Lawn Care Blog
As many dog owners know, one of our largest issues with man’s best friend can often be the fact that they are struggling with their dog digging up their lawn. Digging is a very common habit that occurs naturally in dogs, though some breeds may be predisposed to digging while others are reserved. Dog owners who do find their little friend may be predisposed to constant digging may find this pesky habit quite irritating. As much as digging is internally wired in dogs, it can be controlled in a few ways:
Boredom is often the largest cause of digging in most cases. Make sure you have your dog exercise, and often. If you realize that your dog is bored or lonely, you should make sure to play games such as throw, fetch, and ball games can often keep your pet happy and distract its attention from your lawn and digging.
It will often help your dog’s chewing habit by leading its attention away from the source by providing other objects to entertain them. A knuckle or chewing bone can often help keep your dog away as well as using toys to keep them active and happy.
If you want to lessen the digging habits in your dog, a more professional option is to invest in a training center. Dog care provides your pet with supple opportunities to play with other dogs as well as provide with obedience training that will help your dog understand desired vs undesired habits.
If your dog is outside often, it may be more tempted to dig through your yard. Limit time while ensuring your dog is getting the proper amount of supervised outside time and is able to play while not destroying your lawn.
Here at Westside Grounds Lawn, Inc. while we can’t help train your dog, we are able to repair any damages done. If you or someone you know is in need of a bit of lawn care, contact us today.
Here in Colorado, we’ve finally entered winter and we’ve finally received the snow to prove it! Just over Christmas we received a few much awaited inches of beautiful snow. But with snow comes another: salt. While using salt on driveways, sidewalks, and roads can be great to ensure ice stays away, your lawn may think a different bit differently. Not properly taking care of the salt on your lawn can ensure damage in the spring but nonetheless, there are tricks and tips to ensuring your lawn wakes up happy and clean come spring.
Recognizing Salt Damage
Generally come April is when you can notice damage of the salt when your grass begins to green up from the heat and rain of spring. You will notice in the areas that have been hit hard from salt damage will not change. This most often occurs in parkways, the areas between the street and the sidewalk, and around the edges of your driveway. The reason that these areas have become damaged and brown is because the salt has altered the pH balance of the soil to where the root system of the grass has literally stopped. Good news is that if the crown of your grass still has a little life left, and if you act quickly, these can be saved.
How to Repair Damage
First off and most importantly, the first step to repairing salt damaged grass is to heavily aerate the areas that have been affected. You should aerate your lawn in the spring regardless, but make sure you double pass areas that have been damaged. Next, you should apply a top dressing of Ringer Lawn Restore fertilizer. This natural and organic fertilizer will move down into the holes of the aeration and start the microbial action needed down in the grass’s root zone. The final and most important step is to keep an eye on the areas and watch for flattened areas that don’t recover. These will need to be raked out for the parts of grass that are recovering and are able to spread out more.
Sometimes with heavy salt damage, it can be a little more difficult to repair your lawn to its once healthy and original state. If you or someone you know needs a little bit of help in repairing your lawn, contact us here at Westside Grounds Lawn, Inc. today!
… Is water! Its been a dry, dry year and lately we’ve seen very little snow. We’ve long past the process of preparing our lawn for winter but what to do when fall seems to extend into the winter months? Your plants, being hidden under four inches of nice soil with a nice winter nightcap of fall fertilizer, haven’t been really happy. It has been far to dry for our little plant friends. You’ve already blown out your sprinkler system but right now what our little friends need is a nice, cool drink. With the warm, continuing weather, it may be time to drag out the hose and sprinkler and show your lawn how much you care.
50’s, 60’s, 70’s…
Here in Colorado, we’ve been breaking heat records day after day. Our winter jackets are tucked away in the back of our closets crying to be used but to no avail, we’re still rockin’ away to those 50’s and 60’s. Besides our poor winter jackets being sad with their non-use, our lawns have been crying out for our help as well. With the extended warm weather, keeping our lawns healthy and happy is more crucial now then ever. Giving the lawn the moisture it needs now will continue in helping it stay healthy and pest free. If you do not water during dormant season, you will more than likely water up to 6x more in the spring which is when your lawn needs it LEAST. Over watering in the spring can harm the lawn, waste water, and cost you unnecessary costs. This is why it’s important to water is extended warmth times before the true snow hits.
