What to Expect When Your Warm-Season Lawn Goes Dormant

Tiger StripesWith the cold weather here to stay, you might start to notice the frigid temperatures affecting your grass. So, what exactly does it mean for your lawn when it goes dormant? First things first, there’s no need to worry. If you’re in the Atlanta area, let Simply Green Lawn Care give you the inside scoop into how to care for your dormant lawn.

Tiger Striping and Browning

When the weather turns cold, your grass will go dormant. This essentially means it’ll stop growing but it is still living. Eventually, the entire lawn will turn brown. But first, you might see what we call tiger striping. This is when sections of grass turn brown while others are still green. This is a very normal part of the process and is nothing to get concerned about.

Avoid Heavy Traffic

Dormant lawns can handle some traffic and will even tolerate being walked on in a moderate amount. But just remember that the heavier the traffic is on your lawn during dormancy, the longer it will take for the bright, vibrant green to come back when the weather warms back up.

Don’t Stop Caring for Your Lawn

If your grass needs to be cut, keep cutting it. You want to make sure you don’t cut it too short so it can properly insulate itself during cold spells, though. A lawn care professional like Simply Green can keep an eye on things and let you know when the time is right for a cut, especially after the use of pre-emergent or fertilizer, which change the needs of your grass.

To find out more, give us a call today. We’d be happy to come out and see what’s going on in your yard!

What Should I do with Fall Leaves?

Close-up of yellow fall leavesFall is finally here! But with the respite from hot Georgia weather comes piles of fall leaves. Depending on how many trees you have in your yard, this can be a real problem. How can you get rid of fall leaves? Read on to find out!

  • Compost – Composting is a wonderfully environmentally friendly way to get rid of leaves. A good compost requires both carbon (or “brown”) ingredients along with green ones. Dried leaves make a great carbon for composting. Shredding the leaves will make them compost quicker, but this step generally isn’t necessary.
  • Insulation – Leaves can make great insulation for plants. Encircle your fragile plant with wire fencing (chicken wire works great) and fill the space with dry leaves. This can also work with container plants.
  • Mulch – Dried leaves can also make a great mulch (just make sure you’re mulching the right way). The easiest way to mulch your yard with leaves is by running the lawn mower over the leaves and spreading out the leaf clippings. Please note that this only works with relatively small amounts of leaves. Too many leaf clippings can block sunlight from reaching your grass, resulting in damage to your lawn.
  • Family Fun – Okay, it may not be the #1 choice for your lawn, but while you’re raking up those leaves for compost or mulch, take a moment to play in the pile. After all, a pristine lawn is the perfect space to have fun with your family this fall!

When caring for your lawn, Simply Green strive to exceed your expectations every time. For professional Atlanta lawn care services, contact us at 770-923-0387 today!

Get the Most Out of Your Sprinkler System

Sprinkler spraying water on plantsYour sprinkler system is a crucial part of your landscaping. A properly installed (and maintained) sprinkler system allows you to conveniently irrigate your grass, shrubbery, and trees. Keep your sprinkler system in good shape with these sprinkler system tips from Simply Green Lawn Care.

  • Regular Sprinkler Maintenance – Regularly check to make sure all sprinkler heads are unblocked and are pointed in the proper directions. Also, always be on the lookout for soggy areas of your yard, as this could be a sign of a broken line or leak. You certainly don’t want to pay for extra water that’s only going to damage your plants and lawn.
  • Prep for the Cold Season – It’s important to prepare your system for cold weather. Freezing lines can easily burst in the winter months, resulting in costly repairs. Avoid this by emptying your system and turning it off during winter months when not in use.
  • Don’t Overwater – Overwatering is a waste of money, and it can damage your plants and errode your yard. In addition to being mindful of how much you’re using your sprinkler system, you also need to keep your gutters and downspouts clean. If your gutters are obstructed, overflow from your roof (combined with regular watering) can result in an overwatered lawn. Hydretain is also a huge help with preventing overwatering.
  • Use Hydretain! Hydretain is a new kind of soil treatment. With Hydretain, landscape watering requirements can be reduced by up to 50%, all while decreasing fungus and disease. Hydretain absorbs and stores water, making your watering more efficient.

Call us at 770-923-0387 for more information about Hydretain, to schedule a water management treatment, or for any other Atlanta lawn care services!

Mulching the Right Way

Close-up of wood chip mulchMulching is important. Proper mulching can help fight weeds and reduce soil erosion. Mulching is also important for the health of many plants. Mulch helps preserve soil moisture, keeps plant cool in the summer and warm in the winter, and can even lead to better aerated soil.

