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Lawn Fertilization Service in Denver

Mountain High Tree, Lawn & Landscape offers Lawn Fertilizing in Denver and Lakewood areas. We offer a variety of lawn fertilization options, including organic lawn fertilization, extended release fertilization, weed control, and insect and disease control for lawns. We have programs that are just right for our high plains climate in Colorado.

If you’re looking for a lawn program discount, check out our Seasonal Specials for deals available this month, click here »

 

Colorado Lawn Care and Watering in the Fall

Denver Lawn Service

Rake up leaves regularly to keep lawn healthy.

As we enter fall, many people back off on lawn care. The summer is over, the grass is not growing as fast, and we have longer and cooler nights. We are thinking about getting kids to school, and even breaking out the skiing equipment to ready it for the snows which are only a couple of short months away.

The problem is, fall is a key time for lawn heath; ignoring it puts your grass at risk not only for the winter months but also for the following spring.

Consider what Dr. Tony Koski, Turf Specialist at Colorado State University, say about watering lawns in the fall:

“Lawn watering is often stopped in early fall. Conventional thinking is that because ET (evapo-transpiration) rates are low and the turf isn‘t growing much, it is OK to stop watering. However, historic ET and rainfall data for most of Colorado shows a need of 0.5 to 0.75 inch of irrigation per week during September and October.

While mowing isn‘t needed as frequently during fall, the turf DOES continue to grow – but in ways that differ from spring and summer. Turfgrasses form tillers (side shoots) and rhizomes that increase the density of fall turf. This is an important time for turf to “heal” after a stressful summer, especially if it has been worn down by traffic or suffered from disease or insect problems.

Fall watering is essential for late season nitrogen applications to work most effectively. Fertilizer applied to dry turf is less likely to enhance fall rooting and increase energy storage. Be sure to water in fall fertilizer applications, often considered the most important application of the year.

Fall is the best time of year to control perennial broadleaf weeds – dandelion, clover, bindweed, plantain, and thistle, to name a few. Fall herbicide applications are more effective when applied to healthy, green, actively growing weeds. The herbicide is more easily absorbed and moved to weed roots resulting in better control.

Finally, fall watering of lawns that were damaged by winter mites (clover mites, Banks grass mites) is essential for discouraging mite activity this upcoming winter and reducing potential mite problems.”

As you can see from one of the leading turf experts in not only the State of Colorado, but the entire United States, ignoring lawns in the fall is one of the worst things for grass health.

To keep your grass happy and heathy, follow these tips:

1)  Do not stop watering too early: continue to water regularly into October – this will allow the turf to recover from the summer, start to fill in damaged areas, and push back the emergence of winter mites.

2) Mow: Continue to mow as the yard needs it and keep grass length to about 2½ to 3 inches. When mowing never remove more than ⅓ of the grass blade. Cutting off too much of the blade puts the yard under a great deal of extra stress.

Lawn Fertilization3)  Fertilize: Unless you are using a slow release fertilizer that feeds the yard over the entire summer, get a fall fertilization. This will promote growth at a time when the lawn is trying to recover from the summer and build a good base for the following year.

4)  Weed:  Fall is the time to get rid of weeds. The weeds that hardened off during the heat of summer are opening up more and are easier to kill. Destroying them now, all the way down to the root level, means fewer weeds next year.

5)  Aerate: If you have a yard with high traffic, fall is a good time to aerate to relieve the soil compaction. Compacted soil prevents moisture and nutrients from getting to the roots and prevents the roots from breathing. Grass trying to grow in highly compacted soil cannot recover properly.

As always the Lawn Care department at Mountain High is here to help keep your turf healthy. Never hesitate to contact us at 303.232.0666 send us an estimate request below to get on one of our fine lawn care programs:

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Conserve: Monthly Watering Tips for Denver Lawns

August 2014  Recent rains have been good for our yards and wallets. Remember to adjust your sprinklers according to the weather – if it rains, skip a day of watering.

Remember, choose any two days to water, and if it’s dry, add a third day. Here are the recommended watering times for August:

Denver Lawn Fertilization and Watering

Other Tips:

Maintain and adjust your sprinkler system to ensure you are watering efficiently. At least once a month after mowing, test each irrigation zone to make sure everything is functioning properly and that the lawnmower hasn’t knocked any heads out of alignment.

Learn more at:
http://www.denverwater.org/Conservation/TipsTools/Outdoor/WateringYourLawn/

It’s not too late to earn a rebate by installing a weather-based smart controller.
Learn more at: http://www.denverwater.org/Conservation/Rebates/

Thanks for continuing to use only what your landscape needs!

