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SEPTEMBER 2012
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SEPTEMBER 2012 NEWSLETTER
GRUB ALERT!!!!!
 Be on the look out for grub activity in your lawn.  Grubs, which are the off spring of beetles, are active, and can destroy your lawn.   There are several types of grubs that will feed on the roots of lawn grasses.  If untreated, they can cause severe damage this fall. They are easily missed in early September  when your lawn is actively growing.  The grubs will feed on the roots from under your lawn until brown, weak turf begins to appear and they are discovered.  If the lawn looks distressed and pulls up easily, this may be a sign of a problem.  If, after investigating under the surface grubs are discovered, treatment may be required if grub populations are high. If only one or two grubs are found, it may not indicate a problem.  However, if in doubt, call us to evaluate.  A very common sign of grub activity would be heavy populations of birds feeding on the lawn, or rodent (skunk or raccoon) disturbance of the lawn.  Mole activity, however, does not necessarily mean that there is a grub
                             problem.  Early treatment is the most effective.
Slice seeding can often accomplish lawn restoration easily.  Our system slices through the existing lawn and plants new seed directly into the soil, eliminating other costly processes.
 
SEPTEMBER IS THE MONTH TO COMPLETE LAWN RENOVATIONS AND SEED.

Late summer, early fall is the most ideal time to seed and repair your lawn.  The five heat waves, and lack of rain this year has taken a toll on lawns.  Even lawns that were watered regularly during the summer were stressed and showed signs of damage from heat and/or diseases.  The good news is most damage should recover.  However, if seeding is needed, it usually is a very simple and cost effective process.  Tilling and cultivating are not recommended.  A "slit seeding" or "overseeding" will usually perform well under most conditions.  This is a process where the seed is installed through the existing lawn by slicing through the soil and dropping seed into the rows and soil.  It may not be necessary to install topsoil (loam) to accomplish repairs.  Evaluation of existing conditions is recommended.  If the thatch layer is too thick, it may be necessary to strip the existing lawn out in order to achieve seed contact with the soil.  Checking the thatch is always recommended.  As with any seeding, keeping the new seed bed moist is important.  Multiple light waterings per day may be required.  As the seed develops, watering should be modified to reduce the frequency and increase the depth.  Upon completion of seed development, watering should be done in the early morning before sun rise.  The variety of seed used is critical.  There are many seed varieties available.  The best recommendation is to use a blend consisting of Kentucky Bluegrass, fescues and perennial rye grass.  Avoid annual rye, cheap rye grasses and tall fescue varieties.  A routine, balanced fertilizer program, along with lime and aeration are important maintenance factors to guarantee success for any seeding!  DO NOT apply weed or crabgrass controls when seeding, or wait at least three to four weeks if treatments have been applied, before seeding.

 

 DOWNY MILDEW INFECTS IMPATIENTS!

For the first time in 2011, and again in 2012 Impatients (excludes New Guinea) have been infected with a disease called "Downy Mildew". The symptoms can vary from foliage turning slightly yellow, leaves wilting or curling, and total leaf loss. As the disease progresses, the leaves and flowers will drop, leaving bare stems. Unfortunately, Downy Mildew can spread from the wind, water splash, or when infected plants are removed from their planting area. It is recommended that infected plants, along with their roots and soil be pulled out and bagged so further contamination can be contained. Fungicide treatments to these infected areas have proved unsuccessful. New Guinea inpatients, coleus, and begonias should be considered as planting alternatives for these infected areas in the future.

 More information is available at: 

 www.extension.umass.edu/landscape/sites/landscape/files/publications/impatiens_downy_mildew.pdf

  

 

TO DO'S IN SEPTEMBER:

 

WEED CONTROL - 

*Discontinue crabgrass and other annual grass weed controls; they will die as cool weather and
  frosts occur.

* Fall is a great time to control other broadleaf weeds in lawns and planting beds, including

  weeds like ground ivy and violets.

 

* AERATION - fall is the best time to aerate your lawn.  Core aeration will remove small plugs from

  the  soil, allowing air, water and nutrients to enter the root zone.  This beneficial practice will provide

  thatch control, help prevent diseases, allow lawn to spread and thicken, as well as provide for a

  deep strong root system.

Aeration is one of the most important services for your lawn.  Be sure to schedule this fall!

 

* SPRINKLER WINTERIZATION - Now is the time to be sure your

  sprinkler winterization service is scheduled.  Be sure to contact our

  office to schedule this important service if you have not done so!

  We will be beginning this service in early October.

 

SHRUBS AND TREES -

* Treat any insect activity on your shrubs and trees.

 

* Trim your shrubs and ornamentals before winter.  Arborvitae

  hedges should be trimmed to eliminate top growth, which can be

  a problem with heavy snow loads and ice this winter.  In addition,

  trimming your plants will make them healthier and stronger!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SEPTEMBER IS OFFICIALLY "APPLE MONTH"

Governor Deval L. Patrick has proclaimed the month of September "Apple Month".  Governor Patrick feels it is appropriate to recognize the contributions of our apple and fruit growers in Massachusetts.  These hard working individuals consistently meet the demands of consumers by providing a wide variety of fresh, locally produced, environmentally safe and high quality foods to the residents of Massachusetts.  Apple growers preserve the open spaces of apple orchards and provide families with opportunities to enjoy the outdoors and engage in the treasured activity of apple picking.  Therefore, it is appropriate to share this BAKED STUFFED APPLE recipe with you!

 

4 McIntosh Apples

1/2 Lemon

4 Tablespoons Butter, softened

3/4 Cup Whole-grain cereal with dried fruit (recommend Mueslik)

2 Tablespoons Dark Brown Sugar

1/4 cup chopped walnuts

Vanilla ice cream (optional)

 

Heat oven to 425 degrees.

 

Trim the tops of the apples and scoop out the center core and the seeds of each.  Rub the sides and exposed edges of each apple with the lemon.  In a medium bowl, combine the butter, cereal, sugar and walnuts.   Fill each apple's center with the mixture.  Set the apples upright in muffin tins and bake until tender and bubbly, about 20 minutes.  Transfer to serving bowls, top with ice cream and serve hot.  Enjoy!!

When all is said and done, this summer has been tough on everyone and everything, especially  our lawns.  I ask that you be patient and rely on us to continue to provide you with the best possible products and services for your lawn.  Unfortunately, Mother Nature always has the upper hand.  The good news is, healthy lawns will bounce back and recover!  Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any quiestions or concerns. 
 
Sincerely,


Gary Courchesne
G & H Landscaping, Inc.
Copyright 2012. G & H Landscaping, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
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