Prepare Your Lawn For Fall

Prepare Your Lawn For Fall

The last day of summer is September 23, 2019. 

After the hot Texas summers, the cool brisk weather is more than welcome as fall approaches later this month. Now is the transitional period to take care of your lawn in preparation for fall. There are a few things to do to make sure that you and your lawn are ready for cooler temperatures. 

Here are a few tips to help you prepare your lawn for a seasonal transition in northeast Texas.

1. Continue To Mow

Regardless of the season, a rule of thumb when it comes to mowing is to never cut more than one-third of the height. Cutting your lawn too short can make it susceptible to diseases. Continue mowing even after summer to keep the lawn healthy. When the majority of the growth has stopped you won’t have to mow as often as you would in the summer months.

2. Fertilize

Mulch the grass as you mow the lawn. The grass clippings act as an organic fertilizer by applying the required nutrients to your grass while they decompose. In the fall, fertilizing your lawn will help protect it and keep it healthy when the cool weather rolls in. Before fertilizing your grass on your own, make sure you know what type of grass you have in order to choose the correct fertilizer. This should be a granulated fertilizer that is applied to the lawn using a manual spreader. First Response Lawn Care has an excellent 7-step program. All fertilizer and herbicides are commercial grade. We are licensed with the Texas Department of Agriculture Lic #450863. Our fertilizing program uses a 7 step program to ensure your yard is healthy and the best in the neighborhood.

3. Discard Weeds

Weeds are a constant problem and hassle to keep them away from your garden and lawn. Fall is one of the best times to treat for weeds allowing you enough time to completely discard of all the weeds before growth begins in the spring. When pulling weeds, it is important to grab the root in its entirety. Snipping the roots at ground level won’t remove it and it will be able to grow back. Our weed control program alleviates the problem of pulling weeds alltogether.

4. Aerate

During the summertime, it’s safe to say that your lawn gets a lot of traffic. With heavy traffic comes compact. When the soil is compacted, it can’t retrieve the vital nutrients needed to sustain healthy grass. Aerating your lawn breaks up the soil and allows it to “breathe.” First Response Lawn Care provides aeration services to Rockwall, Texas, Royse City, Caddo Mills, Fate, and surrounding communities. The results are a healthier and stronger turf and root zone that are able to better withstand turf related diseases, pests, and weeds. 

Fall lawn care may not seem like it’s that important, but in order to maintain a lush lawn in northeast Texas, it’s crucial to practice proper lawn care maintenance year round.

Need help with preparing your lawn for Fall? Whether it is mowing, fertilizer and weed control, aeration of any other lawn maintenance, contact First Response Lawn Care today at 214-701-7622. We can help!

Do Not Over Water Your Lawn

Do Not Over Water Your Lawn

The most common lawn watering mistake that most homeowners make is they over water the lawn. It is much more damaging to over water a lawn versus under water a lawn. Over watering a lawn causes the soil to become anaerobic or absent of oxygen. Water replaces air in the soil and anaerobic soils become compacted, prevent deep digging grass roots, and will kill beneficial microbial activity.

Daily lawn watering is extremely damaging for a lawn. Daily lawn watering prevents the roots of the grass from growing deep into the soil. These shallow grass roots will make the lawn unable to stay green during the heat of the summer.

The best way to promote the grass’ roots to start digging deep into the soil is to water deeply and infrequently. After changing the lawn watering to the recommendations below, your lawn might look worse before it starts to look better. The lawn will start to look healthier as soon as the grass’ roots start digging deep into the soil.

The ideal time to water a lawn is early in the morning before sunrise. Our recommendation is to finish watering no later than 6:00 AM. If this is not possible then the next best time to water is late evening.When daytime high temperatures are hot and average above 85°F: Water no more than 3 days per week. This is typically between mid or late June through mid or late August. (e.g. Water every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday). 

This lawn watering technique is a very deep watering, but it also allows the soil to completely dry out before the sprinkler system waters again. Organo-Lawn invented this lawn watering technique and it is universal worldwide.

