Posted by & filed under Christmas Lighting.

We’ve all seen Christmas Vacation with Chevy Chase. Aside from A Christmas Story, it’s aired more than any other holiday movie. There’s something in Christmas Vacation that every family can to relate to. Some families have a grandma who wraps up her jello salad or their cat, other families have a Cousin Eddie parked out by the curb right now. For my family, it was Clark out on the ladder putting up the Christmas decorations. We would watch my dad climb up on the ladder and onto the roof and keep the car ready for when he would inevitably tumble off into the shrubs.

 

Last year alone, over 16,000 people had to go to the emergency room to be treated for some sort of holiday decorating accident. From opening presents to falling off the roof, this time of year can be  dangerous to those filled with holiday spirit(especially eggnog). One third of the people who came into the emergency room were there from falling off a ladder.

 

So this Christmas season, give us a call to not only save you from a trip to the emergency room, but also to save you time! Our professional installers can work with you to create a custom package based on how big or small you want to go! You can keep up with the Griswolds by letting us handle everything from install and free service calls for burnt out bulbs to takedown and storage before next year! No more giant balls of tangled lights to fight with every year, no more stapled thumbs and no more punting Rudolph into the neighbors yard this year. Call us today to get it set up!

Posted by & filed under Uncategorized.

Life is not a matter of holding good cards, but of playing a poor hand well. -Robert Louis Stevenson

Well it’s Veterans Day. That means I have something to write about and get to dump my feelings out onto my computer screen. I’m not going to lie, this post has been hard for me to get down. I’ll get to why that is specifically later on down. My three times a year to shine here are Memorial Day, Fourth of July and today, Veterans Day. It’s almost easier writing for the other two days because it’s not writing about myself. It’s easy to write about the men and women who came before me and their actions. It’s much harder for me to write about myself without being critical or feeling like I am preaching. If I am honest with myself and with others, I have not been a very good veteran lately. I didn’t know this was something you could be good or bad at, I always assumed it was just something you are or you aren’t. Being able to write this has helped me personally step back and gain some perspective though, and I am thankful for that opportunity.

I can’t remember where I heard this, but it ties in to today perfectly. There are three types of courage you can show; physical courage, moral courage and daily courage. Each of the three types of courage can be attributed to the three military related holidays I mentioned earlier. Memorial Day is remembering the physical courage and sacrifice so many have demonstrated on the battlefield. The Fourth of July is a celebration of moral courage, when our founders stood up against tyranny for what they believed was right. Lastly, Veterans Day represents daily courage, something that is harder to see and not often talked about. I’ll go more in depth later on, but I’ll start from the beginning.

Physical courage is the most obvious one out of the three. It’s the easiest to write about and is the most visible to everyone else. Memorial Day is when we get to hear all the stories about those who gave their lives in defense of our country. As a kid, I used to think this meant the absence of fear, just simply not being scared of anything. In fact, it turned out to be quite the opposite. There is no physical courage if there is no fear. Nelson Mandela said “Courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.” I remember very clearly the first time I ever got shot at. It was maybe our 3rd day in Afghanistan. I was on an observation post, up on a hill we had creatively dubbed OP Hill. I don’t want to spend pages and pages telling war stories so I will try and sum it up to the point I am trying to make.

That day early on in our deployment, a Marine foot patrol near our hill was suddenly pinned down from a nearby house with 2 Taliban machine guns firing out the windows. Seven of us from OP Hill threw on our gear and quickly left our base and climbed a nearby hill where we spotted the house and fired a missile at it. My job in the Marine Corps was a missile man and that day we had the javelin missile system with us. It uses thermal heat signatures to lock onto targets which is great for tanks, but we found out it is not ideal in Afghanistan where everything is made out of mud. The missile landed in the front “yard”. If they didn’t know they were flanked, they did now. There was a brief pause where neither side fired, we were not sure if they would tuck tail and run after realizing our position. Suddenly, crisp snaps were going off overhead and the rocks we were crouched behind were kicked up into our faces as bullets slammed into them from their first burst of machine gun fire. We returned fire and the pinned platoon was able to start moving again and not long after, the Taliban decided to relocate. When the patrol gave the all clear, we made our way back up to safety up on OP Hill. I remember my legs shaking from the adrenaline rush wearing off and somehow even shivering cold in the 120 degree heat.

