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rick@spacecoast.edu  // Posts published by rick@spacecoast.edu

21 Aug Posted by in Blog, Sod | Comments Off on Keep your lawn green during a drought

Keep your lawn green during a drought

Unhealthy grassMuch of the country has been experiencing drought conditions for several years now. This lack of water can make lawn maintenance difficult. For a lot of people, the American dream is a house with a green lawn and a white picket fence. With drought water restrictions being enacted, the green lawn part of that dream is quickly fading to brown. However, it is possible to practice good lawn care during these times. Here are 5 tips for keeping your lawn green and healthy when you can’t water every day.

1. If possible, consider planting native grasses. Grass that is acclimated to your location already will grow well without much help from you.

2. Aerate your lawn and amending the top soil with compost to improve soil quality and allow your grass to develop stronger roots.

3. Keep grass longer to encourage deeper roots and shade the surface of the soil during especially sunny days. Set your mower to 2 1/2 – 3 inches and leave the clippings on the lawn.

4. Water long and slow on the days you can. Make sure you’re not watering at too high of a volume – all the water should absorb into the soil rather than running off into the street. Water long enough so that after 24-36 hours the soil is moist to a depth of 6-8 inches, then don’t water again until the grass begins to show signs of needing water. Shallow, frequent watering does not help the grass grow deep, strong roots.

5. Water in the morning before the heat of the day. This allows most of the water to make it to the soil rather than evaporating in the sun. Use a sprinkler that keeps the water as low as possible.

14 Aug Posted by in Blog, Tree Removal | Comments Off on The Importance of Keeping Tree Limbs Away From Electrical Lines

The Importance of Keeping Tree Limbs Away From Electrical Lines

powerlines

Have you ever noticed how many tree limbs hang over electrical lines? This is a dangerous sight to behold. Tree limbs are a major cause of power outages during wind and rainstorms. More than 25 percent of all outages are due to downed tree limbs on electrical lines.

Proper tree maintenance can take to make sure that this does not happen. Most all areas have companies to take care of this problem for you. However, they just cannot see all the potential issues at once. This is where the average person can help improve the situation. If you see a tree limb that is hanging down over electrical lines, you should call your local tree cutting services. Even if you are not from the area, it is important that you inform someone.

When tree limbs go down after a wind or rainstorm, the limb can knock down live power lines. This is especially dangerous if a car is driving by at that time. The people in the vehicle could be electrocuted if they step out of their car with the downed live wire lying on a wet road. Downed power lines can also create a massive spark that could start a fire. To avoid problems, you should execute proper lawn maintenance and observe your tree limbs near power lines.

Taking proper precautions is important and it can save lives. With the continuous miles of electrical lines throughout the country, there are many possible areas that need tree maintenance at any given moment. Tree limbs that hang over power lines, no matter how high, need to be cut down. This job is not meant for the average person and should be left to the local tree cutting services. A person’s lawn maintenance should never include the task of trimming tree limbs
.

08 Aug Posted by in Blog, Land Clearing | Comments Off on Lawn Care Tips for Outdoor Living and Backyard Entertainment for Fall

Lawn Care Tips for Outdoor Living and Backyard Entertainment for Fall

fall outdoorAfter the summer heat has subsided, it’s the perfect time for outdoor entertaining. Fall is also the ideal season to get outside and perform some lawn maintenance. These are a few tips for fall yard care that will help create a beautiful lawn for autumn outside barbecues.

Determine the Grass Type

Cool fall turf grasses thrive in mild temperatures, such as rye, fescues and Kentucky blue grass. Warm season grasses grow when weather is warm and are popular in the southern states of the U.S., like Bermuda, buffalo and Saint Augustine grass. If you’re not sure what type of grass is growing in your yard, take a sample to a local garden center. However, regardless of the type of grass, there is some routine lawn maintenance that needs to be done until the grass stops growing, depending on the area you live.

  • Regular daily watering and mowing once or twice a week is necessary for a neat, manicured lawn.
  • Lawn aeration is a must in order to allow for sufficient nutrient and moisture absorption. It also loosens up the soil for planting winter grass seed.
  • Autumn is the best time of year for applying fertilizer. All types of grass should receive a fall dose of nourishment that contains a mixture of lawn nutrients with a slow release of nitrogen, particularly if the yard is planted with a cool season grass.
  • Fall is a good time for over-seeding and filling in bare areas, which prevents a patchy looking lawn and promotes a lush look.
  • Protect the lawn from being invaded by harmful insects and weeds. Apply lawn pesticides and broadleaf weed killer. This will propose a better looking yard and prevent also help to protect guests from being bothered by pesky bugs.

