Are the Summer Thunderstorms Affecting My Lawn and Landscape?

In North Carolina, summer means high heat and humidity, which often lead to afternoon thunderstorms. While the rain can be great for your lawn and landscape, there are also some steps you can take to protect your home and yard from high winds and flooding. 

Add Mulch

Hard rains and strong winds can be tough on plants. However, helping your plants build a strong root system can make them more resilient and ensure that they come back healthy even if they are damaged by weather. A three-inch blanket of mulch will help plants be more durable and trap moisture during the hot summer months.

Keep Trees Trimmed

Extreme weather can also be tough on trees, especially if they have become overgrown. Losing a limb also has the potential to damage your home and take down power lines. Be sure to remove any dead branches and trim any other branches that aren’t doing well. This will allow the tree to send more energy to the root system and help it become more solidly anchored in the soil.

Tether Plants

If you spent the spring installing new plants throughout your landscape, it is a good idea to tether these young plants to a fence or a stake that has been placed securely in the ground. Again, these plants are still trying to establish a strong root system, so anchoring them will help them survive summer thunderstorms.

Install a Retaining Wall 

Flooding can also be a problem as storms move in and out quickly and drop a good amount of rain. This can be tough on plants and also cause soil erosion. A retaining wall may be the solution for effectively redirecting water and providing a barrier for plants and soil. Fortunately, these walls can also make a great decorative addition to your landscape.

While summer storms can be tough on your landscape, there are some precautions you can take to help your plants survive summer conditions. For additional help protecting and improving your landscape, contact the experts at JT’s Landscaping and Lawn Care.

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What is Crabgrass and Why Is It Bad for Your Lawn?

If crabgrass provides your lawn with some greenery, can it really be that bad for your lawn? For anyone who wants a lush and healthy lawn, crabgrass can be enemy number one. Learn more about this stubborn weed and why you should be trying to get rid of it.

What is Crabgrass?

Essentially, crabgrass is a stubborn weed that spreads incredibly fast and will take over your lawn. Even a small patch among your other grasses can spell trouble. Unlike lawn or turf grasses, crabgrass is annual, which means that its life cycle will only last one year. During the spring, you will notice the first signs and it will continue to grow throughout the summer and fall. Once winter temperatures drop, the crabgrass will die.

This causes two main problems for lawns. First, once the crabgrass dies, it will leave your lawn looking patchy. Second, and more importantly, crabgrass will release up to 10,000 seeds per plant. These seeds will spread all over your lawn and germinate in the spring. In this way, crabgrass manages to be an annual while still spreading each and every year.

Why is Crabgrass Bad?

For starters, crabgrass just isn’t visually appealing. It will stick out like a sore thumb on your lawn and you won’t get to enjoy a soft turf. Crabgrass is also greedy. It will suck up all the water and nutrients for the other plants around it so that it can thrive and spread while your lawn and other plants struggle. By the summer, it can completely dominate your lawn.

Your best defense against crabgrass is to treat it early so that it doesn’t have the chance to spread. Fertilizing your lawn can also help it establish strong roots so that it is more resistant to a crabgrass takeover. 

For help keeping your lawn weed and crabgrass free throughout the year, contact the experts at JT’s Landscaping and Lawncare. We can meet all your landscaping needs. 

 

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How JT’s Can Help Improve Your Yard this Summer

Spring is in the air in North Carolina. That doesn’t mean that we won’t get those last cold snaps, but it does mean that a lot of us are gearing up for some outdoor time. Chances are that your yard is looking a little worse for the wear right now. Fortunately, JT’s Landscaping and Lawncare can help you make some major improvements so that you can enjoy a beautiful and functional yard this summer.

Give Your Lawn a Boost

The spring months are the perfect time to give your lawn a boost so that it comes in even fuller by the time we hit early summer. Aeration and seeding will help to create a stronger root system for your lawn. This will help it survive any periods of drought and heat and provide you with a lush lawn all summer long.

Design and Build Hardscapes

Have you ever thought about installing a new patio, outdoor kitchen, water feature, or another hardscape focal point? JT’s Landscape can help you design a hardscape that meets your needs and your budget and also enhances your entire landscape. Between our design and installation teams, we can truly transform your yard and make it even more enjoyable and functional so that you can comfortably spend the long summer evenings outdoors. 

Install Irrigation Systems

The North Carolina summers can be notoriously hot and humid. Unfortunately, the heat can be taxing on your landscape. If you have invested in trees, shrubs, and flowers, your best bet for helping them survive may be an irrigation system. Fortunately, we can install an advanced system that delivers the right amount of water to the right areas while also reducing waste. 

