Last-Minute Holiday Gifts Right From Your Front Yard

No matter how detailed the list, things fall through and you forget that special someone’s gift. At Spring-Green, we know preparing for the holidays can be stressful and time-consuming. Make your life easier with these last-minute gift ideas, using tree limbs from your front yard. Those fallen branches you meant to clean up before guests arrive, can be turned in to one of the most memorable gifts you can give all year. There are endless possibilities when it comes to creating thoughtful holiday gifts from nature. Here are Spring-Green’s ideas for a last-minute holiday gift.

What gifts can I make last minute for the holidays?

The Holiday Ornament – Create a cherished memory for years to come with a wooden holiday ornament. Find a broken or dead branch thick enough to slice into a sliver the size of your palm. Be safe and take an object to create a small hole at the top. Tie a decorative string through the hole. Once cut to the perfect size, seal the wood with varnish, epoxy, or paint of your choosing. From here, you can add a photo, phrase, or a unique design. Your options are limitless; your creativity should not be defined. 

The Holiday Frame – Memories deserve to be captured and framed. So, why not turn that into a gift? You can start by collecting a variety of fallen limbs and twigs. Once you have collected the wooden piece you will use, it is time to break them. Start by drawing the desired shape of the frame on a piece of paper. Begin to snap your branches/twigs to form a pattern that matches your frame shape. With the frame being shaped out, you can start hot gluing all the pieces together. Once your pieces are all put together, you can paint, glitter, or even stain your frame to your liking.   

The Holiday Candle Holder – Grab a holiday candle and make it a budget-friendly gift with a little holiday spirit. Take your twigs/limbs and break them all to a similar height as your candle. Take your hot glue gun and begin gluing the sticks to the outside of the candle jar. Once you have created a nice base, fill in any empty spots with smaller sticks. Finish off your design with a festive ribbon or string!  



Regardless of how you celebrate, the holidays are a special time. In all the hustle and bustle of preparing for family, gathering gifts, or buying food it is easy to forget a thing or two. Celebrate your holiday season with a few handmade gifts that are budget-friendly and with a purpose in mind. At Spring-Green, we understand what it means to give with a purpose in mind. We tailor our services to the needs of your specific lawn. No more trial and error, we create a program just for you. Learn more about our services by going to Spring-Green.com.   

Why Are My Tree Branches Falling off?

 

Have you noticed your trees are losing branches? Are more limbs collecting in your yard than normal? If so, you might be wondering if it is time to start worrying about the health of your trees. There are many reasons that tree branches fall. Some indicate a problem. Some don’t. Here are the questions you should be asking about your trees.   

Q&As about your tree’s health  

Why do healthy trees lose branches? 

Not every tree that loses a few branches has an issue. Trees shed branches for many reasons that are not linked to illness. Typically, sudden branch breakage is the tree’s response to hot, dry environments. However, tree branches may break off even if they are very healthy. This is normal for larger trees that branches extend further than the trunk can support.   

How can I tell if my trees have an issue? 

If your trees are clearly sick, it can be difficult to determine the prognosis of the falling tree branches. Things to consider when investigating your tree’s health are drought stress, extremely dry soil, tissue shrinkage, disease, and internal cracks. Your tree may be shrinking as a form of protection. It’s a good idea to inspect your trees on a regular basis, checking for discoloration, mold, and unhealthy moss. 

What are the dangers of falling branches?  

Falling branches can damage to your property as well as cause problems on the lawn if left too long. It is important to clear branches that hang over valuable/important structures such as buildings, vehicles, power lines, and lodging areas. Falling branches are the result of many insurance claims due to improper care of their tree branches.   

How can I prevent falling branches?

Check the roots – Often, the cause of branches falling off the tree is related to the root system. Roots that move and slip when branches are trying to stand up to heavy winds can cause even huge trees/branches to fall. Poor roots are often the cause of poor planting, crowded infrastructure, and hidden root damage. Healthy roots are the key to a healthy tree. Unfortunately, roots are hidden, making it difficult for the average homeowner to gauge root health.   

Trim regularly – Keeping your trees healthy with regular trimming. Your regularly trimmed trees will be less likely to have branches break off unexpectedly and cause property damage or other problems.