Additional Tips for Fall Lawn Maintenance

  • Keep leaves from smothering the grass by vacuuming or raking weekly.
  • Never add gas or oil to lawn equipment while in the yard, because it will kill the grass if it is spilled.
  • If you are providing proper lawn maintenance and the grass is still not growing well, you may want to have the soil tested by a professional lawn service company.

 

31 Jul Posted by in Blog, Land Clearing | Comments Off on How Land Clearing Services Aid in Your Land’s Development

How Land Clearing Services Aid in Your Land’s Development

Land clearingLand clearing services provide a critical first step to developers and individuals who are building on undeveloped land. By engaging a team of professionals, developers can ensure that land is cleared efficiently and safely, minimizing risks and preserving the value of your property. Whether for commercial or residential land clearing, a professional clearer manage all elements of clearing and excavation more quickly, efficiently and safely than an unskilled team of laborers could manage.

In essence, land clearing includes all the tasks necessary to transform natural terrain into land on which a developer can begin construction. Depending on the particular circumstances, the clearing and excavation process may require removal of dirt, rock and trees; demolition; excavation for water, septic and sewer systems; drainage; lot levels; foundation building; and erosion control. Without these basic services, it’s impossible to move forward with any form of construction.

Hiring a professional, well-qualified clearing company can offer a number of advantages. Many companies offer services such as mulching, transforming the trees and vegetation on your property into a valuable resource. In areas where intense run-off is common, erosion control services make the property more useful and economical for years to come. An outstanding land clearing service should also be able to clear the allotted property without causing any damage to trees on surrounding areas, or outside the actual building site. This pinpointed capacity for land clearing is a particular benefit for environmentally aware builders and anyone wishing to preserve older growth trees on the property.

In addition to expertise, land clearing services are qualified and equipped to operate all of the machinery needed to adequately clear your land. Depending on the particular type of terrain, kind of vegetation present, and amount of rock requiring removal, a wide range of large-scale equipment may be needed.

 

26 Jul Posted by in Blog, Excavation | Comments Off on Avoid Heat Exhaustion with These Helpful Tips

Avoid Heat Exhaustion with These Helpful Tips

working outsideWhen exposed to consistent high temperatures, anyone will run the risk of experiencing heat exhaustion and dehydration. This is essentially when the body becomes overheated, and may progress to a heat-stroke if ignored for any length of time.

Although children and the elderly are more susceptible to heat exhaustion, it will effect anyone. Lawn maintenance crews, outdoor laborers, and excavator operators are examples of outdoor jobs that put workers at risk.

There are a number of tips that will help to avoid potential heat exhaustion.

1. Clothing

Wearing lightweight, loose-fitting clothing is important. Dark, tight clothing will hold in heat and make it difficult for sweat to evaporate. Wearing a wide brim hat will also help to keep a cool head and avoid sunburn.

2. Drink Fluids

If you’re a contractor or lawn maintenance worker, make certain to drink plenty of fluids throughout the day. This will help to avoid dehydration. Water, fruit juices, and vegetable juice are recommended. Always avoid beverages containing alcohol and caffeine. Both will cause your body to lose valuable fluids.

3. Get Out Of The Heat

Whenever possible, outside work should be scheduled during the coolest part of the day. When this isn’t possible, head for the shade during break time and rehydrate while you’re resting.

4. Use Sunscreen

It’s important to avoid getting sunburn, as this will reduce your body’s ability to shed excess heat.

5. Avoid Hot Spots

You don’t need direct exposure to the sun to cause heat exhaustion. Excavator operators who work in a closed-cab machine are just as likely to be victims. Find an air-conditioned space to bring down your body temperature if you start to feel weak or light-headed.

Prevention is the best course of action. Once you begin to experience heat exhaustion and dehydration, the ship has sailed. When this happens, it’s critical to stop activity, get out of the heat, and seek medical attention when necessary.

17 Jul Posted by in Blog, Excavation | Comments Off on Prepping for New Construction? Your Guide to Site Excavation

Prepping for New Construction? Your Guide to Site Excavation

land excavation 7_17Are you beginning New Construction?

New construction can be overwhelming. If you plan on digging or begin digging without education and knowledge, you may damage infrastructure elements such as; gas lines, sewer lines, electrical and more. This could end up costing you fines, time and money. You can easily avoid these hassles by letting a professional excavation service take care of the hassles.

A Professional Site Excavation service will handle things you may not even be aware of. When excavating there are many things a professional will know how to do. Site excavation is a process, in which rock and soil as well as other materials are removed from a site. With new construction on roads, buildings, and other structures, site excavation is among the earliest stages. Excavation is done to create a clean, level work area, with foundations established in the excavated area.

Your site might also be back-filled and excavated to confirm the material directly under the site is high quality. The site excavation depth of can vary; depending on you may be building and where the building is occurring.

