If you want your fruit trees to remain healthy and productive, it is important for you to prune them regularly. Unfortunately, a bad pruning job can be just as detrimental to a fruit tree as not pruning it at all. To ensure your pruning job is as helpful as possible, follow these four basic tips.
Only prune when the tree is dormant.
The best time to prune your fruit tree is in the late winter or early spring before buds have begun to appear. If you wait too long to prune the tree, it will waste all of its energy on this new growth, only to have it pruned away. Pruning a non-dormant tree also increases the risk of the cut edges becoming infected with fungus.
Remove older branches first.
When branches get too old, they stop producing fruit. Thus, it is these branches – not the new ones – that you want to eliminate first. To tell the difference between old and new branches, look at the color of the wood. Old branches are completely brown. If you can see any hint of green through the bark, that branch is rather new, and you should leave it on the tree, if possible. If you have removed a substantial number of older branches from a given area of the tree and it still seems too dense, then start removing some of the new branches – but do so sparingly.
Prune with the goal of exposing branches to sunlight.
The more sunlight a particular branch receives, the more productive it will be. Thus, your goal when pruning should be to trim away some growth at the top of the tree to allow sunlight to reach the deeper, lower branches. Try to visualize the tree with leaves on it. Look at each lower branch and ask yourself if it would receive sunlight, or if the branches above it would block all of the sun. If your answer is the latter, then prune away some upper branches to expose that lower branch more fully.
Make clean cuts.
Ensure that the shears you are using are sharp. If they are dull, they will make jagged cuts, which take longer for the tree to seal off and heal and are more susceptible to fungal infections. If your shears are feeling dull, many hardware stores offer sharpening services and will sharpen them for you.
Pruning a tree takes time and attention to detail. If you are not confident in your ability to prune a fruit tree by yourself, consider hiring a professional to do so for you. This way, you can be confident that your tree will enter the growing season in great shape. For more information or assistance, contact a landscaping company like Valentino Lawncare.
There’s something quite peaceful about a pond no matter how big or small. They can be beautiful and relaxing, while adding visual appeal to your landscape. You can add fish to them for even more interest and appeal. Here is what you need to about designing a fishpond for your yard.
Decide Where You Want to Put the Pond
Choose an area with a lot of sunlight, which is essential for your fish. Also, make sure your pond site has stable soil to avoid issues with erosion. For a fishpond you have to make it at least 30 inches deep so that it doesn’t freeze in the winter and is big enough to hold fish. The bigger the fish, the bigger the pond needs to be.
Buy the Materials
There are several things you will need to design a successful fishpond. If this is the first fishpond you are creating, you might want to buy a kit. They come with everything you need. If not, here is what you will need to create one yourself.
Install a Water Feature
After completing the basics of installing the actual pond, you can now install extras such as a water feature. You can use a water fountain or a waterfall to make sure the water is moving, which will add oxygen to your pond. This is essential for the fish, and the moving water will keep algae and mosquitoes from infesting your pond. Not to mention the fact that it adds beauty to your pond as well as a relaxing sound.
Add Other Extras
Use other extras for your pond such as pond lighting or plants. You can use plastic plants, but nothing is better than the real thing such as water lilies. This will also make a more natural environment for your fish while providing shade for them.
Introduce Your Fish
Whether you are making a goldfish pond or a koi pond, the procedure to introduce your fish to the pond is the same as introducing fish to an aquarium. Place the fish in the pond, while still keeping them in the closed bag for about a half an hour. Check your water levels to make sure they are safe for fish and then slowly allow water into the bag while making sure the water in the bag doesn’t leak out. At this point, you can remove the fish from the bag with a net and allow them to swim freely in the pond.
For more information about landscaping, contact Design Scapes of Manasota Inc or a similar company.
