A lawn without weeds is a dream some homeowners fantasize about. In all honesty, it is close to impossible to avoid weed growth 100%. But by cultivating a lush, healthy lawn you may help prevent giving weeds an inch to take root. When lawns are thin, weeds invade.
Use a pre-emergent herbicide to halt weed seed germination of annual weeds, like crabgrass, annual bluegrass or henbit. Follow package directions carefully, some are better applied after rain, while others need watering in for best results. Post-emergent herbicides that kill weeds via leaf contact require wet foliage so the herbicide adheres to weed leaves.
To get rid of weeds and avoid reproducing, hand pulling is a sure-way to remove them. Pull out weeds by hand, being sure to get the entire root of each weed. This is often easier when soil is wet, so plant to weed after rain, or consider running a sprinkler first if there's no rain in the forecast. Weeding by hand can be back-breaking work, but there are special tools that might make the work easier. Fish tail weeding tools can be inexpensive and helpful. When pulling weeds with a tap-root, like dandelions, you want to get as much of the root as possible. Pull 2 inches or more of root to ensure it won’t re-sprout. Having the soil moist will help in loosening those deep roots.
When targeting a smaller amount of individual weeds, a handheld spray herbicide can work well too. If you have quite a few weeds in a particular area, you can use a pressurized sprayer to accomplish the larger area with less work. Be sure toIt’s keep a separate, clearly-labeled sprayer just for herbicide. To avoid damaging your healthy plants and shrubs, never spray herbicide on a windy day, as the herbicide can drift. If you accidentally get herbicide on desirable plants, wash its leaves right away, or clip the affected parts immediately and wash the plant thoroughly with water.
While there is no guarantee you'll have a permanently weed-free lawn, the best way to avoid weeds is to maintain the healthiest turf you can. Fertilize and water your lawn as needed, mow grass at the proper height, aerate and dethatch when necessary, add a layer of compost annually to help amend and nourish soil. Healthy, lush grass is your best bet to keep weeds at bay.
Give us a call at Gardenin' Angels if you need help controlling your weeds or have other lawn or garden concerns:
If you've landed on this blog, you can see that we've updated our website. We are extremely excited about the new look, feel, and functionality of our site.
We're proud of our work, which is why we've used lots of images to showcase our landscape, hardscape and gardening expertise in this site re-design. We'd love for you to look around and get an idea of the quality and variety of our work and maybe even get some inspiration on what your outdoor space could look like.
We've also added "call us" buttons to the site so that you can call us with just a tap of the button if you're using a mobile device. Feel free to call us anytime if you're interested in a free estimate, or talking about how we can help bring your outdoor dream to life. We also have a contact form if you prefer to fill out some information and send it to us electronically. Look around and let us know what you think of our site and our work. Be sure to check out our blog regularly for tips and advice on gardening, landscaping, lawn maintenance, hardscape ideas and inspiration.
When the Boston Flower and Garden Show is held, it's officially spring! The exposition is held from Wednesday, March 22 - Sunday, March 26 and features huge gardens and exhibits, competitions, lectures and demonstrations and hands-on workshops. It's a fun way to get a taste of spring when we still have snow melting on the ground.
It may be worth the trip, to give you some inspiration for your garden this year. We love to get motivated by natural beauty...even when it's indoors! Ticket information is available at the Boston Flower and Garden Show website.
We are starting to feel some cold weather in Massachusetts. And to think, it's going to get much colder in the coming months! While frigid temps, heavy snow and ice that are typical of New England winters will cause some damage to our plants, it is possible to minimize damage. Here are a few of our suggestions:
This fall has been so good to us so far. The leaves are just stunning and the temperatures have been pretty mild. We highly recommend that if you like getting your hands in the soil, you take advantage of this time to get outside and plant bulbs for spring and summer blooms next year.
If you're looking at your property and feeling overwhelmed by the leaves and debris that seem to carpet the ground, consider hiring the pros for a fall cleanup. A professional landscaper typically has a crew of professional landscapers and high-quality, commercial equipment to get the job done quickly and hassle-free.
Fall cleanups include removal of all brush and debris, trimming of trees and shrubs, leaf blowing and removal, lawn mowing and edging, weeding, thatch removal, watering of plants/trees, and garden bed clean-out. Even though there are still leaves to fall from the trees, we recommend you call to schedule a fall cleanup, as we book up fast. Get your preferred fall cleanup date by calling us at 774-284-1171.
If you're an avid gardener, you can use this checklist to help ensure you get through all the fall gardening tasks to give you a gorgeous garden next spring.
(Click image to enlarge for easy viewing or printing)
1. Trim those dead or dying limbs
Surely you have some branches on your trees that are dead or near dead. These limbs often surrender to the harsh winds and snow that’ll be here in the coming months. Dead or dying tree limbs threaten our homes, vehicles and even people. If you have large limbs or whole trees that are rotted or dying, it’s best to call in the professionals. But you can probably tackle your smaller, ornamental trees by cutting diseased, rotted, or cracked limbs close to the trunk.
