Category Archives: Landscaping

4 Ways to Remove Sod

Whether you are preparing to lay out a flower bed in your garden that is covered with grass and sod or setting up a new landscaping element to your garden, sod removal is essential. Sod refers to the section of your lawn ground that is held together by grass and matted roots.

 

If you are thinking about turning an area of lawn into a garden bed, your first step will be to get rid of the grass. You can take different routes to accomplish this: Those that yield quick results can require considerable effort, while less labor-intensive methods may take at least a season to produce results. Here are four techniques for turning well-established turf into a bed ready for planting. Each method has its pros and cons, but all will get you one step closer to the bed you’ve been dreaming of.

1. DIG

Digging up grass may reveal harmful insects, such as Japanese beetle grubs, which you’ll want to remove.

This method produces quick, clean results and allows you to plant your garden immediately. But using a spade or fork to remove sod can result in a lot of sweat and sore muscles. If the sod is in good condition, you can use it elsewhere in your yard.

Water the area a few days ahead of time to make the soil easier to work. The soil should be moist but not soggy. Saturated soil is not only heavy but also susceptible to compaction, which leads to poor plant growth.

Cut the sod into parallel strips 1 foot wide using an edger or sharp spade. These strips can then be cut into 1- to 2-foot lengths, depending on the density of the turf and the thickness of the pieces. Next, pry up one end of a piece of sod and slide the spade or fork under it. Cut through any deep taproots, and lift out the precut piece, making sure to include the grass’s fibrous roots. If the underside of the sod contains much loose soil, a fork may work best, as this soil can be shaken back onto the surface when the sod is lifted.

Roll up the strips if you skip the crosscut step, and keep peeling the strip back. Keep in mind, though, that these rolls will be heavy. If you are installing a large bed, consider renting a sod cutter. These steel-bladed, plowlike tools are more efficient than spades for large jobs, and they come in human- and gas-powered models.

Inspect your new bed’s subsoil (and the underside of the sod if it will be reused). Once the sod is gone, look for and destroy potential pests, such as the larvae of May/June beetles. Remove any rocks, remaining clumps of grass, and sizable roots.

Read more: http://www.finegardening.com/4-ways-remove-sod#ixzz4OGs7sLg2

Lawn Mowing Blunders You Should Avoid

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Are you aware that every year huge amount of money is allocated to lawn care and gardening? Sure, that’s right, billions of dollars and most families believe that it is money that’s well spent. The sad part is the fact that a portion of the money spent on lawn care is actually wasted. The waste comes from the mistakes committed by the homeowners in terms of lawn care. If you’re a homeowner and you have a lawn, then it is highly likely that you will be also guilty of committing a few of these mistakes.

– Using wrong mowers

Picking the right mower can certainly be a challenge. There are so many types, brands, and models available to buy, how could you choose the right one? Each will have different features that will fulfill each individuals needs in a different way. You need to have your own research so as not to end up in a wrong purchase. Don’t use wrong mower for your lawn.

– Not cleaning the mower

It’s also a huge mistake when home owners tend not to clean the mower since dirt and other debris can cause rust and corrosion. Not forgetting, dirt also affects the efficiency of mowers. So, it is imperative to clean the mower to prevent costly maintenance.

– Using dull blades

Dull blades are often over looked yet it can have a major impact on the appearance and health of your lawn. Correct this issue and your mowing gets easier while saving you time and effort. What we’re referring to here is your mower blade being dull as a butter knife.

– Mowing at a very low height

Many make the mistake of cutting their lawn shorter than they should. This is not healthy or beneficial in any way. Short-cut lawns expose surface roots to the hot sun, which may dry out and die in no time at all. Not just that, weed and insect may attack since the grass is stressed and weak from being over cut. As a general guideline never ever remove more than 1/3 of the grass blade. Depending on your lawn type, more or less can be cut-off.

– Ignoring maintenance

Ensure the mower you will use is well-maintained. Keep your blades sharp – have them sharpened monthly or at least twice a year. Adjust the mower’s deck height to about 3 inches. In no way neglect the deck’s underside as well. If possible, after every use, clean out the clippings and debris. This helps maintain the machine’s cutting quality and in addition it prevents rusting.

By understanding all these, homeowners can prevent lawn mowing mistakes that can reduce their finances.