Is there a reason my lawn is turning brown in Denver?

The simple answer is…. grass turns brown when the roots can no longer absorb nutrients or water from the soil, or when the soil doesn’t contain enough food or water. There are several factors that can lead to a brown lawn or brown patches, here are the typical culprits:


Brown Grass DenverDrought/heat:
During the heat of the summer, the average Front Range lawn needs 1.5 to 2 inches of water per week. During periods of high heat and low water, many turf grasses will go dormant when they don’t get enough water. This is a normal condition; barring insect or disease, the grass will recover when the temperature drops and/or rain resumes.

If it is necessary to let a lawn go dormant, it is best to keep it dormant. Applying enough water to pull it out of dormancy then cutting off the water again can cause long lasting damage and serious stress to the turf. To sustain a drought-dormant lawn; apply a half inch of water every two to three weeks during the drought. To green it up again, apply  3 inches of water over a week (you may have to water in short increments at first to re-saturate the soil) then resume normal watering or wait until temperatures drop and rain resumes, when it will turn green again on its own.

Sprinkler Coverage: One of the biggest reasons for brown areas is water related issues. If your lawn develops brown patches during the heat of summer; make sure your sprinklers are providing enough water and reaching all areas. The common signs of poor coverage are green areas around sprinkler heads with areas of brown outside of the green circle around the sprinkler head.  Mountain High has sprinkler techs trained to correct any coverage issues.

Weeds: Common weeds will compete with your lawn for water and food. Because of deeper roots, the weeds often times win this battle. Controlling weeds is tricky; a lawn program that includes a pre-emergent herbicide in spring to prevent weed seeds from germinating is key to getting a good jump on grassy weeds like crabgrass and broad leaf weeds such as dandelions. Follow up weed control applications can keep a lawn weed free and allow the grass to take full advantage of the water and nutrients available.  The best defense against weeds is a healthy root system. 

Disease: There are a handful of common fungus problems that hit Front Range lawns. If your grass is covered with white, black, brown substances, from rings, or you have brown stripes, then lawn disease is usually the problem. Lawn disease problems should be diagnosed and treated by a lawn care professional. Mountain High can properly diagnose fungus problems in your turf and begin the process of a healthy lawn.

Lawn Problem in Denver

Chinch Bug Damage

Insects: Chinch Bugs: These drought-loving bugs drain water right out of the grass. Some signs to look for are that your lawn will look wilted, then yellow, and eventually brown. Pull back a wilted patch and look for small fast moving black or grey bugs (1/32 to 1/5 inch depending on life stage) with white markings.

Grubs: These beetle larvae feed on turf roots and mimic drought damage. White grubs appear curled into a “C” shape are the most commonly seen. Sod Web Worm are larger and feed right where the root and plant meet at the ground, also called the crown. A brown lawn with lots of birds pecking at it is often times a good indication that you have grubs.

Bill Bugs: The larva of billbugs like to establish themselves close to concrete then move inward creating damage that progresses inward. The adult beetle has a hooked nose appearance which makes it easy to identify.

Turf damaging insect identification and control is a major part of the lawn department at Mountain High.

Lawn Service Denver for Pet Damage

Pet Waste Damage

Pet waste: Round patches of dead grass with bright green taller grass around the dead areas indicate animal waste is causing the damage to your lawn. If you know a pet has a favorite spot, hand aerate and flush the area with water to dilute the waste. Revive can also help to reduce pet damage. Mountain High can provide a Revive program for your lawn to help with pet damage.

Mountain High’s team has the knowledge and expertise to help you maintain a healthy, green lawn.  Call us at 303.232.0666 or send us an estimate request below:

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Summer Rain & Lawn/Landscape Care

Watering in Denver when it rainsAs sometimes happens in the Front Range of Colorado, a mid-summer rainy period has cooled down temperatures and given us some much needed moisture. While this is great for those of us who live here and will help both the lawn and landscape planting, the few days of rain means a possible change in how we care for our lawns.

A heavy rainfall is not a reason to completely stop watering. Skipping a watering day or two is perfectly fine, but rain water does not stick around long in the Denver Metro Area.

As you consider the need to water or not, keep in mind we live in an environment with normally very low humidity levels. Because of this, once the rain moves out it does not take long for the ground to dry out. With humidity levels dropping down into the low twenty percent range, rain is quickly pulled back up into the atmosphere. As an example, take a look at how quickly the streets dry once the rains stop. The exact same thing starts to happen to lawns and landscape plantings.

