Blog

Protect Your Plants in the Heat

Plants can get cranky and irritated in the heat just like us. Here are some basic steps to keep them at their best during the hottest summer days.

Everyone looks forward to the heat in the middle of our winters, but when it actually gets here it can be very difficult and stressful on us. The same goes for your plants! They need special care and precautions just like we do when the mercury gets into the 90s and up. Even if you’re keeping up on your basic watering plan, there are a few more steps you should take to ensure your plants remain healthy through the hottest parts of the summer.

First, make sure you are watering correctly. You want to water early in the morning, or late in the day to maximize efficiency and avoid a great deal of it evaporation before it reaches the plants. Aim for a nice deep watering, two or three times a week. And resist the temptation to over-water. Over-watering can be just as damaging as thirst, depriving roots of oxygen and fostering fungal growth.

Also, make sure to utilize mulch. A thick layer of mulch insulates plants’ roots from heat, just as they do from cold in winter. It will also help the soil retain moisture. Strive for a nice, thick five or six inches of mulch.

Finally, just like people, plants can get a sunburn! They cease flowering, and suffer from direct exposure to the sun’s rays. Use a patio umbrella, improvised fabric, you name it to provide a respite during the hottest and sunniest parts of the day.

Taking these few precautions will ensure your plants and flowers will stay at their best all summer long! Or get in touch with us. Our gardening services will have your plants and flowers healthy and carefree all season!

 

 

Happy Father’s Day

Happy Father’s Day to all the Dads out there!

This year marks the 108th Father’s Day. It all began in 1909 when Sonora Smart of Spokane, Washington listened to a sermon on Mother’s Day in church, and decided her father, a Civil War veteran who had raised her as a single dad following her mother’s passing in childbirth, also deserved a day of celebration.

The following year, Sonora petitioned the city of Spokane for such a celebration, and it was first celebrated on June 19, 1910. The highlight was a procession of young woman handing out red roses to fathers from horse-drawn carriages.

The annual day steadily gained popularity in the following years, and then in 1924 President Coolidge offered his public support for the day. In 1938 a National Organization was formed to promote the day. In 1966 President Johnson issued a Proclamation recognizing the day. And then finally in 1972, President Nixon signed a bill making the day a public holiday.

Father’s Day is now a wonderful part of our lives. Thanks to all the great Dads from your friends at Beautiful Outdoors.  Hope it’s a relaxing one!

 

Summer Lawn Prep

Take advantage of of the last days of spring to prep your lawn for the hot summer ahead.

If you are like us, you take your lawn care seriously. At this point in the spring, it is looking healthy and happy, and offering a beautiful base for your landscape. But the increased heat and foot traffic that comes along with the calendar turning to summertime will put your lawn’s health to the test. Deterioration can b fast and dramatic, but if you stick to a good plan for the remainder of the spring into early summer, your lawn should look great right through the fall.

First, make sure your mowing is at the tall end of your variety’s recommended tolerance. This allows for greater health at the grow point of each blade.

Your mower’s blade edges should be razor sharp. If not, your grass blades are getting ripped more than sliced, which allows for fraying, making disease much more likely.

Stick to a deep but infrequent watering plan. Once a week is actually fine, but it needs to be long enough that the water really permeates the deep root zone. More than that, and you risk saturation which can also encourage plant disease. Daily watering is absolutely unnecessary.

Fertilize before spring is over, and avoid it during the summer. Do not use a slow-release fertilizer. Fertilizer release once it gets very hot will only encourage brown patches on your lawn.

Finally, keep in mind at all times the varieties of grass you are working with on your property. Try to stick to grasses cultivated for the specific climate.

Remember, Beautiful Outdoors is available for all your lawn care needs. We are here to help!

(Courtesy of our friends at Total Landscape Care.)

 

 

Go Ironmen!

One of our favorite local HS baseball teams has been busy as it wraps up its season!

We have been proud to be a 2018 sponsor of Ramsey’s Don Bosco Prep Baseball team, the #5 team in the state. They have had a busy couple of weeks as they took down Bergen Catholic in the Bergen County Playoff Semis, and then lost a heartbreaking final game to Pascack Hills.