Why Cedar Fencing is the Best Fitting Fence

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Once you decide to build a fence, there are a number of other decisions to be made. The height and type of your fence will depend on whether you would like it to create privacy or merely outline an area of your home. Its length will be decided by the size of the area you would like to enclose. Local zoning rules will allow you to figure out where to place it on your property. The biggest decision, however, is exactly what material to make use of.

Though there are a great deal of selections for fence, Cedar, known for its aroma, appearance and strength, is one of the most widely used woods for fencing and other uses. Custom cedar fence may be built to meet what the customer wants also. Fencing in a yard or property involves finding the right material for the project. Take a look at some of the benefits of installing a cedar fence. This natural wood could be surprisingly resilient, withstanding abuse from weather and insects for many years.

A cedar fence has a classic look that harmonizes with any kind of form of architecture. All metal chain links look exactly the same. There is nothing worse than driving past an attractive home and seeing one. A wood fence having a rich, reddish-blonde tint is unique. It can be used to create a picket, stockade, vertical board, board and batten, or any style to suit your architecture. Every single style looks good in cedar.

Decks look good in cedar, additionally; you’ll be able to build your fence with cedar to coordinate with your deck. Any kind of outdoor structures could be coordinated with this attractive wood. Envision your backyard with a terraced deck, storage shed, and four-foot picket, all in a wood that will fit the look of your house. Your premises value will be increased if you complete all of these projects in the same material.

After installing a cedar fence, you can rest assured the structure will continue to be strong and eye-catching for years. This material withstands damage that may happen from wind and moisture, because it won’t rot or decay. This particular wood will not warp or shrink over time. When the time comes to replace this barrier, you can even enjoy its environmental friendliness, as it is totally biodegradable.

Another timesaving part of using cedar is it doesn’t require stain or paint. The natural oils in the wood protect it without any additional sealing or coatings. As soon as you place your stockade up, it’s going to be very low maintenance. While your neighbor starts every spring painting his pine pickets, you won’t be joining him – unless you want to offer him a hand.

Why Use Artificial Hedges

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Plants have been the most important elements of human existence, not simply for the idea that it causes a cool living atmosphere but most of all it sustains life. With this reality, people appear to find ways to construct even just a little space for the plants to grow. However, that is quite impossible for chaotic individuals who don’t have enough time to maintain and look after their plants. In this instance, in case you are one of those who adore plants yet quite busy to nurture them, then perhaps it’s a good idea to have your own artificial plants or artificial hedges, which actually appear to be natural hedges.

Given that fake hedges are made from the high quality and robust materials, they can be conveniently set up in the meditation and pool side areas. The evergreen appearance of privacy hedges may give comfort and warmth specifically for those people who are seeking relaxation. And no person can ever tell that the artificial hedges are artificial simply because of its natural look. You no longer have to shell out money for maintenance and etc.

From supplying that realistic looks that could enhance the blank wall into a pleasing one, their unique features can leave a warm welcome to the visitors. Fake hedges are very popular when it comes to selecting the perfect privacy screen for your backyard. Based on studies, they play a significant role in the lives of the people residing in urban and suburban areas. They will keep your activities from the prying eyes of one’s neighbors or can barricade your home from annoying sights and sounds. In addition, hedge privacy screen could filter some pollutants or gas values across the area.

Today, home and business owners are growing the application of artificial hedges for several reasons. Large artificial hedges, with the accent of artificial ivy, azaleas and bougainvillea, could significantly affect your outdoor garden -transforming the old plot to a modern courtyard. You can even have it in a form of topiaries or arcs which can give an eye-catching appeal to the crowd. In addition, if you want to add more style to your garden, it is possible to ask the design consultants for valuable suggestions

All this time, we’re bombarded with many different works yet we are able to always think of different ways to relax, to contemplate or to introspect which will leave a memorable experience. And most importantly, this is the time that people can give time not just to us but additionally to our loved ones and friends. Good thing, getting artificial hedges gives us additional time and lower expenditures in the future25

Overseeding: A Key to Beautiful Lawns

There are numerous services that can help make lawns more appealing such as overseeding. Apart from making lawns beautiful, overseeding can also provide other benefits for you and your property.