Landscape Maintenance

If you aren’t sure about maintenance best practices or you simply don’t have the time, we can provide thorough landscape maintenance services that will keep your yard looking great.

Summer is all about spending time outdoors. If you are ready to make the most of your landscape and enjoy your yard as much as possible, contact JT’s Landscaping and Lawncare. We can help with all your landscaping projects.

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7 Unique Products for Your Outdoor Space

Decorative and creative ideas aren’t reserved for the indoors. The market is full of unique products that can enhance your outdoor space. Here are just a few highlights:

Hanging Wicker Egg Chair

This egg-shaped chair can be suspended from a porch or paired with its own frame. It provides a cozy place where you can snuggle up with a book and enjoy the outdoors.

Sony LSPX-S2 Glass Bluetooth Speaker

There are a variety of bluetooth speakers to choose from, but this product from Sony will help create a unique aesthetic. It resembles a lantern and will emit a soft light while also playing your favorite music. 

Tabletop Fountains

Perhaps you don’t have the space or the budget to install a full-scale fountain in your yard. Tabletop fountains provide an affordable alternative that will still let you enjoy the soothing sounds of water and help you relax after a long day.

Outdoor Rugs

Add some color and texture to your outdoor space with a durable rug that will withstand the elements.

Fabric Shade

If your yard gets a lot of direct sun, hanging a fabric shade can protect you from the sun and provide some relief from the heat. These shades typically come in a triangular shape and are easy to install. 

Mini Fire Pit

Even if you don’t have a lot of space, you can still enjoy the warmth and ambiance of a firepit. Tabletop versions are powered by gas fuel cans for a smokeless fire. 

Wind Chimes

Wind chimes are made out of all sorts of different materials that create different sounds. They also provide a simple way to enhance your outdoor space and provide a relaxing sound.

Improving your outdoor space doesn’t have to be an expensive undertaking. Simply adding some of these products can make it feel warm and welcoming. For more ideas on ways to enhance your outdoor space, contact the experts at JT’s Landscaping and Lawncare.

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Lawn Care Checklist for North Carolina

North Carolina has a temperate climate throughout most of the year, which means a longer growing season than other areas of the country. It also means that the state’s lawns need different types of care throughout the year. Use this checklist to make sure you are staying on top of your lawn care duties and can continue to enjoy a beautiful and healthy landscape.

Winter Lawn Chores

Even during January and February, North Carolin can experience warm days. Take advantage of this weather to mow your dormant grass. This will help to mulch up and remove leaves, pine needles and other organic debris. 

You will also want to start spotting winder weeds that may have set up camp. Treating them now can make sure they don’t take over your lawn once the weather starts to warm up.

Spring Lawn Tasks

Get your soil tested. Spring is the perfect time to add lime or fertilizer as needed. However, you won’t know how much of what to add without a better understanding of the acidity of your soil. Investing in a quick and easy soil test can give you some valuable information that will help you create and maintain a lush, well-fed lawn.  

During spring, the grass will come back to life and require periodic mowing. For the first few mowings, be sure to avoid cutting the grass too short. You only want to take off about the top third. 

Summer Lawn Care

During the summer, your lawn will be growing fast and furious. This means that you will probably end up mowing about once a week. You can also encourage and support lawn health with regular fertilization. Just be sure that you are providing your grass type with the right amount of nitrogen-based fertilizers. Adding too much fertilizer can end up burning your lawn, so always follow product instructions carefully. 

Hot summer temperatures and high humidity can also be hard on grasses. To help them survive periods of drought, raise the cutting height of your lawnmower to help slow down the process of evaporation.

Fall Lawn Care Checklist

Fall lawn care tasks will help set your lawn up for success next spring. Around October, you want to start aerating and overseeding the lawn. You can also apply a slow-release fertilizer that will continue to feed the grass throughout the winter months. By the time spring rolls around, your lawn will come back fuller and healthier than before.  

For more lawn care tips or expert help with all your regular landscape tasks and maintenance needs, contact JT’s Landscaping and Lawn Care. We serve businesses and homeowners throughout the triangle area.  

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Best Plants to Plant During the Fall in Raleigh

Typically, we think of spring as a time of regrowth and a good time to plant and expand your garden. However, you don’t have to wait until March or April to start planting and enjoy the colors and textures of a beautiful landscape. There are some great plants that are perfect to plant in Raleigh in the fall and will make your winter garden more interesting.