One of the best ways to care for your trees is to enlist the services of professionals. A quality lawn care service can help customize a tree care plan that protects the life of your trees and prevents unexpected branch dropping. Spring-Green has been the go-to neighborhood lawn care team since 1977. Taking care of your trees is an area we specialize in. We can help you monitor the health of your trees, including preventing branches from falling and damaging your property.   

Contact Spring-Green today to get started.  

Prepare and Protect Your Lawn This Trick-or-Treating Season

 

With Halloween quickly approaching, Spring-Green wants to provide a helpful guide to navigate the upcoming trick-or-treaters. These tips will help you to prep and protect your lawn while still enjoying all the costumes, candy, and fun! 

Why do I need to protect my lawn?  

The cooling temperatures that move in for the fall season tend to alter the durability of your lawn. This causes the grass to go dormant, halts the growing process, and turns the lawn a brownish color.  The Farmer’s Almanac predicts certain areas in the United States will begin to see an increase in precipitation as fall progresses. The already seasonally fragile lawn beings to soften as the temperatures grow colder. This shift can make any homeowner shiver with the thought of trick-or-treaters walking all over the now tender lawn. 

Before you become the neighbor who screams, “Get off my lawn,” Spring-Green wants to help you prevent a collection of mud holes, deep tracks, thinning grass, and dirt patches before they happen.    

Decorate your lawn with a purpose for Halloween 

Halloween Décor – Decorating your lawn with a purpose is a great way to direct traffic. Inflatables help keep others out of a certain area of your lawn. However, if left in one spot for too long, they can damage your already tender lawn by leaving patches of dead grass in its wake.  By using large yard signs to guide the way, you can minimize the damage and prepare the path properly. Signs with smaller stakes are easy to place and do minimal damage to your lawn. 

Rope Maze – Create a rope maze using yarn and stakes to guide the way. This will be fun for the kids and will minimize the damage done to your lawn. To capitalize on this idea, create the maze over your driveway to ensure the trick-or-treaters should never touch the grass.  

Light The Way – Lots of dollar stores sell Halloween themed solar lighting. By placing these along the walk-up or even up the driveway, you can direct traffic to the candy. This is a budget-friendly way to create an ambiance in your yard while still maintaining a path the trick-or-treaters.  

Plastic Chait Mats – If you have a smaller section of grass that tends to get stepped on, try placing a hard desk chair mat over it. This helps absorb the impact and protects soft spots from little trick-or-treater feet.  

Protect your lawn ahead of Trick-or-Treaters 

Having trick-or-treaters walking all over your tender fall lawn can put shivers down any homeowner’s spine. Prepping your lawn and home for trick-or-treats is key to helping keep people off your lawn.  Your lawn is an important part of your home. Spring-Green is here to help you make sure your lawn stays lush throughout the changing seasons.  Since 1977, Spring-Green is dedicated to helping you with your lawn and garden needs throughout all the changing seasons. 

Don’t let the potential damage to your lawn keep you from all your trick-or-treating fun!  

Contact a Spring-Green Pro today to get started. 

How To Test The pH Of Your Soil

As homeowners you may hear the call to test the pH level of your soil quite often. It may seem like a great concept, but many questions swirl around putting a pH test into action. Spring-Green, your neighborhood lawn care experts, have compiled a list of the most frequently asked questions our customers have asked us over the years in relation to testing the pH levels of their soil and all things related.

