Lawncare How-To

Your property is your first impression. What does your landscape say about you?

Hanging Basket Care

Your flowering hanging baskets can bloom and thrive for many months- with a little help from you. Follow these easy guidelines to keep your plants healthy and beautiful throughout the season. Is the Light Right? Match your plant’s location with its light and heat tolerance for best results. Most flowering hanging baskets will continue flowering in shade or partial shade, however some will not tolerate the heat and dryness of all-day sunlight. Ivy and zonal geraniums tolerate the brightest and hottest conditions and an occasional drying out. Petunias also appreciate a sunny location. Impatients and begonias keep the shadiest spots bright but may not hold up in high light and heat. Fuchsia do best in a spot that gets some shade during the middle of the day. Water Before Wilting Don’t wait for wilting as your cue to water! Flowering plants do best if you never allow them to wilt. Take extra care with watering since hanging plants dry out faster than garden plants, because they’re exposed to more wind and warmer temperatures. Under average conditions, flowering plants in 10-inch diameter hanging baskets use 16 fluid ounces of water per day. With proper watering, the plants should last 2-4 days between waterings. Be sure to water thoroughly. If the basket dries out, the soil may shrink and allow the water to quickly run out the drain hole, fooling you into thing it’s thoroughly watered when, in fact, the water is bypassing the roots. Make sure the basket becomes heavy with water, about 7-9 pounds. You may need to re-water the basket again in 15 minutes- or soak it in... read more

Geranium Care Tips from Leonberg Nursery

Versatile, colorful, stately geraniums add a bold accent to any garden setting. These popular flowering plants have handsome, sturdy foliage and produce flowers that last throughout the gardening season. Look for them in a range of leaf shapes and flower colors including red, white, pink, salmon and coral. Geraniums beautify porches, balconies and flower beds. Compatible with many other plants, they can be mixed with shrubs, perennials and annuals for quick color or grouped with other plants in container gardens.

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Post Installation Care of Turfgrass

The following recommendations from The Lawn Institute will help you maintain a thick, healthy lawn after natural turfgrass sod has been installed: FERTILIZER The type and quantity of fertilizer required for your lawn will depend on your grass variety. Cool and warm season grasses vary as do their nutrient requirements. Check with your Extension Service, local nursery or lawn and garden professional to determine what type of fertilizer is best for your lawn. MOWING The turfgrass can be mowed when it is rooted. Be sure to remove no more than 1/3 of the grass blade. The actual height of the cut varies depending on weather the grass is cool or warm season and the type of grass. Keep your mower blades sharp. Dull blades tear the grass blade instead of cutting it cleanly. These small rips in the turfgrass tissue can cause the grass to lsoe more water, increase irrigation needs, create stress, and make the lawn more vulnerable to diseases. GRASS CLIPPINGS Leave grass clippings. Contrary to popular belief, they do not cause thatch. (Thatch usually occurs only when turf is excessively fertilized and soil is compacted, cool and moist.) If you follow the 1/3  cutting rule grass clippings won’t smother the grass plants. They will dry out and work their way down to the soil surface. These clippings return nutrients to the soil, resulting in less fertilizer use. They also cool the soil and help it retain water. THATCH Thatch is a layer of dead and decomposing plant tissue that forms above the soil. A thin 1/2 inch layer is beneficial to a lawn. It protects plant crowns and... read more

How To Properly Water Your Lawn

Proper watering techniques are important. Here are several helpful suggestions: Avoid hand watering because it cannot provide uniformity. The only possible exception to this guideline would be the need to water the surface of the grass to cool it, or to provide additional water near buildings or other beat-reflecting surfaces. Understand each sprinkler has its advantages and disadvantages. Proper use is determined by the type of sprinkler you select. IN-GROUND SYSTEMS require professional installation, routine adjustments and proper maintenance to be effective. The greatest mistake made in most in-ground systems is the “set it and forget it” philosophy that fails to account for changing seasonal water requirements to maximize turf growth or allows the system to operate following an adequate rain. Another frequent problem is when the sprinkler heads get out of alignment and apply water to the sidewalk, street or house-sliding rather than to the lawn. HOSE-END SPRINKLERS range in complexity, cost and durability, but are portable and can provide uniform and consistent coverage when properly placed and maintained. During the growing/watering season, perform routine maintenance to check for blocked outlets, leaking or missing gaskets and misaligned sprinkler heads. Water uniformity can be accomplished by simply using 4 to 6 empty flat bottom cans (tuna fish, cat food, etc.), a ruler and a watch. STEP #1 Arrange cans at random distances from any sprinkler. STEP #2 Run the sprinkler for a specific amount of time, or until there is at least a 1/2 inch of water (1.3 cm) in one can. STEP #3 Measure the amount of water in each can. Some variation is expected, but a difference of 25-30% or more... read more

6 Essential Tips For Watering Your Lawn

Water is essential to all life…too little water and we die, too much water and we drown. The same is true of the grass in our lawns. Water makes up 70% to 80% of the weight of grasses and the clippings alone are nearly 90% water. While most people are concerned about not watering their lawns enough, the fact is, more lawns are damaged by overwatering. When To Water It is essential to begin watering new turfgrass sod within a half hour after it is installed or placed on the soil. Apply at least 1 inch (2.5 cm) of water so that the soil beneath the turf is very wet. Ideally, the soil 6 inches (15 cm) below the surface will be moist. Watering Tip #1 Pull back a corner of the turf and push a screwdriver or other sharp tool into the soil. It should push in easily and have moisture along the first 6 inches (15 cm), or you need to apply more water. Watering Tip #2 Make certain the entire lawn is receiving water. Corners and edges are particularly vulnerable to drying out and are easily missed by many sprinklers. These sections dry out faster than the center portion of a new lawn. Areas near buildings also dry out faster and may require more water. Watering Tip #3 Runoff may occur on some solid or sloped areas before the soil is adequately moist. To conserve water and ensure even irrigation, turn off the water if runoff begins. Wait 30 minutes to an hour and restart watering. Repeat as needed. For the next two weeks (or until... read more

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