Paradise Landscape and Hardscape is a full-service lawn care company in Annapolis. We offer professional landscape maintenance and lawn care services such as weekly lawn care services, customized fertilization programs, aeration, seeding, thatching, sod installation and complete lawn restoration to residential customers as well as commercial clients. Call us at (443) 808-0885 for more information!

Lawns can become vulnerable to pests and diseases for many reasons, including restricted air movement, poor drainage, a lack or excess of nutrients, and incorrect soil pH. There are also some grass species that are more susceptible, and some weather conditions that are simply more favorable for attack. Prevention is better than cure, and with limited chemical treatments available to the amateur it is best to try to reduce the risk of pest and lawn diseases where possible. Call Team Paradise today! We can help with regular mowing to help keep your grass healthy and strong, while removing the clippings helps to prevent a build-up of fungal spores. Avoid high nitrogen feeds during the fall — this encourages long, lush growth that is more susceptible to snow mold, rust, and other fungal diseases.

1. Slime Mold
Commonly found in late summer and fall, slime molds don’t actually cause harm to the grass, although they are unsightly and unpleasant if sat on. There isn’t a cure for the problem, although regular aeration and scarifying reduce the risk of most fungi on the lawn. They can be removed immediately by spraying with a jet of water.

2. Red Thread
Probably the most common lawn disease, red thread causes patches of red-tinged grass, which turn brown and die back. It is often associated with nitrogen deficiency, so feed the lawn with ammonium sulfate as soon as symptoms are spotted; it is usually worst after wet summers and falls. Regularly aerate and scarify to improve air circulation.

3. Rust
This disease can spread rapidly through a lawn, creating yellow patches. Up close, rusty orange pustules can be seen on the grass blades. No chemical control is available, but regular mowing and the removal of clippings will prevent it from spreading. Avoid using high nitrogen fertilizers in the fall. This can cause lank growth, which is more susceptible to disease.

4. Snow Mold (Fusarium patch)
Most commonly seen in the fall or after snow, this fungal disease appears as yellow or brownish patches on the lawn, occasionally with a layer of white or sometimes pink mold that looks similar to cobwebs. Patches can spread rapidly and destroy a lawn. Scarification can help reduce the risk, as can avoiding high nitrogen feeds in the fall.

5. Ant Nests
Ant hills look ugly on a lawn, and if they cannot be tolerated, consider using the nematode Steinernema feltiae as a biological control, which is available from mail order companies. The commercial ant powders and sprays available for controlling ants are usually for use in buildings and not effective outdoors where ant nests can be deep in the soil.

6. Chafer Grubs
These unattractive grubs are the larvae of the chafer beetle and cause problems not only because they feed on grass roots but also because creatures such as badgers and birds often tear the lawn up in order to eat them. Biological control involves watering in nematodes, which are available by mail order, although chemical controls are also available.

7. Fairy Rings
These often appear as irregular dead circles in the lawn or as a ring of toadstools. Effective chemical controls are only available to professionals, so the only possible solution, which is not always feasible, is to dig out the affected area to a depth of 12 inches (30 cm) and replace it with healthy topsoil before seeding or turfing the surface.

8. Leatherjackets
These are the larval stage of crane flies, or daddy longlegs, and cause yellow or brown patches on the lawn surface as they eat through the roots below. To make it worse, birds may tear up the lawn as they attempt to dig down and feed on the larvae. To control, cover the lawn with plastic to draw the larvae to the surface, and then allow the birds to feed on them.

9. Moles
The underground tunneling of moles as they search for worms and grubs leads to the creation of mole hills when the soil is deposited on the surface of the lawn. This makes mowing difficult, creates bare soil for weeds to germinate in, and destabilizes the lawn. Placing mole traps in the tunnels is the only effective method of control.

10. Worm Casts
The casts left by worms on the lawn surface are an unsightly mess. They should be brushed off when dry or otherwise they will be smeared during mowing, and this kills the grass underneath them, leaving bare soil for weeds to germinate in. Don’t overwater a lawn since worms love moist conditions. Use a switch regularly to remove excess moisture.

