Mother Nature can be both a friend and a foe, and when it comes to drought, there’s nothing friendly about her! During hot and dry spells, our lawns and landscape plants can really use our help to get by.
What Are the Signs of Drought Stress?
Different plants show different symptoms. Grass can turn bluish-green or brown in color, with footprints remaining in the turf after you’ve walked on it. Trees and shrubs usually have wilting, yellowing leaves when suffering from drought.
What You Should Do
Ideally, you’ll provide your lawn with 1″ to 1 1/2″ of water per week in the absence of rainfall. Your trees and shrubs will benefit from a deep weekly soaking as well. Naturally, if watering restrictions are in place, you should follow local guidelines for water conservation, watering your lawn, trees and shrubs whenever you can. You may also want to set priorities as to what gets watered first. Valuable specimen trees or anything that was recently planted (trees, shrubs or grass) should get special attention.
It’s very important to keep your lawn and landscape plants well fertilized. Mulching around trees, shrubs and planting beds is beneficial as well. These practices lead to deeper, denser root systems, making it easier for plants to withstand drought conditions (and related problems like insects and disease).
With proper watering, fertilizing and mulching, your lawn and landscape will be much better equipped for the hot, dry weather ahead of us!
It’s time to think about your plans for outdoor summer entertaining. Getting ready for long, enjoyable evenings with family, neighbors and friends starts by accessing your outdoor living areas. If you are looking to expand your entertaining spaces, now is the best time to start the conversation with our landscape design team.
We can help with many aspects of your landscape, and here are a few ideas to consider.
Is your outdoor living and entertaining space big enough to comfortably fit everything you like to do? Do you favor small gatherings, or do you want to be the place where everyone wants to hang out? Thinking through all the things you enjoy doing on your patio or deck can help you begin to imagine how it could be improved or possibly expanded.
If you love the process of cooking outdoors or cooking for others, expand your living space outdoors! From simple to elaborate, there are options to meet every taste and budget.
and Fire Pits
Fireplaces create a natural focal point for every backyard landscape. Outdoor fireplaces and smaller outdoor fire pits are the perfect party features for socializing long after the sun goes down. Let us help you find the right fire feature for your space and keep the party going year-round.
Great for both the front and back yards, landscape lighting is useful for more than just aesthetics. Landscape lighting ensures better safety and allows you to continue your fun long into the night. It is especially important to consider good lighting on paths from the front to the back yard, so guests can clearly see where they’re stepping.
Professional Lawn Care
A lush, green lawn is part of the summertime experience. Professional lawn care from Hively Landscape is a safe and sustainable service that will keep your lawn green and growing all season long, so you can enjoy your yard instead of working in it!
Fall weather can be a wild card. Days go from mild and sunny to cold and gray literally overnight. Once the weather turns, the notion of yard work becomes less attractive. In spite of that, it pays to give your yard a thorough fall cleanup before winter sets in.
Typically, the biggest cleanup task at this time of year is leaf removal. Thick blankets of leaves left to lie can damage grass by blocking needed sunlight, thus weakening the turf’s viability. If left on the ground through the winter, fallen leaves can also render your lawn more susceptible to winter damage. Hively offers leaf removal as part of our fall cleanup service.
Fall Bed Cleanup
Cutting back perennials and removing dead or dying branches from trees and shrubs will help prepare both for go-time in the spring. Plant beds are also notorious for collecting dead leaves, debris, and trash during the fall. These messes only get worse over the course of the winter. By the time the warm, wet spring rolls around, you’ll find yourself with mucky beds full of slime. In addition to being unsightly, unkempt plant beds are also breeding grounds for pests and fungus.
Plan Now for Spring-Blooming Bulbs
Colorful blooms from bulbs will be a sight for sore eyes after another gray winter. Spring-flowering bulbs of all kinds are a major contributor to year-round color in any landscape. It’s important to remember that different bulbs have different blooming times. Bulbs look great in massive plantings of single types or in beds that combine many varieties. As a general rule, bulbs provide the best display when planted in groups of 15 or more.
Could it be your landscape contractor? After all, this is not an easy job or you would do it yourself, right? Besides the shear physical labor involved (pun fully intended), it takes a huge amount of knowledge to properly maintain a mature landscape.
Literally Thousands of Plants
There are thousands of ornamental perennials, shrubs and trees, each with multiple cultivars and varieties that have specific environmental needs and are susceptible to unique pests and pathogens. Each of these unique plants needs to be cared for in unique ways to promote healthy, vibrant and lasting growth.
Mulch is Easy
Just as sure as daffodils and cherry blossoms, fresh mulch popping up on landscapes throughout your neighborhood are a certain sign that Spring is here! Mulch is a simple and cost effective way to give any landscape a fresh appearance and it really is beneficial, too. Check out this link for more info on these benefits https://www.hivelylandscapes.com/2015/05/choosing-the-right-mulch/
Everyone at Hively would like to wish you a happy and safe Thanksgiving holiday and while our staff will be home with family, there are plenty of things you can do to prepare your landscape for a safe winter and successful spring.
Prepare for Hibernation
Even if you continue to enjoy your outdoor living spaces and fire features as the weather gets colder, now is a great time to begin covering your outdoor furniture, or if you have the space, move it into a covered storage area.
Fall is officially here: time to fertilize! Wait, what? Why now? Fall is the ideal time to fertilize your lawn and garden to give it a strong, healthy start come spring. At Hively, we know the benefits of fertilizing your lawn during the cooler fall months; here are some great reasons to invest the time into your lawn now, so it looks great and requires less effort in the spring.
The Weather is Perfect
Cool mornings and evenings provide the perfect conditions for fertilizing. The fertilizer does best in cooler temperatures, and by avoiding the midday sun, your lawn will allow maximum absorption in the shortest time.
If you’re like us, you appreciate a great-looking lawn surrounding your beautiful home. Maintaining that lawn takes a lot of work, and the steps you take in the fall can help ensure you’re greeted by a lush, green lawn next year.
If you’ve already followed our advice on the benefits of aerating your lawn, the next step to fall lawn care is overseeding. Fall is the perfect time for overseeding your lawn if you’re looking to repair thin or bare areas. Overseeding in the fall is preferred for several reasons, including:
- There are shorter, milder temperature days
- Seed better retains moisture and avoids drying out
- There is less competition from weeds
One of the most beneficial treatments you can provide for your lawn is aeration. Core aeration is the process of removing small plugs of soil from the lawn, which reduces the compaction of your soil and promotes root growth. This is the preferred method among landscape professionals like Hively; the alternative, spike aeration, simply pokes holes, which is much less effective and can actually cause further soil compaction.
In the fall, when your turf switches gears from top growth to root growth, aeration provides water and nutrients better access to these roots, which helps it grow thicker and healthier. If you overseed this time of year, aeration also helps maximize soil-to-seed contact, which means you’ll be seeing more of your freshly planted seed sprouting.
The summer heat can take its toll on your lawn, especially when it’s accompanied by a lack of rain. If you want to avoid a brown, patchy lawn, there are a few steps you can take to help give your lawn the best chance to stay green and healthy.
It all begins with your mowing habits. Summer droughts and long periods without rain can cause stress to your lawn. If you mow your lawn too short, or with a dull blade, additional stress is caused and will make it difficult for the grass to recover once cooler temperatures and rain return. Limit your mowing as much as possible and make a conscious effort to mow your grass on a higher setting.