However, if laid incorrectly mulch can damage your plants. Here’s are three tips to correctly use mulch:

  1. Use the right amount. Different plants need different conditions to thrive. Often three inches is required for best results, but this entirely depends on your plants. New beds should have between two and four inches of mulch. However, perennials often only need one or two inches, while most annuals do best with around one inch.
  2. Avoid mulch build-ups. Too much mulch at the base of plants may cause bark decay. It’s important to not use so much mulch that your plants rot. Build-ups can also accidentally create homes for rodents, snakes, and other pests. It’s very important to make sure you don’t over mulch your area.
  3. Consider mulch additives. During the spring and fall months, it might be a good idea to add a pre-emergence herbicide to your mulch. This step can help reduce summer and winter weeds from overtaking your beds.

As you can see, there are a lot of important things to consider when mulching. Knowing how to use mulch (and getting it right the first time) is imperative for the health of your plants. If you want help keeping your Atlanta residential or commercial lawn healthy and looking great all year, then contact us today at 770-923-0387.

Ways to Prevent Invasive Winter Weeds

Droplets of water on healthy green grassHere in Atlanta, we have the perfect conditions for so many weeds to thrive. Many winter weeds, such as annual bluegrass, can become a real problem. Thankfully, fall is the perfect time to begin treating for winter weeds.

Preventative Winter Weeds Treatment

During the fall months, we find that putting down pre-emergent goes a long way to help prevent invasive winter weeds. Pre-emergent fights weeds before they have a chance to germinate. By inhibiting a key enzyme, pre-emergent can stop weeds while they’re still seeds.

Right now is the perfect time to start fighting these winter weeds because they likely haven’t had time to establish themselves in your yard. If you wait just a couple more months, you’re likely to be fighting an uphill battle, so act now!

Spot Treatments

Aside from pre-emergent, this is one of the most important things you can do for your yard to fight weeds. By directly targeting the weeds that are already present, we can stop weeds before they have a foothold on your yard. Make sure to kill these weeds now before they take over.

Lawn Care

One the best ways to fight weeds is to make sure you have a healthy lawn. The stronger and healthier your grass is, the harder it is for weeds to take over. Regular fertilization can help your grass become more resistant to invaders. Likewise, mowing your yard at the proper height is very important. Many people cut their grass too low, creating thinner spots in their lawns. Not only does this look worse, but it also makes room for weeds to grow. When at the proper height, your grass itself can help shade the soil, preventing weeds from getting the light they need to thrive.

Right now new customers can get their first application for only $25.00 when you join our lawn care program! So take steps now to fight winter weeds in Atlanta and enjoy the beautiful, healthy lawn you’ve always wanted.

5 Low-Maintenance Plants to Beautify Your Landscape

Pink Crape Myrtle flowers in bloomLooking for low-maintenance plants to beautify your Atlanta landscaping? Thankfully, our warm weather provides ideal conditions for lots of good Georgia landscaping plants. Here are a few of our favorite easy to care for plants that thrive in Georgia:

  1. Crape Myrtle – Crape Myrtles are known for their beautiful and long-lasting summer flowers. Flower colors range from white to a deep purple or red. Plus, various species of crape myrtles make for great shrub borders, screens, or even container plants.
  2. Japanese Maple – This small tree, also known as Acer Palmatum, can grow to around 15-20 feet tall, with a nice, broad spread of roughly 10-15 feet wide. Japanese maples are known for their beautiful green and red foliage.
  3. Hydrangea – This shrub produces large, elegant globes of flowers. These blue to purple flowers bloom during summer and spring months, adding beautiful pops of color to your landscaping.
  4. Witch Hazel – These shrubs feature abundant flowers. The flowers themselves range in color from blue to lavender, bright pink to rose, as well as a cool white. Sometimes, these colors can all bloom at the same time, even from the same plant, since the petals’ color is determined by soil pH!
  5. Camellia – This compact, evergreen shrub sports white to red shades that can bloom from fall to spring. Camellias require little effort to thrive and make excellent container plants.

Of course, not all plants are easy to maintain, and even the lowest maintenance plants can require professional care from time to time. If you’re ready to get your Atlanta lawn looking great, or if your plants and shrubs need a little extra attention, then contact Simply Green Lawn Care. We offer plant health care and tree services to keep your landscaping healthy and looking great all year!

5 Natural Bug-Repellent Plants to Grow in Your Yard

purple petunias in bloomWe all know how much of a hassle mosquitoes can be here in Georgia. Thankfully, there are some great plants and flowers that mosquitoes hate. Here are 5 natural bug-repellent plants to grow in your backyard or garden:

  • Lavender – Lavender repels just about every bug except for bees. Plus it has the added benefit of smelling wonderful! You can also dry some clippings from your lavender plant to hang inside to keep away moths and other indoor pests.
  • Petunias – Petunias are a great way to add some color to your yard while repelling pests. Their flowers have a slight licorice scent that aphids, hornworms, and squash bugs hate.
  • Garlic – It tastes delicious and bugs hate it! This is a great plant to add to a garden to keep mosquitoes and other insects away.
  • Basil – Mosquitoes and flies hate the smell of basil. This makes it a great plant to add to an herb garden. It can also do well in a container, so it can be a nice aromatic addition to a porch or seating area. And of course, it tastes great too!
  • Lemon Balm – Lemon balm has a citrusy lemon scent with a hint of mint. Mosquitoes hate lemon balm but butterflies and bees love it! This plant can spread like a weed, so keep this one in a pot to avoid it taking over your yard.

