If you are the DIY type, here are some helpful tips to make sure you stay on top of your lawn and landscape needs. 

First, bust out that equipment and make sure it is working!  If you did not winterize your equipment there is a good chance that the gas has gone bad and may have clogged your engine's carburetor.  Even if the engine starts with the stale gas, we highly recommend you discard this gas in an environmentally friendly way (or even just add it to a fresh tank of gas in your vehicle) because stale gas will shorten the life of your engine.  If it will not start, watch a YouTube video on how to clean a carburetor.  It is not that hard to do and can save you a lot of money when compared to taking it to a lawn equipment service shop to do this for you.  If you need to take your equipment somewhere for service, we recommend Crescent Springs Hardware or Pleasant Valley Outdoor Power.  Please keep in mind that the lawn care companies spend way more money than homeowners at these service shops and their needs will take priority to yours.  It could be months before you get your equipment back!

The second thing that comes to mind is getting your pre-emergent herbicide down.  This is if you are not planning on doing any seeding of course!  We highly recommend seeding in the late summer/early fall instead of the spring if possible.  A well-timed pre-emergent herbicide application will greatly reduce the number of weeds and grassy weeds that germinate in your lawn over the summer months.  In my experience, it works better on the grassy weeds, such as crabgrass, than it does on the broadleaf weeds, such as dandelions and clover.

If you do need to seed in the spring, remember to not use pre-emergent herbicide on your lawn.  If you have a service that does your lawn care, be sure to inform them of where you seeded!  Get your seed down as early as you can in the spring to allow the root system to develop as much as possible before the summer heat sets in.  The latest I would recommend seeding in a typical spring is mid-April.  The key to success when seeding is timing, seed to soil contact, and watering.  We have the timing outlined already.  Seed to soil contact refers to how easily the seed can work its way into the soil…basically, how do you prepare the soil to sow the seed.  Aerators, slice seeders, and dethatchers are the most common machines to do this, but you can also use hand tools such as rakes, shovels, and hoes.  You can rent any of these machines from The Home Depot.

Watering grass seed and young grass plants is different than watering established lawns.  The key to remember is, keep it moist!  Yes…  You do not want your seed getting wet and then drying out again.  This will ruin the seed and not allow it to germinate.  Watering in the morning and evening for 15 minutes in each area should do the trick.  If you can do an afternoon watering, it will only help.  Also, remember if we do get rain, you can skip that watering session.  The watering should continue until the grass is tall enough to be mowed.  Turf-type tall fescue is the most common grass seed type in our area.  It takes 10-21 for the seed to germinate, so don’t worry if you don’t see grass poking up immediately.

Things to look at in the landscape include cutting back any grasses or perennials that didn’t get cut back in the fall.  You do this so the new growth can come through.  If you didn’t know, annuals only last one season or even just a portion of a season and perennials come back year after year.

You can also shape up most plants in the spring.  If you have spring flowering plants such as rhododendrons or azaleas, you should hold off on pruning them so you do not cut off the flower buds!  I personally like to wait until a little later in the season to mulch.  At least until the April showers pass.  If you are okay with using a non-selective herbicide, like Round-Up or any alternative, I would recommend taking control of the weeds in your beds by spraying them regularly.  If you can get them under control in the spring, you will set yourself up for an easy rest of the year as far as weeding the beds goes.

Finally, if you are planning any big landscape, hardscape (retaining walls or paver patios), or water features it would be a good idea to start contacting companies and getting quotes for those services.  They are often booked out months in advance.  I don’t recommend too many companies anymore, but I would start with Raymond Landscape Nursery for your larger projects.  You can call them at 859.356.6000 or visit RaymondLandscape.com.  If you do contact them, be sure to tell Dennis or Sean Raymond that Ryan at Loyal Green referred you!  They will take great care of you.

We hope you find value in our blogs and want you to know we are here if you need us to take the lawn care chores off your plate.

P.S. You can also find frequent tips on Facebook at Facebook.com/MyLoyalGreenLawn.  If you have used our service and would like to leave us a review, you can do so by clicking this link: LOYAL GREEN GOOGLE REVIEWS