Up on the hill, we dropped our gear and high-fived each other, celebrating our great victory of shooting a $150,000 lawn dart. It didn’t matter what happened, we just knew we had passed that first test that every young man in the military worries about when joining. There was still intermittent gunfire being exchanged between the foot patrol currently clearing a nearby group of houses, but we were up on the safety of our fortified hill. I remember thinking about how much fun that was when the radio crackled, the Company Commander told us to throw our gear back on and push out further than before and help with over-watch for the nearby patrol. Suddenly things got real for me, I was no longer excited for how much fun combat was turning out to be. I was 23 years old and had brought with me the feeling that I was invincible. Growing up climbing 30 foot trees barefoot and cliff jumping into Skiatook Lake, I understood that it was dangerous, but never assumed that I would be the one to get hurt. Those first bullets missing me by inches shattered that innocence and suddenly I was terrified. I clearly remember standing inside the walls of the hill, fully geared up and waiting for the call to come over the radio to leave the friendly confines and walk out into the open, towards the gunfire. It was like I had never fully contemplated or understood the consequences of joining the Infantry in a time of war. Those of you who know me know that nobody has ever accused me of being someone who thinks things through, I’m more of a fly by the seat of my pants guy. It’s probably my best trait according to my wife(just kidding). I remember looking down at my feet and feeling like they were made of concrete. How in the world was I going to pick them up and walk into that? I had always thought I would be brave in that moment when I imagined it in my head growing up and throughout training. I wasn’t the first one to have to do this, I wondered why it would be a problem for me?

I looked up at the other six guys to see if they had the same reservations as me. If they did, they weren’t showing it, none of us were. We had all spent the last year training together and had come to rely on each other, letting your brother down was the unforgivable sin in the Marines. The call came over the radio and the point man stepped out. I remember thinking “how am I going to do this?” But when it came time for me to step out, it ended up being surprisingly easy. The second I was outside the wire, everything felt natural, training instantly kicked in and I was at ease. As an individual, I wasn’t brave or courageous that day. If it was just me, I doubt I could have done it and I would have remained frozen in place. My courage didn’t come from within, it came from my fellow Marines. We trusted each other with our lives and then some. Not that we ever talked about this, but I am sure the others had the same reservations and fears along with every other young kid who has stepped into battle did throughout history. An individual can have physical courage on his own, but when we all go through that same struggle together our courage is multiplied exponentially.

Moving on to the Fourth of July, the major topic I usually write about is moral courage. Even though it feels like it’s hard to find examples of it lately, moral courage is what founded this country and continues to make our country great. When the 56 Founding Fathers put their name on the Declaration of Independence, John Hancock was said to tell them that members of Congress need to hang together. Ben Franklin replied “Yes, we must indeed all hang together, or most assuredly we shall all hang separately.” They were not sure if they signed for their independence or their death warrant. Time after time in American history, there are pivotal decisions and moments where we have shown that we as a country will not falter when we stand for what is right. In a time when Millennials are known for being selfish, self-absorbed and un-American. Millennials are also fighting a 17 year war that is all but forgotten by everyone except those who fought it. They stood up as the towers fell down, answering the call when America needed it most. The same call that Paul Revere yelled while riding through the streets that night. The same call that was answered in the devastating first blow dealt by Japan in Pearl Harbor. We see examples all over the world of what happens to a country when the young men and women are either unable or unwilling to put their life on the line to save an idea.

