Tulsa Lawn Maintenance Tips For Fall

The weather starts cooling down in Oklahoma, and you start thinking that it’s the end of this year’s Tulsa lawn care days. While it may be true that you won’t have to constantly mow the lawn, there are some necessary fall Tulsa lawn care items you may need to care for  to get your lawn fall tulsa lawn care prepared for winter.

Making sure to take care of your lawn in the fall will help to ensure that you have a vibrant and healthy lawn in the spring. Here is a fall lawn care checklist to help you get started.

Lawn Fertilization

Summer’s heat has likely taken a toll on your lawn, so fall is a good time to return nutrients back to the soil with a slow-release fertilizer. This lawn fertilization in the fall will strengthen the underground root system so that the roots are deeper and the grass recovers faster from drought and heat. This lawn fertilization for your Tulsa lawn will also help the soil to have the nutrients it needs to be strong in the spring. It’s ideal  to fertilize your lawn four-to-six weeks before the first frost.

Overseeding Tulsa Lawns

Perhaps your lawn is starting to look worn-out and thin. This can happen because of summer’s heat or just the passing of time. Overseeding in the fall will help it to be vibrant again. Overseeding or seeding your lawn with a new layer of cool-season grass over existing turf will fill in any thin spots and help it be more resilient to diseases and weeds.

Fall is a great time to overseed your lawn because the soil is warm enough for the seeds to germinate, and yet the air is cool enough to prevent weeds from cropping up. There are many other reasons why fall is the best time for overseeding.

Lawn Aeration

tulsa lawn maintenanceBefore you overseed your lawn, you might need to aerate the soil, which involves removing small core patches of dirt, thatch, grass, and if the soil is compacted  aerating the lawn will help the soil and roots get more oxygen, water, and nutrients. This will help the roots of the new grass seeds to grow deeper and healthier.

Some ask if they need to rake all the leaves in their yard. Commonly, if the leaf coverage is covering the lawn so much that the grass can’t be seen, then the leaves should be raked because they can prevent air and sun from reaching the grass. Thus, it’s best not to wait until all the leaves have fallen before you begin raking. A light layer of mulched leaves applied later in the season can provide the lawn with nutrients and protect it from colder weather. However, if the mulch is too thick or gets too moist before it decomposes, it can begin to choke out the grass or cause lawn disease.

Watering

Even with the weather  getting cooler, your Tulsa lawn will still need regular irrigation in the drought conditions. While the ground temperatures are above freezing, lawns can have infrequent, deep watering to help roots grow deep into the soil.

The Tulsa lawn care experts at Oklahoma Landscape will gladly take care of all your fall lawn maintenance needs, giving your lawn the right fertilization at the right time, as well as aerating, and overseeding your lawn so that it will look healthy, beautiful, and ready for the coming spring!

 

 

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Using Low-Maintenance Plants In Tulsa Landscape Design

It’s easy for us understand drought in Tulsa, and really all of Oklahoma. We know first-hand how tough it can be for plants, wildlife, and even us to survive the heat of summer here. To combat the effects of a long drought and overall help with the global conservation of water and resources, many Tulsa landscape designers are using low-maintenance landscaping techniques.

This kind of Tulsa landscape design makes use of native plants that are already better suited for the Oklahoma weather and also drought-resistant plants. Native plants are also more resistant to local disease and insects. Using these types of plants can often lessen your landscape’s need for irrigation and maintenance. Succulents like aloe, cacti, and sedum are usually very tolerant of dry weather, although do need more water during their growing season and do best in soil that drains well.

Ornamental grasses such as blue oat grass, feather reedgrass, and purple fountain grass are another type of decorative foliage that can, withstand conditions with less water. Some groundcover plants and shrubs can also do well in dry conditions. Groundcover can also be used on slopes to replace lawn areas that are difficult to mow.

Using low-maintenance or xeriscaping techniques can also include grouping plants together with similar watering and sunlight needs so that less water is wasted when caring for these. This form of landscape design also groups together plants that tend to require the same amount of maintenance, which in turn will make landscaping and lawn work overall easier.

Hardscapes are also used in low-maintenance landscaping to cut down on the resources and energy used for landscape upkeep. A stone walkway or paver pathway can reduce the amount of regular maintenance while also creating an stylish dimension to your landscape.

