Summer

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Summer lawn care services. Lawn mowing. Fertilizer. Weed Control. Minneapolis, MN.

Lawn Care & Gardening Related Activities at The Minnesota State Fair

Lawn Care & Gardening Related Activities at The Minnesota State Fair

The Great Minnesota Get Together is here!  Can you believe it?  This means summer is almost over and its getting close for school to be back in session.

With all the chaos going on, we would like to bring some attention to lawn care and gardening related seminars going on at the Minnesota Fair to help you get a handle on your lawn and garden as things start to get busy.

Lawn Care Activities

Nilgun Tuna from the University of Minnesota will e presenting Sustainable Lawn Care on August 28th and August 29th.

If you love a nice green lawn but dislike the maintenance demands, come meet University of Minnesota turfgrass science experts to learn about water conservation practices for irrigating your lawn. Discover the benefits of auditing your irrigation system, planting drought-tolerant turfgrasses, utilizing smart controllers, rain sensors, soil moisture sensors and much more! Presented with support from the Metropolitan Council Environmental Services. At the University of Minnesota CFANS booth in the Agriculture Horticulture Building.

On August 31st,Kim Sullivan from the University of Minnesota will be making a presentation on fall lawn care in Minnesota.

Gardening Activities

Do you want a garden but are too lazy to keep up with the demands?  If so, Theresa Rooney from the University of Minnesota will be presenting Lazy Sustainable Gardening on August 24th and 31st.

How about a rock garden?  One of our favorites you have to check out is the Rock Garden booth.  Their featured items include gazebo and playground equipment, pavers, rocks, fairy gardens, fountains, garden tote bag with books, gardening sheds, illuminated garden stakes, landscaping supplies, lawn ornaments, outdoor fireplaces, outdoor wall art, pinwheels, Regal spinners, stepping stones, wind chimes, flowers, plants, shrubs, and trees.

Peer into distinctive garden kaleidoscopes and see gorgeous flowers transform into mesmerizing images of color and movement. These three unique metal sculptures and spinning flower bowls are created by artist Robert C. Anderson of Sturgeon Bay, Wis.

Fruit trees, shrubs, and vines are a great way to diversify your landscape and an introduction to local food production. We will share low maintenance species that are great starter options, requiring little pruning and being less susceptible to disease. Presented by a Minnesota Tree Care Advocate, Minnesota Tree Care Advocate Program. Located on the Sustainability Stage in Eco Experience.

Learn from master gardeners, talented florists, lawn enthusiasts and other outdoor experts as they offer informative, entertaining demonstrations and question-and-answer sessions all day long on The DIRT Demo Stage located in the Agriculture Horticulture Building. Demonstrations start at 10 a.m. each day.

Tired of mowing the grass? Replace your lawn with a Food Forest! Learn about all the latest growing trends: Native plants, pollinators, healthy soil, seed saving, wise water use, and harvesting food at home! Presented by Russ Henry, Minnehaha Falls Landscaping and Giving Tree Gardens. Located on the Sustainability Stage in Eco Experience.

 

How To Care For Cool Season Lawns In Minnesota During The Summer Heat

How To Care For Cool Season Lawns In Minnesota During The Summer Heat

Once temperatures get into the 80s and above, lawns will begin to struggle a little, with cool-season grasses having the hardest time. Growth will slow, color may fade, and lawns will show signs of wear and tear as they are less able to recover from stress and traffic. Some cool-season lawns will even go dormant in the summer, looking brown and brittle until early fall.

Water Wisely

  • Lawns need at least one inch of water per week, and more when the heat is severe. Use a rain gauge or straight-sided can to keep track of the amount of water received from rainfall and irrigation.
  • Water deeply and less frequently to encourage drought-tolerant roots.
  • Water early in the day to reduce evaporation and fungal growth.
  • Either water your lawn regularly and deeply, or don’t water at all. Don’t let your lawn go brown and dormant, then try to “water it back to life.” If your lawn goes dormant in summer, it should stay that way until fall – don’t worry, it should recover once the weather changes.