There’s a secret behind achieving a beautiful, lush lawn. Landscape professionals know what it is, but many homeowners don’t. Overseeding — as part of a comprehensive, proactive plan — keeps lawns looking great. Whether you’re tending your lawn for the first time or have years of experience, overseeding can improve your results.

Overseeding is simply spreading grass seed over an existing lawn. Done right, it’s a straightforward process that gets the most from your seed and labor. As grasses mature, thinning is normal — especially if you enjoy your lawn and use if often. Overseeding keeps your lawn competitive and steeped in youth and vigor, without starting over from scratch.

The basics of overseeding are the same everywhere, but goals and timing vary based on geography and the type of grass grown. For success with overseeding your lawn, follow this basic guide:

  • Establish your goal. Homeowners overseed to correct thin lawns, but pros overseed to prevent thinning. For lawns in southern regions, overseeding warm-season grass with cool-season reinforcements adds green color during winter. When warm-season grasses go brown, overseeding with a premium, cool-season grass mix, such as a Pennington® Perennial Ryegrass, keeps them vibrant and green. This combination of cool-season grasses, stabilized fertilizer and mulch provides a …

 

Read more: http://www.pennington.com/resources/grass-seed/lawn-maintenance/overseeding-a-key-to-beautiful-lawns

Tips for Choosing the Correct Sprinkler System

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Irrigation and sprinkler systems are being used by so many lawn owners. They are extensively used and greatly useful in golf courses, farms and yards. Depending on the size of your lawn, the machinery used varies. You can find advanced and complicated irrigation and sprinklers that are available on the market nowadays. Simpler ones are more than adequate if you have a tiny yard. The primary purpose behind following an irrigation and sprinkler system is to make certain that garden and plants are provided with adequate water.

These are ideal for medium to large lawns. They are also referred to as rotators as the cover the land 360 degrees. They are safe for children to play with. The water is disbursed in a 360-degree arc that may cover an area completely with water to keep your greenery and crops healthy. You almost certainly understand rotor sprinklers by the sound that they make when they go around, yet there’s also rotor sprinkles that are quiet and work in a smoother manner

Oscillating sprinklers come in plastic or metal. It makes sure that it may stand up to diverse climate changes. The sprinkler is a little heavy since it weighs about 3 kg. Revolving sprinklers use one or more arms to throw the water in a circular pattern. This type of sprinkler features a fairly decent radius however suffers in the uniformity of the water being sent to the lawn. Usually the majority of the water is brought to an area 4-9 feet out.

Some sprinklers tend to be ornamental in nature. They are often in the shape of any animal you can imagine, as well as anything else that’s common in a garden area. You must look very close to realize that they are a sprinkler and this means they are incredibly attractive to homeowners. They’re going to spray water up to 100-feet or so and could be easily installed with quick attachment to the hose pipe. For smaller yards, this is often an excellent option, because it’s both good to look at and useful.

For those who have an extremely big yard and it has a tendency to get really dry and hot in the summertime, an underground system may be a smart investment. The underground system either can water the lawn by the drop method or spray the lawn from various lawn sprinkler devices that can be placed throughout your lawn. It really is your choice to choose which one in right for your lawn requirements.

As certain watering systems benefit some yards and not others, a homeowner or landscaper must consider multiple factors: the amount of area, the frequency of watering, local weather, any tough to reach spots, and the amount of time available to tend to the sprinkler or irrigation system and grounds.

AERATION: WHY, HOW & WHEN TO AERATE YOUR LAWN

Lawn care experts recommend that you aerate your lawn at least once a year. However, if your lawn received heavy foot traffic regularly or if the turf lies on heavy clay or sub-soils, aeration may be done more than once annually.

 

In order to achieve and maintain a beautiful lawn, you should employ basic lawn care practices such as properly mowing, fertilizing and watering. It is also important to ensure that nutrients can reach the soil beneath your grass. Aeration can be an extremely vital element to a healthy lawn because it allows air and water to penetrate built-up grass or lawn thatch.

Get rid of thatch and make way for a beautiful lawn with this quick guide to aeration. You’ll learn why, how and when to aerate your lawn for the best results.

WHAT IS AERATION?

Aeration involves perforating the soil with small holes to allow air, water and nutrients to penetrate the grass roots. This helps the roots grow deeply and produce a stronger, more vigorous lawn.