Next up on Friday, June 1st is the North Jersey Non-Public Semis, vs #20 Delbarton. All the luck in the world, Ironmen!

Don’t forget, call us for a free consultation and mention our sponsorship of the team, and receive 5% off any service. Your landscape is waiting!

Little Free Library Girl Scout Project

We were very excited to help a local Girl Scout aid her community!

As we mentioned a week ago, we were very excited to help a local Girl Scout, Alexa, complete her Silver Award Project. The Silver Award is the highest honor a Girl Scout Cadette can earn.

For her project, Alexa constructed a Little Free Library book kiosk. Little Free Library is a non-profit organization that inspires a love of reading, helps build community, and aids disadvantaged children with access to books by placing book exchange kiosks in communities where folks can donate, take, and exchange books, free of charge.

We were honored to donate our services. Great job and congratulations Alexa!

 

 

Natural Mosquito Protection

There are natural solutions to battle pesky mosquitoes this summer!

One of the things most everyone loves about this area is the beautiful summer evenings. And if you are a landscaping fan like we are, you probably love sitting in your beautiful back yard on those evenings most of all, feeling like the master of your space!

But there is one pesky problem which consistently interrupts your joy around here: mosquitoes.

Sure, you can cover yourself in bug spray, head to toe, and it might help just a little. But the good news? There are a variety of plants which can deter the little monsters, and even enhance the beauty of your landscape!

From DIY Everywhere, here are eight plants to help beautify your landscape this summer while repelling the mosquitoes!

 

Deck Lighting Ideas

Looking for inspiration to get going on an outdoor lighting project? Here are some great ones!

As we have discussed previously, outdoor lighting is a fantastic way to improve the beauty, usability, and safety of your property. This perhaps applies to nowhere in your home more than your deck.

A well lit deck can be the centerpiece of your summertime evening relaxation, recreation, and entertaining. And we can do it for you in a manner that enhances your property’s personal style and your artistic vision.

From our friends at the Spruce, here are fifteen deck lighting ideas to inspire you.

Excited to Give Back and Donate Some Time

Happy Friday everyone!

It has been a very busy spring week around here. Yard projects abound, and we have been working hard on irrigation and other technological installations.

We were very excited the other day, though, to take time and help a local Girl Scout with her Silver Award Project. A Silver Award is the highest honor a Girl Scout Cadette can earn, and involves the completion of a project that makes her neighborhood, school, or local community better.

It was incredibly gratifying, and was a real highlight of what has been a quick developing spring. We look forward to more.

Have a great weekend!

Thinking of Composting? We’ve Got You Covered!

Starting to compost at home is easy and affordable with just a few simple steps.

One question we often get from customers is whether they should start composting at home. Crucial to any garden is nutrient-rich soil, and a home compost pile can provide just that at low cost, saving trips to the garden store, sparing you of potentially harmful chemical additives to soil, and providing an Eco-friendly answer to some of your home refuse.

So how do you do it?

  1. Choose a compost container, available at most any hardware or garden store. It is possible to make your own outdoor pile container, but it will be a little more stinky and will have more unique space requirements,
  2. Start adding to it. Organic veggie leftovers, fruit, paper, grass clippings. All are great in your pile. And animal manure is fine as well.
  3. Watch your carbon to nitrogen ratio. It should be about 25 to 1, carbon to nitrogen. Carbon-rich items include fruit scraps, cardboard, nut shells, leaves, and ashes. Nitrogen-rich items include grass clippings, plant matter, veggie scraps, coffee grounds, and manure. And be careful about things going to seed: they can take root and start to sprout in the pile!
  4. Turn the pile very often. This aerates the soil and stirs bacterial activity (a VERY good thing in compost’s case). Most store-bought containers have a stirring method. If not, use a garden fork.
  5. Keep it as warm as possible. The bacteria will work no matter what. But it will break down faster the warmer it is. Shade is not a friend in this case!

Once your compost begins to take on the appearance of rich, dark soil, and most of the hard matter is broken down, it is ready to use! For more details, visit our friends and source of this longer article at today.com.