can be microclimates within your region that depend on your elevation or orientation, such as living on the north side of a mountain versus the south.
Many plant distributors will label their plants as being hearty in a range of zones. For example, Burpees website has a filter where you can shop for plants online by your climate zone. Each plants description includes a zone range where the plant will be happiest. This Rose MarvelSalvia, for example, can be grown in zones 4-9. However, the Hot Lips Salvia should be grown in zones 7-10.
A great way to figure out if a plant will be happy in your climate is to choose local and native plants. These plants will support the local ecosystem and thrive in your environment.
How Long Does A Landscape Project Take To Complete
As you begin searching for a landscape professional to work with, you likely already have some ideas about what you want in your yard. Even if you dont have an exact idea, you know how you want to spend your time and how your family might enjoy the space.
This is great news! These are two key pieces of information you need to get started. Now we can dive into the factors of the landscape design and installation process to understand how they work, how they can impact timing, and what you can do to aid the process along.
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So What Is The Short Answer
Heres the deal, giving a concrete date on when to start and stop mowing the grass is almost impossible.
Its simple climate, types of grass, ground conditions, and rainfall are all huge factors that have to be taken into consideration.
Has It Rained Recently
If the weather has been super dry and cooler than 50 degrees Fahrenheit, it is okay to stop mowing.
Without the proper moisture and cool temperatures, the grass will not grow and therefore, will not need mowing.
Once again, depending on the climate, this window is normally around late October through early December.
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Seed And Lime The Lawn As Needed
Plant grass seed in bare spots in your lawn or wherever growth is sparse. Consider seeding while applying a slow release nitrogen fertilizer. Early spring and fall are ideal times for reseeding.
- Spring is the best time to test your yards pH to determine if your soil is too acidic. Most grasses grow best when the soil pH is between 5.8 and 7.2. If your soil is too acidic, you can see an influx of moss, weeds, diseases and insect pests.
- Use a soil test kit to find your soil’s pH or ask a county extension agent if he or she can test for you.
- In many parts of the country, lime application can make the soil less acidic and help the grass better absorb fertilizers and nutrients from the soil.
- Soil pH changes over time, so retest yearly until your results are balanced. Afterwards, an established lawn can be tested every three years or so.
- Spring and fall are the best times to add lime to a lawn that needs it. Use soil test results to know how much lime to apply and follow the directions on the lime package.
Tip: Grass planted in spring may need extra watering, weeding and other attention during the summer. Fall seeding requires less fuss.
Get More Info From The Pros
Looking for more information on fertilizing and weed control or just ready to let the professionals take over your lawn care needs? The Grassmaster Plus team is ready and willing to answer any questions you have and can provide you a free quote on your lawn care services for the season. Contact our local office today!
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Your Cool Season Grass Lawn Care Calendar
Cool season grasses include Kentucky blue, fine and tall fescues as well as perennial ryegrass. Cool season gets its name because these grasses grow best in colder temperatures, from 60°F to 75°F.
Happy New Year! Your lawn is dormant under all of the snow. But you can think spring when you clean your lawn care equipment including sharpening your mowers blades, changing its filter, and wiping it down.
Remind your family and friends not to park their cars on your lawn. If you have a large lot, the temptation to drive snowmobiles or ATVs in your yard may be strong.
Resist the temptation! Foot traffic, including snowmobiles, cars, and ATVs, will pull up your lawn grass and compact the soil.
If the northern part of the U.S. has a mild winter, you may find yourself starting to do some spring yard clean up. If thats the case, then wait until all snow melts and the soil has time to dry out.
Then, take soil samples to test. Your local extension service will test your soil, or you can get a DIY kit at your local garden center or big box store. You dont need to test your soil every yearunless its in a problem area.
One word of caution, though. Dont put down pre-emergent weed control if youre planting lawn grass. The pre-emergent will stop yard grass from germinating too.
When To Schedule Lawn Maintenance
It is important to schedule your lawn care maintenance during times that match the life cycle of the turfgrass.
- Do not add fertilizer too early in the spring. This may encourage the grass to grow during a time when it should be slow or dormant.
- Do not spray to control weeds when temperatures are warm. This increases the likelihood of damaging the lawn.
- Do not fertilize in hot mid-summer months. This can cause irreversible damage to your lawn.
- Crabgrass doesn’t develop until late spring or early summer, so don’t apply herbicide used to prevent pre-emerging crabgrass in the fall.
See Water-saving strategies for home lawns for information on how and when to water.
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Tips For Grass Cutting During The Next Seasons
When winter is over, you shouldnt crank your mower immediately after the grass grows tall. Instead, you should follow a few easy steps to prepare for the next mowing season properly.
Usually, after a mower is operated frequently throughout the previous seasons, its parts will develop some wear and tear. Always service your mower in the spring to protect it until the last job of the year.