The main reason for aerating is to alleviate soil compaction. Compacted soils have too many solid particles in a certain volume or space, which prevents proper circulation of air, water and nutrients within the soil. Excess lawn thatch or heavy organic debris buried under the grass surface can also starve the roots from these essential elements.

Should You Be Aerating Your Lawn?

One of the most common questions from homeowners is how to determine if they should be aerating their lawn. Your lawn is probably a good candidate for aeration if it:

  • Gets heavy use, such as serving as the neighborhood playground or racetrack. Children and pets running around the yard contribute to soil compaction.
  • Was established as part of a newly constructed home. Often, the topsoil of newly constructed lawns is stripped or buried, and the grass established on subsoil has been compacted by construction traffic.
  • Dries out easily and has a spongy feel. This might mean your lawn has an excessive thatch problem. Take a shovel and remove a slice of lawn about four inches deep. If the thatch layer is greater than one-half inch, aeration is recommended.
  • Was established by sod, and soil layering exists. Soil layering means that soil of finer texture, which comes with imported sod, is layered over the existing coarser soil. This layering disrupts …

Read more: https://www.briggsandstratton.com/na/en_us/support/maintenance-how-to/browse/aeration-why-how-and-when-to-aerate-your-lawn.html

How To Lay New Sod Easily

I know that most people hate it, but it’s a lot of fun taking a bare, dead area, and transforming it into a lush thriving lawn. Laying sod is actually enjoyable!

 

Every homeowner who’s pushed a lawnmower knows that grass needs periodic care. Even so, the best-kept yards develop problems. Fortunately, the solution can be as simple as an application of the right lawn-care product. Or perhaps it’s time to dethatch, spread lime or just pour on more water. In most cases, it’s a foolproof process that your garden center is happy to help with. And if the problem is really severe, you can usually aerate and add more seed, and be back to normal in a month or two.

But that’s when the soil is workable. It’s not always. In new housing developments, the topsoil is often scraped away to create a fresh landscape. Ideally, developers will finish a job with 5 to 6 in. of topsoil to anchor the new lawn, but that’s the best case. In the chaotic, final stages of construction, the quality of the dirt in the yard is often ignored–especially if the new homeowner is less than willing to pay for extras. Worse yet, rushed landscaping can lead to poor drainage, and building scraps get plowed under, creating fungus problems for years to come. Even the choice of sod can spell trouble if it’s not grown with your particular climate in mind.

While it may be possible to manage bad soil, bad grass or poor drainage, it’s tough when you face all three. That was the case here. Our grass had little heat tolerance and needed regular doses of pricey fungicide. But the biggest problem was the clay soil. In this dense earth, grass roots penetrated an inch or two, then spread out, to create the thick layer of dead plant matter called thatch. Even our tree roots preferred thatch to the heavy clay. These problems, while rather serious, are fairly common, especially in new neighborhoods.

Crafting A Solution
The ideal solution here is to remove 5 to 6 in. of clay soil, replace it with topsoil and replant with a hardy seed or sod. But ours is a landscaped yard, with terraces, flowerbeds, fences and underground sprinklers. It allows little room for earthmoving equipment that might damage our concrete sidewalk and drive. And finally, this method is expensive.

We preferred a more manageable alternative–one that allowed us to do most of the work ourselves, using familiar lawn and garden rental equipment. We knew from gardening in this soil that it could be made workable with enough clay-busting mulch tilled in. And with 2 in. of thatch underfoot, we knew where to …

Read more: http://www.popularmechanics.com/home/lawn-garden/how-to/a135/replace-your-lawn-with-new-sod/

How To Fix a Damaged Reticulation System

Using a healthy lawn will certainly involve plenty of work. But, this just happens if you opt to do most of the tasks manually. Nowadays, you may choose to be smarter by using reliable maintenance equipment. Duties associated with lawn care can be done a lot easier and faster. Additionally, you only need a few bucks to carry it out. To make lawn maintenance a whole lot simpler and easier, among the strategies to consider is always to put in a reticulation system. Indeed, lots of residents with lawns and garden prove that this is a very worthy investment as it provides lots of great benefits.”