While the weather has given us a nice break, and it is not necessary to water in the day or two after the type of rains we received on July 29th and July 30th, it will not take long for both the yard and the landscape to need normal watering again. Even those who have yards with water sensors need to keep an eye out for dry spots in the hotter and sunnier areas of their lawns.

If you do shut your system off because of the weather, don’t forget about it. Double check to make sure you turn you system back on and then verify it is coming on as expected. After every rainy period there are always people who end up with drought damage because either they left their sprinkler off or their sprinklers didn’t come back on with the full programming.

As always the Lawn, Tree, and Landscape professionals at Mountain High are available to help should a problem arise, however, with just a few minutes to give your sprinkler system a once over, many problems can be avoided before there are extra cost involved to repair drought damage.

Lee Kral, Lawn Care Manager

Denver Sprinkler System Tips

Denver Sprinkler CompanyThings are really starting to heat up and it is easy to think that your sprinkler system is on cruise control.  It is a good idea to perform regular system checks not only to find any potential problems but to also familiarize yourself with how the system operates normally, giving you the opportunity to recognize subtle changes in performance.

We recommend checking the system at least once a month throughout the season.  When checking your irrigation system you want to make sure that all of the heads are adjusted correctly for distance and direction and that the spray pattern is not obstructed. Walking past the heads on each zone allows you not only to observe how the head is spraying but gives you an opportunity to notice slight leaks as you walk by that you may not have normally noticed. An area that stays wet around a sprinkler head indicates a seeping valve. A seeping valve is an electric control valve that will not close completely due to a small piece of debris lodged in the valve or possibly being damaged internally.

Drip irrigation is much more challenging to evaluate. You should walk each drip zone listening for leaks, looking for obvious breaks. Checking the vacuum breaker for leaks and opening valve box lids looking for potential leaks is also very important. Running through the programming on the clock and adjusting the station runtimes and the number of days a week the system runs is also a crucial part of your system check.

Sprinkler Company in Denver

We carry a LOT of sprinkler parts with us so we can quickly fix problems.

Checking your system regularly will also help you catch dry areas in your yard before they become a large problem. A regularly scheduled system check can potentially minimize excessive water bills due to mainline breaks or zones sticking on.

The irrigation professionals at Mountain High have the knowledge and expertise to fix your sprinkler system in Denver – we have a van packed full of sprinkler parts so we can fix most irrigation problems on the spot!  Call us at 303.232.0666 or send us an estimate request below:

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Colorado Lawn Weed Control

Colorado Lawn Weed ControlSo you have weeds in your lawn in Colorado. What do you do to keep them at bay?

The ideal time to deal with lawn weeds is in the late summer and early fall. The best way to have a weed free lawn is to have a healthy lawn.

Fertilization:
Healthy lawns are fertilized, particularly in the fall so that during the winter the grass has time to recover after our stressful hot, dry summers in Denver. Fertilization programs help the turf

Hand Dig or Mow weeds to prevent from going to seed:
In the spring and throughout the summer, it’s easy to hand dig those occasional weeds such as dandelions with a weeder (on right) as soon as you see them so they don’t go to seed and spread in your yard.  Mowing is also effective to limit seeds from spreading! For flower beds and gardens, a 3-4″ layer of mulch is very effective at controlling weeds.

Irrigation:
Healthy lawns also receive regular irrigation in the summer months into the fall. Make sure that your sprinkler/irrigation system is well-maintained and is sufficiently wetting the yard. Water longer, and less frequently, to help the lawn build deep roots.

Herbicides:
Herbicide treatments may be necessary in extremely weedy situations. First you want to  identify the weeds.

“A couple of hard frosts will kill some weed species, which means herbicide treatments are not only unnecessary, they’re wasteful. These weeds include broadleaf summer annuals such as purslane, knotweed and pigweed; and grassy summer annuals like crabgrass, goose grass, barnyard grass and foxtail.” ~ www.ext.colostate.edu

Mountain High Tree, Lawn & Landscape has figured out the most effective and environmentally-friendly methods of applying herbicides, and only if needed. If you signup for a lawn program, our lawn experts will diagnose your lawn and apply fertilizer and sometimes herbicides for weed control, if necessary, to help you maintain a healthy, green lawn that looks great even with our hot, dry weather. We also have sprinkler and irrigation techs that can help install, repair and maintain your sprinkler system so that it performs efficiently. Call us today at 303.232.0666 to get a free estimate.