If you’re looking for Atlanta lawn care or landscaping then contact Simply Green Lawn Care today at 770-923-0387 or request a free estimate and lawn analysis!

Rescue Your Fescue With This Pro Lawn Care Tip

autumn leaves on grassThey don’t call it “Hotlanta” for nothing! Those blazing hot summer days have done a number on most of the fescue lawns in the Atlanta area, but as fall draws closer, you can take steps to prepare for a lush lawn next year.

So what’s the secret to a healthy, thriving fescue lawn next spring? The answer has two parts: core aeration and over-seeding.

Core Aeration

Core aeration helps oxygen get to the roots of your existing fescue lawn and reduces the soil and thatch compaction that can develop over time. This alone is reason enough to call us to schedule your core aeration for September, but aeration is even better when accompanied by another important fall lawn service:

Fescue Overseeding

By timing the overseeding of your lawn with an aeration treatment, you’ll maximize the amount of soil the seeds are exposed to, ensuring more take root and sprout into healthy, full grass next season. Overseeding will help your lawn recover from the natural thinning of hot, dry summer weather and ensure your lawn looks great next year.

Increasing the density of your turf is not only aesthetic, it also improves the health and hardiness of your lawn, helping it to withstand pests or diseases in the future.

We take pride in providing you with the best quality lawn care in Atlanta, with lawn services that not only give you a better-looking yard but also improve the health of your lawn. Call or contact us today to schedule your lawn aeration and overseeding this fall!

3 Reasons to Love Your Lawn

beautiful lawnEveryone loves a lush, green yard but did you know that your lawn is packed with a bunch of benefits that go way beyond looks? At Simply Green Lawn, we want to keep you in the loop. Check out some of these cool perks of having a natural grass lawn.

Clean Air to Spare

Each blade of grass in your yard pulls in used, polluted air and pushes out fresh, pure oxygen. Now think about the millions of blades of grass in your lawn working together. The result is pretty amazing! 2,500 square feet of natural grass can clean up to 300 pounds of carbon out of the air every year, producing cleaner air for you and your family to breathe.

Don’t Run Away From Runoff

A natural turf lawn reduces pollutants from slipping through the soil into groundwater. It can also help to absorb and redirect excess rainwater. This means you’re helping to keep flooding and harmful runoff under control just by having a nice yard!

Beat the Heat

Have you ever stood in the middle of a parking lot on a hot Atlanta summer day and thought your shoes might melt to the pavement? Now think about if you’ve ever had that feeling while you’re standing on a soccer field. Grass absorbs heat, keeping the surrounding area 14 degrees cooler than bare soil and a whopping 30 degrees cooler than asphalt. So, the next time you want to cool off, try heading to the park and finding some grass under a shade tree!

Want to find out more benefits of natural grass around your home or business? Check out what we have to offer here at Simply Green Lawn Care Plus in Atlanta, GA!

Conserve Water with a Home-Made Rain Barrel!

rain dropsWater is easily one of the earth’s most important commodities, and our consumption keeps rising while reservoirs are sucked dry. This means that water conservation should be on everyone’s to-do list. But don’t worry, there’s an easy way to conserve water at home. Start collecting rain water!

Rain barrels have been used for a long time and they’re starting to make a comeback in cities like Atlanta. At Simply Green, we couldn’t be happier to see it, either. Follow this quick guide to make your own water barrel system at home.

Making a Rain Water Collection System

To start, you’ll need a rain barrel. This can be an old wooden cask, a 55-gallon drum, or any large barrel. There are quite a few places right here in Atlanta that sell rain barrels. You’ll also need a half inch spigot with metal and rubber washers.

The first thing you want to do is place your barrel on a level, raised platform. Position your barrel on top of the platform and under a downspout. The height of the platform is up to you, just make sure there’s enough clearance for a water pail to fit under the spigot.

Next, drill a half-inch hole an inch from the bottom of your barrel. Connect your spigot and tighten up the washers so water can’t leak out. Then you’ll need to add your filter to stop debris from falling into your barrel. You can also add a screen onto your gutters as an extra filter.

Sit Back and Wait for the Rain!

That’s about it! Now you’re ready to water your veggies and flowers. This simple addition, along with Simply Green’s Hydretain program, can save you buckets on your water bill and reduce your water consumption immensely. So, go ahead and give it a shot. And feel free to give us a call for more information!