Earlier this week, I attended the First Detector Forest Pest training program put on by the University of Illinois Extension Service in Springfield, IL. It focused on different invasive species that threaten native plants or have the potential to cause major financial impacts on local economies in an effort to control these pests. The first pest discussed was the Emerald Ash Borer which is causing the death of literally millions of trees in the Midwest and is moving outward from there. Currently, it can be found in 15 states and […]
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It is the time of year to put your gardens to bed for the winter, unless you live in the areas of the country that are not affected by frost and freezing temperatures. Almost all of my annuals have died due to some cold nights and heavy frosts. As is the case with Mother Nature, one day it can be 70 degrees and the next it is in the 40’s. Being in the Midwest, you sometimes can wake up to a little snow on the ground in the morning.As you […]
One of our Field Service Professionals, Derek J. Gambro, who works in our Wauconda, IL lawn care office, took it upon himself to document the improvements he was able to achieve with a lawn in his territory over the past year. What is the most amazing aspect of this sequence of pictures is how the lawn improved, even during the drought and heat we experienced this past summer. They also show how well the lawn responded once rain returned during the fall. The sequence is illustrated in the gallery above. […]
To many people, fall is their least favorite time of year because of all the leaves that fall on their lawns. I used to spend hours and hours raking leaves, stuffing them into lawn clean-up bags, and hauling them out to the curb for pick up. In my town, I also have to purchase a sticker for each bag that costs about $2.00 each. I have some very large trees on my property, so it was not unusual to have twenty or thirty bags on the curb filled with just […]
Once we started to get some much needed rain in my area, I noticed that I had some Fairy Ring arcs developing in my lawn. I have had a problem with this lawn disease off and on for the last twenty years and it has not been a problem as of late, but it has definitely showed up in an entirely new spot this year. Fairy rings are dark green circles or arcs in turf caused by numerous soil inhabiting fungi. These circles or arcs can range from as small […]
There are certain situations where growing grass is impossible-for example, the area under a tree that has a large, dense canopy or on the north side of a house or other structure that doesn’t let in enough light for the grass to grow. In these situations, your only alternatives are to remove what grass might still be remaining and switch to a ground cover that can withstand dense shade, or use mulch, or a combination of the two. Add Ground Covers to the Shady Area There are many groundcovers that […]
This past summer is one for the record books. Record-setting temperatures occurred in many cities and rainfall amounts were minimal. A lot of lawns suffered from the heat and drought that we experienced in 2012. If your lawn looks anything like mine, you’re wondering whether the brown spots will ever fill in again. In most cases, the surrounding grass was fulfilled in many of the bare spots, but there are situations where some major work will have to be done to get the lawn looking good again. One of the […]
I recently received a question regarding methods to get rid of Centipede grass in a Tall Fescue lawn. Getting rid of Centipede grass can be a daunting task, to say the least. Although it is considered one of the weaker of the warm season grasses, it still can produce a very deep root system and competes well with desired turf grasses. Tall Fescue is a very good grass for the Transition Zone, although it’s tolerance to drought is not that good, it does have good heat tolerance. Tall Fescue usually […]
Regardless of where you may live, at some time your property will be hit by a severe storm. It could be a blizzard, an intense thunderstorm, a wind storm or even a hurricane or tornado. Regardless of the source, these types of storms have the potential to damage your trees and shrubs. The aftermath of the storm may result in property damage, but often the result comes in the form of tree damage , including broken limbs, branches and, in some cases, entire trees ripped out of the ground by […]
How the Drought Can Affect Trees and Shrubs It has been reported that the summer’s drought has affected about 75% of the country, leaving damaged trees and lawns in its path. Many lawns looked burned up and dried out at the height of the heat and drought,equally affected were many trees and shrubs. Repairing a lawn can be a relatively inexpensive process but replacing trees and shrubs can turn into many hundreds of dollars. The Effects of Drought The lack of water will severely limit the plant’s growth. Even after […]