When you own a business in an area that is prone to snow during the winter, it is best to make plans ahead of time. You do not want to wait to hire a snow removal company until the last minute because that could cause you to rush and choose the wrong company. The following guide walks you through the process of hiring a snow removal company to clean your business’ parking lot this winter.
Choose a Local Snow Removal Company
You want to be sure that the snow removal company you choose works locally. The truck that clears your parking lot will have to travel to your location, and the less distance between the two means the sooner the driver can get the job done.
Sign up for a Seasonal Contract
Many snow removal companies offer you the ability to sign a seasonal contract that allows you to have your parking lot cleaned for a set price every time it snows during the winter or the ability to schedule each cleaning individually. Businesses that sign up for the seasonal agreements will often have their lots cleaned first because they will be considered a priority.
Provide an Outline of Your Parking Lot
When you hire a snow removal company, you need to provide an outline of your parking lot to the company so that they can know where the parking stops are located at the edges of the parking spaces and where the islands are located in the lot so that they do not cause damage to them with the snow plow. Also, you may want to indicate where you want the mounds to be created when the snow is removed from the lot. In a corner of the lot is often best because it will be out of the way until it melts.
Hiring a snow removal company ensures that customers can get to your business with ease after inclement weather has hit. The snow removal takes a very short amount of time to accomplish and is worth the investment if you consider that many businesses will not be able to open because they did not take the time to plan ahead. The customers that might have gone to another business will now be able to come to your business instead. It is important to note that the company will have many clients so be patient on snow days because your lot may not be the first lot that is plowed. For more information about snow removal services, contact a company like LP Stewart & Sons Inc.
Now that fall has arrived, it is time to trim your trees and chip their wood to put in your compost pile for next spring’s garden. While you may be unsure about operating such a dangerous and powerful machine for the first time, you can safely use a wood chipper as long as you take care to follow some simple guidelines. Follow these tips to ensure your safety while using a wood chipper for the first time:
Outfit Yourself for Safety
Before starting your wood chipping project, make sure that you are properly outfitted in clothing for the job. Since there are many moving parts in a wood chipper, you should not wear any loose-fitting clothing or jewelry when operating one.
To stay safe while feeding branches into the rented wood chipper machine, wear the following:
Since there will be a lot of sawdust in the air, you should wear goggles for eye protection, and you may want to wear a mask to keep from breathing the sawdust into your lungs.
Chock Your Trailer Wheels
When you rent a wood chipper, it will be on a small trailer that allows you to easily bring it to your home using only a trailer hitch. However, the trailer’s wheels present a hazard because they can roll when you run the wood chipper and are feeding tree branches into it. To prevent movement of the trailer, make sure that you chock both sides of the wheels with cement blocks or large pieces of split firewood. You should never operate the wood chipper without the wheels securely chocked.
Never Reach Into an Operating Wood Chipper
A common wood chipper injury occurs when their operators reach into the chipper to move or retrieve a stuck branch. If you reach into the chipper, a branch can free itself and easily pull your hand and arm into the chipper’s rotating blades. Since getting your hand caught inside of the chopper will result in major injuries, never reach onto an operating machine. Instead, turn off the power, use a lockout system, and then unjam the wood chipper.
Use a Lockout System When Unjamming the Wood Chipper
Finally, when you rent a wood chipper, ensure that it comes with a lockout key. The lockout key is a simple plastic key that fits into a circuit and prevents the machine from being able to start. This is a necessary second layer of safety to protect you from someone accidentally turning on the machine when your hand is near one of the blades.
If your yard needs a tree removed or trimmed, visit Corner Landscaping & Tree Service.
If your yard is rather small and you wish to make it look like it is larger than it is in actuality, there are a few tricks you can do with simple landscape methods. Tricking the brain into thinking a space is larger can be done by drawing the eyes to certain areas of the yard. Here are a few illusions you can create in your own yard to make people believe you have more acreage than you really do.