Which brings me to the men and women we are honoring today, those who stood up and answered the call when our way of life was threatened. They went when they were in the prime of their lives, 18 year olds willing to risk the unknown for something they were only just beginning to understand. To date, 6,954 of those have lost their life defending the abstract idea of America. On Memorial Day and Independence Day we come together as a country and mourn. Today we honor those who came home. The men and women who are left to shoulder the burden that their brothers and sisters laid down. Memorial Day to them is every day, they were able to see what the absence of freedom actually looks like. For those who served, it takes daily courage to keep contributing after they have already given so much. It takes courage for someone who lost three limbs at age 19 to wake up and smile every day when he might not feel like he has much to smile about. It takes courage to transition back into a society that sometimes doesn’t understand the sacrifices you and others made.

It’s not always easy though, most of the time it isn’t. As I said earlier, this post was difficult to get out because I feel like I have fallen short since I left the military and entered the civilian world. Sometimes it takes stopping, stepping back and taking inventory of your situation. The source of my struggle and so many others is something we learned early on in our military training though. Looking back at my first combat experience, I wasn’t brave or courageous. Not by myself. It was only through the shared struggle that I was able to take that first step out into the unknown. We are only strong if we are together, both veterans and the people who now welcome them back into society. That kind of daily courage is what makes veterans who they are. Daily courage is not wanting to take for granted the life we get to live because of those who didn’t return.

The quote at the top of the page sums it up for me. As veterans, sometimes when we go back into society it is easy for us to wonder if it was all worth it. Guys who lost limbs, eyesight, or marriages. Missing the birth of your kids and countless birthdays. Some carry with them a lifetime of pain both mentally and physically and it can be very easy to wonder if it was all worth it. Instead of focusing on the hand we were dealt, we are able to have the daily courage to go out and play the hand we have. The guys I served with were and still are my heroes, in fact I consider myself to be the luckiest guy in the world in that regard. I could very easily feel sorry for myself and sometimes I catch myself doing just that, but standing alongside
the great men and women keeps me from giving into that fear.

I am eternally thankful that I had the chance and ability to serve, it was something I will always be proud of. Just the fact that I was able to wear the same uniform as all of those who still fight daily gives me the daily courage to continue fighting for each other and to keep fighting for America. I am thankful for this opportunity from LawnAmerica that allows me to write about something I feel is important today. Lastly, thank you to every single veteran out there. Thank you for your selfless service and your strength to keep going each day.

Posted by & filed under bermudagrass, Lawn Care.

Looking at the weather right now, it looks like we will get our first big freeze either Thursday night or Friday night. If you haven’t already started the never ending leaf raking, you’re about to start. Bermuda will be done growing for the season and it might look like a big maze in your yard for a little while. You might have to mow your fescue once or twice more, especially to mulch some of the leaves covering up the grass. Once you rake and bag all of your leaves up, you can either put them on the curb or take them to places like Gem Dirt here in Tulsa where they compost those leaves into their soil mixes.

We aren’t hurting for rain and are above average for rainfall the last couple months. Moving into winter, we will be keeping our eye on the weather. Winterkill is one of the most common problems that can pop up from a number of factors such as too little rain, too much rain, low mowing height or insufficient or too much nutrients. Winterkill can also be caused by acute or extended low temperatures.

Even during mild winters, which they are forecasting this one to be for what it’s worth, several node and internode segments of the aerial shoot system of bermudagrass are killed by freezing temperatures. Sunlight then bleaches the dead tissue to give us the straw colored appearance. While the temperature remains too low for sustained growth, people refer to the Bermuda grass as being dormant. In more severe winters, even the shallow rhizomes(below ground horizontal stems) may have also been killed.

We recommend keeping the turf mowed high with the final mowing of the season and to keep the soil from drying out. Usually watering once a week if there is no rain should be sufficient. This should give your yard some protection and help prevent winter damage to your lawn.

Posted by & filed under Fescue.

