Summer is here whether we want it to be or not. It is the time of year when you are driving around you cant help but notice other peoples lawns. Some look very green and nice, while others look drab patchy and brown. More often than not anymore the very green ones are unfortunately chemical induced. Not all of the patchy browns one can be fixed with fertilizer. Some just have the wrong type of grass for the location . The Bermuda that was originally planted may have done great until the trees in the yard began to fill out and produce more shade than the Bermuda could handle. Others lawns just need some TLC, and aerating is a great start, especially with all of the clay our Ozark soil has. Here are a few more tips about grass types and growing them in the Ozarks. Zoysia is one of our favorites (Best Grass to Grow in the Ozarks).
Our lawn is looking a little brown and patchy this year. (our dogs don’t help Tips for a More Dog Friendly Yard ). So topping my to-do list is fertilizing the lawn and thinking of anything I can do to get the lush lawn that always seems just out of reach here in Northwest Arkansas.
Before we fertilize this year we are going to start with aeration. This will help break up the hard clay soil that plagues NWA. It will allow the grass roots to not only receive more air and water but will help the fertilizer that we apply permeate to the root network better. (Promoting root growth) This will allow our fertilizer to do its job instead of just running off during rain or when we water.
Some aeration occurs naturally from plants that have a tap roots such as dandelions. If you or a POA aren’t a fan of dandelions and/or other types of plants that are classified as weeds, manual aeration is an alternative. Sometimes nature needs a helping hand.
Benefits of Aeration
Loosens compacted soil
Allows nutrients to be absorbed more efficiently
More air and water reaches the roots for better growth
Unbinding the roots to promote healthier growth
When Should Aeration be Performed
It is best to aerate a lawn during the growing season. Early Spring is one of the best times. Doing it before fertilizing is also a good idea. Once a year is enough for most lawns but in some situations twice may be more beneficial. Lawns that have a high clay content and areas that have high traffic may need extra attention.
Lawns that have been aerated will need some extra water for a few weeks afterward. We also suggest fertilizing to help encourage and maintain the new growth. Having terrible soil doesn’t have to keep us from having a thick lush green lawn to walk on. Fertilizing and aerating a lawn is in a lot of ways the same as re-potting a houseplant. If a plant is left in the same pot for too long it depletes the nutrients in the soil it has and becomes root bound. Lets treat our lawns to a little TLC and help give them the water, air and nutrients that their roots need to continue thriving, with out a lot of harsh chemicals.
After all of that we are going to over-seed the lawn and give it plenty of water. By the end of summer hopefully our lawn will be full and green for next spring.
Spring may have finally arrived. Hopefully the temperatures will stay up and frost will stay at a minimum for the rest of the season. Now is a good time to plant bulbs, trees and shrubs. Not to mention mowing, removing the rest of last years leaves and shrub pruning.
We are also about to start laying sod in the next couple of weeks. Spring is a great time to lay new sod before the weather gets to hot. The spring rain helps a lot with fresh sod to and cuts out time spent watering.
Give to 2 J’s a call to get your yard back in shape and all spruced up for the year.
We hope everyone had a fun and safe Halloween. With one holiday over, we start looking towards the next. But Christmas is starting to be on everyone’s mind.
The calls started coming in a couple of weeks ago for Christmas lights. We will begin putting them up next week for some folks. If you would like your lights up for Thanksgiving or in place to turn on just after give us a call. Early bird specials will be in place.
In celebration of Labor Day we would like to offer anyone who schedules an estimate between September 1 and September 4th, 15% off of our normal labor charge. Estimates are always FREE. So if you are in need of lawn work or landscaping give us a call to talk about your next project.
Summer is still in swing but the nights are getting cooler and fall is just around the corner. The time to start preparing for cooler weather is coming. If you have been thinking about adding a fire pit to your backyard to enjoy the nice fall nights checkout some of the previous ones we have built.
Speaking of cooler nights don’t forget that we also do chimney sweeps. September is a good month to start thinking about your heating needs and booking cleaning for chimneys and gas units before the service guys get swamped with calls.
2 J’s & Sons hopes that everyone has a fun and safe Labor Day weekend.
This job was a lot of fun, and looked amazing when it was completed. It took a little longer than expected and more stone than we originally estimated. Part of that could have been that the homeowners liked it so much they added a longer wall to the project.
Eight tons of native stone and two pallets of concrete. One hundred and fifty blocks and one hundred and fifty bags of mortar later. The end result was low retaining wall about two hundred and forty feet long that wrapped almost all the way around the house.
The back of the house sits up against a small hill, and all of the water run off from the roof runs into a built up gravel bed that used to be held in place by landscape timbers. Over the years the timbers began to rot and break down. So the new native stone retaining wall should last longer and help with erosion control around the house. Unfortunately we didn’t get any pictures of the back.
One of the hardest parts was finding enough native stone to match the existing rock-work. After we found rock to closely match the stone that had been on the property for years the wall got longer. So it was back to the rock yard to try to find more rock with just the right coloration. The new inventory wasn’t as spot on with the existing stone, but we got it pretty close.
In the end the customer was vary happy and is glad to have the last big project for the property done.
We love tree rings and chocolate gravel. But these tree rings are our new favorite at 2 J’s & Sons.
Cut border stone works great for edging walkways, garden beds and as tree rings. It is a more pricey option than metal edging, but the after effect is great.
It also helps to prevent erosion better than the metal edging. As well as allowing us to put the chocolate gravel around the tree in thicker. The thicker layer of gravel helps hold in more water for the tree to drink and helps keep more weeds out.
This summer has been super busy and flown by. We haven’t been taking pictures of most of our jobs. Luckily this week we snapped a few of one of our favorite yards.
We fixed a leaky pond with a solar powered waterfall. As well as laying some flagstone and spreading out some gravel for a walkway. Both of the stone and gravel should help control an existing erosion problem, and help to fill in bare spots in the lawn.
This lawn gets a lot of sun through out the day. So growing grass has been a little hard, even though the homeowner water it every day. The pathways will help fill in some bare spots where grass seed was washed away.
The waterfall sounds amazing, and the peach water lilies compliment the entire picture. This backyard is great place to relax before bed or wake up in with a cup of coffee.
Start summer off right, by dressing up that old pool and adding a shady sitting area. It may be the best way to beat the humid NWA heat for the next few months.
We rearranged and leveled some existing Belgard Cobblestone pavers around the pool. Polymeric sand was used between the pavers to help stop weed growth and any further movement of the pavers in the future.
Then we pulled up stepping stones leading from the pool to a side gate. More stones and rock were added to make the walkway look fuller.
Next a step was added for easier access from the pool into the new gazebo that was built.
This summer poolside oasis was finished off with a shady gazebo type sitting area. It was built completely out of cedar, except the roof. Native stone and polymeric sand was used for the floor inside the sitting area. This helps keep everything clean. Less debris gets drug into the pool, and wet feet stay clean on the way out.
Add lights and ceiling fan so the pool can be enjoyed 24/7 all summer. Less heat, humidity, dirt and flies. The guests at this pool will never want to leave as long as the drinks keep coming.
This great yard boasts a wonderful lake view. It also makes a wonderful place to host a summer wedding, or in this case two.
We moved flowerbeds, built a couple of new ones. Added steps for better access to the lake front, and a cute walkway to connect the house and steps together.
Retaining walls and channel drains were added for erosion control. As an added bonus the retaining walls give the yard more texture, and make additional seating and planting areas. All of the guests attending will have a level place to converge and sit for the celebrations.
Sod and some seed helped to complete the setting and give the yard a fresh new feel.