Mowing Tips

  • Raise your mower blade in the summer. Taller grass is more drought-tolerant, grows deeper roots, and helps shade the earth to prevent weed seeds from germinating. Cool-season grasses should be mowed at 3”- 4” during the summer, or as high as your blade will go, while warm-season grasses should be mowed at 2”- 3”.
  • Mulching grass clippings helps keep moisture levels steady.
  • Mow regularly, to prevent cutting more than 1/3 of the grass blade at a time. This keeps your grass healthier and prevents the clippings from smothering the grass.
  • Keep mower blades sharp. Make sure your mower is cutting your grass, not tearing it, to minimize stress during hot temperatures.

Don’t Over Fertilize

If your lawn is looking straggly in midsummer, resist the urge to fertilize. In fact, it’s best to stop fertilizing about 30 days before your area’s summer temperatures arrive. Applying extra fertilizer in the heat of summer can burn your lawn and create a flush of tender growth that will struggle in the hot summer weather. Never fertilize dormant lawns – wait until they green up in the fall.

High-Traffic Areas

By summer, many lawns begin to show signs of wear, especially in a few popular pathways. Consider installing stepping stones to minimize damage to your grass, and try to minimize traffic on dormant, brittle lawns. If you’re getting plenty of rainfall and your lawn is actively growing, you can apply a bit of fertilizer to these areas to help the blades recover faster.

Control Weeds

Summer is the season to get those growing weeds removed before they bloom and disperse seed for next year. Targeted postemergent herbicides are designed to kill broadleaf weeds without harming turf grass, but they must be applied when temperatures will be below 85° F for a few days. Keep in mind that during the heat of summer, ANY product can be damaging to already-stressed lawn grasses, so use sparingly or hand-pull weeds instead.

Insects and Diseases

  • Dormant or drought-stressed summer lawns can be more susceptible to insect infestations, such as chinch bugs, cutworms, armyworms, sod webworms, fire ants, fleas, and mosquitoes. Minor infestations often take care of themselves, but severe problems may require attention.
  • Summer is also the time for fungal diseases, such as powdery mildew and brown patch. Apply fungicide if needed, and avoid watering in the evening to keep nighttime moisture at a minimum.
  • Grubs will begin hatching in your lawn over the summer. If grubs typically cause problems in your lawn, you can begin applying grub control around midsummer.

 

A Couple Of Summer Lawn Care Tips That Will Make Your Lawn Be Envied By The Neighborhood

A Couple Of Summer Lawn Care Tips That Will Make Your Lawn Be Envied By The Neighborhood

Summer has arrived in Minneapolis which means hotter temperatures and so far, in 2018, a lot more rain than usual.  To keep your lawn healthy and green we decided to give you a few tips you can use this summer.

Lawn Mowing

In the summer months it is important to set your lawn mowers height appropriately.  With our cool season grass in Minnesota, it is recommended to set your mower height to about 3 and a half inches.

For those of you with a push mower, that means setting your lawn mower height to the highest you can.

Cutting your lawn at about 3 and a half inches will help reduce weed growth and allow your lawn to grow thick and lush.  You may even end up becoming the envy of the neighborhood!

Watering

If you have an underground watering system, setting your watering times from 4 to 8 am is the best for your lawn.  Watering in the early morning hours allows the water to soak deep into the soil so the roots can absorb the moisture during the heat of the day.

If you do not have an underground water system, 4 to 8 am is still the best, but you can still get good results if you have completed watering your lawn by 10 am.

If you follow the 2 simple steps above, chances are likely you will have one of the healthiest lawns in the neighborhood.

5 Most Common Lawn Care Mistakes

5 Most Common Lawn Care Mistakes

Having the greenest lawn in the neighborhood takes a lot of work and a lot of knowledge to accomplish.  To help your lawn get started on the right track, we have provided you with the 5 of the most common lawn care mistakes homeowners make when trying to get their lawn on track.

Cutting Lawn Too Short

Mowing grass too short is very harmful to the plant and can actually put it into shock. Cutting off too much of the grass blade will limit its ability to absorb sunshine, which allows it to perform photosynthesis through its leaves and make food. It also weakens the root system.

Set the mower height to about 2 1/2 inches and never cut off more than 1/3 of the grass blade at any one time. The grass will develop a deeper root system to support the longer blades and need less water.

Watering Wrong Time Of Day

Don’t water between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. It is best to water between 6 a.m. and 10 a.m. There’s usually less wind, less sun, and your lawn has all day to dry.

In the middle of the day, water evaporates too quickly. And in the evenings, water can cling to the blades of grass overnight, which can cause lawn diseases.

