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Aeration is a process that mechanically removes plugs of soil and deposits them on the top of the soil surface. As these cores break down, the surrounding soil, now relieved of compaction, the oxygen will fill in the holes. At this time, it is most beneficial to overseed your lawn with the most desirable blends of turf grass. Newer varieties of seed are proven to have higher resistance to disease, greater ability to withstand drought, and in many cases, better appearance than older cultivars.

Benefits and Results of Aeration

  • Maintains the healthy, thick appearance of your lawn
  • Reduces soil compaction for better growth
  • Helps keep thatch under control
  • Less insect and disease activity

How to know when your lawn needs core aeration

Core aeration offers many benefits for your lawn, and has proven to be one of the most essential processes in maintaining a healthy, thick lawn. The process opens up the lawn by removing small plugs of soil and thatch, allowing more air, water and nutrients to reach the root zone, leading to better plant growth. The microorganisms in the plugs that remain on the surface will dissolve back into the thatch layer to help it breakdown, naturally. The process also reduces compaction.

Thatch is the intermingled layer of roots, stems and other natural material that build up at the soil surface. Some thatch (1/2 inch or less) is desirable as it will act as a cushion and help protect the lawn from temperature extremes. When thatch exceeds an 1/2 inch, it will reduce lawn vigor and increase insect and disease problems.

Benefits and Results

  • Increases access to air, water and nutrients
  • Better plant growth
  • Reduced compaction
  • Natural soil breakdown

A properly mowed lawn is vital to lawn health. Below are a few tips on mowing.
Keep your grass Tall.

Most grass should be cut at the highest recommended setting. The taller grass helps to choke out weeds and keep them from growing. Also, in summer it helps to protect the stem from heavy sunlight. The shorter you trim your grass, the smaller the root system will be.

Tall grass means mowing more often. Make sure you don’t remove more than 1/3 of the grass blade in one mowing. Scalping, or cutting your grass extremely short, leaves it wide open to disease.

Don’t use a dull blade because this shreds the tops of the grass. This exposes the top of the lawn blade tissue for lawn disease spores to enter. Mowing with a dull blade can increase disease activity by 20% or more.

Grass clippings are okay. They return about 25% of the nutrients back to the soil.

There are a number of advantages to adding mulch in your garden. In the summer, mulch helps the soil hold moisture so you don’t have to water your garden as often. In the hot sun, soil also tends to dry out faster and harden. Mulch will help with this by protecting the soil from direct sunlight.

Mulch also prevents weeds. Adding mulch to your planting bed will block light from openings in the soil, therefore inhibiting weed germination. By adding a thick layer of mulch, you’ll ensure that the weeds never see the light of day!

Mulch Tip: While a concentrated layer of mulch is ideal, don’t overdo it. 2–4 inches is the ideal depth for a mulch layer.

Over time, mulches made from organic materials break down and increase your soil’s structure and fertility. This is especially true with compost used as a mulch, as the nutrients will promote soil organisms and aid in plant growth.

Here is a list of the most common types of Mulch you can beautify your lawn with:

Pic of pine straw
Pine straw is a great way to cover grassless areas and enhance curb appeal. Using pine straw as garden mulch keeps down weeds, traps moisture, prevents topsoil erosion, and even helps to keep the soil around the plants at a stable temperature. This is incredibly important with newer plants or those with shallower root systems.

Pic of shredded bark
Shredded bark is one of the most common and least expensive types of mulch. It comes from a variety of sources, including cedar trees. Shredded bark is one of the best mulch types to use on slopes and it breaks down relatively slowly. Some shredded-bark products are byproducts from other industries; they’re considered environmentally friendly. It also comes in a different colors.

Mulch Tip: Shredded bark can take up some nitrogen from the soil as it decomposes. If you have poor soil, adding some organic fertilizer to the soil can help keep your plants healthy.

Pine or Cedar Bark Chips
These bark nuggets are slower to break down than shredded bark, but they don’t stay in place as well. They’re not a good mulch choice for slopes or other areas where they may be washed away by heavy rain; the chips will tend to float and take off like boats. The nuggets are available in a variety of sizes; the bigger the nugget, the longer it lasts.

Stones and River Rock

Because they’re inorganic materials, stone and river rock don’t break down in the landscape, so they don’t need to be reapplied every year. However, it also means they don’t improve your soil over time. Stones are often used as mulch in cactus and rock gardens.

Mulch Tip: Take caution when using stone as mulch—stones tend to hold heat and can damage plants. If you decide to use rocks and stones, cover your soil first with a sheer landscaping fabric. This will prevent weeds from growing.

Trees begin to shed their leaves right around the fall season, and while the sight of dead leaves lying scattered all over your lawn might seem picturesque, they can actually do you more harm than good. These leaves suffocate your lawn and prevent photosynthesis from happening. Cleaning up leaves from your yard can be very time consuming, and not all homeowners will have the patience to finish the job. Contact us today for an estimate.

Shrubs, bushes and hedges are arguably the most underrated and undervalued of all landscaping plants. They possess a natural beauty that can enhance the curb appeal of your home, while providing an attractive complement to lawns, trees, gardens and hardscapes, such as walks, patios and stonewalls.

Many types of shrubs and bushes can be grown into a privacy screen, windbreak or living “fence” along a boundary line. Most varieties stay green and vibrant all year. Shrubs, bushes and hedges can even increase the resale value of your home, but only if they’re well maintained and neatly trimmed.

Badly overgrown, misshapen and unkempt shrubs and bushes will have a negative impact on the appearance and value of your home. Call us today and let us help you get those unruly bushes under control!