Is it time to reseed your Bermuda grass?

In our Southern region, Bermuda grass is a popular choice for lawns. Bermuda grass loves full sun, it thrives in our heat and it is very tolerant to drought and traffic. However, Bermuda grass does have nutritional requirements and is what we might call “high maintenance”. If your Bermuda grass looking a little thin, you may think it is time to reseed.

Why is my bermudagrass thin?

Bermudagrass goes dormant over the winter and honestly can look a little rough this time of year. But, as the temperature warms, the grass breaks dormancy and its rhizomes and stolons start producing a lot of new growth. It is important to have a fertility plan in place so your bermudagrass receives the proper nutrients at the correct time. Our Lawn 360 program for lawns answers this problem!

 Is it time to reseed?

The best time to reseed Bermuda grass is in the spring, but established bermudagrass lawn rarely need to be reseeded. As I already said, warm temperatures and a good fertility program make all the difference for this type of grass. Aeration early in the growing season is another tool to help bermudagrass thrive. Soil can become compacted over time, and aeration relieves this stress.

How can I keep my Bermuda grass strong?

There are several things you can do as a homeowner to help your Bermuda grass stay healthy. Remember that a healthy lawn can fight off weeds, drought and disease better than a weak lawn. 

  • Mow it at a lower height 
  • Water it after you mow
  • Make sure it gets fertilized 
  • See that your lawn is aerated
  • Get rid of weeds

Healthy bodies and healthy lawns. What?

If you think about lawns the way you think about your own body, this all makes a lot of sense. A healthy lawn is strong, free of weeds, and gets plenty of air and water and nutrients. When that healthy lawn is attacked by disease, weeds, drought or insects it has a much better chance of surviving and thriving. When we were all preparing for COVID, remember the people with healthy bodies who took the right vitamins? Those people had a better chance of recovering. 

It is time.

Give our office a call and let one of our professionals come by and evaluate your lawn. We can help you determine whether or not you need to reseed or overseed, and we also have the services to fertilize, aerate, and apply the right sprays to keep weeds from emerging or from coming back. Let us help you get your lawn into the best shape ever! Our Lawn and Pest Solutions Lawn Technicians serve the Memphis, Tennessee and Mississippi areas. You can message our office 24 hours a day just by visiting our website. Our techs are friendly, trustworthy and dependable. Read our Google reviews to see how pleased our customers are with our services.

Plant Health Care, what does that mean?

Have you ever just wanted someone to tell you “what to do” ? Like country music star Pam Tillis, I am a person who doesn’t like for people to “tell her what to do”…there are some instances when that IS what I want. Lawn care is a prime example. I want a beautiful lawn, I worked hard to pay for landscaping to have a beautiful lawn. Now, I don’t know “what to do” with my beautiful landscaping. 

Do you want to take pictures of the spots on your plants and then search Google to find out what they are? Do you then want to research what to do about this new disease that is living on the leaves of your favorite shrub? What are those bugs crawling all over your azaleas? Are they killing it? What do you spray on that? When do you spray it?

This is what plant health care is all about.

You have spent a lot of money on your landscaping. Why not maintain the health of your beautiful shrubs and trees and flowers? Why not get advice from an educated professional who can tell you what to do? Our plant health care pro CAN do this for you.

Lawn and Pest Solutions Plant Pro 

If you join our Plant Health Care program, an expert will visit your lawn six times per year. The pro will examine all of your plants, make notes and a written report at each visit. The pro will put the notes in your file and will also leave a copy of the notes for you. The pro will then treat your plants specifically based on what is happening with your plants and what they need. 

How is this different from other lawn services?

Based on your report, your plants will get a fertilizer with micro nutrients and soil beneficials, insect and disease control targeted specifically to your plants and their health at that specific time. Most programs include a pre-mixed spray that is applied to all of the plants, no matter what they need at that time. 

Why do I need a Pro for my plants?

Why do you need a pro for anything? Why not just let anyone do anything to your car, your toilet, your hair or your dog? A pro means you are letting someone who knows what they are doing use all of their knowledge AND experience handle the investment you have made in your landscaping. 