Source: HGTV

Occasionally a plant will die in the garden. Sometimes the reason is readily apparent, such as an attack by pests or diseases. Or maybe the plant had been set in unsuitable conditions — like a sun-loving plant in shade. Or perhaps the plant wasn’t hardy in that zone.

Yet in most cases, the cause can be traced to a lack of water, and that can be the problem even if you have an automatic irrigation system. Because as good as these systems are, they aren’t perfect. For example, one of the lines might break, and you might not notice the problem until it’s too late. Or, the lines may be in good shape and the emitters work perfectly, but the water coverage is inadequate. Or, a plant may have grown to the point where it’s blocking the spray of water from the emitter. As a result, the surrounding plants are getting plenty of water, but certain plants never do.

The lesson to be learned here is simple: Don’t expect automatic irrigation systems to automatically solve your plants’ irrigation needs. Inspect your system routinely for changes in water pressure due to damaged lines or faulty valves. Examine heads and emitters, which can become clogged by debris. Take the time to actually watch the system at work. Avoid Watering Problems with Irrigation and call us today!

A thriving lawn makes a wonderful foil for flower borders and creates an emerald focal point in winter when color is in short supply. There are different types of turf for different situations but all lawns benefit from regular mowing, and care and attention in the spring and autumn. Paradise Landscape & Hardscape can help take the dirty work out of your routine so you have time to enjoy your life a little more. We can go maintenance lawn care plan with you to help create a yard that you’re neighbors are sure to be eyeing! Call us today to learn more and we can help you with a tailored program that fits your needs!

A healthy tailored lawn program may include:

• Lawn Analysis to help tailor a plan to meet your lawn’s needs
• Proactive services during key stages throughout the year
• Fertilization
• Weed control
• Protection against lawn damaging insects or fungus

TIPS FOR A HEALTHY YARD:

Mowing – All Lawns Benefit from Regular Mowing:
Mow grass whenever it is growing, provided the ground isn’t too wet or icy to walk on. In spring, mow once a week with the blades at their highest setting, and gradually lower them as growth accelerates. Use a box to collect the clippings, which can be composted, or use a “mulching mower” which doesn’t remove the grass but chops it into fine pieces, returning nutrients to the lawn. Rake off thick patches of clippings, which will damage the turf. In summer, a high-quality lawn may need cutting three times a week, but in autumn, as growth slows, once or twice a week should suffice.

Watering – Water in Morning
In dry periods, water newly laid turf, freshly sown areas, and high-quality lawns. Leave established lawns unwatered, but stop mowing because longer grass helps protect the roots. The grass may turn brown, but will recover once it rains. Water a new lawn every week in dry spells, until it is established. You can tell when fine lawns need watering because they lose their spring when walked on. Reduce water evaporation by using sprinklers early in the morning or at night. Move seep hoses by 8 inches every half hour.

Feeding – Divide the lawn into a grid of yard squares using stakes.
The amount of fertilizer you need to maintain lush green grass depends on how rich the underlying soil is, and if you occasionally leave the clippings on the lawn, which help top up the soil nutrients. Apply granular or liquid lawn fertilizer at least once a year. Spring and early summer feeds are high in nitrogen to boost leaf growth; products for use in early autumn are low in nitrogen but high in potassium to aid grass roots in winter. Do not overfeed because it can result in weak growth and fungal problems. Divide the lawn into a grid of yard squares using stakes. Apply fertilizer at the rate according to the package. Rent a calibrated spreader for large lawns, and water if it doesn’t rain within three days after feeding.

Weeding Options – Apply a lawn weedkiller in spring or summer.
Acidic lawns are prone to moss and weed growth. Check soil pH in winter, and raise it by applying ground chalk or limestone at a rate of 2 ounces per 10 square foot. Apply a lawn weedkiller in spring or summer, and repeat in early autumn. Organic gardeners can grub out creeping buttercups, daisies, and tap-rooted weeds, like dandelions, using an old knife.