  1. What is pH? The pH level measures how acidic or how alkaline a substance is. The test of pH shows the amount of hydrogen atoms that carry a positive charge. A higher concentration of hydrogen ions makes it is more acidic, while a lower concentration of hydrogen ions, the more alkaline the sample is.
  2. Why test soil pH level? We often get asked why it matters. An accurate and balanced soil pH is critical for optimal plant and lawn growth. Testing the pH of your soil will also help you determine what type of grass to choose and which plants and shrubs to add to your outdoor landscape. Your pH results will also provide direction on fertilizer and foods are needed to support a healthy lawn.
  3. What is a good pH level? The answer is, it depends. As a general rule of thumb, acidic substances fall between pH 0 and pH 7, while alkaline or basic substances fall between pH 7 and pH 14 on the pH scale. The most pH neutral that can be achieved is pH 7 – neither acidic nor alkaline. The answer to which pH level is best comes down to what you want to plant. Some plants thrive in acidic soil while others thrive in more alkaline environments. If your soil’s pH doesn’t match the needs of the plants and grasses that you desire, you’ll have to work to adjust it accordingly.
  4. What are the benefits of good pH levels? If your soil’s pH levels are too acidic or too alkaline, nutrients can have a hard time dissolving in water and reaching your grass or plants’ roots. Out of balance soil pH levels impacts your lawn’s ability to take in the nutrients present in the soil. Measuring the soil’s pH first can help you determine this foundational issue that won’t improve with fertilizer treatment.  
  5. How do I test the pH in my soil? A soil test kit will let you know if the soil has a low or high pH, or if it suffers from a nutritional issue. You can use a store-bought test or contact your Spring-Green lawn care professionals for a deeper level of testing that provides test results and recommendations. There many types of tests available to test your soil’s pH, including test strips, chemical test kits, digital pocket testers and portable meters.
  6. How do I fix a problem with my soil’s pH? Irrigating the soil frequently can help lower the pH if it is too high as well – without watering too much, of course. Rainfall also affects soil pH. Be sure to keep local weather in mind as set up your watering plans. Application of fertilizers containing ammonium or urea can help to increase the acidity of your soil.  To make soils less acidic (or more alkaline), ground agricultural limestone can be added to the soil. The finer the limestone particles, the more rapidly it becomes effective.
  7. How can Spring-Green help? The pros at Spring-Green can help you determine what your target pH level should be based on your goals and provide the plan to get there. Beyond just an initial consultation, Spring-Green supports your lawn care goals from start to finish.

Spring-Green has been the go-to for American homeowners who want to have healthy lawns and quality service from trusted local professionals. That’s how we got the name – your neighborhood lawn care experts! Our team can guide you on the perfect grasses, shrubs, and plants for your unique corner of the world – including, developing an assessment and plan for your soil’s pH levels!

Contact Spring-Green today to learn more!

How To Paw Proof Your Yard

The world has many outside playtimes and that is not excluding our furry friends. With more lawn renovation than ever before, it is important to tackle the need of paw proofing your yard.  Harsh chemicals, poisonous plants, faded yellow spots, and so much more remain a threat to your family’s well-being. However, Spring-Green is here to share their best practices and insider tips for your lawn, your pets, and you – not necessarily in that order. Not to worry, your professional lawn care team at Spring Green is here with the answers to all the most frequently asked questions about your pets and your lawn.

Pet Proofing Your Yard FAQs

  • What harmful chemicals should I avoid if I have pets? As a new pet owner, it should already be habitual for you to check your household cleaner. However, it is easy to forget about those outdoor cleaners as well. Be sure to check for harmful chemicals in products that you use to fertilize or de-weed your lawn, shrubs, and trees.
  • How do I create dog-proof patios and porches? Pet proofing may be needed for those nosey pets.  Placing fencing to keep your dogs from going into areas of your yard design for your personal leisure or a growing garden is a great pet proofing tactic.
  • Should I create specified dog pee spots? Dogs and cats tend to be creatures of habit. You can save yourself time and reduce the chance of damage to your lawn or hardscapes by creating pee areas. Training your pets to use that a specific area can only be beneficial. This practice will also reduce or eliminate the chance of you or a houseguest unexpectedly stepping in dog waste.
  • What to do if my dogs like digging holes? If your dog is a naughty digger, it can wreak havoc on your lawn.  There are a few tricks to try to reduce the digging, including walking your dog at least twice daily to help them burn off energy. Provide them with toys to keep them occupied and reduce the time they spend alone. You may also be able to work on some simple commands with your dog and use them when you catch them beginning to dig. You may also have to block off the area that your dog is prone to dig in if your dog is persistent.
  • What are dog-approved plants? Plant toxicity awareness is important for pet owners. You might be growing poisonous plants without even knowing it. If you have dogs, cats, or children, it benefits you to learn more about poisonous plants, and if possible, remove them from your yard. The ASCPA makes it easy with its poisonous plant cheat sheet.
  • What are the best remedies for yellow spots? Preventing yellow spots in your lawn from dog urination might require some creative moves on your part. You may consider installing a tougher type of grass that can withstand wear and tear and, well, pee. Clover lawns may be a consideration to help prevent the yellow staining. Diluting dog urine, if you spot it in time, is another option to preventing those unsightly yellow spots.
  • What lawn care practices should I follow to protect my pets? Pets love rolling around in the grass and taking naps in shady spots of your lawn, but hidden in the tall grass are more ticks and fleas. Be sure to keep your grass mowed and trim to your pets’ chances of picking up ticks and fleas.
  • Should I put up a barrier around my pool? Most likely, yes. Every dog is different. Some love the water; some despise it. At the very least, you should train your dog on how to get out of the pool if it were to fall in. An even better option – put a safety fence around the pool to ensure no issues occur when you’re not home or not paying attention.