Our pros don’t prune trees or pull weeds. Our pros are carefully examining what is happening to the plants in your yard. They are taking notes and reviewing the progress of the treatment plan. They are leaving you with careful instructions on what to do next and how to do it. 

Don’t wait until some disease or critter has taken over your plants. Be preventative and keep those bugs from taking over the plants you so lovingly selected, planted and nurtured. Let our pro be on the lookout for invasive pests like crape myrtle bark scale and advise you on treatments. Contact our office today to learn more about our plant health care program. Get a Lawn and Pest Solutions plant health pro in your lawn ASAP!

When is the time to spray for summer weeds?

Is it time for you to head to then local home improvement store and buy all of your chemicals? Is it time to do research and figure out all of the recipes for your mixes? Is it time to rummage around in your shed and find that old sprayer? Is it time to spray for summer weeds?

Yes. And no.

It is time to call Lawn and Pest Solutions and let the experts do the spraying. Timing is everything. It IS time to spray for summer weeds before they emerge. Weeds like goosegrass, doveweed and dallisgrass are beginning to germinate a few inches down in the warming soil. You don’t have to watch very far into the video links to those weeds to feel overwhelmed about doing it yourself.

Now is the time, and timing is everything.  

Our licensed lawn technicians apply split applications of pre-emergent (weed preventer) to give your lawn the best results. Now is NOT the time for fertilizer, it’s too early! However, our lawn techs DO know when the time is right.

What are you waiting for?

The correct product at the correct rate at the correct time is what you get with a professional. Many of us have learned our lesson with DIY projects. Whether it’s getting orange hair from a box of blonde at the discount store or burning a spot in our lawn with a “not quite right” mixture of fertilizer or weed spray. 

Putting a large investment like your lawn and landscape into the hands of a professional is a wise thing to do. If you like mixing up chemicals and spraying them yourself, you’ve got to know there is more than a little chance of not getting it quite right. Don’t risk it this spring with your lawn. Give us a call at Lawn and Pest Solutions and let the folks who know what they are doing handle this job for you. Our technicians cover Mississippi and Tennessee and can handle your lawn issues like the professionals that they are. 

Organic Lawn Care

Organic lawn care is a topic that we love to discuss with our customers. The term organic is large and broad. Some might even call it a “hot topic” and for sure, it’s important. 

Is organic lawn care a viable option for me?

In our part of the country, organic lawn care is not the best option for ridding and preventing weeds in our lawns. However, that doesn’t mean we aren’t using what is safe for our environment. At Lawn and Pest Solutions, we use a safe application for weeds that has been approved by the EPA. We don’t just make the strongest mixture and dump it in a tank. We use the correct rate at the correct time with the correct application. 

The applications for lawns in our region have been through rigorous testing and are based on our long growing weed season and warm climate. There are organic applications in cooler climates that are effective, however, these applications are very, very limited for weed control. Now let’s talk about weed control…

A major component of weed control is applying pre-emergent in the fall and spring. There are currently no “organic” pre-emergents available. The pre-emergent we use at Lawn and Pest Solutions is derived from plants and in a less stringent world, it would be considered “organic”. 

Why is pre-emergent important?

A good pre-emergent in fall and spring means less herbicide later. The other major component of lawn care is fertilization. A strong, fertilized lawn is going to fight off weeds as much as an herbicide. Currently, there are organic fertilizers available, they are effective yet require more frequent applications.

So, here’s the news. 

We live where you live, we care as much about the environment as you and we want to use the least amount of harmful ingredients in our lawn as you. Everything we do involves a risk, whether it’s driving a car or spraying our countertops with cleaner before we prepare food on them. At Lawn and Pest Solutions, we strive to provide you with a weed free lawn with the least amount of risk to our environment. 

Our licensed lawn technicians are always ready to discuss with you the options for the most current, environmentally friendly and effective way to treat your lawn. There is a balance and we feel we strike a very good one between effective weed control and caring for our environment. Contact our office here and get the ball rolling on your beautiful lawn!

Should you remulch your flower beds?

