Five Tips to a Better Lawn

 

We’ve all done it, walked down the street and stopped to stare with envy at the perfect lawn of a neighbour. That lawn that is the perfect shade or green, weed free and every blade of grass seems to be just the perfect height. You ponder how he does it – well I have some tips to help you start turning heads!

  1. Regular Watering
  2. Fertilizer Program
  3. Mowing
  4. Overseeding
  5. Aeration

#1 Regular Watering – Your lawn needs water especially in times of drought. You may consider installing an irrigation system which you can set to water your lawn at a set time and can skip days when there is sufficient rain, or you can use sprinklers and hoses to water. No mater what method you choose you want to be sure to water early in the morning to avoid mold damage to your lawn.

#2 Fertilizer Program – Feeding your lawn is an important part of it’s overall health. By creating a feeding schedule for your lawn you will help to develop a strong root system which, along with regular watering, will help form a strong root system for your lawn and help fend off pests and diseases.

#3 Mowing – Mowing is an important part of your lawn care regime. Picking a good quality mower is the first step, one mower to consider is a zero turn mower. You should always keeps the blades on your mower sharp, this will reduce the damage to the turf and reduce the chance of disease. Be sure to mow frequently, only ever removing a third of the height and mowing to a height of three inches.

#4 Overseeding – Overseeding your lawn allows you to fill in areas that have been damaged over the winter or by pests and disease as well as allow you to introduce more turf species to your lawn that are drought tolerant. Overseeding is best done in the fall however it can also be done in the spring.

#5 Aeration – Aerating your lawn is the process of creating space in the soil for air and water. You should aerate in the spring or fall before you overseed and can do so using a machine that you can rent from your local rental supply store or using aerating shoes. Aerating also allows the roots of your turf to become stronger and this will provide you with a stronger lawn.

For more great gardening posts, visit a blog I like Grow Gardener

 

 

 

 

Pantone Colour of the Year 2016

pantone2016Every year Pantone, which in my opinion is the authority on colour, announces their colour of the year. Last year you may recall the colour was Marsala, and we saw lots of great items popping up in fantastic maroon tones.

This year, Pantone has announced the colours of the year. Yes COLOURS! The choices for this year are:

  • Rose Quartz (13-1520)
  • Serenity (15-3919)

So what do these colours look like? Rose Quartz is a warm rose tone (think a soft pink rose) while Serenity is a cool blue tone (think a baby boy’s blanket).

You can find more information on the Pantone Colour of the Year Announcement Page

So, one might wonder how this relates to landscaping? These two colours are ones we see often in landscaping. On first glance I immediately see a number of common blooms in these colour lines:

  • Jack Frost Bugloss
  • Blue Clips Bellflower
  • Forget-Me-Nots
  • Pink Dianthus
  • Pink Hidcotte Lavender
  • Pink Hydrangeas
  • Pink Roses
  • Many, many annuals

I also see the tones of the Rose Quartz in many of the stone products we use in landscaping projects. From natural stone (think granite) to manufactured stone (with the many tones that are blended to create the amazing colours of concrete pavers used).

Rose Quartz and Serenity would also be an excellent accent colour to the outdoor living space through paint, cushions, pots and planters! Let your creative juices flow when using these colours in your outdoor space and have fun!

Slowly….There are Signs of Spring!

This past week the temperatures have been in the double digits, in fact it has been the warmest it has been in 6 MONTHS! I’ve long since broken out my sandals…for me, that is a sure sign of spring! However, now that the snow has finally melted at home here just outside of Barrie, Ontario I am finally starting to see some real signs of spring!

Here is just a sampling of what I’ve seen walking around my yard. My favourite might be how happy my dog Tucker is basking in the sun!

TUCKER BUD CROCUS DAYLILY OSS2M

Perennial of the Year 2015 – Geranium xcantabrigiense ‘Biokovo’

 

 Every year the Perennial Plant Association names a Perennial of the Year, and for 2015 that choice is ‘Biokovo’ Cranesbill (Geranium xcantabrigiense ‘Biokovo’)

Cranesbills are amongst my favorite perennials for the garden. Their profuse blooms and excellent mounding habit make them a sure win in the garden! I’ve been known to sneak Cranesbills into my garden and gardens of my clients as far back as I can recall and everyone loves them! 

‘Bikovo’ offers a delicate scent and and has excellent fall color! It has multiple uses in the garden from a border plant, ground over or an excellent addition to the rock garden. Cranesbills are also known to be an excellent plant in the pollinator garden and ‘Bikovo’ is no exception! 

Some facts about Bikovo

Zone – 4 through 8

Bloom Color – white/pink

Foliage Color – green turning orange in fall

Culture – Bikovo prefers full sun to a light shady location in well drained soil

Uses – excellent border perennial. Best used at the front of the planting or as a ground cover


Photo courtesy of the Perennial Plant Association

Looking for some Spring Gardening Chores?

Now that spring has arrived are you looking for some gardening chores? If you are like me you have probably been looking out the window itching to get out there are start doing anything in the garden to start feeling like you’re back into the gardening season.

For those looking to get a jump start on their gardening to do list, here is a list of items to scratch off the gardening chore list now:

  • Prune trees and shrubs that were damaged over the winter months by ice, snow or rodents
  • When your lawn is dry enough to walk on you can begin raking to remove debris. It is important to wait till your lawn is dry though or you will leave holes in your lawn
  • Once your garden beds are thawed you can remove any leaf debris and old grasses and perennials that were left for winter interest. You can also add in compost or manure to re-nourish the soil for the upcoming growing season.
  • Spend some time in the garage or shed repairing and painting broken furniture and outdoor decor, and sharpening and cleaning blades and tools
  • Start your seeds indoors so they are ready to plant once the risk of frost has passed

Spring is also the perfect time to consult with a landscape designer for any bigger projects you may be tackling this season. Landscape consultations start at $150 and include an onsite sketch. Contact me to book your appointment.

Creating Curb Appeal

testWhether you have a new home or you have been in your home for a number of years, creating curb appeal is an important part of your homes features.

Curb appeal can:

  • Invite buyers to your home
  • Bring your personality outside
  • Extend your inside style outside

According to Landscape Ontario, landscaping your home can increase your home’s value by as much as 15%. Adding landscape features can make your home more inviting and appealing to those who visit.

Ways to add curb appeal:

  • Add large planters and window boxes and fill with seasonal annuals – colour is appealing to almost everyone!
  • Replace builder walkways and steps with interlocking stone – permeable pavers are shown to have a 12% ROI!
  • Add lighting! Many people visit your home at night and some simple lighting will blow them away!
  • Add mulch to your gardens – this will make your plants pop and reduce time you need to spend weeding
  • Plant a tree. Trees do so much to add value to your home as well as help our environment. It is a win-win situation!
  • Paint your front door – adding a fresh coat of paint to your front door can bring a new dimension to both your house and your landscape
  • Do some pruning – clean up trees and shrubs by giving them a good pruning. Removing dead and overgrown growth can give old shrubs a well deserved facelift
  • Overseed your lawn – does your lawn have bare spots? Overseeding can help to fill in those spots and give your lawn a nice lush appearance

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Jodie Munshaw CLD is a Certified Landscape Designer offering landscape design services and custom urn and planter arrangements services for both residential and commercial properties in Simcoe County. She can help you add some “curb appeal” to your home if you are thinking of selling. She can be reached by email at jodiemunshawcld@gmail.com