By Sherm M. Fields, Acres Group Professional Landscaping, and Angela Duea, LMS Communications Specialist
Some of us believe that turf is the most glamorous part of your landscape. Most people, however, are more enamored with other landscape characters.
Your flowers get a lot of attention because they are the high fashion of landscape. They turn heads like Cindy Crawford, Tyra Banks, Gisele Bundchen, Beyonce and Gigi Hadid.
Your trees, on the other hand, bring the masculinity, strength and character that many find exceptionally appealing. Trees are like the Clint Eastwood, John Wayne, Harrison Ford, Chris Hemsworth, Idris Alba and Bradley Cooper types of your property.
While we agree that great flowers and trees deliver a lot of star power to your property, if your grass looks like a celebrity mugshot, your property is at best on the “B” list.
The following are some simple, but extremely effective ways property managers, association boards, and landscape committees can work with their landscaper to ensure the property is ready for the paparazzi.
- Three is good, but four is better. Adding a 4th enhanced fall fertilization to your turf program will bring additional vitality to the root system of turf grass; helping it to overwinter and be in better condition when it comes out of dormancy in the spring. Also, ask your landscaper if they can apply a product such as Maxi Cal along with your fertilization. It provides micro nutrients, balances soil pH, and aids your grass to more efficiently utilize nutrients, water and oxygen. It also minimizes dog, salt, and stress damage.
- To ensure that your grass plants are getting the maximum nutrition, core aerate your lawn in the fall in conjunction with your fourth fertilization. It helps break down the dense thatch layer and enables roots to grow deeper and grass plants to receive a more efficient flow of nutrients, water and oxygen.
Just as the Hollywood Red Carpet is designed to make celebrities look glamorous, if your turf is a lush green carpet, your entire property will look stylish and will deliver rave reviews.
- If you have thin or weak stands of turf grass, slit seeding is a great way to restore compromised turf areas. Think of it like our farmers planting their crops. Metal blades cut small rows in the ground and seeds are dropped below the surface of the soil. This ensures great soil-to-seed contact. Slit seeding can be done anytime but spring and fall are recommended to take advantage of cooler temperatures and more abundant rainfall.
- Along with enhancing your turf, be fierce in protecting it from dastardly creatures. Grubs are the larvae of beetles – such as Japanese Beetles. They feed on the roots of grass plants and can kill huge patches if left untreated. It is highly recommended that you authorize a preventative grub control which is best applied early/mid-summer – generally, around the 4th of July. Do not wait to authorize until you or your landscaper see damage. Curative treatments are available but are more expensive, and once a grub chews off the roots of a grass plant, it’s over for that plant – dead is dead and it will need to be reseeded/restored.