Taking care of that special family member may take a few more steps, but it is well worth it.  At Spring-Green, we understand that lawn care is a vital part to your children and pet’s safety. That is why we know how to help you create a lush and entertaining yard that is free from toxins and hazards as well as provide the tips you need to keep your pets from damaging it. Of course, dog training is not in our wheelhouse, but we’ve got the lawn care tips and service locked down. Just ask one of our professional and knowledgeable technicians for information.

Contact Spring-Green today.

What to Know When Renovating Your Lawn

Many savvy homeowners are taking their lawncare into their own hands. Whether you’re renovating your yard to sale your home or want a healthier, greener lawn, Spring-Green has the knowledge you need to make it a success. From timing to tips to weed control, we’ll guide you through the details.

  • What are the benefits of renovating my lawn? By renovating your lawn, you are not only increasing your property value, but reducing the risk of soil erosion, groundwater impact, and helping improve the environment. For many of us today, being outside is the perfect vacation from indoors. Enjoy it more in a newly renovated yard.
  • When should I renovate my lawn? Timing matters. If you live in a colder climate, your lawn renovation should start before the winter goes into full force. If you live in a more tropical climate, you should wait until the rainy season has subsided. A good rule of thumb is to renovate your lawn at least, 45 days before the first frost
  • What will it cost to renovate my lawn? Setting a budget in any project is important. When working on your lawn, there are many DIY options to give you the results you desire but it can cost. Many products for lawn renovation can be picked up at your local home store. But be careful because using low cost products or seed may cost you more in the long run because you have to retreat or reseed due to failure of the initial application.
  • Should I outsource the work?  If renovating your lawn is not in your skillset, do not worry, Spring-Green has you covered.  Spring-Green works with you to achieve your lawn goals. They tailor their fertilization and weed prevention process to your specific lawns needs.

Step-by-step Tips for Renovating Your Lawn

  1. Dethatching – If you have thatch, you’ll need to clear it away. Thatching rakes may be needed if you have a severe thatch problem. By removing the thatch, you’ll be clearing space for the new grass roots to thrive in a healthier environment.
  2. Aerating – Aeration is creating tiny openings in the lawn that lets air, nutrients and water to reach down into the roots of the grass. This is an important step to help your new lawn flourish. Be sure to extract “plugs” that are two to three inches long to get the best results. Aeration should be done when soil is moist – not overly saturated and not completely dry. Be sure to make this service a part of your regular maintenance program. Good thing Spring-Green Lawn Care can aerate for you to help keep up maintenance.
  3. Seeding – The first step is to decide on what type of seed you want. Of course, you’ll want to take into consideration what works best for region and your soil conditions. Be sure to avoid the common mistake of not overseeding. Once you’ve done the dethatching and aerating, it’s time to seed using a hand spreader or lawn spreader for larger areas of the lawn.  It’s also suggested to use a Starter fertilizer to be used in conjunction with seeding.
  4. Weed Control – Controlling weeds is a top priority for your lawn renovation. Clear out the existing weeds and overgrowth and then set your strategy to keep them at bay. Start by applying quality fertilizer. This can be done while seeding or a few weeks after. You’ll need to do manual weeding until your new lawn has been mowed approximately three times, after which you can begin to use herbicides and weed killers.
  5. Watering – It’s mission-critical to keep your lawn hydrated during the lawn renovation process. Several light waterings throughout each day will be required to ensure the new seeds germinate. Once your new lawn is established, you can use the rule of thumb of about one inch of water per week. Be sure to factor in local rainfall numbers to this equation.
  6. Mowing – Once your new lawn has grown to a height of approximately two and a half inches to three and a half inches, you can begin mowing it. Be sure to remove only about one-third of vegetation each time you mow.