Dogwood

The dogwood is already a popular shrub throughout North Carolina. There are many different species to choose from and a lot of them come with distinctive bark, which can add color to your garden. Plant them in the fall to enjoy the red and yellow hues of the bark and by spring they will be loaded with fragrant blooms. 

Viburnum

These woody shrubs produce flowers in the spring, but they are full of color throughout the year. During the fall, they display beautiful fall foliage colors and by winter they will be covered in blue berries. Expect your viburnum to reach a height of 6’ to 8’ feet when it has fully matured.

Holly

Holly provides the classic Christmas color contrast of deep glossy green leaves against red berries. These hardy trees put on a great show throughout the year and their berries will be around well into the winter months. 

Sarcococca

Sarcococca is a unique box shrub that actually waits until mid-winter to flower. Planting a few during the fall will mean that you get to enjoy small, fragrant white flowers once the rest of the garden has gone dormant. 

Winter Jasmine

This flowering plant also blooms during the winter and can be trained to climb up a trellis, making it a great addition to certain architectural features around your landscape. Healthy winter jasmine will yield star-shaped yellow flowers and grow to a height of up to 15’. 

Don’t miss out on the opportunity to enhance your fall and winter garden and enjoy beautiful plants throughout the year. For additional help with your Raleigh area fall planting plans, contact the experts at JT’s Landscaping and Lawn Care.

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When Should I Put Winter Fertilizer On My Lawn?

Many people assume that spring is the best time to lay down new grass seed and fertilizer. The return of warm weather brings other plants, trees, and shrubs back to life, so it only seems to make sense that this would be the best time to encourage new lawn growth with fertilizer, however, this isn’t the case. Keep reading to learn more about the ideal time to fertilize your lawn. 

Why You Should Fertilize during Late Fall

By late fall, any lawn growth above the surface has stopped, but that doesn’t mean that your lawn has gone completely dormant. There is still plenty of activity happening underground. Your lawn still needs air, water, and nutrients during the long winter months. In fact, adding fertilizer and preparing your lawn to weather the winter will help it come back stronger and thicker in the spring. 

When it comes to fertilizing your lawn for the winter, timing is everything. You want to apply fertilizer after your lawn has stopped growing and before the first snow of the season. Basically, as soon as you store your lawnmower away for the winter, it is time to apply some nitrogen-rich fertilizer that will continue to supply the roots with the nutrients they need to stay strong and healthy. Nourishing the root system and helping it to become thicker will result in a lush lawn once growth resumes above ground.    

Call the Professionals

While it may seem counterintuitive to apply fertilizer in the late fall, this is actually the ideal window of opportunity to give your lawn the boost it needs to come back fuller and thicker in spring. If you need help choosing the right fertilizer and preparing your lawn with aeration techniques, contact JT’s Landscaping today. We have years of experience helping home and business owners throughout Raleigh and the Triangle enjoy beautiful and healthy landscapes. 

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How to Prepare Your Lawn for Winter

The winter months provide a break from contrast lawn maintenance, but that doesn’t mean you want to completely ignore your yard. Before the cold really sets in, you will want to take certain steps to prepare your lawn for winter. Investing some time during the fall will ensure that your lawn returns healthier than ever in the spring. Follow these tips for a better lawn.

1. Do the Final Mow

For the last mow of the season, you will want to cut the grass down to 1”-1.5”. This will make aeration easier and allow you to identify any areas that may need extra compost and seed.

2. Remove Leaves and Organic Debris

Raking up leaves and pine needles throughout the fall can feel like an endless chore, but it is an important part of preparing your lawn. A thick layer of leaves can prevent air from reaching the roots. In addition, leaves can accumulate moisture, which provides the perfect home for both pests and disease. If the leaves aren’t too thick or wet, you can simply use your lawnmower to mulch them up into smaller pieces, which can then provide your lawn with nutrients.

3. Aerate and Fertilize Your Lawn

Before the Triangle area experiences the first frost of the year, you will want to aerate and fertilize your lawn. Aeration not only breaks up any compaction that has occurred, but it also allows air, water, and nutrients to reach the roots. Adding the right fertilizer once you have aerated provided roots with the opportunity to absorb and store nutrients over the winter. As soon as the weather turns warm and the grass begins to grow again, it will have everything it needs to create a dense root structure and grow back thicker than ever.

4. Overseed

When you combine overseeding with aeration and fertilizing, you improve your chances of creating a thicker lawn. A push spreader is the best way to consistently deliver seeds. Be sure to overlap slightly as you make passes across the lawn. 