Giving Our Lawns the Best Christmas Present
Want to give your lawn the best present? Pull out that old school sprinkler you used to jump through as a child. Setting up your sprinkler to run on oscillating for about 45 minutes to an hour, depending on exposure, is one of the best gifts you can give. If your sprinkler sprays continuously over one area, check your lawn about 30 minutes in. Try pushing in a screwdriver into the soil to see how dry and hard it is, base your continuing watering time on that. Since you are more than likely not used to watering, set an alarm on your phone to avoid over-watering. If this warm weather continues, be prepared to check and water again the next weekend. After watering, don’t forget to unfasten your hose, drain it, and store it until it is needed again.
I’m Out of the Loop!
In need of some help? No worries. Here at Westside Grounds Lawn, Inc. we’re trained to keep your lawn as happy and healthy as possible. If you or someone you know is in need of some lawn Christmas presents, contact us here at Westside Grounds today and we’ll bring some holiday love to your favorite lawn.
We’re so close to winter, only 1 month left! And while we may be ready to kick back and be ready, there may be a few last minute preparations to ensure your lawn is in tip top shape and ready for winter.
Your lawn is an entire population of different plants. With this being said, there will be different needs for each variety of grass but for the most part are able to be treated as a whole and the best way possible. Since our biggest goal is a healthy, happy lawn come spring, it’s important that we keep maintaining unless the last possible minute.
You should continue mowing your grass until there has been no visible growth for about two weeks. The best time when to know that is when there are no clippings to remove. Remember to leave grass at least two inches, but no more than three inches for winter. This height requirement is absolutely imperative to your lawn’s health because cutting grass to short makes it vulnerable to drying winter winds and the sun. If there is no protecting snow, the winter sun can be damaging to your lawn. Leaving your lawn at least two inches will protect the crown, which is the white area visible at ground level that will also extend into the root zone. If you allow your grass to grow too long though, the height can also cause problems. If your lawn is too tall, the grass will lay over on itself. Bent down by too much snow, it will bring in that moisture and develop fungus and diseases such as snow mold. While too much sun or wind can be damaging, it’s important to remember your lawn needs light and air all winter.
Usually by this time of the year, the top growth of your grass has stopped growing but the root system is still going. These roots are sending out rhizomes or tillers that will sprout new blades of grass in the spring. A green plant will typically live about three years and then will be replaced by new plants from its own rhizomes. While this is a great thing for your yard, we need to focus on another necessary task: edging the flowerbeds! Once a new grass plant grows where your flowers are, it is considered a weed. Save your time and your back some weeding time next spring by ensuring you edge all of your flowerbeds now.
Fall is a great time of the season to fertilize your lawn for the last time, especially to encourage those roots. Even if you have been keeping up with fertilizing your lawn, many of its nutrients have been taken away these past seasons so it’s important to remember to fertilize for the winter. Look for fertilizer high in nitrogen or a winterizer-type, which is lower in nitrogen and higher in phosphorus and potassium. Taking the time to fertilize your lawn now will encourage it to have a healthy, beautiful growth for next spring.
Your lawn is always growing so make sure during the fall to keep the falling leaves raked so that they don’t gather up and suffocate your lawn’s roots. Make sure to keep raking, even after the first snowfall has melted. Leaves that lay on your lawn all winter long can prevent water from reaching the grass or trap in too much moisture, causing grasses to rot out and die by the time spring comes around.
By ensuring that you are caring for your lawn in the fall, you can encourage healthy growth in the spring. A final parting tip though: make sure you take your mower in for maintenance now. That way when everyone else is standing around in long waits for repair, you’ll be up and ready to cut and take care of your beautiful spring lawn.
It’s no secret here that in Colorado we’ve got an abundance of deer roaming throughout our state. Many of us get surprise visits in the night in our backyard especially if you live near an open space. While it can be fun watching a deer quietly graze on your lawn, in all reality, it’s not helping your grass grow any greener.
We can never control mother nature or her creatures therefore it can be difficult to stop deer from destroying your landscape. Often times they are able of taking out your entire garden in just one short evening with their grumbling tummies which means unfortunately for you, their little midnight snack can cost you a lot of money trying to replace the plants that they just ate for their supper. There are different tricks and tips to keeping our friendly little deer from eating all of your hard backyard work.