Fertilizing Out Of Season

It is best to apply fertilizer when the grass is rapidly growing, not during the hot summer when the grass wants to go dormant anyway. Fertilizing at this time will require more water to support the increased growth.

Fall fertilization is important for root growth and will give the lawn a boost next Spring. Late spring, late summer, and after the last mow of the year are ideal times to fertilize.

Not Testing Soil

Most homeowners just plant grass willy nilly. Grass thrives in soil with a pH of 6 to 6.5. 

Send a soil sample to your local extension service for testing and they’ll tell you what your soil needs to make your grass healthy.

Mowing With Dull Mower Blades

Dull mower blades actually tear grass blades leaving them looking brown on the tips and making them more prone to disease and insect damage.

It is recommended to sharpen your lawnmower blades at the beginning of each season and possibly once more about mid-way through the season.

Minneapolis Lawn Mowing Season Is Here

Minneapolis Lawn Mowing Season Is Here

The birds are chirping, the flowers are blooming the grass is starting to grow and our lawn mowing crews are out and about throughout the Minneapolis area mowing lawns.  This is also the time of year when a lot of our customers have some great questions about lawn mowing.  Below are some of the top questions we receive from existing and new customers.

What Month Do You Start Mowing?

Typically we like to get started mowing lawns late in May or early in June.  However, weather patterns can move these dates up or push them back.

What Is The Best Time Of Day To Mow?

The best time to mow your lawn is throughout the morning and evening hours.  When the sun is at its peak, your lawn is busy photosynthesizing and trying to keep moisture in and mowing during this time can actually stress your lawn.

Is It Good To Cut The Grass Before It Rains?

Mowing your lawn right before it rains is actually the best time to mow.  However, if you miss the rain and still need to mow afterwards, check to see if the blades of grass in your lawn are standing straight or bent over.  If they are bent over, wait an hour or so until they are standing straight because cutting bent blades of grass can lead to a less clean cut.

Can You Cut Your Grass Too Often?

Yes you can.  If you cut your grass too often can be just as damaging as letting it grow too tall.  The rule of thumb here is to never cut more than one-third of the blade of grass.

Do You Have Mowing Questions?

With over 25 years experience mowing all types of lawn throughout Minneapolis, we know a lot.  If you have questions about your lawn and you want expert advice, contact us and we will do our best to answer your questions.

5 Tips for Summer Lawn Care in Minnesota

5 Tips for Summer Lawn Care in Minnesota

Summer heat can take a toll on your lawn.  If you mow too low, water too much or too little, or ignore early signs of pests, your grass could quickly become lackluster or even completely die in small or large patches. Keep your lawn looking its best all summer long by following these 5 summer care tips.

1. Mow at the right height.

In summer, adjust your mower height to leave grass taller. Taller grass shades soil, which reduces water evaporation, leads to deeper roots and prevents weed seeds from germinating. Ideal mowing height varies with grass type. Time mowings so you’re never removing more than one-third of the leaf surface at a time.

2.Water properly.

The most efficient time to water lawns is probably early in the morning hours from 4 to 8 a.m. Less water is lost to evaporation due to lower temperatures and less sunlight.

Midday watering, though good for the plants since it cools the plant temperatures and reduces heat stress, is not as efficient because some of the water evaporates before getting into the soil.

Watering in the evening should be avoided. If the grass plants go into the night-time hours wet, they will remain wet for extended periods of time. This may favor the growth and development of turfgrass diseases.

3. Treat for grubs.

Insecticides for grubs can be applied from May through mid-June, when recently overwintered grubs (larvae) start feeding. However, these grubs are large and may be difficult to kill. Starting in mid- June most grubs are in the pupal stage and insecticides are not effective. In early July adults emerge to feed on plants, mate, and then at night fly to grass to lay eggs. The best time to apply insecticides for grubs is from mid-July until early September. Granular applied insecticides distributed on soil with a spreader are usually the best insecticides

4. Clean up after your pooch.

The family dog can cause dead spots on a lawn. If you see dying grass due to your dog’s urination, flush the area with water to dilute the urine in soil. The best solution is to create a mulched or pebbled area and train your dog to use that area for bathroom breaks. Also, keep waste picked up and dispose of it properly.