Now that summer is finally fading away (hopefully), now is the time to fertilize cool-season tall fescue to strengthen plant and turf roots so that it comes out strong next spring. Late fall is the most important fertilization of the season for fescue. As the warm season turf is slowing down and ready to go dormant, fall is when fescue does the best. Now that the leaves are starting to fall, it’s also important to make sure that they are off the grass before we come out and spray your Late Fall Application. Just like the other applications, we recommend watering the treatment into the soil within a day or two of us coming out.

Fescue

For fescue turf that has been seeded earlier this fall, this fertilization provides a nice boost of nitrogen for growth, along with other soil nutrients for plant health. After not growing much during the winter, early spring warmth will then stimulate earlier spring green-up with the nutrition provided from the fall fertilization. “Fall fertilization is the foundation for a successful turfgrass fertility program,” says John S. Kruse, Ph.D, a research agronomist with Koch Agronomic Services, LLC. “Winter survival and spring green-up depend, to a significant degree, on a sound fall fertilizer application, particularly when combined with timely cultural practices.”  We also will carefully spot-treat any existing winter annual broadleaf weeds with a liquid post-emergent herbicide at this time of year. There usually are not many broadleaf weeds now, and we have to be careful not to harm any new fescue seedlings.

We DO NOT apply a fall pre-emergent to fescue turf in the fall, as this would harm fescue seeding. We assume that homeowners will at least overseed in the fall, so we do not apply pre-emergent to fescue as we do on bermudagrass or zoysiagrass. About the only grassy weed that comes up in the fall may be some annual bluegrass. It usually blends in OK or is not much of an issue in healthy fescue turf. If it is, then we do offer a supplemental treatment of Prograss Weed-Control, which can be safely applied in early December without harming new fescue seedlings.

Fall is not only an ideal time to fertilize turf, it’s also an ideal time to give trees and shrubs that important boost as the winter months near. Late Fall is the ideal time for deep-root fertilization, so we’ll start this service sometime in late November and on into December.

Posted by & filed under Fall Deep Root Fertilization.

Do we really need to fertilize our trees too?

If you live anywhere other than undeveloped countryside, the answer is yes! However, it’s easy to understand why this service can be overlooked by homeowners when anyone can look out in the country at all the healthy, beautiful native trees growing fine on their own.

For the most part, as long as the soil is healthy, the trees growing from it will be healthy as well. Did you know that when we start adding landscaping, turf and concrete to a property, we might make it look prettier, but we also change how all of these things interact with each other. Trees in urban landscapes usually need additional help to get all the nutrients they need to thrive. One way that trees get their nutrients is from the leaves they shed in the fall. Once those leaves decompose, they provide an additional layer of organic material, which provides nutrients over time that feed the soil. Of course, not every homeowner has the option to let those leaves sit on their yard all winter long. Sometimes HOA’s have rules requiring leaves to be raked, or maybe you just don’t like having that mess and want it cleaned up. Other reasons for raking are unavoidable and you don’t really have a choice. For example, my wife told me that I have to rake the leaves at our house. She didn’t care much about the “natural organic material,” and just wanted it bagged up. So if you’re like me, you might be asking yourself, “How do I replace those lost nutrients?”

The nutrients required for healthy trees are the same as needed for healthy turf; nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium (NPK). Tree roots and grass roots compete for the soil’s nutrients, which means the deeper tree roots are often left hungry when a homeowner only fertilizes the surface of the soil. Trees actually require a higher rate of NPK than turf, however applying that higher rate on the surface would not only damage the turf, but prevent all of the nutrients from traveling far enough down to the roots to be absorbed. To ensure the nutrients get deep enough and are applied at the correct rate, we inject pressurized liquid fertilizer about 12 to 14 inches in the soil. The pressurization breaks up and aerates the soil, providing much needed oxygen to the root system as well. Tree roots are opportunistic and will develop wherever oxygen, nutrients moisture or space are present. Even through that crack in your sidewalk, unfortunately.

