lawncareQ: What are some common issues with lawns, coming out of the winter months?

Kelley Green Lawn & Landscaping: We usually don’t see any major problems with lawns after winter.  However, because of the drought last summer, there may be some damage to lawns.  If a lawn has sustained a large amount of turf damage due to the drought, homeowners should have aeration and over-seeding done in early spring.  This will allow germination to take place before pre-emergents need to be applied to the lawn.  With the unusual amount of snow and ice this winter, there may be turf damage from snowplows and salt.  When a snowplow damages turf, usually the sod should be replaced as soon as possible. While the turf is still dormant lightly compact the turf back in the area that was damaged.  If the turf was damaged from salt, usually the turf will naturally recover and fill in.  If not, the aeration and overseeding will help.

Q: What do you recommend doing to get the lawn ready for spring?  (What can homeowners do themselves and what should they hire a professional for?)

Kelley Green Lawn & Landscaping: Homeowners need to perform a spring cleanup.  This would include cleaning up leaves, sticks and other debris from the lawn and landscaped areas.  It is also important to spot seed any bare areas in the lawn in early spring and trim the remaining perennials that weren’t trimmed in the fall of last year.  Lastly, homeowners should  check their gutter systems for obstructions and debris.

Q: For homeowners with pets – are there any pet-friendly ideas you recommend when it comes to their lawn/landscapes?

Kelley Green Lawn & Landscaping:  We have designed a few pet-friendly hardscapes for some clients.  Instead of using mulch we installed a smooth decorative gravel where the pets usually run and patrol.  We also installed paver areas where the pets like to lounge.  We try to install plants that are sturdy, drought tolerant and non-poisonous to the client’s pets.  If a client wants turf in their pet areas, we try to install sod or other grasses that are more tolerant to high traffic areas.

Q: What are different types of fencing options for homeowners with animals – like invisible fencing – how effective are they?

Kelley Green Lawn & Landscaping: From my own experience, nothing works better to retain pets better than a traditional chain-link fence or wooden style fence.  Once a pet becomes a “Houdini” or “Jumper”, installing an invisible fence, in addition to the chain-link or wooden fence, can help reinforce a safe containment.  However, if a pet is trained properly the invisible fence is a very cost-effective way that homeowners can retain their pets.

Q: Are there any red flags for lawn care/landscaping scams that homeowners should be aware of?

Kelley Green Lawn & Landscaping:  The homeowner needs to make certain that they are hiring a qualified landscaping company which has insurance (worker’s compensation, liability), a business license, references, and number of years in business. If the price sounds too good to be true, you eventually get what you pay for with shoddy craftsmanship.

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