The Dog (Dawg?) Days of Summer are upon us and we’ll be struggling to keep our lawns looking good until the traditional break in the weather roundabout the last week in August. What are some of the things we can do to help our lawns though this period?
The past couple of weeks have been bone dry in almost every corner of the Lawn Dawg universe resulting in quite a few reports of drought stress on our lawns. Drought stress is the natural response of grass plants to periods when there isn’t sufficient soil moisture to continue growth. The plant realizes that it’s in trouble and shuts down the leaves
Recently in the news there have been reports about a new study that was published in the Bulletin of Insectology on the role of insecticides in Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) in honeybees. The study itself can be found here if you’re so inclined to read it: Sub-lethal exposure to neonicotinoids impaired honey bees winterization before proceeding to colony collapse disorder.
Another April has come and gone; this first full month of spring has been a continuation of winter by other means. In the lawn care industry, it has been challenging to say the least.
- Myth: If I do not fertilize my lawn, its better for the environment.
The opposite is true. Proper fertilization practices will create a dense healthy stand of turfgrass which is second only to a forest soil in removing pollutants from the environment before they reach groundwater.
- Myth: If I can’t water my lawn, it’s a waste of time to fertilize.
As we look at our calendar and see that it says its spring, it sure doesn’t look that way outside, does it? After a long, cold winter, it seems as though it will never warm up and we’ll be looking at bare trees and brown lawns forever. Naturally, that isn’t the case – by the time the Fourth of July comes along we’re about in the same place horticulturally every year. It’s the intervening three months that make the professional lawn care business interesting.
Assuming that winter releases its death grip on us some time soon, we will begin taking notice of what’s been hiding underneath all that snow. Let’s take a look at some of the more common problems:
Hey! How Come My Neighbor’s Lawn Is Already Green?
Driving home this morning, my lovely bride happened to take notice of a bright green patch of turfgrass on our next-door neighbor’s lawn. “Why is Steve’s lawn so green? Our lawn isn’t that green?” Sigh… I even get it at home!
The question of pet safety when it comes to pesticide use is a subject that can be raw and emotional – we all love our pets and would never knowingly do anything to harm them. Making sure that everything we use around the house is safe for them is a completely legitimate question; unfortunately, there is a lot of misinformation out there from people who have an agenda against any use of pesticides.
When people find out what I do for a living, somewhere in the conversation they will invariably ask what we do all winter long. After all, there is no grass to fertilize. While it is true that for a couple of weeks the branch offices are quiet, that’s due to the fact that the management staff has accrued vacation time and December is when they wind up taking quite a bit of it.
A word from God drives on the north wind.
He scatters frost like so much salt;
It shines like blossoms on the thornbush.
Cold northern blasts he sends that turn the pond to lumps of ice.
He freezes over every body of water,
And clothes each pool with a coat of mail.
He sprinkles the snow like fluttering birds.
Its shining whiteness blinds the eyes,