Within the United States, builders have to follow federal excavation safety standards. Standards are developed and enforced by the US – Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). It is extremely important to hire a professional for site excavation. These professionals have specialized equipment and workers to handle a variety of excavations.

Professional Site Excavation Services deal with everything from construction to prevent side walls collapsing as well as organizing safe removal of excavated material. Hiring a professional usually ensures the excavation is conducted competently and safely. The professional reduces the risk of future problems on the site.

10 Jul Posted by in Blog | Comments Off on Your Guide to Trees in Your Yard

Your Guide to Trees in Your Yard

tree care 7_10When it comes to enhancing your yard, you probably instantly think about plants, green grass, and beautiful trees. Trees are nice to have in your yard, but they do require some maintenance. A tree in your yard will not thrive when planted, if you ignore it. It is important for you to find the right tree for your yard and then learn how to take care of it properly.

Choosing Your Tree

When you start shopping around for a tree, consider purchasing one that does not burst and bloom up into the air, if you have utility lines around you. Choosing a tree that is shorter in height will prevent damage to your power lines.

Another thing to consider is a tree that offers your home shade. Shade from a tree in your front or back yard can help cut cooling costs during the summer time.

Lastly, when choosing your tree consider the types of soil, sun exposure, and overall weather conditions that your tree will be exposed to. A tree that grows well in Florida may not grow as well in Colorado and vice versa.

Tree Care Tips

When you first begin planting your tree, consider what you are going to place around your tree. Some people just leave soil around the tree; however, mulch is one of the best things you can put around it.

Mulch helps to retain water and keep the tree moistened. It also prevents weeds from growing around the area. Weeds can strict growth of your tree over time. Mulch helps to mark off the area for avoidance of roots with your vehicle, lawn mower, and more.

If you thought you could get away with not watering your tree, you are wrong. Trees need water just like everything else. A new tree will need to be watered once it is planted and often throughout the first few years of it growing. If you fail to properly water the tree, your tree will begin to die and may develop disease.

Although your tree does need water, you must avoid overwatering it. If you begin to overwater your tree, it can cause growth problems. If you find that you live in an area that does not get a lot of rain, you should consider picking a tree that is drought tolerant.

Pruning your tree helps keep it healthy and removes any dead leaves or branches that do not need to be there. Good pruning will lead to flowering and healthy trees.

Lastly, you should keep an eye out for diseases and pests that may invade and harm your tree. Pests and disease kill your tree’s roots and cause the tree to die.

Start Caring for Your Tree Today

It is important that you care for your tree on a regular basis. If you are unable to, you should hire a lawn maintenance company to come out to your home and handle your tree care for you. Your landscaper will help plant trees and let you know which ones are ideal for your area.

03 Jul Posted by in Blog, Uncategorized | Comments Off on Don’t Kill Your Lawn: Get Rid of Pests without Harsh Chemicals

Don’t Kill Your Lawn: Get Rid of Pests without Harsh Chemicals

pest removal 7_3Pests have a way of inviting themselves to live on your lawn whether you want them there or not. It can be hard to deal with pests, especially when they never want to seem to leave and the result of your struggle is dead grass. There is a way to properly maintain your lawn without the side effects of brown spots, dead grass, and large dirt holes.

Types of Pests

There are three different types of family of pests that can invade your garden. These include:

  • Insects
  • Mammals
  • Gastropods

These three families wreak the most havoc and if you are not paying attention, they can destroy your yard.

Caring for Your Lawn

There are different ways of pest removal for your yard; however, you do not want to use harsh chemicals that will cause your grass to die. Chemicals are also a hazard to family pets and children so it is best to avoid them.

There are alternatives to the chemicals and these safe solutions will help rid your lawn.

Bait and Trap

If you have grasshoppers, slugs, or other pesky pests that tend to invade your lawn, trap them. You can do this by baiting them to a certain area and then trapping them. Once the pest is trapped, you can kill them or relocate them elsewhere.

For instance, to get rid of pesky Lubber grasshoppers in Florida, you can set cups of soapy water into the ground. The grasshopper will fall into the cup as he walks along the ground and then drown in the cup. You must make sure the top of the cup is flush with the ground and that the cup is deep enough that the grasshopper cannot get out.

Coffee Grounds

Coffee grounds are a safe way to keep pests off of your lawn and out of your garden. You can add the coffee ground to the soil and this will actually help promote the health of the soil. Deer and slugs do not like coffee and this will automatically keep them away from your yard.

Castor Oil

Castor oil is a great way to keep moles out of your lawn. You can usually tell when a mole is present because your ground will have little mountain volcano holes everywhere. The mole is notorious for destroying yards and will not hold back in your yard. Simply apply a granular or liquid castor oil to your lawn and watch as the moles find a new home elsewhere.

Insecticides

It is always best to use organic and safe insecticides on your lawn when possible. Sometimes you may not be able to avoid using traditional insecticides to get rid of certain pests such as mole crickets, grubs, and chinch bugs.