We have had some nice weather for a bit, and before winter strikes again, our Southern selves are already asking, “should I go ahead and mulch my flower beds? It only takes a couple of days of sunshine for some of us to break out the shorts and the shovels. 

Why should you remulch your flower beds? 

Mulching for the first time or the remulching for the fifth time allows air, water and nutrients to get to roots while also protecting the plants. We have featured mulching in several blogs before, like this one about mulching or bagging.

When should you remulch your flower beds?

According to Gary Bachman at Mississippi State Extension Service, anytime. Fresh mulch always makes your landscaping look nice and it can really be done anytime of year. However, most of us start thinking about adding mulch or remulching in the middle of spring or towards the end of spring. One thing to remember is that if you mulch too early, your mulch might keep the soil colder or frozen longer. Try waiting until the last freeze is over to allow the soil to warm up. It won’t be long!

Here’s some good news…

You don’t have to remove the old mulch! Experts say we should leave last years’ mulch and allow it to break down into the soil. Now that’s the kind of advice I like to hear! Here are some easy tips about mulching from HGTV that are mostly aesthetic in nature.

Mulch. Mulch. Mulch.

If you say mulch enough, it starts to sound really weird. Here is where the word “mulch” comes from. Mulch is an added bonus to most landscapes. Mulch protects your plants and gardens while making everything look a little nicer in the process. Lawn and Pest is part of the protection you can add to your lawn and landscape. Your landscape is an investment and we are here to help you protect your investment. Contact our office here and we can send a licensed lawn technician to you ASAP. We serve Mississippi and Tennessee homes and businesses and would be glad to help you. 

The Art of Scalping

“The art of scalping” seems a little dramatic for what is really just a good “haircut” for your lawn at the end of winter. Some may remember learning about scalping in history class. Others may have learned that scalping involves an expensive ticket to a big event bought from a less than scrupulous character outside the venue.

Ticket scalping is a prevalent undercover activity that has strong ties to the upcoming Super Bowl this Sunday. NFL coaches and players are even known to get involved. Yard scalping on the other hand, is a good thing. 

What IS scalping my lawn?

Scalping your lawn just means that at the end of winter, you lower the blade on your mower and give your grass a really good cut. It won’t look pretty, but it serves a great purpose. Just think of it like good skin care. You are removing all of the tough, dead “skin” that has built up over the cold winter. Scalping is preparing your lawn for the spring sun and new growth that is lurking just under the soil. 

Scalping is a reboot for your lawn

When you mow down low, just one inch from the ground, you are removing the accumulation of winter that can cause thatch. Once you have mowed down to the stalk more light can get to your grass. More light on your grass means warmer soil. All of this adds up to stronger grass that turns green earlier. Your healthy lawn is just waiting underneath!

Should I scalp my lawn now?

Timing is everything with lawn scalping. Wait until the last of the sub-freezing temperatures to pass. If you scalp too early, your tender grass stems will be exposed to extreme cold. The best time for scalping in our region is middle to late February. 

Again, timing is critical. Don’t wait too late to scalp. If you wait too late and your grass has already started growing, scalping will only cause your grass stress. Stressed out grass means slower growing grass.

What types of grasses need scalping?

Scalping works best on warm-season grasses like Bermuda and Zoysia. Never scalp Centipede, St. Augustine, or cool-season grasses like fescue.

Quick tips for scalping your lawn:

Sharpen the blades on your lawnmower, dull blades damages grass and exposes it to diseases

Scalp when your lawn is pretty dry, mud covered grass stems don’t get enough sunlight

Bag up your clippings from scalping, debris left on your lawn is basically an undoing of the scalping

Don’t forget to use the clippings in your compost pile

As we say here almost every week, having a beautiful lawn is a year round job and we are here to help. Your lawn is part of the investment of your home and we can help you keep that part of your investment looking its’ best. Our certified lawn technicians serve Mississippi and Tennessee. You can easily spot our uniformed employees in their white Lawn and Pest Solutions trucks. Contact us here to get a quote on your lawn, you can text, email or call us just by clicking this link

Crape murder

You don’t have to watch Netflix to observe this heinous crime. On trees.

