A Full Service Lawn Care, Landscaping and Irrigation Company
 

                   WE DO IT ALL. . .

MAY 2013 

 

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MAY 2013 NEWSLETTER

Well, we finally made it!  Spring is here and the Sunny skies are lighting up the days.  Although April into May has been dry, we are finally getting some badly needed rainfall! We have no idea what Mother Nature has is store for us this season. There are times when she provides challenges for us, and we become frustrated with the result of our hard efforts in trying to maintain a beautiful and manicured landscape.  So, here are a few important things that you can do to assure you are doing your part... 

 

MOWER MAINTENANCE...

 

At the start of the season, usually spring, there are four main areas to focus on when it comes to lawn mower maintenance:

 

  1. CHANGE OIL: Even if you don't think it needs it, do it! The oil should be changed at the beginning of every season. Over the course of the cutting season, dirt and other impurities will collect in the oil and those things will ruin an engine. Check your mower's owner's manual for the proper procedure.

    2. CLEAN AIR FILTER: If the filter in your mower is an accordion-style paper

        type, simply remove the filter cover and blow out all the debris with the

        high-pressure air hose. If the filter is made from foam, wash it in a water

        and detergent solution, let it dry, and apply a few drops of oil to it. In some

        rare cases you may have to replace the filter, but most of the time, a

        simple cleaning will do.

 

  1. CHANGE SPARK PLUG: The little space at the end of the plug where the metal end bends at a 90 degree angle is called the gap. Many manufacturers are now packaging new plugs with the gap pre-set, so it is fairly simple as removing the old and installing the new. However, it is a good idea to double-check the gap with an inexpensive spark plug gap tool just in case. Yes, it is a good idea to change the plug every year so you're starting every cutting season with a new spark plug.

 

  1. LAWN MOWER BLADES: Sharpening lawn mower blades is important. Clean cuts promote a better grass health. A dull blade rips the grass, increasing its exposure to grass diseases. It takes a little more effort to care for lawn mower blades and it should be performed prior to the first cutting, and then monthly thereafter. Removal, sharpening and replacing should be done before the first mowing. Before removing the blade, be sure to detach the spark plug wire to prevent the mower from accidently starting. Tilt the mower up and use a wrench to loosen the bolt that holds the blade on by turning it counter clockwise. Sharpening a blade can be done with a metal file, sharpening stone, or a motorized grinder. Whatever method you choose, follow the existing beveled edge on the blade by passing the file over the blade in the same direction each time. Using a small grinding attachment for your cordless drill can be an easy, effective way to sharpen your mower blades. Simply place the blade in a bench vice and you can hone the edge without a problem.
 

CALL BEFORE CUSTOMERS

 

It has come to our attention that the need for "CALL BEFORE'S" is slowing our production down, and making it difficult to service our customers in the most cost effective and time efficient manner. After surveying several of our customers, we found that they were under the impression that they needed to be at home when we performed a service at their residence. For the most part, this is not the case. In our busy lives of today, we are having a difficult time contacting and scheduling many of your time sensitive services due to people being at work or not at home when we are in their neighborhood. In an effort to try and not add a fee to all call before services, we are asking that if you do not absolutely need to be called before any given service, PLEASE call our office, send us an e-mail, or let one of our technicians know, that we can remove you from the call before list. We will always leave you the required information to let you know what service has been performed. We thank you for your

cooperation in this matter!

