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5 Myths About Watering and Irrigation

Water dropAfter a rather wet spring, we've had record high temperatures, coupled with an extended dry spell. To be honest, I do have an irrigation system in my yard, but it was installed before we moved in and I constantly struggle with the placement of the sprinklers, the grouping of the sprinklers and the overall installation. Be that as it may, this is about some of the misconceptions about watering and how to best care for your landscape

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Spring Tree Care 101

Trees at dusk in SpringThe snows have dispersed, now grass returns to the fields and leaves to the trees. -- Horace

I've been getting a few questions about tree care recently and with good reason - the heavy snows this winter have taken their toll on a lot of trees and shrubs, leaving us with damaged or weakened trees in our yards and landscapes.

The first thing not to do is panic! Trees are very hardy and will survive some of the most severe conditions imaginable - some even need to be subjected to burning in order to produce seed. keep reading ...

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Has Spring Sprung, Yet?

Waiting for SpringIt's hard to believe that a year ago, the snow had already melted and the ground had warmed enough to dry out so I could rake the lawn! This year, it will still be several weeks until we reach that point, but there are still a few things I'm working on to get geared up for warmer weather.

First off, the recent cold weather is slowing the snow melt to ease the flooding and I'm thankful for that. It also makes me mindful of the cycle of life and of the seasons. No matter how much we tend to disconnect ourselves from our climate and the environment, we still cannot fully control it or forsake it. The trick is to not see weather as an adversary, but as an ally - partner with it and you will improve your life and the lives of those around you. keep reading ...

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Spring Gardening Preparations

Rose hipWait - this is October and it's fall! I am well aware of that and I also know that what you do now will have a big impact on how your plants will fare come next spring. Even though the days are definitely shorter and cooler, there is no shortage of things to do outside and now is a great time for landscapes.

Before you head inside (or somewhere warmer) for the winter, here are 8 fall gardening activities that will ready your yard for winter and another season of enjoyment next spring.

Start deadleafing your daylilies and hostas

The leaves are transferring their energy into the roots for the winter. Gently tug on the dead leaves to remove them. This will improve their appearance and prevent mold and crown rot. If you have a lot of hostas, you can leave some for the spring cleanup. If you have some large clumps that you want to divide in the spring, the leaves will help you locate them early next spring. keep reading ...

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Cutting Down on Yard Care

Lawn turf grassI just finished cutting our lawn and having a look around the yard. This year has been tough on a lot of the landscape - trees all around the city are showing signs of stress, lawns are browning in areas, crabgrass is running rampant, among other things. As much as I like the look of a freshly cut lawn, I know the impact maintaining it has on the environment. I've had some passionate discussions about this with friends and associates also in the landscaping industry - I'd like to thank them for all they do and contribute to making our little corner of the world a better place to live in.

I shared a little math exercise a few posts back and I'd like to add a few more things to that equation. Not only do our lawns require water to stay green, we also have other inputs to keeping our lawns looking good. For most of us, that means getting out the lawn mower every week and giving it a nice even trim. Each weekend, about 54 million Americans mow their lawns, using 800 million gallons of gas per year. That might have an impact on the economy and environment, don't you think? The EPA has put into effect stricter requirements for small engine emissions, but the average walk-behind mower produces 11 times more pollutants per hour than an automobile. Seems like we shoud be a bit more environmentally friendly with our lawn care, shouldn't we?

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