Author Archive for David Swords

How To Properly Mulch Your Flowerbeds

mulching-york-paHow To Properly Mulch Your Flowerbeds

Spring is just around the corner.  It is time to dust off your tools and get mulching.  Mulch is a cheap and effective way to make your flower beds come alive.  It will improve the aesthetics of your home and provide your plants and shrubs with much needed nutrients they need to thrive all year.  It is important to get a good quality mulch.  If  the mulch is not treated you can potentially bring in insects, fungus, and weeds.  We recommend mulching first thing in spring in order to keep the weed seeds from coming in contact with the earth.  The first step in any quality mulching project is to pull all of your weeds.  Scraping the top layer of the mulch up as you go will help to insure proper decomposing.   Without weeding the weeds will just grow through the mulch in a week. Next take a flat shovel around the edges to dig a border in order to keep your lawn at bay.  A simple way to create a new bed is to lay out a garden hose as a guide so you know where to dig.  A 3-4 inch edge is preferred  so that it will stay all year without the need to re-edge.  We then like to apply a pre-emergent, such as preen all over the beds.  This will help to stop future weeds from growing by prohibiting any weed seeds that may have already been there from germinating. Finally apply the mulch.  The general rule of thumb is 3-4 inches.  However mulch can get hot and burn tender flowers so keep it shallow around these plants.  The same goes for trees that may be in your landscaping.  Around your trees you will want to create a bowl  with the trunk in the middle.  The mulch will be shallow and build it up around the drip line.  This will create a basin in which to hold water and irrigate your trees.  By following these simple guidelines your home will look good, your plants will thrive, and you will spend a lot less time in your flowerbeds this year!  If you can not find time this year simply give us a call.  We are now serving all of York, PA and would be glad to stop by and give you a free estimate!

Ways to Maintain a Healthy Lawn

Ways to Maintain a Healthy Lawn

Many people mow their yard. But few know how to cut it properly. Mowing is an unnatural task in the life cycle of grass and puts a lot of stress on your lawn. With that being said it is lawn-mowing-york-paimperative to minimize that stress as much as possible.

To Bag or Not to Bag

A lot of people bag their clipping but what few people realize is that the clippings are actually great for your yards health. They are an excellent natural fertilizer. As long as you are not cutting more than a third off your grass the clipping are best kept on the grass. Most people think this is where thatch comes from but it is not. Thatch is actually dead grass tissue and has nothing to do with clippings.

Keep Your Blades Sharp

Maintaining a sharp edge on your blades is essential. If you do not have sharp blades you are basically tearing the grass instead of cutting it. This weakens the grasses health and leads to a yard that is more prone to disease and insects.

Mowing Height

Every type of grass has its own preferred mowing height of course but in general the same rules always apply. You never want to cut more than a third off grass at a time. The blade is the part of grass that receives sunlight and this is where it breaths. By cutting it to short you are essentially restricting its airflow and limiting its food. In order to cope with this scenario the grass will stop putting energy into its roots and direct it all to growing the blade. Therefor not only will your grass grow more quickly but the roots become very weak. If your grass gets out of hand it is always best to cut it in increments with a couple days in between until you reach the desired height.

In general it is best to keep your grass tall. This will block weed growth by limiting the sunlight that reaches the soil. The typical mowing height is three inches however for optimal health during the heat of summer it is best to raise the mowing height. This in turn provides shade for your grass and keeps it cooler which will keep it greener longer. In the spring and fall it is better to mow a little lower. This will enable the grass to dry quicker eliminating fungus and disease issues. In the fall and winter it will also limit the amount of critters seeking refuge in your yard trying to protect themselves from frigid temperatures.

Mow At The Right Time

It is best to avoid cutting when the grass is wet. This includes in the morning and evening when there is dew on the yard. By cutting when it is wet the grass can clump together and smother your lawn creating dead patches in the process. It is also best to avoid the hottest part of the day, which puts unnecessary stress on your grass.

For more information or lawn service tips please call 717-309-8065