Ask the Lawn Care Expert

Leaves: Are They Overtaking Your Yard?

raking leaves in your yard

The one yard task I dislike the most is raking leaves. I have a very large Silver Maple tree on the side of my house. My neighbor has a multi-trunk Silver Maple that is not as large as my tree, but it formed many years ago, probably from one seedling that was mowed a couple of times, resulting in a “clump” Silver Maple. Eventually, the five trees that are all growing into each other at the base will start crowding each other out and, eventually, the entire tree will probably […]

Learn More »

Have You Reflected on Your Lawn and Landscape Yet?


It is at this time of year that I start to evaluate how well my plants grew this past summer. My tomatoes did not get enough sun to produce much fruit, so those will have to be moved to a new location next year. The Variegated Ribbon Grass that I planted several years ago is spreading out way too much as it has aggressive underground roots called rhizomes. If I don’t cut it back every couple of years, roots and all, it will overtake the garden in a couple of […]

Learn More »

Has Your Dog Been “Skunked” Lately?

dog being skunked in your yard

I would guess that many of dog owners have had to deal with their dog being “skunked” at least once during its lifetime. Skunks have adapted to living in an urban environment and can be found in most major metropolitan areas. They are becoming very active at this time of year as they are building up food reserves for the winter. Although skunks don’t hibernate, they do enter a type of dormant state and rarely leave their underground den during the winter. The chance of your dog getting “skunked” increases at […]

Learn More »

Dog Stinkhorns: Have You Seen Them?

dog stink horns

One of my coworkers sent me a picture of some weird looking growths in her garden areas. They rose quickly, arising with a red stalk and a brown tip and they stink. The common name for this organism is a Dog Stinkhorn. Fall is the traditional time when Stinkhorns will push up in gardens, landscape beds and even in lawns. They are in the mushroom family, but instead of relying on wind to carry its spores, this species produces a thick slime at the tip that attracts insects, including flies that […]

Learn More »

When Is The Best Time To Aerate Your Lawn?

what core aeration looks like

The best time to aerate your lawn is based on 3 conditions: Type of grass in your lawn Weather conditions in your area Amount of moisture your lawn has received Aeration can take place at any time of the year, but the best time is usually in the spring/early summer or fall.  The general recommendation is to core aerate when there is the most root growth. For warm-season grasses: Bermuda, St. Augustine, Centipede, Zoysia, it is in May and June when these grasses are coming out of dormancy. Cool-season grasses: […]

Learn More »

Fall Webworms: Have You Seen Webs In Your Trees?

webs showing up in trees

During a recent trip to meet with our Franchise Owner in Springfield, MO, I got to witness an amazing amount of damage from Fall Webworms. This caterpillar is a gregarious feeder on the leaves of over 100 tree species, but it prefers mulberry, oak, hickory, walnut among many others. As many people are familiar with the Eastern Tent Caterpillar that feeds on the leaves of crabapples and other fruit trees. Both of these, Fall Webworms and the Eastern Tent Caterpillars will create webs in trees. The webs for Eastern Tent […]

Learn More »

Fall Leaf Removal: What You Need To Know

raking leaves in the fall

It’s that time of year again when leaves begin to fall from the trees and shrubs, summer annual weeds like crabgrass and spotted spurge begin to die and the temperatures begin to cool off. A light scattering of leaves won’t harm a lawn, but excessive cover of several inches prevents sunlight from reaching it. The leaves seem to “glue” together as they get wet from rain and are on the lawn for an extended period of time. This will prevent the grass plants from making carbohydrates that are needed to […]

Learn More »

Pythium Blight: Should You Be Concerned?

Puthium Blight Marietta, Ohio

Roger Grose, Franchise Owner in Marietta, Ohio sent me this picture of Pythium Blight that developed on newly seeded Tall Fescue turf. According to the homeowner, many of these spots appeared overnight on the lawn. There are several different strains of Pythium Blight that can occur on turfgrass. It grows mostly on golf course greens and tees and is not a disease we see in most home lawns. It can be a common problem on newly seeded turf, especially when too much seed is planted in too small of an area. If […]

Learn More »

Have You Been Seeing Multi-colored Beetles?

Multi-colored Asian Lady Beetles

I am sure that many people have noticed Lady Bugs or Lady Beetles flying around the house during the winter, especially soon after a frost occurs. You are not alone as they have been active all summer throughout the US. If you have seen these beetles in your home during winter then you are most likely seeing Multi-colored Asian Lady Beetles. As the cold seasons approaches take the time to protect your home. The best way to control the beetles’ entry into a home is through prevention.  Asian Lady Beetle […]

Learn More »

What To Do When Grass Won’t Grow In the Shade

front yard with lots of shade

This is the traditional time when reseeding of cool-season grasses takes place. Late summer to early fall provides soil temperatures that are warm. This helps the newly seeded seed to germinate and the fall season usually means more rain than the summer season. It is also the time when turfgrasses “heal” themselves from the ravages of the past summer. This is mainly due to an increase in root growth as soil temperatures moderate. When you are deciding what needs to be reseeded, it is important to understand that there are […]

Learn More »