Different Plant Options
Deer have different appetites and favor some different grasses and flowers. A plant that deer stray away from is stonecrops. This plant is a yellow, orange, red, or pink flower which the deer hate and will make your landscaping beautiful. This plant often stands out in the stone garden community because of its contrasting colors to other flowers and leaves that appeal to the deer.
Another plant that our whitetail friends dislike are lamb’s ears. This is another plant that is also a beauty in the garden. The lamb’s ears produce a light purple flower on tall spikes that have a silver foliage that feels similiar to velvet. This plant will never be eaten by deer for a delicious snack as they dislike the texture and taste.
Lastly, if you’re thinking of the ultimate plant to stray away deer as well as other animals, the prickly pear cactus will do the trick. It will provide a similar benefit as to a barbed-wire fence without actually having to install one. This plant can grow between 6-14 inches and deer always stray away from this prickly foe.
Each of these plants can be grown in your yard without much water and sunlight. If you’re interested in having a certain type of plant inserted, contact us here at Westside Grounds Lawn, Inc. today!
October Lawn Care
Here are some items to be aware of with respect to your lawn in the month of October.
1) Reduce mowing – As the temperatures begin to get cooler, the soil temperature also falls off and growing conditions also come to an abrupt halt. Make sure your last mow is below 3” to prevent excess water storage in the grass, which can lead to fungus.
2) Lawn Aeration – You can still aerate your lawn to help relieve soil compaction and breaking up thatch buildup in lawns.
3) Mulch leaves – If you have leaves on your lawn property, take steps to rake them and bag them. I have also found that mulching with the lawn mower provides an excellent way to chop leaves into fine pieces and incorporate the nutrition back into the soil.
4) Water lawn – If fall conditions are very dry and hot, 80-95 degrees, continue to water your lawn to insure a healthy soil nutrition. If conditions are damp and cool, this step could be skipped.
5) Winterize your sprinklers – Watch the nightly forecasts and make sure you take precautions with respect to colder temperatures, below 25 degrees Fahrenheit. Turn off the water and drain your system to prevent the cold from doing damage to your pipes.
Have you noticed the chilly nights and changing weather? That’s right, Fall is here, which means snow is right around the corner!
Don’t get caught in the cold! Sign up for Snow Removal today! Westside Grounds provides security for those snowy days. Sorry, no more “snow days” off work!
Bryan MacAulay is our new sprinkler tech/crew leaders! He is an experienced manager and we are so lucky to have him on board! He is originally from Oregon but now calls Colorado his home.
We also welcome Joshua Zancanelli, our other crew leader! He has been managing in the lawn care business for years. It’s great to have his expertise with us! He is also a new father!
Welcome, Bryan and Joshua!
We appreciate your feedback. If you have any questions or suggestions, please feel free to contact us!
Here is a PDF copy of our newsletter: Westside Grounds Newsletter Oct
As Coloradans, we know exactly how brutal our snow storms can get when Old Man Winter comes knocking on our door steps. And with that, we should know what kind of options we have when it comes to snow removal. When you are a homeowner, you generally live under a certain HOA’s rules and almost all of the time, that includes keeping your driveway and sidewalk clear of snow. Today we’ll talk about different options and how to execute them.
Good ‘Ol Manual Labor
We all know exactly what this means. Breaking out those shovels and going out and manually removing the snow by the handy dandy shovel. This is one of the more common methods used in Colorado. There are different pros and cons to this, of course, and it’s important to evaluate them all. The pros can entail anything from saving the environment, (no using gas, etc.) strengthening your body, and just enjoying being outdoors while the snow pleasantly falls. But of course with pros, there are cons. The cons can include anything from the length of time it takes, possible injuries, and just a general dislike for it. Manual shoveling can work for a family with 5 boys but might be a little more difficult for the single mother. It does get the job done though.
Breaking Out the Machinery
For the lucky few who are able to have one on hand, a snow blower is a fantastic piece of machinery for those who live in states with heavy snowfall. (i.e. Colorado) This, of course, also has it’s pros and cons. Some of those can include faster snow removal, less manual labor (only pushing), and better results. Some of the cons though can vary from expensive machinery, lasts only a certain time, and you have to buy fuel for it. It can be a great option for some though!