5. Sharpen your mower blade.

A dull mower blade tears grass, creating ragged, brown edges that provide an opening for disease organisms. Sharpen your mower blade regularly. The rule of thumb is that a sharp blade lasts for 10 hours of mowing. Consider purchasing a second blade so you’ll always have a sharp blade at the ready.

What To Expect From Your Lawn Mowing Service Company

What To Expect From Your Lawn Mowing Service Company

Lawn Mowing Service Company

Choosing a lawn mowing service company can be quite challenging.  The options almost seem endless between well established companies, small growing companies, startup companies and even the neighbor kid down the block who is trying to make some extra cash. 

With so many choices, how do you know what lawn mowing service company is right for you?

When considering a lawn mowing service company, you need to consider how well you want your yard to be maintained.  If you are simply looking for somebody to stop by once a week, cut the lawn and be on their way, the kid down the block may be the right choice for you.

However, if you are looking for a professionally well-kept lawn that is mowed, weed whipped and the debris is cleaned up, you are going to need to hire a company with all the tools.  Well established, small and startup companies are going to be the best choices in this scenario.

Finally, if you are looking to have the greenest lawn on the block, you are going to want to hire a lawn mowing service company that does more than just mowing.  Check with well-established and small growing companies who provide weed control, bush trimming and many other services alongside their lawn mowing services.

Once You Hire A Lawn Mowing Service Company, What Should You Expect?

Besides the simple expectation of having your lawn mowed on a regular schedule, your personal lawn mower should have a good understanding of what your lawn is telling him.  After all, your personal lawn mower is on your lawn, and plenty of others, every week so they should be able to tell what is happening with your lawn.

Your personal lawn mower should be able to make recommendations for fertilizer, weed control, watering schedules and more.  The more detailed your lawn mower is, the healthier your lawn will be and the happier you will be.  Once you land a detail lawn mower who makes the right recommendations, you will want to hang on to them so be sure to get their business card just in case.

Start Researching Lawn Mowing Service Companies

I think it goes without saying, but before you hire just any company be sure to talk to 3 or 4 companies and ask them questions about what services they offer to ensure they will be able to offer you every service you think your lawn may need and then some. 

Once you have narrowed it down to those companies who have the services you need, get a free estimate from each one for all the services they offer.

Finally, head on over to the internet and check for reviews left on Google and Facebook.  The lawn care business is very competitive and you need to make sure you are hiring a reputable company.

Lawn Mowing Season Begins in Minneapolis

Lawn Mowing Season Begins in Minneapolis

It’s official… spring has finally arrived in Minneapolis and this means you will start to see lawn mowing crews pulling their trailers on highways and city streets near you.  In today’s blog, we are going to talk a bit about ways you can keep your dedicated lawn mower looking forward to mowing your lawn.

First Mow of the Season

If you’re a new customer, the first mow of the season is the best time to try and meet your lawn mower to go over the quirks of your lawn such as boundaries, special instructions or to let them know of any hidden pipes that may be sticking up out of the ground.  This meeting ensures that your lawn mower will know what expectation you have of them throughout the year and will result in a relationship where everybody is happy.

If you’re not able to meet your lawn mower when they arrive at your property, you may want to consider marketing items in your lawn with flags.  Be sure to leave a note with the office so they can include it on the job details so your lawn mower knows what the markers mean and can remove the markers for you after they mow your lawn.

How Weather Effects the Schedule

Mother nature can be brutal on lawn mowers throughout the mowing season.  Traditionally, our lawn mowers at Peter Doran Lawn like to stay on a schedule and mow your lawn on the same day each week.  However, mother nature can throw weeks at us where rain keeps us from being able to stay on schedule.  If it does rain during the week, your lawn may end up getting mowed a day later or at a later time of the day if your lawn mower is working hard to catch up throughout the week.

Heat also plays a role in how much your lawns your lawn mower can mow during a week.  On those really hot days, heat exhaustion can set in and you may want to keep an eye on your lawn mower if you are around the house while the mow your lawn.  Additionally, since coolers only keep things cold for so long, you can earn “brownie points” from your lawn mower by offering them a cold cup of water or lemonade!

As the lawn mowing season gets into full swing, we look forward to servicing you and your lawn in the most professional way possible.  If you haven’t received your free quote from us yet, be sure to give us a call at 763-315-0052 or fill out our free estimate online and we can get you on the schedule.