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Watering is an essential task when you own a lawn or a garden. By watering plants regularly, lawn owners can help make their turf and flowers healthier and much more flourishing. Not to mention, watering can also make the soil better. Thus, to make sure you can water plants properly and adequately, you should go for reticulation systems. Nowadays, reticulation systems have benefited lawn owners, from minimizing gardening tasks, improving lawns and minimizing water usage. Therefore, owners are certain that they could give you the best for their lawns. But, there comes a period when these reticulation systems may break down or malfunction, which may be a huge problem.

Experiencing a lush garden involves common sense, adequate soil conditions and suitable reticulation equipment. Although reticulation system enables you to dedicate energy and time elsewhere, if you don’t occasionally look into the system, you might be pouring money down the drain. Breaks, leaks, broken fittings and split pipes are normal incidents and much water could be wasted especially if irrigation is under pressure. You need to be careful at looking at these signs.

Unattached or broken sprinkler head

Accidentally cutting over the reticulation or sprinkler head and damaging it is probably the most obvious and dire reasons you will have to have your reticulation system restored. Depending on the damage it acquired, qualified reticulation repair systems can deal with the head or advise that you have it replaced – often a more expensive choice. As such, upon having a reticulation system installed on your lawn, make sure that you go about your other gardening tasks, especially mowing, carefully.

Pooling water round the reticulation heads

Even though you may not see any kind of obvious cracks or damages on the heads, if you see water round the heads even after the system is turned off, this part may already be not working. The head itself may be defective and in need of speedy repair.

Wet and muddy parts on your lawn

 If you often observe wet and muddy areas that aren’t near any reticulation head, there might be a pipe break underground. This often demands speedy repairs to ensure that water coming from the system isn’t wasted and your grass and plants obtain the proper amount of hydration needed.

Excess water on driveways and sidewalks

This often indicates poor lawn irrigation system design and installation. It is a problem that has to be repaired right away as well since using a poor design will waste water on sidewalks, homes, driveways, and everywhere else but your lawn.

Brown spots on your lawn

 Finally, this sign indicates that no water is getting to these areas in your lawn. Reticulation repair professionals need to be contacted right away if you see these brown spots so that your turf and plants can get the correct amount of water they need immediately.

Rubber Mulch For Your Landscape

“Rubber is a component that’s used for lot of reasons and thus it’s recycled. One modern use for this component is within the form of a rubber mulch, that is just a sheet of rubber dispersed on the ground. This mulch is gathering popularity at the back turf, gardens and front patio at various households as it is eco-friendly and at the same time stops the grass external damage. That is why it is also sometimes labeled as eco green rubber mulch.”

http://www.rubberscapes.net/images/gallery/Red-Rubber-Mulch-Landscaping.jpg

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Individuals are unaware of this type of useful substance as the rubber mulch has still not obtained commercial recognition. Furthermore people choose to uncover grass lawns in their gardens as the lawns look better however the mulch nowadays are available in different types and colors. The mulch nuggets are recycled and reused over these properties. Following are some of the benefits of mulch.

It’s non-porous or water absorbent: Rubber shredding does not take in water when compared with organic mulch. It also stops the growth of unwanted weeds which enables the soil and also the plant to obtain the needed water. Which means it conserves water more and it keep the soil moist. What’s more, it does not wash away during heavy rain.

Shock absorption ability helps in avoiding accidents. The elasticity of rubber causes it to become a great choice for a total surface covering. It will help reduce the shock of a fall or crash therefore making the area less at risk of mishaps. The leading reason why rubber mulch is used in athletic fields, playgrounds and horse arenas is its ability to absorb falls.

Pollution free. These surfaces are eco-friendly and free from pollution along with other inorganic substances. The rubber mulch reduce exposure of heat to the lawn thus serves as an insulator. Additionally it is easy to maintain than natural or synthetic grass. For example, shredded bark mulch type, which is actually a by-product of the wood industry, is made of cedar trees. It’s also cheaper than other solutions. In addition, the sound absorbency of rubber flooring lessens the problem of noise. Rubber absorbs the sounds instead of reflecting it.

In summary, rubber mulch appears to be an incredible decision for an eco-friendly sound way of landscaping. It has additionally been through quality upgrades throughout the last couple of years. Right now rubber mulches, which happen to be ideal for home gardens and landscaping, can be found in a great deal. It may take getting used to, however it looks like the tires definitely will keep rolling into our gardens, parks, and playgrounds.