ABC Blog

How Many Sprinklers per Zone?

a green yard due to having enough sprinklers per zone

Most homeowners would expect installing sprinklers to help their yard thrive in the summertime. Yet the wrong type of irrigation or too much water can damage your lawn. That is why it is important to learn more about sprinkler systems before making a major change to your yard’s irrigation.

Before you install a new sprinkler system, you will have to decide how many sprinklers per zone. Considering the different types of sprinkler heads and understanding the best times to run sprinklers will also help you make the right choice for your lawn.

Some homeowners feel confident enough to redo their sprinkler system on their own. However, it is often more convenient and affordable to consult a sprinkler repair company. Lawn care experts can help keep your yard looking great all year round, even in the heat of the summer.

Figuring Out How Many Sprinklers to Install

Many different factors come into play when deciding … Read Full Post »

When to Trim Crape Myrtles

a crape myrtle bush

Crape myrtles are popular trees because of their beautiful flowers that bloom in spring and hang on through warm summers. Their leaves are stunning in the fall, and even their vase-like shape and bark have their appeal in the winter. The question on many homeowners’ and landscapers’ minds is “When is the best time to prune them?”

Depending on the climate of your area, pruning should take place in late winter or early spring. It should definitely happen before the first blooms start to grow. It is important not to go overboard when cutting back the tree’s pretty branches. Many people cut their crape myrtles down to a nub, which is an eyesore in more than one way.

Not only does it look like a horrible accident, but such a severe trim stops the interesting, mottled bark from forming. Why buy and plant such pleasant trees only to remove all that beauty? … Read Full Post »

How To Fertilize Your Lawn

a homeowner fertilizing their lawn

Every homeowner wants lush, green grass in their yard. This means grass that is thick, healthy and free of weeds. Knowing how to fertilize your lawn is an important part of regular lawn maintenance. But it can be tricky knowing the right products to use and steps to follow. When should you fertilize? How often? What’s the right nutrient mix for your soil? Let’s explore these questions and more as we learn the right way to fertilize your lawn.

The first step in fertilizing your lawn is to determine the right mixture of nutrients for your grass. Warm-season grasses, like St. Augustine, bermuda and zoysia, need different fertilizer blends than cool-season grasses, like Kentucky bluegrass or rye.

Most yards in southern states have warm-season grasses. These grasses grow best in warmer weather, when it’s at least 75 degrees outside. Warm-season grasses go brown and dormant in the fall if they are not … Read Full Post »

The Different Types of Fertilizers

Springtime means that homeowners are fertilizing their lawns. If you want to keep your lawn looking its best this summer, you will want to get an effective fertilizer.

Still, there are so many different fertilizers to choose from. So how do you know which types of fertilizer you need for your lawn?

The main reason you need to fertilize your lawn is to improve soil nutrition. Soil alone does not contain enough nutrients like potassium, phosphorus or nitrogen. Commercial fertilizers are labeled according to their NPK (nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium) levels. These nutrients are the keys to healthy, green grass.

Keep reading to learn more about different fertilizers and which ones may be best for your lawn. You will also learn about plant food versus fertilizer and whether the best time to fertilize is before or after rain. With a better knowledge of fertilizer types, the grass will always be greener on your … Read Full Post »

How To Bring Back Dead Grass

a front yard with a dying lawn

If you have grass, you want to be able to take pride in your lush, green lawn. But maintaining healthy grass requires time, effort and know-how. Sometimes, you have to deal with problems like bald patches. Yellow or brown areas are another common issue. Knowing how to bring back dead grass is an important part of keeping your lawn thriving. If you know what’s causing the issue, you can take steps to fix it.

One important thing to know is the difference between dormant and dead grass. Sometimes, brown grass looks dead, but it’s not.

Dead Grass Versus Dormant Grass

All grass varieties have a dormant season, when they stop growing and lose their green. For warm-season grasses, this happens starting in fall, when the temperature outside cools down. Once the soil temperature drops below about 50 degrees on a consistent basis, the grass starts to go dormant.