If it’s time for a lawn renovation, you’ll be set up for success with these tips from the lawn care experts at Spring Green. And, of course, if you need our help onsite – we’re here. Spring-Green has many specialties and services custom made for their community. With our core aeration process, we can open up your lawn by allowing more air, water, and nutrients to reach the spots that need it most. Our lawn fertilization and weed control process is tailor made to your area and environment. Here at Spring-Green, we even help maintain your irrigation system. So. before you begin your lawn renovation, reach out to Spring-Green for our expert advice and professional services. We’re here to help you get your lawn looking beautiful again. Contact us today or visit our website!

Which Grassy Weed is in My Lawn?

It is not uncommon for a customer to believe they have crabgrass in their lawn, when in fact, they may have one of several perennial uncontrollable grassy weeds growing in their lawn.  The difficulty is telling which grassy weed is present.  Without getting into a lot of detail, here are a few simple clues to tell which grassy weed may be growing in your lawn.

  • Crabgrass:  This annual grassy weed grows flat to the ground and it looks like it has been stepped on.  Its growth habit resembles the spokes of a wheel.  The leaf blades are light green in color.  The center of the plant may be tinged with purple, but not always so.  As the seed head develops, its shape resembles a bird’s foot.  It is usually found along driveways, sidewalks, and street edges. Since there are two species of crabgrass that grows in the Midwest – Large and Hairy, there may be hairs growing on the plants as well.
  • Coarse Fescue:  This perennial grassy weed is often called crabgrass as it seems to grow better in the summer and can be more noticeable during summer heat and drought conditions.  It will grow in isolated patches throughout a lawn or in areas that are drier.  Identifying characteristics of this plant include a clump-growth habit, prominent veins on the leaf blade and the leaf edge or margin is serrated.  If you run your finger down along the edge, it will feel sharp, like a serrated knife. 
    Improved varieties of this turfgrass have been cultivated due to its ability to withstand more heat and drought than traditional cool-season grasses like Kentucky bluegrass and perennial ryegrass.  The improved cultivars often referred to as turf-type tall fescue, can be found in many seed mixes that are sold throughout the Midwest. 
  • Quackgrass:  This is another common perennial grassy weed that usually grows in large patches.  The leaf blades are a lighter color than of other cool-season grasses and the blades are sharply pointed at the tip.  In order to properly identify this grass, you need to pull up a plant so that you can see the sheath (stem) and where the leaf blade meets the stem.  If you look closely where the leaf blade meets the sheath, you will see two little growths that resemble little fingers wrapping around the sheath.  These are called auricles and they are the main identifying characteristic of quackgrass.
    One other identifying characteristic of quackgrass is its root system of aggressively growing rhizomes that can grow for many feet underground before surfacing.  Even if you were successful removing much of the root system, even a small section left behind can develop into a new grassy weed.

There are control measures for these weeds, but coarse fescue and quackgrass require the use of non-selective weed control products that contain glyphosate and then reseeding the area once the plants have died.  This is best done in late summer and early fall. 

Crabgrass begins to die when temperatures start to cool, and the amount of sunlight reduces in the late summer and early fall. There are weed control products that can be applied to crabgrass before it gets too old.  The best way to prevent crabgrass in the future is to apply a crabgrass preventer in the spring and, above all else, mow at a height of 3 inches all season long. 

If you think you may have a problem with these grassy weeds, contact Spring-Green so that we can provide proper recommendations to help your lawn improve.

Getting To Know & Getting Rid of Invasive Plants

Invasive Plants - Dandelions

Invasive plants are just as they sound; invasive. They are invading a space that is not native to them. This doesn’t just mean they came from somewhere other than your geographic locale, it can mean that they will cause big trouble for your landscape. Not all invasive plants are bad, but knowing how to identify them and remove them if needed can be mission-critical to keeping your lawn and its surrounding landscapes healthy.

Spring-Green, the neighborhood lawn care specialists for over forty years, can guide you to the knowledge you need to protect your landscape against potential damage that invasive species can cause. Of course, we’re here for you every step of the way as you build the perfect and healthy outdoor oasis. So, let’s drill down on the definitions, signs, and best practices for dealing with invasive plants.