Break Up Flat Space
Instead of accentuating a small lawn by keeping it flat and trim, add a sidewalk, cobblestone path, or some stepping-stones through the land to help distract people from noticing a small space. This walkway will work even better if it is not placed in a straight path. Have it curve through the land or place it with a few jagged turns to help draw eyes back and forth when walking through the area.
Add Some Distractions
When space is flat, the eyes will glaze over the area quickly and alert the brain that a small area is being viewed. Drawing the eyes into other directions because there are several things to see will make the land seem larger because of its busyness. Place a decorative statue in the middle of a small parcel of land to give people something pleasurable to view. Place a birdbath, a fountain or a bench in the yard to divert attention away from the size of the land.
Use Color To Brighten
To help give your yard more appeal, add several plants and colorful flowers throughout the space to give the area character. Warm colors like yellow, orange and red give a happy glow to an otherwise sad plot of land. Place larger blooms in festive flower pots to increase the warmth of the space. Add a few garden signs or painted rocks to give people something to view as they walk through the yard as well.
Draw Eyes Upward
Place a few items at higher levels in your yard so people need to look upward to appreciate them. This will give the impression of a larger space, because the eyes will need to look up and back down to see everything in the area. Do not stop with one tier of height, but place items at different heights to make the space look even bigger. A flagpole or carved tree would gain a lot of attention for the highest level. A medium level attraction could be a bird feeder or bird house on a pole, and lower-level diversions could be flowerpots on top of cinder blocks or large rocks. A retaining wall would also break up the space while drawing eyes upward.
You may want to ask a professional such as JK Landscape Construction for more advice.
If you’ve got a small backyard but want to plant trees, the design or layout you choose should focus on similarities between the trees — and these aren’t always cosmetic. It takes good planning, but you can eventually have a small yard with well-chosen, healthy trees if you follow some guidelines. Here’s what to consider when choosing and placing trees for your yard.
Chances are the trees you have will be planted in some sort of pattern or group. Even if you have only two trees, one in each far corner of your yard, there needs to be a unifying factor such as shape, size, or even type — two fruit trees of similar height could work, for example, or two trees with similar flower colors. While there’s nothing wrong with an asymmetrical design, even those aren’t created randomly, and you can still detect patterns and similarities between the different components.
For ease of care, planting trees with similar nutritional requirements is usually a good idea. However, be sure that your soil can support the trees. For example, if you have trees that need a lot of water and a lot of nitrogen, more so than other trees, you must be willing to add adequate nitrogen to the soil if it doesn’t have a lot of its own. If you’re hoping the trees will just make do with what’s in the soil, you won’t have the trees for very long. If you don’t feel that you can provide the fertilizer, water, and other needs for all of the trees in that part of the yard, you can also contract with a landscaping company.
Many trees need another tree from their species, or a closely related species, in order to set fruit. However, some trees are too good at setting fruit when fertilized by whatever pollen comes along, resulting in cross-pollination that affects the fruit the tree eventually bears. If you’re planning a mini-orchard, you have to get the spacing right so that you end up with the types of fruits that you want.
If planning all of this on your own doesn’t sound like something you want to tackle, contact a landscaping company, such as Maddox Garden Center & Landscaping, Inc., that has experience with small yards. The workers will know which trees go well in which groupings, as well as how to care for the trees. You can have a tree-filled backyard, and landscapers could be key in finding the right design for your property.
Have fun this fall with some distinctive and diverse accents and focal points for your backyard or patio. Give the landscaping autumnal flair while keeping it simple and tasteful.
Some fun fall features for your outdoor space include:
Use [a] simple yet sophisticated grapevine to create a large and full wreath for the entrance to your space. These are easily found at crafting stores, but be sure to buy a large one for the most dramatic display. A roll of raffia ribbon makes a bow that suits the fall season. Consider raffia or grapevine garland for your arbor, porch, or pergola to bring a bit more rustic charm.
