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Spring Lawn Care in the South

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As you may suspect, lawn care varies greatly depending on region. What may be the right turf for northern climates won’t be right for southern terrain. If you live in the South, it’s important to know the best landscaping and lawn care tips for your region.

Additionally, the right planting and maintenance tasks will also vary depending on the season. Here, we will outline how to choose the right turf for the South and how to care for your lawn and plants during the spring season.

Turf

Choosing the right turf is very important to make sure that you have grass that will survive the temperature and climate during the summer months ahead. The southern area of the country is located within the “turf transition zone.”  This means that the climate allows the use of both cool season (Fescue) and warm season (Bermuda/Zoysia) grasses. However, because weather conditions can fluctuate to extremes, all turf grasses are susceptible to environmental stresses. 

Fescue

Fescue performs and looks its best in spring and fall.  Fescue lawns will naturally thin as a result of summer heat and other environmental stress so expect to see this in the summertime.

Bermuda and Zoysia

Bermuda and Zoysia perform and look best in late spring through early fall.  These grasses are completely dormant in the winter and lose all chlorophyll which results in the turf turning a light brown color. However, they fare very well during the harsh summer months making them a good pick for southern landscapes.
 
Spring Turf Care

When it comes to spring turf care, it’s important that all winter landscape tasks are finished before the spring. Be sure to make sure that you take into consideration what tasks need to be done during the fall and winter to prepare for spring.
Let’s talk about what maintenance jobs actually need to be completed during the spring season. Here are several tasks that will need to be completed.

Mowing

Fescue performs and grows well in the spring and should be mowed weekly at a three to four inch mowing height. This height encourages a deep root system which helps to strengthen grass.

In mid to late April, you will generally start to see the warm season grasses, Bermuda and Zoysia, begin to change back from brown to green as they transition out of their winter, dormant season.  This is called “greening up.” These warm season lawns should be mowed weekly and at a one to two inch mowing height during late spring and summer.

Scalping

Scalping is a mowing process that is done primarily on Bermuda lawns in early to mid-spring or just before the Bermuda grass starts to green up.  It involves the removal of excess, dead turf leaf matter to promote grass greening up sooner by allowing sunlight to warm the soil surface. Scalping also helps to prevent thatch and is done after all chance of frost is past.

Core Aeration

Another spring maintenance task on warm season turf is core aeration.  Aeration is performed by coring type aerators that penetrate the soil surface and remove and redeposit small columns of soil. Aeration reduces soil compaction (caused by foot traffic, mowers, etc.); improves the soil’s ability to accept oxygen, water and nutrients provided by fertilizer; enhances decomposition of grass clippings and thatch that accumulate at the soil surface.

Fertilization and weed control

In early spring, it’s important to apply a slow release fertilizer to fescue turf. The same should be done to warm season grasses (Bermuda and Zoysia) in late spring. All turf grasses should be treated with a weed controller in the spring as well.
 
Landscape Service Needs

All the previously mentioned landscape maintenance tasks are specific to turf care. The following are some plant maintenance tasks that should be completed during spring.

Disease and Insects

You should always make it a point to inspect plants for disease or insect problems such as fire ants. Check the color and condition of the leaves and the soil surrounding the plant to make sure you don’t spot any irregularities in color or any insects.

Spring and Summer Flowers

Mid April is the perfect time in the South to add some spring color to your lawn with spring and summer flowers.  Plan your selection carefully around the most summer hardy flowers. These will perform the best and endure the drought, heat and humidity stresses of southern summers.
 
Trees and Shrubs
Early spring is a good time for installing landscape plants such as trees, shrubs and perennials. However, there needs to be sufficient watering to get these plants through the dry summer months. It's also important to to prune and maintain the plants you install. Some trees may do better installed in the fall or winter so be sure to research the type of tree you are wanting to plant to see when is the best planting season. 

To learn more about the services that Landscape Management Company in offers in North Georgia, please contact us today!

Posted: March 20th, 2014 | Permalink

End of Summer Lawn Care Tips

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When it comes to landscaping and lawn care, spring and summer are the best times to dive into those special projects and maintenance chores. As the summer months come to an end, it’s important that you make sure you’re protecting all of your hard work as well as preparing for hibernation in the colder months. To make sure you’re prepared, we’ve outlined an end of summer checklist with a few things to remember as you’re winding down for the cooler weather.

First Things First
Did you know that the summer months last from July to September? People commonly mistake the summer months to be June through August due to do school year schedules but the summer months (and the heat) last much longer than you may think. Nevertheless, summer is through in September and your lawn should be treated with that in mind.

Service and clean lawn care tools
Summer usually means cutting the grass a lot but before you put away the lawn mower for the colder seasons, it’s a good idea to get it serviced so that it’s in good condition for storage. The last thing you want is to pull out the mower after several months only to find out it has rusted or isn’t working properly. Consider getting the blades sharpened (this will make your job much easier) and getting the oil changed so that it’s in its best condition for when you need it again.

Don’t forget any other tools that you used throughout the summer such as trimmers and pruners. These should be cleaned and oiled where needed and put away in a dry storage place so that they are protected from moisture and don’t rust.

Watch out for pests
Spring and summer are popular times to do a lot of planting and landscaping. Keep an eye out for insects and pests as they can easily destroy all of your hard work and precious dollars you’ve spent. If you’re noticing any brown spots in your lawn, this could be a result of an insect problem. Try pulling out a clump of grass from a dead area in your yard and inspect the roots. If they look rotted, it’s probably due to a pest problem. However, if they look to be intact, it’s most likely due to lack of water.

Seeding
The end of the summer is the perfect time for seeding your lawn and fixing those dead spots if you need it. Whether it’s been a long draught of a summer or you just have a few brown spots in your lawn, re-seeding can bring your yard back to life. As the summer rolls to an end, the temperature typically drops. This gives the new grass the perfect climate to grow back plush and green. Also as the temperature is cooler, there are fewer bugs and fewer weeds to worry about destroying the new grass.

If you have any questions regarding lawn maintenance, please contact Landscape Management Company today! Or, if you would us to come service your yard, you can request a quote and we’ll get back with you shortly! 


Posted: September 30th, 2013 | Permalink
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