Another part of low-maintenance landscape design in Tulsa is preparing the soil well for native plants and shrubs. Making sure the soil is healthy with regular lawn fertilization will help reduce its need for water. Using a good mulch or compost can also help your soil retain water better in addition to preventing weeds and erosion.

The Tulsa landscape design architects at Oklahoma Landscape would be glad to help you create a low-maintenance landscape design plan that’s geared to your particular landscape with the perfect plants, shrubs, and hardscapes to complement your home and lifestyle.

 

Weed Control Tips For Your Tulsa Landscape

 

Often considered the enemy of every gardener, weeds can quickly take over a lawn, stealing water, nutrients, and sunlight from the surrounding grass. That’s why it’s important to have an effective Tulsa weed control treatment in place for every stage and season of a weed’s life. With just a few weed control applications throughout the year, your lawn can be healthy and look beautiful and effervescent.

In the early spring, you’ll want to start by controlling broadleaf weeds like dandelions and ragweed as well as annual grassy weeds like crabgrass (all of which will grow rapidly in Oklahoma) by using a pre-emergent weed control herbicide. Use one that will kill both types of weeds, both broadleaf and grassy weeds. Apply this using a broadcast spreader after you havweed control tulsae mowed the lawn a couple times at the beginning of the season. Apply the herbicide also along sidewalks where crabgrass tends to grow more. This weed control treatment will help to abate these weeds before they even develop and overtake your lawn.

Later in the season, you might still see a few dandelions or crabgrass weeds that don’t want to go. Most of these can easily be dealt with using a spot-treatment post-emergent weed control herbicide. Concentrated herbicides that you mix with water yourself are commonly a better value. These can be used with a handheld sprayer to spot-treat any weeds or crabgrass. Sometimes you can find a spot-treatment herbicide that kills both broadleaf weeds and grassy weeds, but you may have to use different weed control spot-treatments for broadleaf and grassy weeds. Follow the directions on the package for prepping and when to apply the weed control treatment, usually when temperatures are below 85 degrees F. for a few days.

Interestingly, one of the best ways to keep weeds away doesn’t involve weed control herbicides. Keeping your lawn well-maintained with proper lawn fertilization, irrigation, and mowing will help to crowd out pesky weeds and prevent them from overtaking the lawn. Healthy lawns can better defend against weeds so having a good lawn care and maintenance schedule is really key to preventing weeds.

If weeds have already overtaken your lawn late in the season, you may need to spray the entire weedy area with a post-emergent weed control herbicide using a sprayer attached to a hose, getting the weeds slightly wet. You may need to apply a different herbicide for broadleaf and grassy weeds. Again a concentrated post-emergent herbicide that you mix yourself will be a better value. Apply the herbicide on calm days so that the herbicide is not inadvertently carried to other plants and flowers that it could also harm.

If you would rather not have to hassle with applying weed control treatments, the Tulsa weed control experts at Oklahoma Landscape can take care of all your lawn care needs. We offer a custom 6-step Tulsa weed control and fertilization program for your lawn that will keep it lush, vibrant, and weed-free all year. Call us today for more details!

Learning the Value of Mulch – Tulsa Lawn Care Tips

When you think of adding things to your garden mulch may not be high on the list, but actually it’s one of the best things you can add. Mulch can help protect plants and their roots from extreme temperatures and help them absorb and retain water better. Thus, mulch will keep a garden healthier, more resistant to drought and is great for weed control while improving soil quality. Adding mulch to your garden can save much time and energy and help to simplify your other Tulsa lawn care tasks.lawn care tulsa

But how much do you need and which type of mulch should you use?

There are various types of organic and inorganic mulch. Organic mulches like cedar bark, wood chips, shredded leaves, hay, compost, and grass clippings will add nutrients to the soil as they decompose. Inorganic materials include stone, gravel, or black plastic and other landscape fabrics. Stone or gravel can be good to use around areas that are likely to get washed out, and black plastic and landscape fabrics are helpful in vegetable gardens to help warm the soil and hold moisture.

Organic mulch is usually best because it adds nutrients to the soil. Different types of organic mulch though can be better for distinct areas. For instance, fresh organic mulch will be more effective at controlling weeds than aged mulch, but will take longer to decompose, TheFamilyHandyman.com noted. So fresh mulch won’t add nutrients to the soil as fast as aged mulch to help encourage plant growth, but on the other hand, will last longer. Therefore, fresh mulch may work better around trees and shrubs that need more weed control than nutrients in the soil. Like fresh mulch, large pieces of mulch like wood bark will take longer to decompose and thus will last much longer.