2. Cut Back Perennials
Remove the dead or dying annuals along with the slugs that feed on them and breed in fall. The foliage on your perennials is likely dead or starting to die, so trim them down to the ground which will sends nutrients the roots for next season. Putting in this bit of effort now will result in a healthier spring garden.
3. Plant New Shrubs
Planting shrubs in early fall is great in New England’s climate. The soil is cool and moist which provides the plants an ideal start to establish roots. Dig a hole for your new shrub that’s about twice the diameter and just an inch or two less deep than the full height of the root ball. Position the shrub in the hole ensuring the top of the root ball does not go below ground level (it should be level or just an inch above the ground). Fill in any spaces of the whole with soil and water thoroughly. Add more soil to top of root ball followed by mulch.
Fall is here and with it, cooler days and nights. If you love spending time outdoors, an evening fire is an incredible way to extend you time relaxing or entertaining outside. Outdoor fun is not just for summer! Winter, spring, summer or fall (as long as it's not raining or snowing) you can enjoy an outdoor fire. How nice is it to cozy up to your loved ones on a cool fall or winter night? Roast marshmallows or tell stories with your kids around the warmth of the flames?
Gardenin' Angels offers installation of quality, custom fire pits. They're built at our facility in Easton, Massachusetts and delivered to your home. Complete installation at your home takes roughly two hours. If you wish, we can can also design and install a stunning patio surrounding your fire pit for a more substantial outdoor living area.
Fire pits are built on a 6-inch concrete base, reinforced with metal mesh, and constructed with fire bricks and natural stones. We have five models available for you to choose from. Call us for more information at 774-284-1171.
In New England, late-September through October is the ideal time to plant bulbs and roots for flowers that will bloom next spring and summer. The weather is starting to cool, but the ground is still soft and easy for digging. If you plant in the next 4-6 weeks, flowers and shrubs will get well-rooted throughout the winter and be ready to make their debut next year.
If you're starting a new garden bed, consider a tiered look, with the tallest shrubs and flowers in the back, a middle row for medium height blooms and a front row for low-to the ground flowers and ground cover.
Fall is also a great time to divide perennials that are outgrowing their space. Check out one of our previous blogs about dividing and transplanting HERE.
MYTH: By mowing your grass shorter, you won’t need to do it as often.
By adjusting your lawn mower to its shortest setting, you’re exposing sensitive root systems to excess sunlight, allowing weeds to capture more sunlight and grow themselves, and limiting your lawn’s ability to produce sugar from photosynthesis. Your grass then is overworked trying to produce new blades using additional sugar reserves. Letting the grass grow long, then cutting it short can shock your lawn system. Dramatic cutting removes more of the leaf, leaving mostly bare stock. Thus, the plant is unable to produce extra shoots and brown patches are often the result. This, in turn, leads homeowners to think their lawns need more watering, a dangerous course of action for a lawn already weakened by shortened blades.
MYTH: You should water grass at night.
Many homeowners avoid watering their lawn during the day because they think the sun will absorb most of that water before the grass can benefit from it. This leads many to water lawns in the evening. However, by watering later in the day, moisture that's not absorbed will sit on the grass all night — which can invite mold or fungi. Ideally, homeowners should water early in the morning if possible.
MYTH: I don’t need professional landscaping services.
Many homeowners think that landscaping services lack the technical skill requirements of siding or plumbing installation and that it’s essentially a Do-It-Yourself project. While it’s true that most people can mow a lawn or plant shrubs, the opportunity provided by a professional landscaping contractor shouldn’t be dismissed. In fact, professional landscaping is one of the most common, moderately-sized home improvements out there. Along with asphalt roofing and bathroom remodels, residential landscaping is one of the top three home improvement projects searched by homeowners seeking a professional contractor. The return on investment for homeowners can be significant.
MYTH: All landscaping is good landscaping.
While a poorly-maintained lawn is a missed opportunity to enhance your home, poorly-executed landscaping projects can cause more damage than it’s worth. One of the most common mistakes is to plant and cultivate trees and shrubs too close to a home. Trees may allow pests to infiltrate your roofing and attic space, inhibit roofing ventilation, or broken branches may directly damage your roof. Hedges, meanwhile, can trap moisture in your siding and lead to mold and rot. Another major error by landscapers with little expertise is to install a hardscape patio that does not have a grade to allow for water run-off, or wrongly incorporating a grade. This can result in pooling of water or water runoff into your foundation or other sensitive area. These and other, less common mistakes are also important reasons to consider hiring a professional, experienced, landscaping contractor. Their general landscaping expertise as well as understanding of local weather patterns, native plants and regional considerations will help identify potential dangers before they occur.
Rodrigo Dos Anjos