Test Your Invasive Plant Knowledge

  • The Definition – The official definition, as put out by the National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration, for invasive plants is any organism that causes ecological or economic harm in a new environment in a region where it is not considered native. Invasive plants can range from fish to reptiles to (the focus of this guide) plants. Invasive plants can be introduced to an area by ship ballast water or accidental release. The most common way, however, is attributed to human transport.
  • Common Invasive Plants ­– Your region will determine which invasive plant species you should be on the lookout for, but it’s a good idea to get familiar with this list of common ones.
    •  Poison Ivy – Poison Ivy is known for the itchy rash it causes for most people and is definitely an invasive plant species that you’ll want to keep out of your garden. If you spot it, be sure to wear gloves and protective clothing when removing it from your yard.
    • Dandelions – Dandelion can be problematic because it can quickly take over your entire lawn. The commonly-recognized yellow flower blooms quickly, and its seeds can disperse in the wind. Next thing you know, your green lawn is overtaken by a field of yellow flowers.
    • Violets – Wild violets are hearty in most environments as well as add flair and color to your garden. If you don’t want them in your garden, however, you can remove by hand or with a spot spray weed killer.
    • Creeping Charlie – Creeping Charlie is also sometimes referred to as Ground Ivy. It is strong and vigorous and can overtake your garden creating a mat that smothers other plants. You can dig it up or treat it with herbicide, which will likely take several applications over several weeks.
    • Plantain – Plantain is a common garden weed that likes the dark, moist corners or your garden. It’s easy to get rid of by digging up the roots or with the use of a Dandelion weeder. 
    • Crabgrass – Crabgrass is easy to remove by hand, but if it’s not kept under control, it can become a full-time job to get rid of it. Crabgrass thrives in the heat of summer and can be kept at bay with spot herbicide applications.

Crab Grass is also Invasive Plants

The Problems They Cause – The issue with invasive plants can be large on a macro and micro level. Let’s explore some of those reasons why we shouldn’t let invasive plants into our landscape and some of the problems they can cause.

  • Economic impact – Beyond our own backyards, invasive species can have a deep impact on the economies they invade. Agriculture, forestry, and fishing can all be impacted when invasive species are left uncontrolled.
  • Environmental impact – Invasive species have been shown to have an extreme impact on the environments they enter. They can cause the extinction of native plants and animals, destroy the surrounding biodiversity and permanently alter natural habitats.
  • Impact on Your Garden – Not all invasive species are bad, but most can have a negative impact on your home or business landscape. With their survival resilience, they can overtake your native plants, trees, and grasses if not kept in check.

How to get rid of invasive plants – Getting rid of the invasive plants that have popped up in your garden is not rocket science, but it might require some hard work. Techniques will slightly vary depending on the type of invasive plant you’re faced with removing, but the following are some overarching ways to clear them out.

  • Pull them out at the roots manually. Pull them out by the roots and dispose of your invasive species, if you can. If they have overcome your garden, this might be a tall task – so start early.
  • Use garden machinery. Mowing, chainsaws, and weed whippers might all be useful in getting the invasive species out quicker. It can be hard to protect to your desired native plants, grasses, and shrubbery.
  • Apply herbicides or weed killers. Your local garden center will have a bevy of chemical applications to kill off your invasive plants. The key will be finding ones that are environmentally-friendly and applying a way to does not kill everything.
  • Hire a professional for the assist. Spring-Green professionals help homeowners every day find solutions to protect their gardens from invasive species as well as assistance with removing them if they get out of control.

Spring-Green is your neighborhood lawn care specialist. We’ve been helping local homeowners and businesses with all aspects of lawn care since 1977. The impact of invasive species can be unsightly, costly, and negatively impact our environment. Spring-Green can help you proactively avoid issues before they happen and get your garden out of trouble if invasive plant species find a stronghold there. It all starts with a phone call or an email.

Start your partnership with the professional lawn care team at Spring Green today.

Don’t Make These Common Summer Lawn Care Mistakes

It’s easy to get overwhelmed by summer lawn care. Taking care of your lawn during the summer months is not rocket science. Still, it can feel like it sometimes – especially when there’s a mainstay of misleading and inaccurate information about how exactly to best care for your summer lawn. Of course, all intentions are in the right place, but where is a weary homeowner to turn when looking to keep their lawns healthy as the temperatures soar and the outdoor fun escalates? The good news is, your easy solution has arrived. The professional lawn care team at Spring-Green has put their heads together to compile a “mistake list” to eliminate the learning curve, dispel any false lawn care myths, and prepare you for a summer full of outdoor fun. Let’s get started!