Benefits of Using Our Lawn Maintenance Services
Our lawn mowing team gives homeowners in Annapolis peace of mind because we always cut grass at the right time before winter arrives. We make lawns look great in the fall by focusing on the following things during lawn maintenance jobs:
- Height: Although grass no longer grows in the fall and winter, it still needs volume to give a property curb appeal. This is why we trim lawns strategically to keep the grass lush throughout the colder months. There are many grass species in Annapolis some types appear fuller and more prosperous when theyre a certain height. If you let us trim your lawn, well examine it and cut every stalk correctly.
- Patterns: After a lawn is mowed, its grass usually tilts in the direction where a blade made the cuts. Because this happens, we always cut grass in a pattern. For example, if we cut your grass diagonally, well cut it in a straight line after it grows back before fall.
- Trimming and edging services
Finding Your Landscaping Style
Just like homes can have different architectural styles and themes, so can landscaping. Homeadvisor.com provides eight different styles that you can consider:
Use the style of your home to influence the style of your landscaping.
For example, a Victorian-style home might cater well to an English Garden, with brick pathways, proportional garden beds with ornate benches. If you have a Craftsman-style home, then an Oriental or Woodland style with plenty of natural, rustic materials may be the correct choice. If you have a contemporary suburban home, you may consider an informal, eco-friendly, modern style that prefers function over form.
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When Is The Best Time To Overseed My Lawn
For cool-season lawns, the best time to overseed is late summer and early fall. For example, in the Northeast and Zone 5-6, the last week of August or the beginning of September are the best conditions for new grass. The number of weeds to be invasive is much lower in September than spring seeding in the spring .
Tying Your Landscape Together
Your perfect landscape starts with a holistic vision, incorporating an intentional style. Landscaping brings balance to the plants, hardscaping, and structures to provide an aesthetically pleasing and functional yard.
Once youve developed and implemented your vision, with proper maintenance, you can continue to enjoy your landscape for decades to come.
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Developing Your Landscaping Vision
As with any process, landscaping starts with a plan. While you could start picking out plants you find attractive then try to figure out where they go in your yard, you likely wont end up with a cohesive landscape.
Your landscaping plan should account for your level of interest in maintaining your yard, how long you plan to stay in your home, and how you plan on using your space. A yard suited for young children to play in would be very different than a yard geared towards entertaining, or even a sanctuary for relaxation.
Grab paper to sketch on, put together an online board for brainstorming ideas, and gather magazines or newspaper clippings to pull together images that you find inspiring. You can choose to plan your landscape yourself or hiring a landscape architect or contractor to help you create a plan.
Landscaping Businesses Awaiting Approval To Return To Work Amid Stay
A ride-on mower sits empty as landscaping businesses wait for approval to return to work amid the stay-at-home order.
SHAKOPEE, Minn. – Landscapers are among some Minnesotans fighting to get back to work. They say they are essential and can stay busy and safe with most of their clients staying at home.
Matt Doehling of Doehling Landscapes says his phone is ringing off the hook with clients looking to line up appointments to start services at their homes, but Governor Tim Walz’s executive stay-at-home order bans them from operating right now.
Landscaping businesses awaiting approval to return to work amid stay-at-home order
Landscapers are among some Minnesotans fighting to get back to work. They say they are essential and can stay busy and safe with most of their clients staying at home.
It does seem for an odd reason we were singled out and I cant speak to exactly why that was, but it does feel a little unfair for sure, said Doehling.
Landscaping companies say this is prime-time season for them to start outdoor spring cleanup projects and get ready for the busy summer. Many companies believe they can follow the CDC guidelines for social distancing better than most industries.
We believe we can do our jobs safelyguys on mowers, guy on backpack blowerswere often 10, 20, 30, 40, 50 feet apart and weve put together procedures here in our office on how crews are going to start staggered timeswell have one individual per truck, said Doehling.
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Snowless But Lotsa Leaves
Once the snow is gone, you might be able to see something else blanketing your lawn. If you didnt get the chance to rake up those leaves before the snow fell, youd want to get a start on lawn mowing pronto. These leaves block sunlight from the grass, keeping it from growing. Not to mention, that blanket of leaves can let the fungus grow and even kill your grass. So whip out your lawnmower and mulch those guys up, and youll get your grass kick-started on growing.
Function Of The Outdoor Space
The initial consultation with your landscape design/build professional is so important. This is the moment when they are asking you important questions to determine the scope of your project.
This is certainly a time not to keep information bottled up inside. You want to share with them what you envision and how you ideally want to use the space.
Even if you think its impossible, without sharing your dream vision, your landscape professional will never be able to truly understand what youre seeking. Then when you ask, How long do landscape projects take? he or she will give you a range, but you wont know where youll fit in until the full complexities of your project are laid out.
Take that consultation appointment seriously and share how you want to use the space. Your landscaper will then know all of your needs and can help match your budget to creating a space that has the elements youre seeking for long-term outdoor enjoyment.
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