Crape murder is quite a dramatic statement, isn’t it? It does capture the attention of gardeners and homeowners across the South. And it’s time again. Late January and early February signal aspiring Paul Bunyan’s across the South to gather their weapons.

Before you go chopping away on your crape myrtle trees…

I can’t mention Paul Bunyan and walk away…this link explores whether he was a real man. Whether Paul Bunyan was real or not, he did have a way with chopping down trees, and that’s what we are all here for today. The pruning of our treasured Crape Myrtle trees across the South. 

Crape murder is the practice of pruning your crape myrtle back on the main trunks, often to the same location each year, and often to a height of 4 to 5 feet. The misconception is the tree will produce more new growth the following spring and summer. Many believe this result in more bloom, but it really just means more shoots. Weak shoots that will be weak and will place stress on the tree.

Why do crape myrtle trees need so much pruning?

Many times, crape myrtle trees need severe pruning because they are planted in improper locations. Reminding us of the importance of a good landscaping plan! But if your trees are in need of pruning, don’t commit crape murder, but follow these guidelines:

  • Don’t prune far down onto the main trunks
  • Don’t cut out large sections
  • Remove branches that cross one another
  •  Remove seed pods from last year
  • Allow your crape myrtle to look like a tree
  •  Your crape myrtle should look like an umbrella from a distance
  • If your Crape Myrtle is too tall, you can prune it back down to a more appropriate height, but not every year!

While Lawn and Pest Solutions does not offer a pruning service, we want to help you maintain a beautiful lawn. We have licensed technicians ready to assist you with all of your lawn and pest control needs. We serve Mississippi and Tennessee and are always available to take your calls, texts or messages. You can contact us here for a quote. If the mention of Paul Bunyan has you sentimental, check out these statue locations

Winter pruning

Is winter pruning a good idea for shrubs and trees? Before you go hacking away at everything in your landscape, do a little research. For some plants, winter is the very best time to prune. 

Winter is when plants go into dormancy, which appears to be death to the unknowing observer. Dormancy is really when plants go to sleep. Plants in dormancy are preparing their insides for freezing weather and lack of water and nutrients. Dormancy is like hibernation for plants. Before deciding on an across the board winter pruning for your plants, keep reading.

What does temperate mean?

In temperate climates like ours, most of our plants go into dormancy. Temperate is a word that is used a lot, but I decided to look it up.  The regions between the middle latitudes of the Earth are considered temperate. That means our temperatures can span greatly throughout the year. We have distinct seasonal changes unlike more tropical areas. In the South, we joke that our four seasons can all appear in one week!

What happens in dormancy?

Plants that are in dormancy may appear to be dead, but they are really just saving energy until the weather is right for them to grow. For some plants, this is the best time to prune. While they are in dormancy they may not have any leaves and it is easy to see their true shape. It is also a good time to prune because when they come out of dormancy, they can focus all of their energy into new growth. 

Are you feeling artsy?

As usual, researching a topic about anything can lead you down a “rabbit hole” of information. When reading about pruning the art form “espalier” caught my eye. For the daring gardener, espalier is an extreme form of pruning which leaves the tree (typically fruit trees) as a two dimensional form. Read more about espalier here, and let us know how it works out for you!

How do I know which plants to prune?

Here are a few suggestions, but it is really worth a few minutes of your time to google specifically the plant or tree. This link to the Farmer’s Almanac has a through listing of many plants and trees and when it is best for you to prune. 

  • If your shrub or tree blooms in the spring, it is best to prune it in the spring right after the blooms fade.
  • If your shrubs are evergreen, prune them in the winter while they are in dormancy.
  • If you are thinking of pruning your trees, it is worth hiring a professional tree trimmer once every three years. Chain saws and ladders are not a good idea for amateurs. 

Plant health care is important to us a Lawn and Pest Solutions. Our trained and licensed lawn technicians are always willing to listen to your concerns and advise you on ways to improve your landscape. Contact our office here and let us schedule a visit! We serve the Mississippi and Tennessee areas with lawn and pest control.