So what can you expect to see after our deep root fertilization? Your trees will have a much greener leaf color and thicker foliage. They will benefit from improved disease and drought resistance, healthier root growth, and additional protection against damage in the winter. The only drawback is that next fall you will have even more leaves to pick up unless you can convince your spouse otherwise. If anyone does manage to get out if it, please write in and let me know how you did it. If I don’t respond, I’m probably raking.

Posted by & filed under Lawn Care.

With summer winding down and fall right around the corner, we are starting up our fall fescue seeding program and sending out the seeding crews this week. The window for this service generally falls between mid-September to mid-October. That allows the seed to germinate and grow some before winter sets in. The more time the seed has to get established this fall, the better it will look come springtime and survive in the summer heat. If you are considering this service, don’t wait until the end of the season to pull the trigger, the earlier in the window you get it done, the better your results will be.

Our mission at LawnAmerica is to give our customers all of the benefits of having a healthy, green lawn without having to spend the time and money it would take to DIY. Out of all of our services, Tall Fescue Seeding requires the most help from you the customer to ensure great results. Once we aerate, prepare the soil, and get the seed and liquid starter fertilizer in the ground, we leave specific and easy to follow watering instructions for you to follow to maximize your results. Requiring the seed bed to be moist for the first 10 days or so, and making sure that it is not allowed to dry out is the most essential step in the process. We recommend watering your new seed three times a day for about 15 minutes. The easiest way to do this, is to set your sprinkler system and let it do the work for you. For those that don’t have an irrigation system in place, it can be a little trickier, you can find timers for outdoor water faucets and set up sprinklers in your lawn to help if you are not able to water during the day. Sometimes, we’re lucky enough to get a little help from Mother Nature like we have this week, and the good news is that it’s hard to over water during those crucial first 10 days.

At around the three or four-week mark, we return to check on your seed and make sure everything is germinating and growing appropriately, adding any seed if and where needed. One common concern we get from customers is that their seed appears to be coming in too thin. Most of the time, the concern is unfounded. When Fescue seed first begins to peek through the moist (hint-hint) soil, the blades are thin and spaced out a little wide. This is completely normal and ideal. It is not going to come in like the green shag carpet our grandparents used to have in the 70’s. To fully develop into a full and thick turf, the seeds need space to grow and nutrients from the soil. We’re careful not to put down too many seedlings too close together because they will end up competing for the nutrients and water resulting in your turf not having the developed root system needed to survive next spring and summer. I promise, next spring, the blades will grow thicker and healthier and if properly maintained, your lawn will fill out and look great.

The bottom line here is that we need your help with the seed process. We want the best possible results for you and your lawn. As long as we are able to work together, manage our expectations and follow the watering schedule, your lawn will be thick and healthy come spring time! If you haven’t already scheduled your Tall Fescue Seeding with us, just give us a call or click here for a free estimate. We’ll get any questions you have answered. Remember, the sooner, the better!

Posted by & filed under acorn, Tree Care.

I have a beautiful oak tree in my front yard that has recently become the neighborhood gathering spot for what seems to be all of the local squirrels.  They are attempting to enjoy the abundance of acorns the oak tree has produced this year, many of which have already dropped despite still being green.

For the most part, I don’t mind the squirrels, though there is one that I am convinced doesn’t like me.  Every time I venture outside close to the tree, he drops half-eaten acorns on me.  I personally think he is throwing them at me, but that makes me feel a little crazy to admit that a squirrel would target me.  I’ve given him no reason to be mad at me, but he doesn’t drop (or throw) them at anyone else in my family so what other conclusion am I supposed to make?

It got me to thinking though, it’s still August but I have an abundance of acorns on the ground and many, many more still in the tree.  Why do I have so many acorns this year, especially since I had so few last year?

