Saving money and getting a great-looking lawn and landscape in the spring starts with you! This simple guide will save you the costs of expensive treatments by proactively eliminating issues.
1. Fix Snow Mold & Mole Damage
After the snow melts from another tough Ohio winter, most people get to see the damage caused by snow resting on the grass. The most common forms of damage are snow mold and mole trails.
Snow mold is easily recognizable, with small- to medium-size patches of what appears to be dead grass. This condition is a result of fungi that grows and thrives underneath the heavy snow blanket. As unsightly as snow mold may be, these spots of dead-looking grass are confined to the blades of grass and do not affect the growing part of the plant.
Avoid the expensive treatments and lightly rake up the infected areas instead. This will allow oxygen to circulate and speed up the natural recovery of your lawn.
Mole damage, meanwhile, is identified by narrow, twisted ridges throughout your lawn. The small, mouse-like rodents hide underneath the snow blanket during the winter months, causing a tunneling effect in your lawn. Lightly rake these areas, and the problem will correct itself.
Tip: Be gentle! Don’t rake too hard in the spring, as this can cause damage to plants.
2. Prevent Weeds
Early spring is a perfect time to prevent weeds from establishing themselves in your landscape beds. The key to effective control is preventing the weeds from germinating.
Putting down granular herbicide in your beds before you mulch will prevent weed seeds from germinating throughout the year. Coupled with an occasional quarterly spray treatment, this will save you a lot of time on your hands and knees pulling those pesky weeds.
3. Plant Pruning & Perennial Care
Before your landscape begins to bloom, take some time to perform basic maintenance on your plants. Cutting back last season’s dead foliage and pruning your shrubs/trees can help your landscape maintain a clean, neat look.
Cut back any perennial grasses, and remove any dead bloom stalks. Early spring is also a great time to separate perennials, creating more plants. Using a spade shovel, divide the perennial in half, creating two plants.
Early spring is also a great time to transplant any existing trees or shrubs that you want moved. The key to transplanting is removing the plant with a sufficient amount of soil around it that contains feeder roots. Insufficient soil around those roots could kill the plant.
The general rule of thumb is that with most small- to medium-size shrubs, dig a root ball that is 20 times larger than the trunk. This allows for ample feeder roots and will prevent the plant from going into shock.
4. Prevent Harmful Tree & Shrub Insects
Fruit trees, magnolias, crab apples and other shrubs often encounter unwelcome guests over the winter months. These insects — a list that includes spiders and mites — hide in your plants, just below the surface, sustaining themselves on your plants’ nutrients.
An inexpensive dormant oil spray before your plants bloom will kill these intruders and prevent you from needing an expensive treatment later in the season.
Need help keeping your lawn and landscape looking its best? Green Impressions offers residential landscape maintenance services across Northeast Ohio. Contact us to learn more.