Gerry's Blog



Was visiting a lawn today. The customer was showing me some Quaking Aspen suckers that were coming up in her lawn. This near relative of poplars is notorious for sending up suckers from its roots. These suckers if left alone will turn into a new Quaking Aspen tree. 

In one spot, she had cut back the suckers quite often and there was a part of the root- almost a stump that was 3-4 inches across. When I looked at it, I was surprised to see a bunch of Chinch Bug nymphs crawling all around the stump

Chinch Bug Nymphs- lawn care hazard in Burlington Ontario


I suspect the chinch bugs were basking in the early morning sun. They prefer sunny spots and a piece of root that is up above the ground level is not damp and moist. And there are very few grass blades to shade it. 

So they climbed up on the piece of root to enjoy the sun. There wasn't any damage to the lawn at this point, but if there are enough nymphs, they could feed enough to damage the lawn.

Chinch bugs are a lawn care hazard. If there are enough of them, they can quickly turn a lawn brown. These little insect nymphs suck the sap from grass plants. The lawn will look like it lacks water. And since Chinch bugs are prevalent in the summer, people often just assume they haven't been watering enough. The lawn is in fact suffering from a lack of moisture, because the chinch bugs have taken a lot of it away. In time they will damage and/or kill your lawn.

Call Turf King Lawn Care Experts for chinch bug problems in Ancaster, Burlington, Caledonia and Oakville.


See the LAWN LIBRARY for more info.

Crabgrass Skeletons

When people call in the spring and say that they have crabgrass growing in their lawns already, you can be skeptical. Crabgrass is rarely seen here in Hamilton, Burlington Oakville Ontario until June. In April, you may find skeletons of old crabgrass plants that have died over the winter. Often the dead grass disintegrates and disappears. Especially in front yards where they get walked on or shoveled with the snow.

Crabgrass- a pain for Lawn Care providers in Stoney Creek

Here are some photos of some crabgrass skeletons from a backyard.

There are no easy solutions to a crabgrass problem. But crabgrass is most often found in weak areas of the lawn. So by getting your lawn healthier by seeding or by having a professional lawn care program can go a long way to reducing crabgrass

More info at LAWN LIBRARY

How to Determine If You Need a Lawn Care Professional

Author: Grant Eckert

Lawn care is simply mowing the lawn and raking the leaves, right? Who needs help with that? Lawn care is much more than that and even the mowing alone can keep a person busy during a good growing season. So, the real question becomes: "How do I know when I need a lawn care professional?"

The first and easiest indicator is the condition of your lawn. If your lawn is "getting away from you" and you simply can't keep up, a lawn care professional may be able to help. Many people work long hours at their job and by the time they make it home, mowing the lawn is the last thing on their mind. Even with newer riding lawnmowers, a decently sized lawn can still take an hour or more to mow, time that could be spent with the family or doing other odd jobs around the house.

Of course, lawn mowing is not the only concern in the lawn care arena. The overall condition of the grass is important, too. If your grass is spotty or simply not growing in areas, you may need some lawn care help. If you don't know, or care to know, the difference between Kentucky Blue Grass and Annual Ryegrass or the differences in cool season grasses and warm season grasses, you may want to get a professional to come help you select the proper grass for your particular lawn. They will have the experience and knowledge to know what type of grass is best suited for your soil content and shade level.

These professionals can also help you determine your lawn's water needs. They may be able to help you design and set up a watering system that will improve the lawn. A good sprinkler system can help keep a lawn hydrated, even during those sweltering summer months. Of course, it is also important not to drown a lawn. This is where a professional can help you by setting up a good watering schedule.

Although many lawn care professionals do not specialize in landscaping, they may be able to offer valuable insight in the selection and placement or various items on the lawn. They may be able to offer guidance on what particular plants will work well with the current structure of the lawn. They will be able to work with you to enhance the overall look and feel of the lawn by the addition of strategically placed plants and structures. They may even be able to tell you which plants will improve, or hurt, the pH of the soil you are working with, thereby preserving the beauty of the lawn.

Lawn care professionals are also very helpful when dealing with weed infestations. They often know and have available many solutions to counter the weeds. They can often stop the infestation before it gets out of hand. Bringing the lawn back to its original condition will be the goal. Nothing hurts a lawn quicker than an influx of weeds taking over. A good lawn care company can come in and take the lawn back.

Weeds are not the only dangerous infestations that may occur. Animals and insects can destroy a lawn. Knowing how to prevent this from occurring, or stopping it quickly when it does, can save a lot of stress on you and the lawn. Many times these critters go unnoticed until it is too late. Once they get a hold on the lawn, they do not want to let go. It takes some serious interventions to drive them out and reclaim the lawn. That is where the experience of lawn care professionals comes in handy. They usually have the knowledge and equipment necessary to get the job done.

Finally, there is the convenience factor. Sometimes it is nice to just relax, knowing your lawn is being taken care of. If you are going to be gone for an extended period of time, or if you have several properties, you don't have to worry about the lawn. A lawn care professional will be there to take care of it and keep it green and lush. You can enjoy the benefits of a beautiful lawn without the labour.

When deciding if a lawn care professional is needed, it is important to look at your lawn. If you have a lush, green lawn that would rival most professional sports arenas, and you enjoy spending hours mowing, then you probably do not need one. If, like most people, you struggle to find the time to keep the grass cut, let alone lush and green, then you might want to consult with a lawn care company. See what they have to offer and decide if it is right for you. A lawn care professional can make the difference between a mediocre lawn and a "Wow the neighborhood" lawn.

Grant Eckert is a freelance writer who writes about topics pertaining to home maintenance such as Lawn Service | Lawn Services

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