ABC Blog

When Should I Have My Lawn Aerated?

After mowing, watering, trimming, raking and mulching, you think you’ve met your lawn care needs, but then that pesky aeration word pops up and bursts your daydream thought bubble. Do you really need to aerate? If you want one of the lushest, greenest lawns in San Antonio, you do. Fortunately, you only need to aerate your lawn twice each year, so you don’t have to fret about it regularly.

With San Antonio’s dry climate, we recommend aerating during early spring, around March 15, and again in fall, around October 15. If your lawn receives abundant traffic, however, you might consider aerating up to five times each year. Spring aeration prepares your yard for new grass growth, and fall aeration helps your lawn recover from an activity-filled summer. Additionally, Texas A&M Agrilife Extension recognizes the holes left in the lawn behind the aeration machine as perfect little feeding tubes for water, fertilizer, … Read Full Post »

Keeping the Grass Greener on Your Side

As the weather cools, it can take more and more work to keep your lawn looking healthy and green. Instead of throwing in the towel and putting off your lawn care and maintenance projects until the spring, let the pros at ABC Home & Commercial Services of Dallas take over. In this post, we’ve outlined four professional lawn care projects that can save time and reduce your stress level during the cool season.

1. De-Stress Fertilization and Weed Control

Although fertilization is especially important for cool-season grasses, it’s important to take steps to protect the health of your lawn throughout the year. We use winter-safe fertilizers to prepare your grass for the cold days ahead. These applications might be tricky and stressful to pull off on your own, but they’re a snap for our seasoned lawn care team.

Cool-season weed control is also key. While occasional frosts and freezes can limit weed growth … Read Full Post »

Flower or Fungus: How Can You Tell?

Unless you’re a botanist, you might have trouble remembering some of the key differences between plants and fungi. Don’t let this get you down. While their cell structures and metabolic processes are actually very different, many types of plants and fungi appear to grow and reproduce in similar ways. If you see a strange organism popping up through your lawn’s grass, consult this handy guide.

Are All Fungi Bad?

First, it’s important to note that not all fungi are bad for your lawn. Many species actually break down organic matter that can harbor grass-eating pests or give rise to weeds that choke the life out of your lawn. Indeed, many homeowners use fungi in walled-off areas to break down organic waste like sawdust, wood chips, mulch, tree droppings and even food byproducts.

Key Types of Flower-Mimicking Fungi

Here’s some useful science: Mushrooms are the “fruiting bodies” of the underground fungal structure known as mycelium. … Read Full Post »

A Healthy Lawn Needs Good Soil

Although it may seem like some people just have green thumbs that let them create flourishing lawns and gardens, this superstition couldn’t be farther from the truth. In reality, your lawn’s health is entirely dependent on the quality of the soil beneath.

Just like your home needs a good foundation, your grass, veggie gardens and decorative plants must have good earth if they’re to grow strong. Here are a few tips on demystifying your quest for healthier home landscaping by creating better soil.

The Fertilizer Misconception

Many homeowners labor under the mistaken impression that they can simply dump fertilizer on the ground every season and sit back while their plants take it all in. While this approach is well intentioned, it’s sorely misguided.

Fertilizers work by providing plants with vital nutrients, but you can definitely overfeed your lawn. Although your grass won’t start to pack on pounds like a person might if they ate … Read Full Post »

5 Reasons Why You Should Map Your Irrigation System

While the amount of work that goes into setting up a lawn or garden irrigation system may tempt you to simply get it installed and be done with it, you really ought to document the process. Even if your system works admirably for years and you never change a thing, you’ll find that knowing exactly where all the conduits and sprinkler control valves are will come in handy later. Read on to learn why mapping out your irrigation system with the help of a Houston lawn care specialist is such a good idea.

1. Ensuring Coverage Efficiency

Mapping things out before you start ensures that you minimize the amount of water that your system requires to keep your lawn healthy. This may not be a big concern normally, but if your area suffers a drought or implements summer water usage restrictions, your irrigation map will help you avoid watering the same place … Read Full Post »

Green Grass Needs More Than Water

What’s that subtle sound? It’s your grass begging for a little TLC. While it’s true that frequent watering will keep your lawn healthy in the blistering San Antonio heat, watering restrictions are definitely a consideration. Not to mention, your lawn needs and deserves so much more than water in order to remain healthy.

