Lawn Care and Landscaping Maintenance:
Tips for Spring
Not only will spring lawn care and landscaping help you to get a major head start on your outdoor projects, it will also help to ease the overall workload for the entire year!
With spring almost upon us, it’s time to start thinking about how to prep your lawn for spring and get your landscaping in shape for summer. Sure, there’s a lot to do, but with proper planning, timing and a little landscaping maintenance you can create a beautiful and attractive environment that can help make your business stand out from the crowd. Before you get started on any other outdoor projects, there’s some spring clean up you can do first to help make this year’s lawn care and landscaping maintenance go far more smoothly.
Now, we all know that regular landscape maintenance is a big job that requires consistent attention. Once all of the plants starts to grow and the critters and pests return, just getting started on this year’s landscaping plans can become very labor intensive. Preparing for the warmer months now can make your job a lot easier, and can effectively eliminate—or greatly reduce—many of the lawn care and landscaping problems that challenge us over the course of the year.
Here is a list of things that you can do NOW to prepare your properties’ landscape to be healthier and more attractive to potential clients, tenants and customers.
Lawn Care Tips for Spring
First: Spring Lawn Clean Up
As the snow melts, it leaves in its wake a lot of debris built up from last fall. Sticks, leaves, broken branches, dead plants and garbage all need to be cleaned up and disposed of properly as part of early spring lawn care. Your municipality may not allow lawn clippings to go out with the trash, so be sure to do your research before bagging them up and leaving them on the curb!
Something to Consider: Aerating Your Lawn
Sometimes overlooked when discussing spring lawn cleanup, aerating the lawn can help to rejuvenate your property’s soil and grass. It encourages new growth and helps to heal any areas damaged by compaction, heavy use or heavy machinery. Aeration means creating small holes in the sod and removing plugs of soil which allows nutrients, air and water to reach the roots. It can be done by hand or with a machine.
Prune, Edge and Cut: Grass, Shrubs and Trees
Next on our list of lawn care tips for spring is getting out those tools for clipping, pruning and edging. Your perennials and trees can all benefit from a good, healthy trimming. Focus on older growth and anything that looks damaged or diseased – this encourages the plant to put energy into new growth and helps to keep your plants from growing too large. By removing any unhealthy growth you’ll be reducing the potential for disease and keeping the flora healthier.
Edging means cutting back the sod that tends to grow over sidewalks, onto patios or into landscaped areas. Edging tools come in several different styles – some are operated by hand and some are electric.
Additional Spring Landscaping Maintenance
Bug Off: Pest Control Planning
Preventative measures that deal with common wildlife pests will not just keep your landscape looking its best, but will also save you a lot of trouble over the course of the year. Animals such as ants, grub worms, and wasps (plus other stinging insects) create headaches in their own unique ways.
Larger animals such as birds and mammals can create major problems, including property damage and burrowing holes in the grass. When you do your spring lawn clean up check for any existing tunnels and fill them in – you want to avoid having holes around that people can step in and twist an ankle!
You may need to set out traps if the problem is severe. Figure out which local pests are common to your region and buy any sprays or trapping equipment needed to get rid of them. Researching your local exterminators now isn’t a bad idea either—if you do have a pest invasion, you’ll immediately know who to call.
Install and repair fences and wire mesh where needed to keep other large mammals away from sensitive plantings.
To Spray or Not to Spray: Effective Weed Solutions
Weeds are the ultimate headache, but are also a great reason to be proactive about early spring lawn care and landscaping maintenance. They can begin growing as early as February or March and can quickly take over.
Most people don’t want to spray poison, especially in a vegetable garden or a pubic area. If the area is small and your labor force allows for it, your crew can weed by hand. But if you don’t have that luxury, make sure to post signage if you spray an herbicide so children don’t accidentally ingest the chemical.
Pre-emergent herbicides can act as a barrier to potential weeds already lurking in your existing beds by inhibiting them from germinating. Applying it before you mulch in early spring can make all the difference.
Working Under Cover: Mulch
Speaking of effective weed control, heavy mulching is a great way to bury weed seed and tiny weeds before they become big enough to cause problems. However, weeds that are already mature likely won’t be affected by this technique because they have built up the resources to grow right through the mulch layer.
Additionally mulch is a great way to keep plants watered because it locks in the moisture at the base of the plant. Mulching around plants, trees and in gardens doesn’t just look good—it can mean the difference between healthy, vibrant plants, and plants that struggle to stay alive.
Feed the Need: Fertilizer & Compost
Fertilizing helps to repair damaged spots in your lawn, and can add a much needed boost to your small trees, shrubs and perennials. When you fertilize, you should also be seeding the lawn for lush, consistent growth. Depending on your preference, there are organic, chemical-free lawn care treatments available as well as the more traditional chemical applications.
Composting is a fantastic way to eliminate yard waste, take care of the environment, save money on gardening, and reduce waste disposal costs. And, in addition to or instead of fertilizer you can use compost to feed your landscape plants and gardens. It’s not great for the lawn however, since putting compost on your lawn would basically be throwing dirt on top of your grass.
Start a compost pile now, or add to the one you currently have going. Turn over and expose the interior of the pile in the early spring so it will be ready when your gardens are in full bloom.
Bringing In New Life: Transplanting
Any new plants and trees that you want to incorporate into your property’s landscape should be transplanted now. Planting in early spring allows the roots to firmly establish themselves, offering enough time to strengthen and grow into the earth before the next cold season begins. Always follow specific planting directions from a nursery or greenhouse when putting in new vegetation.
Make It Rain: De-Winterize Your Sprinkler System
One final piece of lawn care and landscaping advice – don’t forget to prepare your sprinkler system for the warm weather. After the last winter freeze, sprinkler systems need to be drained, brought back online, tested for leaks and repaired, if necessary. Freezing temperatures can cause pipes to swell and break, so when you remove them from storage in the spring be sure to test them before you need them. This will give you time to fix any issues that may have occurred in fall or during storage.
Lawn Care And Landscaping: Now’s the Time!
As winter’s icy grip finally eases up and the ground becomes visible again, spring clean up preparation of the grounds around your building(s) is vital if you’re going to get ahead on all that upcoming landscape work. While it may still seem a bit brisk outside, working in the sun isn’t so bad. Preparing for spring now will guarantee a stronger, healthier landscape, and you’ll be thanking yourself all year long for being so proactive about your landscaping maintenance in the spring!