Not Sure if You Have Pests?

If you are not sure whether it is a pest in your lawn, you can do a test on the ground by creating a solution of soapy water. This solution is then poured onto a patch of your yard. If you do have yard pests, you will notice they begin to rise to the surface and you can quickly identify the type you have.

Call a Professional Today

Your lawn care is important and you will need to call a professional lawn care company if you are having problems with pests. You can try and control them yourself, but when the problem becomes unruly, you need to rely on the professionals.

26 Jun Posted by in Blog, Sod | Comments Off on Brown Spots on Your Lawn? Learn How to Rid Them Immediately

Brown Spots on Your Lawn? Learn How to Rid Them Immediately

 

Unhealthy grassIf you have ever walked out onto your lawn and noticed patches of brown spots, you were probably taken aback. These spots make your grass appear ugly and discolored from the rest of it. The patches of brown are there for a reason and to rid your lawn of them, you must figure out what is causing the spots and then address them accordingly.

 

What Causes Brown Spots?

 

There are many different reasons why brown spots will show up on your lawn. One of the first major reasons is because of a lack of proper lawn maintenance. If you are not watering your lawn properly and taking care of it, your lawn will die and become brown.

 

Other causes include:

 

  • Chemicals.
  • Dull mower blades.
  • Animal waste.
  • Poor soil.
  • Roots.
  • Erosion.
  • Drought.
  • Disease.
  • Pests.

 

How to Get Rid of Brown Spots

 

One of the first things you will need to do is identify why you have brown spots in the first place. If you are unsure of why they are there, you will find yourself constantly treating your yard without any results.

 

Below are some of the things you can do to improve and rid brown spots from your lawn.

 

Short Grass

 

You want to make sure that you are always mowing your lawn and keeping the grass short. The longer the blades of grass, the more humidity that becomes trapped between the blades and when this happens fungus can grow and deteriorate your grass.

 

Avoid Nitrogen

 

Avoid using nitrogen fertilizer on your yard as this promotes fungus growth. The fungus enjoys the nitrogen and feeds off of it, thus spreading to more areas of your yard.

 

Water

 

Make sure you are watering your yard on a regular basis. Without the proper water, grass will die and leave brown spots on the lawn. If you do not have a sprinkler system equipped, make sure you get out into the yard and water your lawn until all of it has received water.

 

Pest Control

 

If your lawn is suffering from pests, talk with your local landscaping company to find out what type of pest control you can use to rid the bugs. As long as the insects and pests remain, your lawn will continue to turn brown.

 

Keep Up with Maintenance

 

It is important to keep up with your lawn maintenance. If you are unable to handle your lawn care yourself, you should hire a company that can come out to your home and do it for you. Without the proper care, your lawn will begin to turn brown and then deteriorate until all of the lawn is brown.

 

Remember, do not get discouraged and try to combat the problem as best as possible and when you can no longer handle it, call a professional.

 

19 Jun Posted by in Blog, Excavation, Land Clearing | Comments Off on Get Your Ground Ready for a Swimming Pool: Hire an Excavation Company

Get Your Ground Ready for a Swimming Pool: Hire an Excavation Company

To beat the summer heat, you jump into your in ground swimming pool to cool off and maybe work on a tan. If you do not have a swimming pool, you are probably looking at your backyard wishing you did. Excavators are an important part of the swimming pool process and help prep the ground before your pool goes into it. It is important for the ground to be done right, otherwise you could end up with cracks in your pool. Excavation is needed for all in ground pools and it is the foundation work for your pool.

The Process

The first thing that needs to be done is preparing the layout. You and your contractor will go over how big the pool is, where you want it, and more. The contractor will look around at the yard and judge the ground. This lets him know how to prepare for the job ahead.

Next, he will then begin marking the lines where he will be digging. You will often see white paint lines throughout your yard marking where the digging will occur. These lines help remind him where he needs to excavate. After the lines are down, excavation can begin. You will notice that your contractor begins removing dirt from the ground.

As the excavation continues, you will notice that the area of the ground that is dug out is different in all places. This is because the deep end of the pool needs more dirt dug out than the shallow end of the pool.

Once all of the dirt has been removed from the ground, the rest of the work must be done by hand. This includes getting those fine lines dug out and rounding off any edges to ensure that the pool will have the perfect fit.

Once everything is ready, the pool will be placed into the hole and the contractor will fill any open areas with dirt that was excavated.

The process requires time and dedication to get it done. All of the holes need to be the perfect size and the excavation company must pay attention to what they are doing so that your pool fits properly and does not become damaged.

Contact an Excavation Company Today

If you are looking to have a pool put in your yard for the summer, hire Real Tree, Inc. to help you get your ground ready.