Over Seeding

Fire Yourself! Hire A Professional!

womanmoneyWelcome back to the Wonderful World of Weed Man!  This week, we finish up our ‘The Grass IS Greener Over There!’ series.  It has been a great journey.  The first of many!  We wanted to finish up the series by discussing the hiring of a professional lawn care company.

If you feel that you would like better results with your lawn, or just don’t have enough time to take care of it yourself, a professional can help.  Before you hire a company there is a check list of questions you should answer to see which company would be best for you.  We of course humbly submit our Weed Man hat into the ring.  We previously posted 10 Reasons to Choose Weed Man, for just a FEW of the MYRIAD of reasons why Weed Man is the best company.  But of course, you must decide this for yourself.

Questions you should be asking when considering hiring a professional lawn care company

What are the Pros?

A Pro Will Make the Complex Simple – It makes sense to have an expert help you on your lawn.  If you do it yourself, you have to ask:

  • What do you put down?
  • Which product is best for my lawn?
  • Do I need a license for a specific product?
  • Is a product that requires a license a better option for my lawn?
  • How much do I put down?
  • Where should I NOT put product down?
  • How do I calibrate the spreader or sprayer so I don’t put too much down?

It can quickly get confusing and one can see how easily it would be to make a costly mistake.  A licensed expert will help simplify matters and do the work for you!

Regular Service – We run into many customers who previously took care of the lawn, and found that they would miss needed applications.  They did not have enough time, or just didn’t realize the lawn needed a regular application program.  With a company you will receive all the needed treatments for your lawn within a consistent program

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A Healthier Lawn – a
professional service will help you achieve a level of health and beauty in your lawn you may not have thought possible.  I know from personal experience that my lawn surprises me year after year when it keeps improving.
Slow, subtle improvements show up in my lawn making it easier to maintain and more resistant to problems.  Not only is it healthier, it just looks better.

 

 

Professional Knowledge and Experience – This is HUGE!

I want to stop right here so I can stand up on my soapbox for a moment:

soapbox

You’d be hard pressed to find a more knowledgeable person about lawns than someone who visits multiple lawns every day.  Day in and day out – week in and week out – month in and month out – year after year.  It takes experience and knowledge to understand how your lawn lives/dies.  That experience and knowledge can go to work for you!  Lawn technicians are vital to help diagnose issues when they occur and help prevent them in the first place.

The alternative?  Well, most DIY’s are subject to the confusing maze of misinformation on the interwebs!  Hopefully you stumbled upon a knowledgeable website such as ours.

If you are unsure of the information on the internet, you can go visit a local retailer who may or may not specialize in your lawn.  We often hear commercials for local establishments who tell you to dig up a piece of your lawn and bring it in to their store to diagnose the problem.  They mean well, and can definitely offer products to help you with your lawn.  However, the disconnect occurs when the retail establishment offers products without the necessary knowledge/experience.  This type of interaction is great for the retailer but poor for the homeowner.

Think about it:  You now have a pothole in your lawn, you brought a damaged area of your lawn into a young retail professional who may or may not really know anything about lawns.  (Are they licensed?  How many lawns have they treated professionally or personally?)  They don’t treat lawns for a living!  They do however sell things for a living!  You may end up buying a product for a damaged area in your lawn that possibly would have been resolved with a change in watering.

Had you had a professional come and look at the lawn in its environment and context you would get a correct diagnosis without the potholes, and the extra cost for a product that many times is not needed.  Not to mention the time you spent digging the hole, driving to the store, disposing of the dug up sod, cleaning of your vehicle, and application of the product (needed or not).  If you insist on digging your lawn up to seek professional lawn advice from the dog food salesman, then I have a real estate proposition to tell you about….

I will pause again to now step down from my soapbox.  I appreciate the patience while I displayed a little more candor and sarcasm than usual. 

The advantages of a professional lawn care service can go on and on, but let us continue to other questions you need to answer when considering hiring a professional service.

What are the Cons?

There really are only a few disadvantages to hiring a professional lawn care company:

Cost – some might consider a professional service to be expensive.  However, in our experience, if you do a full program by yourself, many find that the cost is similar to having a professional service do it for you.  Usually the gap in value comes when a homeowner takes care of the lawn themselves and only does one or two applications a year.

Timeliness – With some professional services you may not have perfectly timed applications or come out as quickly as you need them to.  At Weed Man Boise, we work really hard to visit existing customers’ lawns within 2 business days when they call regarding a reapplication, next application, or just need an inspection.

DIY – Some homeowners just really enjoy working on their lawn.  We can’t fault you there.  We suggest let us help you with the heavy lifting and you can focus on the more enjoyable aspects!

What type of company should I look for?

Reputable – Are they registered with the BBB?  Are they on Angie’s List?  Are they associated with organizations that promote professionalism and environmental responsibility?  Do they offer a guarantee?  Will they be around in the future?  Look for online reviews.  Take a look at their social media.  A reputable company should have a good history and a good amount of reviews.