3 FREE Lawn Care Apps to Help You Maintain a Healthy Lawn This Summer

3 FREE Lawn Care Apps to Help You Maintain a Healthy Lawn This Summer

Maintaining a healthy lawn is more work than most people realize.  These 3 lawn care apps will help you keep the pest away, track and suggest when to mow and even make suggestions to keep your landscape and garden plants healthy.  Best of all, all 3 of these lawn care apps are free and can be downloaded to your phone today.

Turfpath App IconTurfpath Lawn Care App

Android Download | Apple Download

Turfpath is a great app that will help you recognize pests in your yard and ways to treat your yard to get rid of those unwanted pests.  This app also allows you to interact with other users by asking questions and getting answers from professionals about your questions.  You can also receive awards and badges on Turfpath for sharing information.

MowerPlus App IconMowerPlus App by John Deere

Android Download | Apple Download

Mowerplus helps you keep track all of your mowing activities from how long it has been since you last mowed, the direction your last mowed and provides feedback to help you mow your lawn so it can grow to its maximum potential.  The MowerPlus app is also region specific and gives you additional insight to seasonal timeline feeds.  Additionally, if you have a John Deere mower, you can receive maintenance tips to keep your mower running at tip top condition.

Sprout ItSprout It App

Apple Download

The Sprout It app is a landscaper and gardeners dream!  This app will make suggestions on when to plant your vegetables, herbs and other plants based on the region you live in.  It provides reminders, tips and suggestions based on when your planting date and personal preferences.  Furthermore, you will receive integrated weather information and alerts to help you protect your plants when the weather changes.

Do you have a lawn care app that you really enjoy?  If so, please share it with us in the comments below.

Lawn Care Tips to Prepare Your Lawn for Summer

Lawn Care Tips to Prepare Your Lawn for Summer

Summer is only months away, which means the dry season is waiting to take a toll on your lawn.  Preparing your lawn for the upcoming dry season means taking the right steps towards the end of spring and beginning of summer are essential to your lawns health.  Here are 4 lawn care tips you can follow to ensure a healthy green lawn this summer.

Dethatching

Dethatching your lawn is by far one of the most important things you can do in the spring to help your lawn grow healthy in the summer.  Dethatching is the process of raking out the dead and damaged grass from your lawn.  Dead and damaged grass absorbs nutrients in your lawn leaving less nutrients for healthy grass to absorb and grow.

Late Spring Fertilizer

In the late spring/early summer, weed control that focuses on popular Minnesota weeds such as dandelions and creeping Charlie/ground ivy should be applied before they start to take over your lawn.  Once these weeds begin to take over your lawn, it’s hard to stop them as their seeds are easily spread across your lawn by wind and animals.

The second application of fertilizer in the late spring is a granular fertilizer that promotes healthy lawn growth.  This granular fertilizer should be a slow release granular fertilizer that releases nutrients that feed your lawn over time.  A slow release is phenomenal during the drier months of the late spring and early summer.

Lawn Mowing

Regularly mowing your lawn is ideal helps reduce of creating an ideal habitat for insects like mosquitos, voles, mice and snakes.  Furthermore, when mowing your lawn, it is important to keep in mind that shorter is not always better.   Proper mowing height is important to help your lawn strive during the colder, wetter months and the hotter, drier months.  During the hotter, drier months, you may want to let your lawn grow a tad bit longer so it can strive.

Below are the ideal height for grass based on the type of grass you have in your lawn…

Cool Season Grasses of Minnesota

Kentucky Bluegrass                : 2.5 to 3 inches (60-75 mm)
Perennial Ryegrass                : 2.5 to 3 inches(60-75mm)
Tall Fescue                             : 2.5 to 4 inches (60-100 mm)

Warm Season Grasses of Southern State

Common bermuda                  : 0.75 to 1.25 inches ( 20-30mm)
Hybrid bermuda                      : 0.5 to 1.0 inches (12-25 mm)
St. Augustine                          : 2.0 to 4 inches ( 50-100 mm)
Zoysiagrass                            : 1 to 2.5 inches (25-60 mm)
Centipede grass                     : 1.0 to 2.0 inches ( 25-50 mm)

Following the lawn care tips above should prove to give you the lush, healthy, green lawn you strive for this year.