The first source I turned to was the Farmers Almanac.  For years folklore has suggested that an abundance of acorns was a sign of an upcoming harsh winter with cooler than normal temperatures and above average snowfall.   As with most folklore, this analysis has to be taken with a bit of skepticism.  Some years the theory proves true, but just as many years go by where it does not.

The second source I turned to was a book I read late last year, The Hidden Life of Trees by Peter Wohlleben.  Mr. Wohlleben has spent his life as a forester in Germany and now manages his own environmentally friendly woodland there.  In chapter 5 of his book, Peter discusses how the amount of seeds (acorns) is more of an indication of stressors on the tree from the previous season.  Periods of drought or insect infestation in the previous season will cause the tree to produce more offspring (seeds) the following season as a defense mechanism to ensure the survival of their species.

Peter’s analysis does fit with what we have seen with the number of stressors over the past year; everything from drought to late-Spring freezes, to extreme heat.  It only makes sense that acorns would be abundant this year.

So it looks like the squirrels and the deer will be eating well this fall.  It’s also a pretty good indication that we will have some tree saplings to manage next spring, but that’s another story for another day.

I have to admit though; there is part of me that hopes the Farmers Almanac is right.  A little snow this winter sounds good, especially on this warm August day!

 

 

Links:

Can Acorns Predict a Rough Winter?

20 Signs of a Hard Winter

The Hidden Life of Trees

Posted by & filed under Fescue, fescue seeding.

I took a stroll through the store last night and was reminded that fall is just around the corner.

How is that, you ask?

Everything from coffee, cookies, and cereals all the way to air fresheners and body washes were flavored or scented in pumpkin spice.  Don’t get me wrong; pumpkin spice has its place, and many people swear by a hot pumpkin spice latte at their favorite coffeehouse, but man it feels a little early!

You know what’s not early?

Planning for overseeding if you have a fescue lawn.

Unlike warm season grasses such as Bermudagrass or Zoysiagrass, which spread on their own, Fescue requires overseeding to maintain thickness and density.  And a thick, dense lawn is your best defense against weeds throughout the year.

Fescue is a cool-season, clump type turfgrass, which performs best in cooler climates. However, it can be used in the transition zone for shaded areas, where warm-season grasses do not perform well.  Being a clump type turfgrass means that it does not develop its density from underground rhizomes or stolons on the surface.  Instead, it has to be seeded every year to help repair any damage from drought, disease, insects or heavy traffic.  Re-seeding, or overseeding, introduce new plants into the grass, which as they grow and mature, will develop into a thick, healthy lawn.

Fall is the ideal time for Fescue seeding.  Seeds planted in September and October have time to sprout and develop a robust root system before winter sets in, which is critical to a healthy plant.

Over the coming weeks, your Route Manager will be leaving behind information for fescue seeding. Our seeding operation consists of using a top-quality blend of fescue seed, with zero weed seed.  We aerate the soil, rake the bare areas, apply a starter fertilizer, and leave behind detailed watering instructions.  We also return in about three weeks after the overseeding to check for any bare areas and sow extra seed if necessary.

Call LawnAmerica today to make sure you reserve your spot on our schedule.  This way rather than spending your weekend behind a rake and an aerator, you can instead enjoy your pumpkin spiced oatmeal, while drinking your pumpkin spice coffee and enjoying the smell of your pumpkin spice scented candle.

Maybe we will jump on the bandwagon next year and have pumpkin spice coated fescue seed!

Posted by & filed under Fescue, Lawn Care.

We talked in our last blog about how to properly care for warm-season turf.  Today we want to look at the other side of the spectrum and talk about cool season grass, or more specifically about fescue.

As you might suspect a grass such as fescue that is part of the cool-season family of grasses doesn’t particularly like the heat of summer.  While it is true that fescue may not thrive this time of year, it is possible to protect it and prepare it for when colder weather returns later in the year.