5. Reduce Foot Traffic

Once the grass has gone dormant, it is more susceptible to damage. If you continue to walk the same path across your lawn, you can damage the grass and create bare spots come spring.

Following these five steps will protect your lawn throughout the winter months and ensure that you have a healthier landscape next spring. If you would like professional help preparing your lawn for winter, contact the experts at JT’s Landscaping. Our team of highly trained experts has years of experience helping homeowners throughout the Triangle enjoy healthier and more beautiful landscapes. 

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7 Fall Cleanup Services for Retail Center and Office Parks

Fall is here and it is time to turn your attention to your landscape. Spending some time cleaning up debris and preparing your grass, trees, flower beds and irrigation systems for the winter can help ensure a beautiful and healthy landscape once spring arrives. Taking advantage of fall cleanup services can help you make a great first impression with customers and visitors who come to your retail center or office park. Here are the top 7 commercial landscape services we recommend during the fall:

1. Leaf Cleanup

While fall foliage can be beautiful, once the leaves have fallen and are covering your turf, it is time to take action and search for some fall cleanup services. Not only do dead leaves make your property look unkempt, the leaves are bad news for your grass. The leaves will prevent air and nutrients from reaching the lawn while also collecting moisture that will attract insects and plant diseases. That is why leaf removal should be at the top of your list for fall landscape services.

2. Aerating and Seeding

One fall cleanup service you should consider is aerating and seeding. Mowing your lawn and even just walking on it can cause the soil to compact, which makes it difficult for water and nutrients to get to the roots. Aeration works by removing plugs of soil from the lawn and creating clear pathways to roots. When aeration is followed by overseeding, your lawn will grow back stronger and fuller in the spring.

3. Fertilizing

It may sound counterintuitive to fertilize your grass right as it is beginning to go dormant for the winter. Keep in mind that while your grass won’t be growing, the roots are still developing and need nutrients. Fertilizing in the fall will help create a deep and healthy root system that will result in a thick lawn once growth resumes in the fall.

4. Pruning

Now is the time to cut back overgrown or dead trees and bushes. With the leaves gone, you will be able to see what needs to be trimmed. Pruning not only creates a tidy landscape, it also supports plant health.

5. Take Care of Perennials

Now that the bloom is off your perennials, your flower beds are probably full of deteriorating stalks. You can cut them back all the way to the ground, which will help prevent disease, improve the look of your landscape and help the flowers come back next year. This is a necessary fall cleanup service you should complete to keep your lawn looking great.

6. Mowing

For the final mow of the season, you will want to cut the grass shorter than you may usually cut it. Shorter grass will help prevent moisture from accumulating and spreading disease. It will also make leaf removal a lot easier.

7. Winterize Your Irrigation System

During the warm North Carolina summers, your irrigation system plays a key role in providing the right amount of moisture. Once the weather turns cold, you want to protect your system so that you don’t have to worry about making costly repairs. It is important to remove all the water from the system to prevent any freezing and take other steps to winterize the system.

Leave your fall cleanup tasks to the experts. Call JT’s Landscaping to schedule a consultation and set up a fall cleanup schedule that will protect your retail location or office center landscape and make sure that it looks better than ever next spring.

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What are the Benefits of Aerating and Seeding?

As summer begins to wane, it is time to start planning for your spring lawn and landscape. Investing some time in preparing your lawn will go a long way to ensure that it comes back fuller, lusher, and healthier than ever before. One of the most effective ways to support your lawn is through aerating and seeding. 

Over time, your lawn’s soil can become compacted. This is especially true if you have pets and kids running around, but it can also happen with regular use and mowing. Compacted soil tends to create a shallow root system and makes it difficult for water, air, and other essential nutrients to reach the grass. 

How Aeration Works

Aeration creates holes and loosens the soil, which makes it easier for the roots to absorb all the nutrients they need. This helps to create a deeper and thicker roots system and a more dense lawn. Aeration also makes it easier for a seed to properly germinate and fill in any bald or thin patches on the lawn. aeration

Seeding Your Lawn

Once the lawn has been aerated, it should be overseeded. Basically, this means generously spreading seed across the entire lawn and not just bare areas. Overseeding will help to create a thicker and stronger lawn that will help to keep weeds at bay and resist insects and other types of turf damage. Repeating this process on a yearly basis will ensure that your lawn continues to improve.

Aerating and seeding are simple ways you can support your lawn health, repair any damage that may have occurred over the summer, and enjoy a lush and beautiful lawn in the spring. For professional help with year-round lawn care and maintenance, contact the experts at JT’s Landscaping. We have years of experience serving homeowners and businesses throughout the Triangle.

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