Elevate a simple display with a can of metallic bronze spray-paint. Use brown- bronze mums as your foundation element and spray-paint all the other features to coordinate with the flowers. Use pumpkins, gourds, and planters spray-painted the same shade of bronze, and arrange them on a set of steps or the patio.
Don’t think you have to sacrifice whimsy when creating an elegant yard and landscape; there are many fun, festive features that can fit in even the most sophisticated design. For instance, corn husks, hay-bales, and carved pumpkins remain seasonal staples, and these are typically balanced by a front door for a rustic, yet contemporary, look. Consider filling a wheelbarrow with mums to prop in the yard or garden; hang wired mason jars from your clothesline and fill each with a small cluster of fresh or silk mums.
Another idea is to clean out pumpkins and use them for containers for yellow or white mums. Line them up along the steps, or use one for your patio table centerpiece. Try different sizes, shapes, and even colors to create the most intriguing, unique planters for your mums or other plants.
A fire-pit brings a certain warmth to your yard during the fall season, and these can be purchased inexpensively at most home and garden retail venues. Set a cast-iron pot on top with some cinnamon sticks and a bit of water or wine to create a warm, fragrant atmosphere that will beckon you outside.
There are many cool things that you can do to create a fall theme in your yard without the typical accents and decorations. Try these ideas for something a little different, and that will bring an autumnal touch to your home’s yard and landscape.
For more ideas for backyard landscapes, click this link or do an online search.
While sod may be the quickest way to get a beautiful new lawn, it is also the most expensive. However, starting a lawn from seed is often a hit or miss process, plus it takes a long time to see results. To improve the results you get from grass seed, you should consider hydroseeding. It will still take a few weeks to get your lawn established, but your grass should be lush and healthy when it erupts. Here’s an overview of how hydroseeding works.
Seeds And Nutrients Mixed Together
Hydroseeding is so successful because a blended solution is sprayed onto your yard rather than just seeds alone. The mixture usually consists of your choice of grass seeds plus fertilizer and mulch. The mulch keeps your seeds moist and protected while the fertilizer nourishes the sprouts.
You’ll need special equipment to plant grass seed this way if you want to do the job yourself. If you have a large yard, you’ll probably want to rent a machine from a home improvement store that makes spreading the seed easier. If your yard is fairly small and can be reached by a garden hose, you can use a hose and canister attachment. If you go this route, you mix the solution into the canister and attach it to the hose. Then you spray the mix onto your yard. The best option may be to hire a landscaper to do the job, especially if you have a large yard. That way you won’t find out weeks later you did a spotty job of applying the seed and are left with several bare spots in your lawn.
Lawn Preparation Is Necessary
Although hydroseeding is the ideal way to spread grass seed on your lawn, you’ll get the best results if you prep the ground first. Since hydroseeding creates a good environment for sprouting, you may grow weeds in addition to grass if you don’t start with fresh soil. The optimum choice is to start with bare topsoil that is free from rocks and dirt clods. This creates the perfect growing medium for the new grass seeds as the roots will be in the best environment for strong growth.
If you already have grass in your yard and just want to rejuvenate it, then you can use this method over your existing lawn. You should still prep the area first by raking the lawn so the seed can attach to the soil. It’s best to undertake this process in the spring when the growing season begins and there is plenty of sun during the day to support the growth of grass sprouts.
Water Is Critical
The mulch in the mixture helps the soil retain moisture, but you’ll still need to water your lawn frequently after planting the seeds. The soil should stay moist until the grass has sprouted and it is ready to mow. Once the grass is strong and healthy, you can cut back on watering your lawn. Since you’ll need to water the seeds frequently, you may want to install a sprinkler system before applying the seeds. If you don’t install an underground system, you can use a portable system with a sprinkler and your garden hose.
In addition to giving your new grass seeds plenty of water, you also need to give them space. Try to keep your kids and big pets off the grass as much as possible until your lawn is established, otherwise your lawn may develop dead spots. If you do notice spotty areas in your grass after a few weeks, all you have to do is spray more of the seed mixture onto your lawn until you have a lush carpet of healthy grass.