Licensed and Insured – Does the company have technicians who are licensed to apply products on the lawn?  An applicators license is required in the State of Idaho for a professional company to apply pesticides on your lawn.  If they do not have a licensed technician, I would run the other way.

Do They Partner with Me? –  A good company will help you with suggestions on mowing and watering.  To have a great lawn, it does take a partnership between the homeowner and the lawn care company.  As a homeowner, you see your lawn every day, and have more involvement with watering and mowing.  Your company should help educate on best practices.

If you have considered or are currently considering hiring a professional lawn care service, our hope is this article will help direct you in making the right decision.  Consider firing yourself, and hiring a lawn care company.  Better yet, hire Weed Man!   For further information visit www.weedmanboise.com or call 208-888-9911.

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Lawn Repair or Replace?

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Welcome back the Wonderful World of Weed Man!  We are on Part 4 of our ‘The Grass IS Greener Over There!‘ Series.  If you are joining us you can find last week’s blog post here.  We are excited that you have joined us for another adventure in the lawn world.  Our hope is you learn something about your lawn to help make it more enjoyable part of your home!

This week, I wanted to discuss repairing areas in your lawn.  Whether you are new to the lawn world, or have been dealing with lawns for many years, you will eventually run into an issue that needs fixing.  Lawns can get damaged or have areas die off for a variety of reasons:

  • Insects – this is usually the quickest and most destructive cause of lawn damage.  Several insects like to feed on the lawn and can damage or chew away the root system.  Essentially, without the root system, the lawn is dead – it just doesn’t know it yet.  Many times the damage you see on your lawn from insects is an area where they WERE recently.  It takes a bit of time for the damage to show.  Without a root system, grass cannot repair itself.  This is generally the most severe form of lawn damage.
  • Drought Damage – just not getting the water it needs.  Lawns can generally recover from drought damage depending on how severe it is and how long it has been since it was watered.
  • Disease – many type of fungi are present in the soil waiting for the right conditions to attack!  It’s a slow death as well – again not as severe and quick as drought or insects, but it still can lead to a lawn that needs fixing if the damage is severe enough.
  • Animal – In my instance it is my dogs – not necessarily urine spots.  Most lawns can recover from that.  My damaged areas from my dogs are from digging or a running path they constantly go over.  Again some healthy lawns can recover from running paths over time, but digging usually  needs a bit of training for the dog and repair work for the lawn.  It could be another type of animal as well, like voles or gophers.dog dug.jpg

 

Whatever the cause – the lawn looks terrible!  At this point we run into many people who feel it would be better to just start over.  I think what surprises me most is the amount of money someone would put into completely replacing the lawn and then disregard correcting the root cause.  Above and beyond that one will spend a large amount of money, but not utilize any type of lawn program to maintain/improve on the large investment they made!

(Insert soapbox for me to stand on) –

Please, I implore you.  Make no hasty decisions about replacing your entire lawn!

And for goodness sake, if you spend the thousands of dollars needed to replace your lawn, fix the root cause.  On top of that, PLEASE HAVE SOME TYPE OF ANNUAL LAWN PROGRAM TO TAKE CARE OF YOUR INVESTMENT!  It does not have to be with us, but please protect your investment.

(I will now step down from the soapbox.)

It may be hasty to replace the whole thing!  Your lawn is a living organism and most times it just needs minor repair work and some tlc.

Don’t go crazy – save yourself some time/headache/money – focus on a repair.

To properly repair your lawn it is important to know what caused the damage in the first place.  It would be terrible to spend the time and money repairing your lawn to only have it happen again.  Once you have identified the root cause of the damage and taken steps to make certain it doesn’t happen again, you are ready to repair!

The steps for repairing your lawn are as follows:

  1. Remove the old dead areas with a shovel.  You can trim up the areas being removed so they are straight.
  2. Check soil conditions and level.  You may needs to till up the soil a bit or add some top soil to make sure that the level matches the surrounding grass area.  This will also ensure that whatever replacement method you use the soil will be ready for it.
  3. Replace the grass.  You can seed this area, or if you want to spend the money for quicker results you can lay down sod in the damaged area.  For more information on seeding you can take a look at a previous blog post on over seeding.  For those who are utilizing sod:  Make certain that you cut the sod to fit the damaged area as close as you can.  Try and find a sod grass type that matches your existing lawn.  A majority of lawns in our area use a Kentucky Blue Grass.
  4. Water the new grass area.  Depending on sod or grass seed your repair will need more water than the main part of the lawn.  You can use a sprinkler attached to a hose to water that specific area more often than your automated system will do.
  5. Restrict traffic in new areas.  This will help ensure all your hard work is not undone by a neighborhood lawn bully walking in your lawn!
  6. Watch it grow!  Soon your new grass will fill in and blend with the rest of the lawn.  Usually within 3 weeks both sod and seed will be coming in nicely and will be ready to be cut with a mower.