Symptoms of an Over Watered Lawn

Some clear signs of over watering a lawn include: severely compacted soils, the presence of Necrotic Ring Spot lawn fungus, the abundance of insect pressure, mold, root rot, and a shallow root system. Over watering a lawn is much worse for the grass and trees than under watering a lawn because a lawn that is watered too much will starve the soil of oxygen. Air is extremely important to the health of the soil and to promote deep digging grass roots. Most of the time when we see a lawn watering problem in a Boulder or Fort Collins area lawn, we advise the customer that we need to adjust the lawn watering schedule in their lawn, they often assume we want to increase the amount of water. This might be true some of the time, but the majority of the time we end up reducing the frequency of days the lawn is being watered and increase the duration.

First Response Lawn Care can perform a sprinkler audit and set up the system to water according to our suggestions. The lawn is usually being watered deeper and less frequent. Most of the time, after we make our adjustments, the total water use is reduced which goes a long way towards water conservation. It’s a good thing for your lawn, for resources and for your pocketbook.

Call First Response Lawn Care (214) 701-7622 if you would like a sprinkler audit, sprinkler repair or need a new irrigation system in Rockwall, Fate, Royse City and surrounding areas!

Summer Guide to North Texas Lawn Care

Summer Guide to North Texas Lawn Care

Now is the time to start paying attention to the summer guide to North Texas lawn care to ensure that the Texas heat doesn’t inflict its damage on your yard. With the heat rising and the outdoor season starting in earnest, the summer guide to North Texas lawn care will let you start off the season right!

Watering Habits

When and how you water your lawn is the most important factor in the quality of your lawn and plant life. The industry standard for the amount of water your lawn needs is roughly an inch of water per week or 1/2 an inch twice per week, whether the yard gets water manually or from rainfall. The best time to water the yard is early in the morning before the sun starts beating down on it. This will allow the water to soak into the dirt and to the roots.

Watering restrictions in your community during periods of drought will affect when you can water your lawn. Try to stay diligent to the one inch per week of water guideline. Too much water can be wasteful and damage harmful to the life span of the grass. Having your irrigation system checked and maintained during this time will ensure that water usage is appropriate for the needs of your yard.

Mowing

The grass should be taller during the summer months, which will allow for deeper root growth and cover from the sun. The insulation also allows for the soil to maintain its moisture better. The general rule of thumb is to keep the grass roughly about 1 ¾ inches to 2 ½ inches for most turf types.

It is also important not to let the grass get too long. and removing more than 1/3 or the leaf blade height at when mown can do damage to the grass. Different mowing and watering strategies are required depending on the type of grass. It is prudent to check the type of grass in your yard before taking any serious steps.

Preventative Care

The actions you take now will be seen a month from now. One key preventative measure is fertilization and aeration of the lawn. But not all fertilizers are created equal when it comes to summer lawn maintenance. Call us today at (214) 701-7622 to discuss your lawn care needs and we will be happy to help!

it’s critical to take care of weed problems during the summer before they’re able to germinate and seed in the fall. It is also recommended to apply weed treatment while the temperature is less than 85 degrees to prevent harming the grass. Aerating and loosening the soil is another pivotal step in the process. This act ensures that the dirt retains its moisture. Tight, compact soil typically leads to quicker evaporation. Keeping the soil less compact allows for greater water penetration down to the roots.

Pest and Insect Control

The summer months are also a time when you’re likely to see more pests and insects in your lawn as tiny creatures search out for water. Many beetles and other insects lay their eggs in the grass during the early parts of the summer, which hatch into grubs during the middle of the season that will eat at your grass.

A healthy lawn will help prevent insect infestations. Dry stressed, or dormant lawns are more likely to be home to insects. Aphids, Caterpillars, Fleas, Fire Ants, Chinch Bugs, Grubs, Mosquitoes, Spider Mites, Snails, Slugs and Beetles are just some of the pests can provide services for. Call First Response Lawn Care today at (214) 701-7622! For all your lawn care needs!

Did you know that your lawn care may be tax deductible?

Did you know that your lawn care may be tax deductible?