Hidden (Literally) Options
A snow removal system that is generally not as well known is the snow melt system. The concept is fairly easy. A heating system is installed in a new or previously installed driveway that has a sensor in it. When the sensor detects below freezing weather or precipitation, it will turn on. And that’s that. You never have to lift a shovel or push a snow blower again. Be warned though, snow melt systems are costly to install but once they are in, they cost only cents to operate.
Who You Gonna Call?
Last but not least, our favorite option, getting help from those who know it best. Hiring a professional snow removal company can have amazing benefits and everything gets down professionally, efficiently, and you never have to lift a finger. Pros are anywhere from a clean, safe driveway and cons can be the cost. There are many great benefits to all of these options though.
Contact Westside Grounds
If you are interested in having a professional snow removal service scheduled for this winter, contact us here at Westside Grounds today! Have a beautiful driveway all winter long without having to do anything yourself.
Following up on our Winter Lawn Care post, we bring you our Winter Lawn Care Infographic! Feel free to post on your website, share around, or just use it for your own information!
With only a mere 133 days left until winter, it’s important to prepare our lawn for those cold, brutal Colorado winters. With the right amount of care and preparation, your lawn will be nice and sparkly for spring’s anticipated arrival.
It is known to be that late fall or early winter is some of the best times to fertilize cool season grasses. Since the majority of lawns in North America are made from these grasses, such as Bermuda and bluegrass, it’s a fairly good bet that your lawn has one of the more typical seasonal blends. Before the first freeze hits, give your entire lawn a thorough fertilization to replace all of the proper nutrients that can be lost from the soil during those hot Colorado summer months. Once the weather turns cold, the fertilizer will remain in the soil and feed and give your lawn nutrition all winter long. When spring comes springing along, your lawn will be full, healthy, lush, and a beautiful green that has been feeding on wonderful fertilizer nutrients underneath all of that cold snow.
During the last few months of summer, your should gradually lower the cutting base of your lawn mower each time you cut your grass. Slowly cutting your grass will allow it to winter well without shocking your lawn but cutting it all off at once. If you leave your lawn too tall during those winter months, it will be a perfect place for field mice and other animals that want a nice, warm place to sleep. Mice can destroy immense parts of your lawn by building nests and create dead spots where they spend their time. Make sure your grass is as short as possible at the end of summer, short grass protects any new growth that may be fragile by the end of growing season.
Cleaning your lawn is often forgotten about during summer. It can be easy to forget about those stray logs, toys, lawn furniture that get knocked over and forgotten about before winter comes. Make sure you clean your entire lawn of all of these objects after you mow it for the last time of the year. Do an occasional sweep of your lawn every couple of weeks during the winter. If an object is left on the grass during those cold weather months and snowfall, it can create large dead spots because of the weight of that object. In the spring when the snow melts and you find those objects, the area will be stunted and thinner than the rest of your lawn.
When your grass is brown and short, it can be easy for people to forget that it shouldn’t be walked on. Try and prevent as much traffic on your lawn as much as possible. Grass is relatively resilient but it will be difficult to recover after winter if it becomes well worn. Keep your sidewalks cleared of snow and ice so you and your guests won’t be tempted to take a shortcut on your lawn. Never, ever allow anyone to park their car or truck on your lawn. Even the smallest of all vehicles will leave impressions in the soil and kill off any grass underneath the tires. Using your lawn as a temporary parking lot is one of the fastest ways to kill the good grass and make room for those horrible crabgrass and other types of pesky weeds.
There is not much you can do during the cold months of winter for lawn care. If you properly care for your lawn in the fall, it will be fine until the welcoming warm days of spring arrive once more. Make sure that you aerate, fertilize, and mow the lawn before the first freeze of the season. Rake away those pesky dead leaves that have fallen and collected on your lawn to avoid wet spots that will become mossy or moldy within time. Keep your lawn cleared of debris and remind family and friends to respect the yard while it is dormant.
Once you have taken care of your lawn before winter, you will be ready to enjoy a nice, warm winter indoors while your grass has a nice healthy sleep before arising beautiful and ready for spring. If you or someone you know needs a bit of lawn care help for winter, contact us here today at Westside Grounds!