Avoid These Summer Lawn Care Mistakes & Myths:

Don’t Burn with Fertilizer:

Adding too much fertilizer or adding it at the wrong time is a common summer lawn mistake that homeowners make. Too much fertilizer can burn grass blades and promote disease. By choosing slow-release fertilizers that do not need to be replenished as often, you can nourish your summer lawn with the vitamins it needs while not risking burning or other common problems.

Don’t Overwater or Underwater:

It’s important to find the perfect balance when it comes to watering your summer lawn. Too much or too little can cause big problems. If you water your summer lawn with too much water, you will wash away nutrients and create an environment ripe for fungus, making it susceptible to disease. Too little water can cause your grass to die. As a rule of thumb, most types of grass require one to two inches of water per week to thrive.

Don’t Neglect the Weeds:

Weeds are strong and resilient in nature. They’re especially strong and thriving during the summer months. Weeding is an essential task to keep your lawn healthy. If left unchecked (or “un-weeded” to be more accurate), your lawn could get into serious trouble from overpowering weeds. Be sure to check for weeds routinely and remove as quickly as possible when they appear in your summer lawn.

weeding

Don’t Cut with Dull Blades:

Have you checked the sharpness of your mower blades lately? Cutting the summer lawn is a common mistake that is easy to make, but almost just as easy to prevent. Dull mower blades can injure your grass blades and impact the aesthetic look of your lawn.

Don’t Cut Too Short:

Just like watering, mowing requires a perfect balance between too much and too little. Many overzealous homeowners take the step of mowing their lawn too much or leaving the grass blades too short. As a rule of thumb, you should never cut the grass below the one-third mark. If you do cut your grass too short, you may cause it to lose valuable nutrients and succumb to disease or even die.

Don’t Leave Clumps of Cut Grass After Mowing:

The grass grows like crazy in the summer, and post-cut grass clumps can seriously pile up. Resist the temptation to leave the clumps as they lay after you mow your lawn this summer. The left-behind grass clippings can block sun from reaching your lawn and cause yellowing and even cause your grass to die. Be sure to rake up the grass clippings to keep your lawn healthy.

grass mowing

Don’t Choose the Wrong Grass for Your Area:

Certain types of grass fit your geographic location, and others don’t. It’s that simple. If you choose grass types that aren’t a good fit for your climate and soil characteristics, you will be struggling against the odds to help your summer lawn succeed.

Don’t Neglect the High Traffic Areas:

Summer is the time for increased outdoor activity, raised temperatures, and scorching sun – all elements that can lead to wear and tear of the summer lawn. One way to mitigate against this issue is to install stepping stones or pavers in highly trafficked areas. You may try other ways to minimize traffic on your summer lawn that includes fencing and path lighting.

Don’t Overlook Signs of Insects and Pests:

Summer lawns are prime targets for insect infestations, such as chinch bugs, cutworms, armyworms, sod webworms, fire ants, fleas, ticks, and mosquitoes. A routine pest preventative maintenance plan can help you keep your lawn from getting overtaken by these common summer insects.

Summer lawns are more important than any other time of the year when outdoor enjoyment needs are at their highest levels. Myths and mistakes for the care of your summer lawn abound. Don’t fall for the common missteps, just call the pros in from Spring-Green to assist you in your summer lawn pursuits. Spring-Green can share professional know-how that fits your unique area, your unique lawn and your unique goals. We’ve been the neighborhood lawn care specialists for over thirty years, so you can trust that we know the difference between summer lawn care myth and reality.

Contact Spring-Green for a consultation today.

Fruit Tree Care Tips

apple fruit tree

Having a fruit tree in your backyard can be one of the most rewarding things. Enjoying freshly picked berries, apples, mangoes, avocados, and others can create delicious delicacies and family memories that last a lifetime. Proper care for your fruit trees is the key to keeping the fun flowing. The Spring-Green team, leaders in lawn care since 1977, wants your enjoyment of your fruit trees to last for years to come, so we put this guide together to help you understand how to care for them. While care will vary based on your fruit tree varietals and the region of the world you reside, these best practices will help you build a strong foundation for success care of your fruit trees.