 

  
                     
LAWN FERTILIZER PROGRAM(S)

 

It's NOT too late to think about your lawn fertilizer program for the 2013 season. NOW is the time to apply crabgrass preventative!  A quality lawn care fertilizer program not only keeps your lawn healthy and looking great throughout the season, but it will protect your investment by providing the balanced nutrients along with weed and insect controls that it needs. Please find our lineup of "PROGRAMS" and related services outlined below. We use only the highest quality products, which are applied by our licensed and certified technicians. Our programs are competitively priced.
CALL US TODAY FOR YOUR PRICE QUOTE!
OUR CUSTOM LAWN FERTILIZER PROGRAMS >>
"GOLD PLUS" LAWN CARE PROGRAM
Our "basic" program, which includes: 5 applications of balanced fertilizer; pre and post emergent crabgrass controls; nutsedge control; broadleaf weed control and surface insect control.
(This is a great program, with budget in mind.)
"GOLD 5" LAWN CARE PROGRAM
Our "best value" program, which includes: 5 applications of balanced fertilizer; pre and post emergent crabgrass controls; nutsedge control; broadleaf weed control and surface insect control, plus the added protection of preventative and curative grub control! (This program is recommended if you have a history of grub problems, offering the best value.)
"PLATINUM 7" LAWN CARE PROGRAM
Our "premium" program, new for 2013! Offering: 7 site visits per year, including 6 applications of balanced fertilizer; pre and post emergent crabgrass controls; nutsedge control; broadleaf weed control and surface insect control, plus the added protection of preventative and curative grub control and disease control as needed!
(This program is our "all inclusive", without the cost of paying extra for grub and/or disease control applications.)
OTHER IMPORTANT LAWN CARE SERVICES - Lime and Aeration.

   
LAWN MOWING TIPS:
These tips will help keep your lawn looking great!

 

 

...DON'T CUT WET GRASS:  Wet grass will clog your machine and leave clumps of grass all over the yard.  Wet grass tears and rips and won't cut easily.

 

...DON'T MOW IN THE SAME DIRECTION:  Cutting your lawn from north to south one time and east to west the following time will prevent ruts and will allow the grass to grow thicker.

 

...USE A GRASS CATCHER:  For the first and last mowing of the season use a grass catcher to pick-up the clippings.  Using the mulching feature will reduce your yard waste and put valuable nutrients back into the soil.

 

...GRASS MOWING HEIGHT:  The ideal mowing height is between 2 ½ to 3 inches tall in the Spring, and 3 to 3 1/2 inches in the Summer.  Don't always assume the numbers on your mower represent an accurate height measurements.  To obtain a height measurement, simply mow a small sample area, then measure the height.  Adjust up or down to obtain the proper mowing height.  Remember to record these settings for future use during seasonal mowing height changes.

 

...KEEP MOWER BLADE SHARP:  It is recommended to sharpen your blade(s) monthly for

best results, and to keep your lawn from being ripped and torn by a dull mower blade! 

  
TICK CONTROL PROGRAM
 
Ticks and fleas can have a considerable impact on the health and well-being of your family and pets, and can invade your home's interior. These disease carrying insects can safely and easily be controlled.  We are now offering plans that will help keep these pests controlled throughout your lawn and garden areas.  In addition, it is recommended to apply an insect repellant containing "DEET", and labeled for ticks and fleas.
 
Call us today for more information and program pricing!
Red Thread Disease 
OTHER PROBLEMS TO BE ON THE LOOK OUT FOR...
  
** Be on the look out for chewing insects on
    shrubs, flower and trees.  Continue with a
    shrub and tree care program.
** Lawn diseases will start be more damaging as the
    humidity increases, especially if you are over watering.
    Treating your lawn with a disease control might be recommended if the
    disease is severe enough.  (Red thread and leaf spot are common late
    spring, early summer disease problems.
** Weeds can be controlled easily now. Avoid weed controls when the
    temperature is above 80-85 degrees!  Also, avoid weed and crabgrass
    controls if seeding or sodding.  Weeds will have to be treated later in
    the season.
** Delay planting annuals,bedding plants and vegetables until threat of
    frost is over.  You can purchase early, but do not plant until weather
    remains consistently mild.  Usually third to last week of May.
SPRINKLER SYSTEM SERVICE AND START UP...
  

