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Extend your evenings with landscape lighting

With days getting shorter, now is a great time to be thinking about how lighting can help you make the most of your yard. We are almost a month out from the first day of fall, landscape lighting can help give us more time outdoors. There are three main ways lighting can enhance our outdoor experiences; accessibility, security and ambiance.

  • Landscape lighting benefits

Whether it is lighting a walkway or stairs, adding light to darker parts of the yard, or making a patio more welcoming, we can enhance these spaces through lighting and make them more useable for more of the  year.

  • Landscape lighting technology options

Landscape lighting is continually advancing with technology. LED is common for improving efficiency. Smart controllers are available for both retrofitting an existing system or starting a fresh new one. You can even add color changing lights that can give some extra fun outside for a special event.

There are numerous landscape professionals designing and installing systems who can help you with your installation.

Click “DO IT FOR ME” to request a FREE quote.

Source: customer-service@bestyard.com in collaboration with Associated Landscape Contractors of Colorado

Continue to learn about new plants – changing your landscape

Flower breeding companies put in years of time and money into coming up with new plant varieties, new colors, and new plant traits. They are always working on improving current varieties, like the ability to withstand extreme weather conditions. Some of the specific traits they look for in flower breeding are; more flowers, bigger flowers, different flower shapes, certain colors, and disease resistance. This same process happens for vegetables, roses, perennials, and trees and shrubs.

There are thousands of new plants and the growers will pick which ones they will grow. Garden centers will then have samples of some of the new varieties for sale. Check them out, try them, let the garden centers know your outcomes. You never know what beauty they could bring to your landscape.

  • Flower Trials
    Every year the plant breeding companies hold “Flower Trials”. Each company is working on new plants, improved plants or crosses of plants. The trails are fun and a great opportunity to see 1,000’s of new plants that will be on the market in the coming years.

Click “DO IT FOR ME” to request a FREE quote.

Source: customer-service@bestyard.com in collaboration with Associated Landscape Contractors of Colorado

Identify problems and protect the trees

 

Learn what is damaging your tree, and how to stop it. Distinguish between plant damage brought on by diseases, insects, or a nutrient deficiency. Learn to identify these pests and how to protect the trees. Beetles and bugs are damaging our trees.

  • Ash Bark Beetle – These beetles are accounting for most of the decline of the Ash trees. Bark beetles infest and reproduce in live trees. They may infest the entire tree. Spring pruning and disposal of infested branches can limit population development of the beetle.
  • Anthracnose – Anthracnose is a group of fungal diseases that affect a variety of plants. Shade trees such as sycamore, ask, oak and maple are especially susceptible. Anthracnose causes the wilting, withering and dying of tissues. Other symptoms are girdled dead twigs and areas of sunken bark. Good sanitation is the first line of defense; rack and safely destroy all fallen leaves from infected trees and roses.
  • Maple trees – What’s happening with Maple trees where the leaves are more yellowish than green or red. This is not from beetles but by micro-nutrient chlorosis. This occurs when a tree shrub is lacking micronutrients. Treat this by incorporating chelated formulas of iron or manganese or zinc into foil.

Click “DO IT FOR ME” to request a FREE quote.

Source: customer-service@bestyard.com in collaboration with Associated Landscape Contractors of Colorado

Manage Japanese beetles

Japanese beetles

Japanese beetles have descended upon many Front Range communities. These exotic pests love many of our favorite plants, including roses, Virginia creeper, sunflowers, and green bean plants. But before the adult beetles wreak havoc on plants, leaving behind lacy skeleton of leaves, their white grubs are busy at work chewing on our turf roots.

If your lawn is looking damaged, it could be due to any number of causes including heat stress. But if you are seeing Japanese beetles in your yard, they could be laying eggs in your turf and affecting its health. Luckily, some of the same techniques can help with either cause. Mow your grass higher—it promotes deeper root growth and helps turf manage the heat. Healthier roots can better withstand the grubs’ destructive behavior, so any practices that promote turf health make your lawn less susceptible to damage.