Grass will also go dormant during … Read Full Post »

How to Winterize Your Home and Yard

a home after a winter storm

Winter is here, and even in a place with milder temperatures, preparing your home and lawn for whatever Mother Nature throws your way can give you and your family peace of mind. Since it’s hard to tell when a more serious freeze or winter storm will pop up, it’s important to get your home prepared early. No matter what comes your way, there are critical steps you can take to be ready.

Heating System

If your heater smells when you turn it on for the first time of the season, that’s a good reminder of the importance of having your HVAC serviced before temperatures dip. Fall is a good time to contact a licensed professional for a tune-up on your heating system. Just as a service call in the spring gets you ready for the blistering summer, a check before winter helps your entire HVAC system run more efficiently. A unit that … Read Full Post »

Too Much Fertilizer Is Never a Good Thing

a lawn with yellow spots because too much fertilizer was used

Adding fertilizer to your lawn gives it an extra boost, helping it stay healthy so it can establish a good root system. A solid root system protects the lawn from foot traffic, mowing and weather extremes. All plants—including the grass that makes up your lawn—use a lot of energy to not only establish roots but also to grow naturally. Fertilizer can help your lawn in all of these processes.

As with anything else, you can use too much fertilizer, so you should take steps to ensure you are applying the correct type and amount for your lawn’s needs. Fertilizer can be made of a number of things, from synthetic compounds to a variety of composted manures. When shopping for the right type, check the bag. It will have three numbers on the label, listed as # – # – #. Each number on the packaging represents the fertilizer’s percentage of three … Read Full Post »

Bermuda Grass Versus St. Augustine Grass

bermuda grass

Lush lawns are a homeowner’s dream, a beautiful green canvas that not only frames the home but also provides a soft setting for recreational activities. As we all know, such lawns don’t just happen. They take regular maintenance and care—even throughout the winter months.

The amount of upkeep a lawn requires relies in large part on the type of grass used. Two common varieties used in lawns across the nations are Bermuda and St. Augustine. Each has its own set of needs in order to keep it looking its best in a variety of weather conditions. A landscaping professional can answer specific questions about how either variety would be likely to perform in your area.

Let’s look at the qualities of each type of grass, how it works as a lawn grass and any special needs that each type might require.

Bermuda

Bermuda grass, pictured above, is known for being a tough variety that … Read Full Post »

What’s the Best Fertilizer for Bermuda Grass?

a homeowner preparing to fertilize their grass

Lots of people love bermuda grass because it thrives in so many conditions. It’s fine with humidity but also drought-tolerant. It feels good on your feet, yet can handle lots of foot traffic. There’s plenty to love about this low-maintenance grass. But, that doesn’t mean it doesn’t need a little care throughout the year, including the right fertilizer. The best fertilizer for bermuda grass is one with plenty of nitrogen, some potassium and little to no phosphorus. This blend of nutrients, called the NPK ratio, will help your bermuda grass look its best.

Most fertilizers come in liquid, water-soluble or granular form. Both liquid and water-soluble fertilizers are easy to apply. You attach the fertilizer container to your garden hose and spray an even layer throughout the yard. Liquid fertilizers absorb quickly, which means they may need to be applied more often than other forms, like granular fertilizer. This dry form … Read Full Post »

How Much Compost Do I Need?

a shovel in a compost pile

Using compost is a great way to build a solid foundation if you are trying to establish a new lawn or to revitalize an existing yard or garden. The exact amount of compost you will need for your project depends on how you plan to use it. However, in general, if you are mixing compost into soil, then compost should make up no more than 25% to 30% of your mixture.

A basic formula to figure out how much compost you will need to make or buy is to first find the area of your yard by multiplying the length of your space by its width in feet. Next, use the guidance below to find out how deep the compost should be (in inches). Divide the depth by 12 and then multiply this number by the area of your yard. This will give you an estimate of how many one-cubic-foot bags … Read Full Post »