THE IMPORTANCE OF SPRINKLER SYSTEM START-UP SERVICE

 

Your sprinkler system is made up of both electrical and plumbing parts that need to be maintained. A finely tuned system will keep your landscape healthy all year, deliver water in an efficient and cost effective manner, and conserve H2O. Below are a few steps that you should be following to keep your system working properly for years to come. Please feel free to call us if we can add you to our Sprinkler Start-up service.

 

..Check all valves and electrical connections between controller and valves.

..Program controller and replace a memory battery if needed.

..Examine backflow device

..Check sprinkler system for efficient coverage of your landscape.

  As landscapes mature sprinkler heads may need to be moved, added, or

  shut-off. The nozzles in the sprinkler head may need to be increased or

  reduced.

  RECIPE OF THE MONTH...

(Sorry there was no recipe in April!  Donna, our recipe contributor, was under the weather and not able to provide one for that month.  She is feeling better now, so hopefully, we are back in business now.  Many of our readers were disappointed and missed the recipe.)

 

SUNNY SKILLET BREAKFAST

 

3 Cups firmly packed shredded potatoes(store bought or homemade)

1 Tbsp butter

2 Tbsp vegetable oil

1 small red bell pepper, diced

1 medium onion, diced

1 garlic clove, pressed or finely chopped

¾ tsp salt, divided

6 large eggs

¼ tsp pepper

 

Preheat oven 350 degrees. Melt butter with oil in a 10 inch cast-iron skillet over medium heat. Add bell pepper and onion, and sauté 3 to 5 minutes or until tender. Add garlic and sauté additional minute. Stir in potatoes and ½ tsp salt cooking until potatoes are golden and tender approx. 10 minutes. Remove from heat and make 6 indentations in the potato mixture, using back of a spoon. Break one egg into each indentation, sprinkle with remaining salt and pepper. Bake 12 to 14 minutes or until eggs are set or cooked to you liking. Serve immediately.

  
OFFICE MANAGER PROMOTION
 
We are happy to announce that Julie Godin, who has been part of our office team since 2010, and obviously, an avid Red Sox fan, has been promoted to "Office Manager" effective April 2013.  Congratulations Julie, and welcome to the management team!  Julie can be reached at extension 110.
Donna, previous office manager, would like to thank our customers, vendors and co-workers for their care, concern and support as she recovers from her recent illness. She will return to accounts payable position, and of course, recipe contributor for our newsletter.
E-MAIL, E-MAIL, E-MAIL....
  
Please share this newsletter with your friends and family.  Send us their email and we can put them on our mailing list, or you can forward this newsletter to them.
 
If you would like to share any tips, ideas or other useful information, as well as customer testimonials about projects we have completed for you, and comments about our staff members. We always appreciate your comments.  You can send your contribution(s) to: [email protected].
CHECK OUT OUR NEW PHOTO WEBSITE!
  
    
We have posted hundreds of photos of projects we have completed over the years.  In addition, there is an album with photos of shrubs and trees.  Maybe you can add some to you landscape!
  
OUR MAIN WEBSITE, www.ghlandscaping.com  IS BEING IMPROVED AND UPDATED. WE ARE IN THE PROCESS OF CONSTRUCTING A BRAND NEW LOOK TO OUR SITE.  SHOULD BE UP AND RUNNING SOON!  WE WILL KEEP YOU POSTED.

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G&H LANDSCAPING'S MANAGEMENT TEAM, AT YOUR SERVICE
Gary L. Courchesne, Owner, Mgr.
Landscape/Hardscape/Lighting Design and Installation
413-532-4888 Ext. 113
Bill Golaski, General Mgr.
Lawn Sprinklers and Mowing & Maintenance
413-532-4888 Ext. 115
Chris Courchesne, Mgr.
Lawn Care/Fertilizer Programs/Shrub Care Programs/Lawn Installations
413-532-4888 Ext. 110
Julie Godin, Office Mgr.
Office
413-532-4888 Ext. 110
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