To learn more about hydroseeding, contact a company like Bark Blowers & Hydroseeding Inc.
How to keep a lawn looking nice might seem like a mystery to some people. You may put a lot of time and effort into your lawn, only to have it look subpar. Luckily, getting a nice looking yard doesn’t have to be unattainable. There are a couple simple things you can do to keep your lawn looking great. Here are a couple tips.
1. Spray For Bugs
One of the most important things you can do is manage pests in the yard. Everyone knows how important it is to spray for bugs and pests in the house, but many people do not realize how many bugs they have in their yard. For example, there are some bugs that will actually nest in your grass and eat through the grass. They will steal the nutrients from the soil and from the grass so that it will inevitably die. This is why it is best if you can have professionals come and spray your grass at least once a year. Ideally, the beginning of the season is the best time to prevent the bugs from nesting.
You will notice that your grass has patches of dead spots, rather than everything dying, if you have bugs.
2. Water Only A Couple Days
More water is better, right? When you are talking about volume you may be right, but not with frequency. It is better to water your lawn a couple times a week and really drench the lawn when you do. If you try to water the lawn everyday or a couple times a day a little bit, it won’t work as well. You need the roots of the grass to become really soaked. That way it will allow the roots to get as much nutrients as they need. If you only give the grass a little water each day, even if you do it often, it will never fully reach the roots and the grass will die.
3. Keep The Grass Clippings On The Grass
When you mow your lawn try not to bag it. The grass clippings act as a great fertilizer for the existing grass. They will fall back towards the roots and nourish the soil. If you haven’t mowed for a long time, and the grass is extra long, you may need to bag it. But if you are on top of mowing and your clippings and normal sized, keep them on the grass.
By doing these simple things you can keep your lawn looking great. For professional help, contact local landscapers, such as Glynn Young’s Landscaping & Nursery Center.
Tree removal is something that all homeowners may consider at one point in time because of a tree they have on their property that doesn’t seem to be adding any value to their home. Tree removal should always be done by professionals, since they will have the right tools, equipment, and experience to get it done safely. However, there has to be a specific reason to remove a tree on your property. A tree removal service won’t be able to get rid of one without some kind of valid reason, since doing this could cause harm to the local environment. Here are the top three reasons to consider hiring a tree removal service for a tree on your property:
The Tree is Dead:
A dying or dead tree must be removed from your property. This is because, first of all, it’s not contributing to the environment in any way once it is dead. On top of this, a dead or dying tree is weak, which makes it highly susceptible to falling down during high winds or any other extreme weather. This can potentially cause damage to your property and other property surrounding you. Dead and dying trees are also subject to pest infestation, and you don’t want that since these pests can then easily make their way into your home as well once they are on your property.
The Tree is Causing Damage:
At some point, a tree’s roots can become so overgrown and out of control that they can begin to cause damage to the foundation of your home, the electrical wires running under the ground, plumbing lines, and more. If this is the case, the tree will need to be removed before it costs you a great deal of money in property repairs. You will especially need to consider tree removal if you have a neighbor who is concerned about the tree on your property causing damage to their own property. You won’t want to end up in a legal battle against them if the tree ever does happen to cause damage to their home.
The Tree is Unappealing:
A tree on your property that is unappealing adds no value to your home and can, in fact, deter potential homebuyers away from your home if you ever decide to try and sell. If you feel that a tree on your property is not adding any value, you can call a tree removal service. However, the tree removal service will have to provide a thorough inspection to determine if tree removal truly is the only option. In some cases, tree pruning will be enough to make the tree appear much more appealing on your property.
By knowing the top three reasons to remove a tree from your property, you can begin to understand when it is appropriate to call a tree removal service such as Mead Tree & Turf Care Inc to your home.