First and foremost, make sure you are not cutting it too short.  Fescue, this time of year, should be maintained at between 3.5 to 4 inches in height (or taller) and should never be scalped, especially when it’s hot.  The taller the grass, the more shade it provides to the soil helping to keep the plant cooler and maintain essential moisture in the root zone.

Irrigation is vital as well.  Ideally, your lawn would receive at least 1.5 inches of rain each week.  Some weeks you may get lucky enough for Mother Nature to cooperate, but in most cases, you will likely have to utilize a sprinkler system or hand watering to supplement.  Watering in the morning is ideal, but if your schedule doesn’t allow for early mornings, anytime during the day is better than not watering at all.  It is crucial not to water late in the evening or overnight to help reduce chances of fungus activity.

Fertilizers can be applied in the summer, however, it is imperative that the fertilizer be comprised of organic material that does not contain quick-release nitrogen sources.  Quick-release products that are high in nitrogen will burn fescue in the summertime, causing more damage than benefit.  LawnAmerica utilizes a liquid organic product that in addition to a small amount of nitrogen also has iron, humic acid, and other micro-nutrients that not only benefit the plant but help to improve the structure of the soil.

Despite best efforts though, fescue will thin out during the heat of the summer.  Since most turf type fescues do not spread laterally, any thin areas will have to be overseeded later in the fall.  Applying seed in the heat will be of little benefit.  However, when the nighttime temperatures start to cool off in September and early October, seeding can be accomplished successfully.

Posted by & filed under bermudagrass, Lawn Care.

It’s July, it’s hot, and unless you have been one of the fortunate ones to have a pop-up shower lately, it’s pretty dry too.  The temperatures are making it pretty rough for our LawnAmerica guys out treating lawns.  It’s making it tough on turfgrasses as well.

Warm season grasses and cool season grasses each react to the summer differently.  Today we are going to discuss warm season turf.  In our next blog, we will cover cool season turf.

Warm season turfs such as bermudagrass and zoysiagrass don’t mind the heat so much and actually thrive in the summer heat as long as they are adequately maintained and irrigated.

Irrigation can be a challenge in this heat, but maintaining a supply of about 1.5 inches each week will ensure the plant has enough moisture to look great.  Summertime in North Carolina can be known for Mother Nature being unpredictable when it comes to helping with rain consistently making the use of a sprinkler system or hand watering a necessity.   Watering in the morning is ideal, but if your schedule doesn’t allow for early mornings, anytime during the day is better than not watering at all.

In situations where irrigation isn’t an option, and Mother Nature isn’t helping out, warm season grasses can begin showing signs of stress by turning a bluish-gray color before fading to brown. In cases like this, the lawn isn’t dying but instead is going dormant.  This is a way for the plant to defend itself during times of stress to ensure survival.  Once the stress of the heat is diminished or consistent moisture returns, the grass will resume growing as usual.

I don’t recommend allowing your grass to go dormant if you can help it as it will use up necessary reserves of energy breaking dormancy again and can leave your lawn thinner heading into winter which will impact not only the health of the turf next spring but the number of weeds present as well.  A thick, healthy lawn will always be your best defense against weeds.

Despite the heat, warm-season grasses still need to be fertilized. Bermudagrass does exceptionally well when adequately fed this time of year.  Utilize granular products with several sources of slow-release nitrogen along with natural organic content to help prevent burn potential and provide a consistent color without the excessive top growth that can come from the quick-release nitrogen sources.

It is also essential to maintain a consistent mowing schedule. Regular mowing helps bermudagrass to spread and stay thick.  Mowing height will depend on the type of bermudagrass you have.  The newer hybrid varieties can generally be kept shorter than common bermudagrass, but on average between 2 and 2.5 inches will provide excellent performance.  Just be sure that when you mow that you don’t remove more than one-third of the plant each time.  Removing too much top-growth will not only remove the color but will also stress the turf which is something we want to avoid. Contact LawnAmerica today for more information.