Landscape Corner May 2007 by keralaguest


									                      Wyndham Meadows Landscape Corner
                                                May 15th, 2007

Lawn Care Tips:                                               form ruts over time. Also it makes your lawn
Well by now your lawn should be green and                     attractive! If you take notice, this is what the
growing like a hayfield! A well established lawn at           golf courses do (and not just for the looks)!
this time of year will grow about 4” to 5” in a week.        Mulch or Bag? I am a big fan of mulching
The unfortunate part of wanting a great looking               when you can and if done correctly. Mulching
lawn is the maintenance of mowing. However for                takes the nutrients in the grass blades and
those of the less physical type, I guess that is why          allows them to return to your soil thru
lawn mowing services exist. Either way proper                 decomposing for the roots to take up again.
mowing is important to a healthy lawn. Here are               Good use of your fertilizer dollar! It also
some important tips:                                          helps moisture from evaporating to quickly
   Your mower height should be a minimum of                  out of the soil. First make sure you mower
       3” to 3.5” for bluegrass or fescue lawns (we           has a mulching blade. Typically the have
       all have this type). To ensure you have proper         some type of serration or offset that helps
       height, place your lawnmower on your                   double/triple chop the grass clippings. If you
       driveway and measure from the concrete to              need to purchase one you can go to Lowe’s or
       the bottom lip of your mowing deck.                    HomeDepot and buy the average type mulcher
   Sharpen your mower blade! This is                         blade. For the advanced yard pro want-a-be
       important as a dull blade damages your leaf            you can purchase the Gator Mulcher blade
       blades of your lawn. It tears it verses cutting        froom or
       it clean off. This tear does not heal properly The top picture
       and allows fungus and viruses (diseases) to            is a gator blade.
       enter your lawn.
   When to mow? Mow when the lawn is dry.
       Simply go out and drag your hand thru your
       lawn if your hand is wet – wait!!! Mowing
       when wet makes a mess under your mower
       deck and forms clumps of grass clippings that
       do not break down as well. Also for those that
       have riding mowers, heavily wet soils will             I do not mulch if I leave clumps on the lawn.
       compact easier under the weight of your riding         Switch to bagging. The clumps will not
       mower. This compaction squeezes the air out            breakdown quick enough and will suffocate
       of the soil and will cause your roots to suffer.       your lawn underneath leaving yellow patches.
   How to mow? Alternate the direction in                    Excessive mulching heavily will build up a
       which you mow each time you mow. There is              thatch layer that then also prohibits air and
       no excuse for not cutting in at least four             nutrients (fertilizer) from getting down to the
       different patterns…long ways, diagonally,              root zone. Therefore, it will be inevitable to a
       shortways, and reverse diagonally. Using this          healthy lawn to occasionally bag. Mulch
       mowing tip, you will prevent your grass from           when you can.
       "getting into a rut" (literally). If your
       lawnmower wheels pass over the same area in            More Tips on next Page 
       the same direction each time you mow, they'll
Grub Control Time:                                     amazes me the amount of people that starve their
I am a little late in telling you this. The month of   lawns or feel one application of fertilizer is all it
May is all about Grub Control. If you have not         needs. I drive by some of the lawns and they are
done so, get out and by some grub control and get it   simply crying! If your lawn isn’t a dark green color
applied ASAP. The product of choice for me is          with 4” to 5” of growth a week, your lawn needs
Bayer Advanced Crub Control with Merit. You can        food! If you are one of these I strongly recommend
purchase this at Lowe’s.                               in early June to help your lawn grow roots. Good
                                                       roots will help with efficient water uptake and help
                                                       survive the blasted heat coming in July/August. To
                                                       do this apply a fertilizer blend with higher P
                                                       (phosphorus) & K (Potassium), 2 key minerals for
                                                       root development.

                                                       Remember each bag of fertilizer is mark with:
                                                       Again I would recommend for most of those that
Another locally available type is GrubEx by Scotts     need to build roots to go to HomeDepot and
which is sold by Home Depot.                           purchase LESCO starter fertilizer 24-?-11 and/or
                                                       general-all-purpose fertilizer 12-12-12. If you stick
                                                       with the same manufacture you can blend the two to
                                                       get higher P&K values.
                                                           As you may tell, I am not a big fan off Scotts
                                                       brand as their fertilizer blends are ground fine and
                                                       have higher nitrogen ratings. This means the
                                                       fertilizer does not last as long but it does green up
                                                       your lawn faster. If not applied correctly the higher
                                                       (N) nitrogen can cause burn spots. Don’t get me
Most of the grubs that we have are a result of the     wrong, good lawns do require increase nitrogen, I
Japanese Beetle (June Bug). They spend 10 months       just prefer the type that releases slower over time.
of their life in the soil and 2 months (late may to       IF the last two paragraphs were too confusing for
early July) as bugs. In Oct thru Feb they move         you simply go out to Home Depot or Lowe’s and
deeper into the soil for winterization. Thus           buy some starter fertilizer or Scott’s turf builder
chemical treatments are less effective at this time.   type and get it applied!
In April the start migrating towards the surface,
which is why now is a great time to apply your grub    Broadleaf Weed Control: Guess I could
control. (see chart below).                            review broadleaf weed control again, because those
                                                       broadleaf weeds are sure growing great right now.
                                                       Even the dopes in the crowd can identify the
                                                       dandelion, the easiest of all broadleaf weeds to
                                                       control. Chickweed is another easy-to-control
                                                       weed, as well as identify. Henbit (purple top) is not
                                                       as well known, and a bit nastier than the
                                                       aforementioned weeds. Speedwell (Veronica spp.)
                                                       is tougher to ID, often times mistaken for
                                                       chickweed, and it’s the toughest yet of the weeds
                                                       discussed thus far. Everybody knows what clover
Heads-up! June Fertilization:                          looks like, and it’s only tough-to-control because
You will hear me say again and again. Healthy          most products lack the necessary ingredient. A
roots make a healthy lawn. Your lawn, just like        “Weed-Be-Gone®” type of formulation will take all
you, requires food and water to survive. It simply     these invaders out of your lawn, as long as they
                                                       contain the active ingredient, dicamba. Check the
label. It’ll probably say, “sumthing sumthing salt
of…dicamba”. Be sure before you buy, and apply it
the way the manufacturer tells you to. Sprays are
much, much more effective than fertilizer-based
products. You listening? Don’t waste your time
using dry products. Plus, those dry products contain
way too much nitrogen for springtime applications!

Tree/Landscape beds:
I have had a few of you ask about Tree care tips.
   Triming – I realize that the late spring frost
      may have caused some damage to trees and
      shrubs. When this happens don’t be to quick
      to trim. I too was surprised how well some of
      my limbs gave birth to new leaves when left
      along. If you do not see new growth by end of
      May and the branches are brittle – go ahead
      and trim them off. Also you should be
      trimming off any sucker branches growing out
      from the trunks or around the base of the tree.
      Make sure to make a clean cut to keep
      infection from setting in.
   Ornamental Grasses and dead foliage from
      your flower beds should be trimmed back and
      racked out. Fertilize with an all purpose 12-
      12-12 type fertilizer before mulching.
   Tree fertilizer – Young trees those smaller
      than 4” thick trunks can benefit from having
      Tree Fertilizer spikes put in. You can buy
      these at Lowe’s or Home Depot. Simply dig a
      hole about 12” deep and insert spike. Follow
      instructions on package for placement.

I urge you to print this off and share with your
neighbors as we do not have everyone’s email
address. If you would like to make sure you are on
the distribution list send your email address to the
Wyndham Meadow homeowners association email

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