Everything to Know About Caring for Your Backyard Fruit Trees

“An Ounce of Prevention is Worth a Pound of Cure”: This old adage is almost always true; Understanding how to prevent an issue with your fruit tree is the best way to keep the enjoyment lasting for many years to come.

  • Fertilizer – It’s recommended that you fertilize your young fruit tree once each year, typically in the spring before the tree fruit blooms. It’s recommended that fertilizer usage increases over the years as the tree matures. Be sure to water immediately after fertilization to ensure the fertilizer gets into the tree’s roots.
  • Pest Prevention – Watch for signs of damage from pests that can hurt the fruit tree. Be sure to weed regularly and pick up fallen fruit, as well as trim off dead branches.
  • Mulching – A layer of mulch applied to the base of the fruit tree not only protects the soil when temperatures drop, it also boosts the healthiness of the soil. Mulch should consist of compost, wood chips, grass clippings, shredded leaves, pine needles, or wood nuggets.

Get Good at Pruning: Regular pruning is important to keeping your fruit trees healthy long-term. Depending on the climate where you live, the bulk of the fruit pruning will take place in winter. Some pruning should regularly take place all year long as well. The National Gardening Association recommends pruning suckers and waterspouts in early summer months to reduce chances of disease and insect issues.

pruning fruit tree

Young vs. Mature Fruit Trees: Your care regimen for young versus mature fruit trees is slightly different. Let’s check out some of the best practices for your trees, depending on age.

  • Water a young fruit tree once every-other week.
  • Mature fruit trees still need a thorough watering on a regular basis from you or rainfall.
  • Fertilize your young tree gently as it grows and be sure to trim with pruning shears as needed.
  • Use fertilizer intended for mature fruit trees when they have been in the ground for three years or more.
  • For a newly-planted fruit tree, cut the top at around three feet and make sure the branches are uniformly spaced-apart.
  • Mature trees require a yearly pruning in either late winter or early spring, removing dead and broken branches.
  • No more than one third of the total growth on the tree should be removed in one season.

Planting Fruit Trees: Questions swirl for newbie fruit tree planters like “lots of direct sun versus no sun,” or “how do I prepare the ground?” as well as “how often do I water my newly-planted fruit tree?” No worries. Spring-Green has the details you need to get started on a good foot:

  • Water a young fruit tree once every other week. Most fruit trees require that you apply enough water to moisten the soil to a depth of three feet to reach the roots.
  • Find a place in your backyard (or front yard) where your fruit trees can get approximately six hours of sun each day.
  • Be sure your fruit tree is planted a minimum of three to six feet from sidewalks, driveways, and buildings.
  • If you’re planting more than one tree, allow 10 to 15 feet of space between each tree.

What if Your Fruit Tree is Sick?

Ways to treat a diseased fruit tree will vary depending on the type of tree and your location. However, a copper spray, found in most home improvement stores or nurseries, resolves most common fruit tree diseases. You may also explore insecticidal soaps to get rid of common pests like aphids and mites. If the disease is only harming a small portion of the tree, cut away the dead branches damaged by the disease, and with each cut be sure to disinfect your tools with a bleach or alcohol solution. When removing diseased branches, make you’re pruning cut is six inches below the diseased area. You can also learn about how to rejuvenate mature fruit trees that haven’t produced much fruit in their later years here.

Your backyard environment needs some assistance to provide the same benefits to trees and shrubs as a natural forest habitat. Spring-Green offers homeowners expert guidance in caring for fruit trees, along with other types of trees, including shrubs. Our tree and shrub care program is designed to provide quality service at an affordable price. We can provide tips for maintenance and prevention, as well as assistance when your fruit trees encounter a problem. Since 1977, we’ve provided neighborhoods just like yours with the very best in lawn care, which, of course, includes your fruit trees.

Check out Spring-Green’s…

  • 2-Step Tree Program – Nourish and protect your fruit trees with Spring-Green’s tree and shrub care programs and services that keep your landscape looking beautiful and save you tons on replacement costs.
  • Root Feeding Service – Spring-Green offers a deep root service that delivers essential nutrients directly to your fruit tree’s root zone.
  • Specialty Injections – Tree trunk injections can allow your fruit tree to fight certain types of leaf diseases or insects.

Contact A Pro From Spring-Green Today To Get Started.