6 simple steps to repairing your lawn, saving you lots of hassle and embarrassment!  If you are unsure your lawn capabilities or need help diagnosing the root cause of the damage in the first place, keep us in mind and give us a call!  www.weedmanboise.com

 

 

 

 

The Grass IS Greener Over There!

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Welcome to the wonderful world of Weed Man!  I’m Brian and I will be your guide!  We started this blog to help inform and educate our customers so they will get the most out of their lawns.  Whether you are a Weed Man customer or not, you are welcome here, and we hope you gain something by your visits.  This week I would like to overview where we are headed in the near future – lawn care tips!

It happens…you work hard on your lawn.  You spend countless hours and untold amounts of money to get the results you want to no avail.  Your neighbors lawn looks amazing and you just can’t seem to match the deep green lawn that he has.  On the other hand your other neighbor has a black thumb with a degree in growing weeds…that like to invade your lawn.

Just before you give in and give up let us offer some advice!  Sure you could hire a professional – Weed Man Boise, in particular.  We would love that!  Nevertheless, even Weed Man customers are given the expectation that achieving and maintaining a great lawn is really a partnership.  So whether you take the professional lawn guide approach or DIY approach we would like to help you have an amazing lawn.

Over the next weeks, we will be detailing how you can have an AMAZING lawn your neighbors will be joyously talking about.  (They may talk anyways, but lets be honest, nobody wants to be the black thumb homeowner who specializes in weeds.)

We have 11 tips for lawn care that every homeowner should be aware of:

  1. Mower Startup
  2. Fertilization
  3. Sprinkler Startup/Maintenance
  4. Over seeding/Lawn Repair
  5. Weed Control
  6. Watering Practices
  7. Mowing to the Season
  8. Bug Care
  9. Aerating
  10. Mulching
  11. Hire Weed Man!
  12. Addendum: I did everything you said, MY Grass ISN’T Greener Over HERE!

Each tip will have a separate posting unpacking the details of how to take advantage of each practice.  Please check back often to get updated!  We would also love to hear from you about any lawn care questions or subjects you would like discussed.  Feel free to leave a comment below and we will incorporate it in our 11 tips!

 

 

Your Lawn is Tired,Give it Some New Blood!

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Every spring we get quite a few inquiries about over seeding lawns.  I’ll tell you the same piece of advice we tell everyone –  it may not be necessary!  Certainly we can charge you to come out to your lawn and provide a service.  We sure don’t want to talk you out of a service we can provide, but we also are committed to treating your lawn just as our own.

Before jumping head first into the work involved for over seeding, it should be determined if it needs to be done or not.  Here are a few reasons you should over seed:

  • Bare areas exist in the lawn
  • The lawn has damage that have thinned out areas
  • Overall the lawn is very thin and unhealthy – new grass can help improve the disease/drought/insect resistance of your lawn.

If your lawn is full and even moderately healthy, generally you will not need to do an over seeding.  Many times a good fertilizer will help thicken up the grass blade.  When the lawns overall health is improved, it will start to fill in by itself and the extra time and effort of over seeding is not always warranted.  Saving money is also a nice benefit.

You may not be sure if it necessary to over seed, so allow your lawn care technician to evaluate what is best and most cost effective for your situation.

If you decide to take on over seeding your lawn, it is very much like visiting a pet store in the mall and taking home a puppy.  There is work involved in it, but well worth the investment.

For those lawns that need an over seeding – here are 6 steps to getting this done effectively.  Either with the help of a lawn care professional, or on your own, these are some recommended steps to make the most of your efforts.  Please over seed in the spring or fall, when soil temperatures are cooler.  It is very very very difficult to over seed a lawn in the heat of summer.  It can be done, but requires constant babysitting.

  1. Mow your existing lawn.  Before you can put seed down on the lawn, the current grass must be cut down to about 2″.  Bag your clippings as well.  This will help enable the grass seed to make easier contact with the soil.  This will also reveal areas that are thinner than others and may need more seed.
  2. Aerate your lawn.  This will help open up the soil to allow water/air/nutrients to penetrate deeper and circulate better.  Aeration is like magic fairy dust for your lawn.  If you weren’t seeding the lawn, you should aerate on a regular basis anyways.
  3. Seed the lawn.  Walk the lawn and broadcast the specific areas.
  4. Lightly fertilize around the time that you over seed – Extra nutrients in the soil will always help a germinating grass seed.
  5. Water daily for the first couple of weeks – depending on the time of year you may need to water 2 or 3 times a day just to get the soil to stay moist enough for the germination process.  This is the part that requires work and dedication.
  6. Mow the lawn once the new grass is 3 1/2″ to 4″. (usually 3-4 weeks from original planting)  Cut the lawn down to 3″ and continue on your regular lawn maintenance program.

Following these steps will help move you towards a beautiful and healthy lawn.  Be sure to protect your investment long term as well.  Whether with Weed Man Lawn Care or on your own, utilize a standard/consistent lawn care program!

 

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