Mosquito Repelling plants in Denver

Rosemary, Horsemint, Marigold, Lemon Balm, Ageratum, Cintronella, Catnip, Basil, Lemon Thyme and Lavender are all mosquito repellents… who knew?! We have some of these planted in our gardens, but maybe they all have to be planted together to work! We love all these plants for our landscapes as well as container gardens, so we’ll keep on planting and hoping that those pesky skeeters will stay at bay! Let us know if you’d like help with your landscape design and planting, we have a great landscape design team to help you design, build and take care of your landscape in Denver.

Denver Mosquito Repellent Plants
Image source: http://infinitylawnandgarden.com

 

Rings in lawns in Denver – Necrotic Ring Spot

necrotic-ring-spot

Necrotic Ring Spot in Denver

Because of the very wet spring and a strong summer warm-up, the Front Range is seeing heavier than normal NRS this year.

Necrotic Ring Spot (NRS) is a fungus affecting Kentucky bluegrass and annual bluegrass in Colorado. Other diseases can be confused with necrotic ring spot; therefore, an accurate assessment by a trained diagnostician is crucial to identifying the pathogen to properly address management of the disease. Management of this disease is difficult and requires an integrated approach utilizing cultural, chemical, and varietal control measures.

Symptoms:

Necrotic Ring Spot forms a circle of dead grass. In larger rings, the center will be green. In smaller circles, the grass will all be dead. The dieback results in a sunken depression. Grass can also be yellow or brown and appear in scattered patterns; however, where lots of rings are present, the lawn can appear to have a serpentine appearance of dead/sunken areas.  No leaf lesions are present on foliage infected with Necrotic Ring Spot. As the disease advances, roots, crowns, and lower stems will develop a black or brown discoloration.

Necrotic Ring Spot in Denver Lawn

In many cases, dandelions find the dead ring an easy place to get established, but they often appear weak or small when they do grow inside an NRS ring.

The following information comes from the University of Utah website: 

Necrotic ring spot is a disease that infects cool-season grasses, primarily Kentucky bluegrass. The disease is damaging to bluegrass because the pathogen will infect and kill the crowns and roots, resulting in a slow recovery. This pathogen belongs to a larger group of pathogens that cause “patch” diseases in turfgrass, although taxonomically they are not related. A patch is characterized by the blighted appearance of turf in a section of otherwise green turf. Patch diseases are difficult to diagnose in the field because some of the symptoms associated with this pathogen can also be caused by a variety of other stresses. For example, stress caused by poor or extreme soil moisture, or improper mowing will result in brown turfgrass in irregular shaped patches. Diagnosis can also be difficult because of the similarity of individual symptoms between different pathogens. 

The first symptoms are small, light green areas of turf. These areas will get larger and under drought conditions can go beyond 2-3 feet. Symptoms may also increase in size and severity with successive years. As the leaves are infected, they will turn a reddish brown to bronze color then weaken to a light straw color.

As you can see from the above excerpt, NRS is not easy to identify at early stages. In addition to the University of Utah information, many yards are hit with other fungi before NRS appear. It is not uncommon for a yard with Ascochyta or Melting Out to get rings weeks after the first disease is successfully treated.

Treatment options:

First and foremost, the first thing to understand when fighting NRS is there is no quick fix and no “cure”. However, there are a variety of treatment options.

To property combat NRS, a combination of chemical and cultural practices needs to be maintained.

1)  Slow release fertilizer program: Mountain High offers an Extended Release fertilizer program. This fertilizer breaks down slowly enough to feed the lawn without feeding the fungus.

2)  Two aerations per year: the Front Range has heavy soil compaction issues. Relieving this compaction not only strengthens the lawn, it also helps keep the NRS fungus in the soil and out of the crowns of the plants. Mountain High offers aeration services in the spring and fall (we do not recommend any aeration during the heat of the summer).

3)  Proper watering: proper watering prevents stress to lawn which in turn makes the lawn more resistant to NRS and other diseases. Watering deeply  (but less often) is much better than watering more often with less water. This gives the lawn a reason to develop deeper roots.

Overwatering can cause water damage to the roots while also bringing the NRS into the crowns of the plants.  Under watering puts the grass under a great deal of stress and makes it vulnerable to insects and diseases like NRS.

Mountain High recommends about 2.5 inches of water per week, spread out over three or four watering days. During really hot weather more water is needed.

4) Fungicides: NRS cannot be cured, but there are a few fungicide combinations available to ‘knock back’ the disease. Mountain High offers NRS fungicide treatments, but we recommend them only after fertilizer and cultural practices do not show enough improvement to the lawn.

As with any lawn problem, the lawn care professionals at Mountain High have the knowledge and expertise to provide the proper programs and treatment recommendations for NRS. Call us at 303.232.0666 or send us an estimate request below:

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