Green with Envy

Your neighbors will talk about your lawn—it’s just a fact of life. Give them something to talk about with a luscious lawn that makes them want to kick off their shoes and walk barefoot right up to your front door to ask you what your secret is.

Caring for Your Lawn

➢ Fertilize on Schedule

Proper fertilization is key, but it must be done at the right times of year and with the right blend for your type of grass. For example, a fertilizer formulated for Bermuda grass would kill St. Augustine. It’s important to know exactly which breed … Read Full Post »

5 Ways to Prepare Your Yard for Autumn

landscaping houston, lawn care houston

Summer is over, but it’s not quite time to hang up your lawn tools for the year. Here are the final five lawn care tasks you need to complete before winter:

Remove Dead Leaves Immediately

Raking your leaves might sound like common sense, but many homeowners actually put it off until all of their trees are completely bare. Trees can drop leaves for more than a month, and they’ll pile up. After a good rain, those leaves will become damp and heavy, and you’ll have a difficult time blowing or raking them into a pile.

Try to remove dead leaves at least once a week as soon as they begin dropping, and you’ll split up a large task into manageable chunks. Dead leaves will also prevent grass from receiving sunlight, which will decimate your lawn after a few weeks. Fungus and mold will also take their toll.

Eliminate Weeds in Your Lawn

Most plants begin … Read Full Post »

5 Tips for Irrigation: Save Water and Money!

Remember when you were a kid and you had no idea that the lush, green lawn where you played baseball and turned cartwheels all summer took so much upkeep? Forget about mowing—the mere cost of watering the lawn is a surprise to many homeowners. Some homeowners are wasting water (and money) by using irrigation incorrectly. Have you ever gone for a walk in your neighborhood and dodged the sprinkler that was watering the street? How many people in your neighborhood have their irrigation system on constantly, even on a rainy day? There are ways to keep your lawn and garden from wilting without draining your bank account. Here are five:

1. Water wisely. Watering your lawn and garden efficiently doesn’t have to mean purchasing expensive equipment or becoming a self-sustaining hippie commune. Two habits that can help you conserve water are watering in the early morning and keeping the water where … Read Full Post »

Healthy Grass under Your Tootsies

Which lawn personality are you?

It isn’t summer until the kids are running around on the green lawn in bare feet and tank tops. Of course, in the land of endless summers (like in Bryan-College Station and most of the southwest), it’s tank top weather year-round! High temperatures and unpredictable precipitation make lawn maintenance a tricky proposition. This combination invites all manner of creeping, crawling and rapidly expanding pests that can take over your lawn faster than you can find your flip-flops.

Fungus Grows on Texas Lawns

St. Augustine grass is popular as a Texas turf material because it grows thick and green with proper lawn care. It’s also cushy and not too tickly on bare feet. However, this grass type is also susceptible to pest problems, especially when forces of nature conspire to create a cozy environment for fungal growth. Other grass types including Bahia and Bermuda can harbor some fungus growth given high temperatures, waterlogged … Read Full Post »

It’s Huge, It’s Scary and It Wants Your Tomatoes!

Once you’ve tasted fresh, home-grown tomatoes, you’ll scoff at the anemic, mass-produced ones available at grocery stores. Growing tomato plants is rewarding, but you may run into a few challenges. If the leaves and unripened tomatoes develop holes or disappear overnight, or you find dark green droppings around the base of your plant, it’s time to inspect it for one of the tomato grower’s greatest enemies.

Identifying the Tomato Hornworm

The tomato hornworm is a large, green caterpillar with a curled head and a sharp-looking red horn on its rear. A mature hornworm is between three and five inches long and its markings include white stripes and rows of false eyes on both sides. At first glance, it resembles a ghastly little alien and many new tomato growers are quite startled the first time they spot one. A closer inspection reveals that the little fellow is harmless. Its size is intimidating, but it’s soft, squishy and … Read Full Post »