Mulch for your flower bed may consist of shredded leaves from your landscape. Grass clippings can add a great deal of nitrogen to your vegetable garden. These organic and free mulches can help make your gardens healthy and beautiful.

How much mulch should you apply?

A deposit of mulch about 4 inches in depth will usually be enough to discourage weed growth and help retain moisture although 2-3 inches may be enough in shadier areas. On slopes, more mulch may be needed to help it stay in place, possibly around 6 inches as it may shift more frequently.

Before you apply mulch to an area, be sure to weed the soil. Keep about a 6 to 12-inch area around woody stems free from mulch as well as about a 1-inch area around the base of plants and vegetables free from mulch to prevent rotting.

While organic mulch helps the soil to retain moisture, it can also prevent the soil from warming in the spring. Thus, mulch will need to be pulled away from around perennials in the spring to allow them to grow better.

The Tulsa lawn care specialists at Oklahoma Landscape can take all the hassle out of lawn and garden maintenance with our custom lawn maintenance, weed control and fertilization programs. Call us today for more information!

 

 

Organic Tulsa Lawn Care – What Are The Benefits?

We often hear about “going green,” on the news. The benefits of organic foods and using organic products are often talked over. We visit the many local farmer’s markets on the weekends. We all love Tulsa’s organic grocery stores like Sprouts and Whole Foods. We realize that these green foods and products are often better for us. We know too, organic is also beneficial for the environment.

lawn care tulsa

So, naturally there’s also a growing trend toward organic lawn care and gardening. More commercial property owners and Tulsa residents are using natural lawn care products and methods in their landscapes. What are some of the benefits of using organic lawn care?

Soil and Root Improvement. Organic fertilizers support natural microbial and fungi activity in the soil by giving microorganisms in the soil organic material to feed themselves on. Thus, they decompose the organic material. In this natural process, more nutrients are made readily available for the soil over time. Because these nutrients are released, the soil and roots of grass and plants are strengthened, an ecological balance takes place, soil retains more moisture, and the soil’s texture and composition are of better health.

But because the nutrients are released into the soil more slowly with organic fertilizers, the chance of over fertilization or “burning” is greatly lessened.

However, organic fertilizers may cost more than inorganic ones, and it may take longer to see the results because the nutrients are broken down with time in the soil.

Lush, Green Grass. Because the root system is improved through organic fertilizers, the grass itself is green and lush. Organic fertilizers also aid in photosynthesis by releasing carbon dioxide into the soil. This healthy root and soil system also helps grass be better able to ward off weeds, fungus, disease and even cope with drought.

Biodegradable and Safe. Organic lawn care products are non-toxic and biodegradable, meaning they are safe humans, pets, and other wildlife. They also do not pollute the water or air supply. Thus, natural fertilizers reduce the amount of chemicals released into the environment.

While it is likely that it may take longer to see the results of your organic Tulsa lawn care, overall organic lawn fertilization provides many benefits for both the environment, the lawn, and your family.

 

Fertilization and Pet Safety Tips for Your Tulsa Lawn

We love our pets! We want them to be able to fully enjoy the grassy space of the outdoors. But at times our Tulsa lawn’s fertilization and weed control needs may require the use chemicals that if ingested can  have serious effects on dogs and cats.

“While small ingestions of fertilizer may only result in mild stomach upset, larger ingestions can result in severe poisoning from the iron, nitrogen, and other chemicals,” The Pet Poison Helpline noted.pets and fertilizer treatments

It’s very easy for pets to pick up fertilizer on their paws, or body, by rolling around in a lawn, and thereafter quickly ingest the weed control herbicide or fertilizer.

Dr. Petra Volmer, a veterinarian and toxicologist at the University of Illinois, College of Veterinary Medicine in Urbana said in an article about pets and safety around fertilizers stated, “If you find your pet rolling or walking in a recently sprayed area or spray him by accident, immediately wash the substance off with a mild dish soap, such as Dawn, and contact a veterinarian.”

Dr. Volmer  also noted that insecticides like those used in the garden for roses and molluscicides for snails, , are often more toxic to pets than herbicides or fertilizers so it’s good for homeowners to be especially careful when using these around animals.

What can you do to protect your pets when you’re fertilizer or weed control treatment to your Tulsa lawn?

