Tips

MOWING:

Mower Height – 2½ – 3″ throughout the year is recommended. The last cut of the season should be made at 1½” which will help reduce chance of snow mold and matting.

When to mow – Mow frequently especially in the spring when growth is rapid. Never cut more then ¨÷ of the grass blade in any one mowing. Try to avoid mowing in extreme wet or hot conditions.

Sharp Blades – Blades are often overlooked and not sharpened enough. Blades should be sharpened several times during the growing season to create nice clean cuts. This will help to maintain deep color longer and eliminate frayed grass blades.

Scalping – Scalping of the lawn (cutting the lawn severly too short) can lead to many problems for the lawn and should be avoided. Scalping can lead to thinning of turf, loss of color, and contribute to the buildup of crabgrass and broadleaf weeds. Scalping a lawn during dry, hot conditions can also appear to be “burned”.

A properly mowed lawn will tend to be thicker, better color and be more resistant to diseases, insects and weeds

General Plant Care Tips

WATERING:

Check all plants weekly. Check newly planted trees and shrubs every few days for the first two weeks. Annuals and Perennials daily, thereafter, every week to 10 days. Simply dig around the root zone with your fingers to a depth of 2-3″ for small plant and 6-8″ for larger ones and trees. Water generously when the soil feels dry to the touch.

Slow, deep watering is preferred. This type of watering is accomplished by placing the hose at the base of a plant, at a heavy trickle, and water 5-10 minutes for small plants – longer for larger plants while moving the hose in a few locations around the plant.

When the soil feels moist do not water. Soil must be allowed to dry out between waterings. If a plant is maintained in constantly moist soil, the plant’s health will deteriorate over time. A plant weakened by over watering may die of oxygen deprivation or become susceptible to pest and disease. For this reason, lawn irrigation systems if not designed correctly, can be hazardous to ornamental plantings.

Monitoring water requirements frequently is more important than watering frequently. Monitor your plants’ water requirements for at least the first two to three years. Plants close to buildings where heat may reflect and plants under roof eaves require closer monitoring. During the hot summer months and early fall disregard natural rainfall. Often, rain received during these periods produces mostly runoff and contributes little, if any, to increasing ground moisture.

Maintain a 2 to 2 and a half inch mulch layer to help conserve ground moisture, prevent weeds and retain moisture. Remember, excess amounts of mulch will result in poor air circulation and reduce plant vigor.

Too much mulch could harm your plants.

FERTILIZATION:

Ricks Lawn & Landscaping applys a pre-emergent herbicide to all planting areas before mulching is installed. We also fertilize at planting so generally no fertilizer is necessary for the first year. In subsequent years, we recommend using a balanced (i.e., 10-10-10, 14-14-14) plant food (preferably with micro nutrients). Be sure to follow the instructions on the label. If you have any questions on specific requirements please call us.

PESTS:

Your plants are guaranteed to be free from pests and diseases upon installation. We use plant varieties that are disease and pest resistant whenever possible. As a secondary control, our plant material is closely monitored and turned over rapidly so you benefit by receiving the freshest and healthiest plants available.

Be observant of changes in plant vigor and growth. Plants are more susceptible to disease and pests if they are weakened through poor maintenance practices such as over or under watering. If you make it a practice to walk the landscape and be observant of your plants’ progress, you will spot symptoms of disease or insect infestations well in advance of any serious problems.

PRUNING:

Pruning should be minimized for good plant health. When planted and spaced according to its growth characteristics, a plant should require little pruning. However, you may remove dead or dying branches and crossed or rubbing branches any time of the year. When in doubt, call us.