Long gone are the days we could pay a neighbor’s kid to mow the lawn for 5 bucks. Most home owners spend thousands of dollars each year sprucing up their lawns.  Homeowners associations have gone to the extent of setting lawn standards to be abided by all home owners. Therefore the question is whether or not caring for your lawn is tax deductible?

The answer is “MAYBE”! Part of your job as a homeowner, gardener or landscaper is to prune plants back to reduce their size and you can also do this with your taxes. If you’re self-employed, there are tax deductions that can trim the net amount of taxes you’ll owe.

According to the Tax Court, sole proprietors who regularly meet clients in a home office can deduct part of the costs of landscaping the property. The deductible portion is based on the percentage of the home that is used for business. The Court also allowed a deduction for part of the costs of lawn care and driveway repairs.

You can read what the IRS says about this and learn more at https://www.irs.gov/taxtopics/tc509.

And be sure to contact First Response Lawn Care for all of your lawn care needs.

Winter Lawn Diseases

Winter Lawn Diseases

 

Winter lawn diseases and what you need to know about them.

Severe damage can occur in lawns during the winter months. Sometimes patches of lawn become brown or bare during the winter and don’t return to  green when spring comes around. For the most part, turf grasses are resilient and strong, though damage to grasses for Various reasons.

Cold Desiccation

Grasses will survive just about any temperature if they are blanketed with snow, but uncovered grasses in very cold conditions will continue to lose moisture and oxygen after the ground is frozen solid.

If the damage is minor, individual grasses may recover, or surrounding grass plants may fill in. With widespread damage, you likely will need to reseed or re-sod dead areas.

Snow Mold

When heavy snow falls over ground that is not yet cold, the moist conditions may foster a variety of fungal diseases collectively known as snow mold. In the spring when the snow melts, you will notice fuzzy or crusty patches, pink or gray in color, blanketing portions of the lawn.

Snow mold usually dies as sun and breezes dry out the lawn, but if the turf has been infected for a long time, the grass may die. Usually, though, the grasses will gradually recover. If the lawn still has debris from the previous year, rake this up to improve air circulation to the grass.

To prevent snow mold, make sure to de-thatch or aerate your lawn regularly, which will increase air circulation and prevent snow mold.

Crown Freeze

The crowns of turf grass can be killed if warm, moist weather is followed by a sudden freeze. This is most common in late winter and early spring, when unexpected frost occurs in warm climates.

Widespread damage requires reseeding or re-sodding. There is not much you can do to prevent crown freeze.

Voles (Field Mice)

Sometimes winter damage is caused by voles. The mouse-like pests average around six inches long, and they spend their winters tunneling beneath the snow or lawn debris, eating plant roots and keeping warm.

Re-seeding is usually the best option if the damage is not too severe. Otherwise re-sodding the damaged areas may be required. To keep voles at bay, remove dead grass and fallen leaves in the fall. Our fall or spring cleanup services might be right for you!

Questions? Contact First Response Lawn Care by clicking the link below to ask about our expert services in all these areas!

Contact First Response Lawn Care Today!

Protecting Outdoor Plants from Texas Frost

Protecting Outdoor Plants from Texas Frost

Low temperatures are being forecast for this weekend in much of Texas as a winter storm slides through the Dallas metro area. Time to talk about protecting outdoor plants from Texas frost. One day it’s 55 and sunny. The next, it’s 32 with frost on the ground. Welcome to Texas ya’all. Fluctuating temperatures are a common occurrence around here. Back to the pending freeze tomorrow. You may need to protect your outdoor plants and flowers from the freeze and/or frost.

The warmth we’ve had may be enough to keep a plant from freezing during a short cold snap. For added protection, you can protect plants in a freeze by placing a sheet or blanket over the plant and then putting a piece of plastic over the sheet or blanket to help keep warmth in. Never cover a plant with just plastic, however, as the plastic will damage the plant.

You can cover larger plants (trees and shrubs) with old bed sheets, burlap, or commercial frost cloths (avoid using plastic). For best results, drape the cover over a frame to keep it from touching the foliage.

Be sure to uncover them in the morning when the temperature rises above freezing.

Stay warm friends since the Groundhog Day rodent, Woodstock Willie, did see his shadow and predicted six more weeks of winter weather from February 2nd!