Gardening Lawns

Tim’s Tips – Mid-March

Tim’s Tips – Mid-March

by Tim Wittmaier

Now is a good time to go after cool season weeds in your beds, mainly Henbit and Chickweed. These weeds can take over bare spots of ground. In the warm season, these weeds will die then reappear in the fall.

Roundup Pro
You can remove weeds by mechanical means such as a garden hoe, or use a chemical. Non-chemical treatments of weeds can work but sometimes are not practical considering the labor needed to treat the area affected. I recommend Roundup Pro because it includes a surfactant that helps the herbicide stick to the weed. You can mix an herbicide using Dawn as surfactant also.

Moles in your lawn are slowed down by pre-emergent herbicides and fertilizer. They don’t like the smell and the chemical odors will deter their mating for awhile. Moles have a very keen sense of smell. For a more permanent mole solution I recommend spring-loaded mole traps.

Milorganite fertilizer has a bonus effect – the smell repels rabbits and deer for awhile.

You can probably reseed lawns earlier than normal this year but it’s still a little early. Wait until the ground temperature is 50 degrees or above through the night. If you have no choice but to seed now, use a rye grass. If you have used any pre-emergent herbicide, wait three weeks to seed or your seed may not come up.

The intermittent warm temperatures may tempt you to accelerate some spring tasks but you still have to be vigilant about the possibility of more freezing temperatures.

Keep an eye out for plants that did not survive the dry winter or have salt damage.

Gardening Lawns

Tim’s tips for February Lawn and Garden Care

Tim’s tips for February Lawn and Garden Care

by Tim Wittmaier

There are many tasks that need to be performed in the yard and garden at this time.

If you mow your own lawn, give your mower a spring tune up. Get blades sharpened, change oil, check for mechanical problems and check that your blade is set at the right height for the type of grass you have.

If your turf has too much acid apply lime to correct the PH.

If your PH is too high (too alkaline) and your soil is compacted, add some gypsum. Gypsum will also combat the effects of salinity and sodicity in the soil that may occur due to irrigation and the use of ice melting products. Gypsum reduces soil crusting and aids water penetration into the soil.

Scale in trees appear this month and they are crawling. Now is a good time to use dormant spray/horticultural oil if you need to control them. Dormant spray/horticultural oil is a product that does not discriminate between beneficial and non beneficial invertebrates, so it’s best to apply it for scale when other invertebrates are not yet active.

Ferti-lome Brush Killer Stump Killer
February is a good time to prune trees, shrubs and perennials, especially fruit trees. Some evergreens are not yet ready for pruning. Prune pines, holly and spruces now. Wait another month to prune boxwoods and yews.

Take a look at your lawn and planting beds. Unwanted woody plants can be a problem. Look for invasives such as Mulberry and Honeysuckle. If you can identify them without their leaves, pull or dig them as soon as you can. If you can’t pull or dig the unwanted woody plant out, cut off as much of the stem as you can and dab an herbicide product onto the end of the stub. You can apply the herbicide with a paintbrush or bingo markers. For safety wear gloves and use eye protection while applying. Ferti-lome Brush Killer Stump Killer is a product sold at Schnarr’s that would be suitable.

It’s drier than normal for this time of year, so water your evergreens now.