It’s always best to follow the instructions on the manufacturer’s label exactly in how much to put down and when to permit access to lawn again. Applying too much fertilizer may cause the grass to retain the fertilizer residue for an extended period of time.

Carrie Gustavson with the University of Illinois, College of Veterinary Medicine stated “…make sure a treated lawn is completely dry after waiting the maximum period recommended on the label. To be extra safe, consider watering down the lawn after application and letting it dry before allowing pets into the area.”

Liquid fertilizers, may be harder to see on the lawn, and to know if they’ve been absorbed into the soil. Often water will be used along with a liquid fertilizer to help it be absorbed into the soil. You’ll need to keep pets off the lawn until the grass is visibly dry after being watered, an article in the SFGate Home Guide noted.

With granular fertilizers broadcasted across the lawn it can more easily be noticed that the fertilizer pellets have dissolved and been absorbed into the soil after a watering of the lawn. Generally, you can allow your pets back onto the lawn 24 hours from when you last saw any granules on the grass blades.

You may want to wait at least 48 hours after the fertilizer application before you allow your pets back onto the lawn, to be on the safe side.

“Consulting a professional landscaper for custom fertilizing instructions is the best way to stay safe if you are unsure of the application amount,” the SFGate Home Guide noted.

Oklahoma Landscape, Tulsa lawn care and landscaping company, can take care of all your lawn fertilization and weed control needs so that your lawn not only stays beautiful but is also safe for your pets.

 

 

 

Weed Identification Needed For Effective Weed Control

Are you looking for weed control solutions for your Tulsa lawn? Effective weed control can be an ongoing battle, but identifying what type of weeds are trying to overtake your landscape is the first step in controlling these pests.

Recognizing different kinds of weeds in your Tulsa lawn can help you create the most effective weed control plan by knowing the weed’s life cycle and better understanding how to stop this process. Identifying weeds can also help you identify specific problems in your lawn and soil. The presence of some weed varieties may indicate that your soil is compacted or that the lawn is shady or to wet.

So, how can you effectively control some of the more common weed varieties?

Dandelions. One of the most common types of weeds in Oklahoma, these can grow in yourdandelion-199269_640  lawn and garden to be about 1 foot tall with yellow flowers that turn into puff balls. These weeds have a stout taproot, and often a large leaf base that expands outward and chokes out the surrounding turf.

Mulch can be ready to lend a hand in preventing these weeds from overtaking your garden. These deeply-rooted weeds are difficult to pull out so digging the roots, which can be 2-3 feet deep, using a trowel or shovel will be needed. Using a pre-emergent weed control in the spring along with a fertilizer will help to control them as the weed control herbicide will help to kill the weeds while making the grass stronger. A thick lawn that will choke out these weeds is one of the most effective tools for preventing dandelions so having regular lawn fertilization program is important.

Crabgrass. Another common Oklahoma weed, crabgrass is a grassy annual weed that sprawls out across the ground from the main root growing up to 19 inches wide. It can grow quickly in hot, dry conditions anywhere the stem comes in contact with soil. While they die in the fall, one weed can produce over 100,000 seeds that will grow in the spring.

Once again, having a thick lawn is a major strength in control crabgrass by preventing the weed seeds from getting needed sunlight. Mowing your lawn at a higher height and watering deeply and less frequently will help prevent these weeds. Mulching as well as using a pre-emergent weed control will also help to control these weeds.

Creeping Charlie. This is a ground-clover with low growing, creeping stems, scalloped, kidney-shaped leaves, and purplish flowers. This stinging-nettle-320318_640aggressive perennial weed likes shady, moist areas often under trees or in gardens and cool weather.

Using a pre-emergent weed control in the spring or fall will help to prevent these weeds. Mulch especially in gardens and under trees is helpful in thwarting this ground-clover.

Lamb’s Quarters.
This broadleaf annual weed averages a height of about 36 inches but can grow up to six feet tall, has stems with red streaks, and has triangular or diamond-shaped, scalloped leaves. This weed has tiny green flowers that grow in clusters. It can grow in just about any area in the shade or sun.

Mowing or tilling the area where these weeds show up can be helpful in reducing the number of plants and seeds. Post-emergent weed control can also be useful in stopping this weed from taking over your landscape or garden.

For more information on the particular weeds in your Tulsa landscape, talk to the weed control experts at Oklahoma Landscape on tips on how to control these garden pests.