As for the adults in your plants, the best control is handpicking them and dumping them in soapy water. If you can’t control them this way, you can speak with a landscape professional about insecticides that might help. Traps are not recommended, as they have not been shown to reduce beetle damage. In fact, the lure that attracts the beetles to the traps is likely to invite even more beetles into your landscape than they capture, according to USDA, thus increasing the damage to plants.

Experts say that the only way to avoid losing plants to these pests, look for plants that don’t attract them, like lilacs, hydrangea, and pines. Again, your local garden center or landscape professionals can help you find the right plants for your conditions that won’t bring more beetles around.

Click “DO IT FOR ME” to request a FREE quote.

Source: customer-service@bestyard.com in collaboration with Associated Landscape Contractors of Colorado

Time for a mid-summer makeover

garden area plants

Now is a good time to refresh garden areas, as some annuals have likely begun to fade. Choose some perennials that will tolerate the hot days still ahead and bring color to your garden for the rest of the growing season.

  • Gardens are where plant science and art come together. Start by selecting plants that will grow in Colorado’s harsh hot and cold climate and that need very little water. Then select the ones you will plant based on their aesthetic value-color, texture, size, shape.
  • Some plants have colorful blooms while others offer interesting texture or foliage. Because they grow to different heights, taller plants will be best as a backdrop to other plants while short ones should be placed along borders and mid-sized ones should be placed between the two extremes. Consult a landscape professional or local garden center for recommendations for your landscape conditions.
  • Here are a few recommendations, including some from Plant Select®, which offers low-maintenance plants that are well-suited to Colorado’s unique climates.
  • Purple coneflower (Echinacea purpurea) – This low-maintenance, drought-tolerant flower features colorful blooms that pollinators love.
  • VERMILION BLUFFS® Mexican sage (Salvia darcyi ‘Pscarl’) – This North American native features red flowers that attract humming birds.
  • Engelmann’s Daisy (Engelmannia peristenia) – These bright yellow daisies are tough perennials that can adapt to most conditions—just don’t put them in a very shady spot.

Enjoy perennials for the variety they offer in phases throughout the growing season.

Click “DO IT FOR ME” to request a FREE quote.

Source: customer-service@bestyard.com in collaboration with Associated Landscape Contractors of Colorado

 

Helping plants through a heat wave and saving water at the same time

plants

Even in our high plain’s region, the higher the normal heat, dryness, and extreme temperature swings of our summers can cause stress and potential damage to the garden. Even plants that prefer warm weather are not always big fans of temperatures above 95 degrees, or drastic changes.

  • What is too hot?

This will depend on the plants – Cool season plants like pansies, snapdragons, and veggies like broccoli, lettuce, etc. don’t like temps above 75. You will see those veggies bolt, (Go to flower and seed). Warm season plants like tomatoes, peppers, squashes, zinnia, impatiens, & annual vinca love & thrive in warm temps (75-90). But when we get in the mid and upper 90’s to 100 even those can slow production or suffer. Newly planted perennials, trees & shrubs too can suffer. The more mature a plant is the better it should be able to withstand the heat.

  • It’s hot outside – Should I water more?

Not necessarily. Plants may look wilted just as a reaction to the afternoon heat, they may bounce back in the cooler evenings. If that happens, they don’t’ need water, if they are still wilted in the AM, they need water. If you just water without knowing how much moisture is in the soil, you may overwater them. Plants can temporarily shut down all their functions when we get to the high 90’s.

– Solution; Get a water meter! AND Water deeply, not just during the heat spell, but all the time. Train the roots to go deeper for water. The deeper the roots go to get water the better off they are when the heat or stress comes. The top few inches of soil dries out much quicker than the deeper soil. This is true of all plant categories – annuals, perennials, shrubs, trees & veggies!

Remember plants are pretty resilient. Just like people – keep your plants as healthy as possible! When they are healthy, they will be more resilient when stressed by heat of other environmental elements.

Click “DO IT FOR ME” to request a FREE quote.

Source: customer-service@bestyard.com in collaboration with Associated Landscape Contractors of Colorado

 

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