Temps will drop well below freezing several nights beginning this weekend and that can damage sprinkler systems not yet winterized. The most vulnerable part of the system is also the most expensive component.
The backflow prevention device, because it is above ground and contains water, can easily freeze, resulting in repair costs and possible property damage.
If your system has not yet been winterized, follow the simple steps in this video from the City & County of Broomfield.
For at least another week, it appears there will be no frost warning along the Front Range, so vegetables can be left to continue ripening if they are not yet ready to pick.
If you are ready to harvest and store this year’s crop, however, here are some tips to prolong the shelf life of produce you grow or bring home from a farmer’s market.
To harvest most plants from your garden, it’s best to avoid pulling or tugging on plants as that will damage them. Instead, use a sharp knife or pruners to cut stems to remove the produce. Make a clean cut and hold on to the fruit, not the stem.
When buying pumpkins, select the ones with a stem still attached if you want them to last through the fall. After harvesting squashes and pumpkins, carrying them by the stem will likely cause it to break off. Without the stems, they will deteriorate sooner.
In general, the cooler days of fall are ideal for harvesting and cloudy days better than sunny ones. Morning is the best time to pick produce because that is when veggies have the highest water content.
Prepping veggies for storage
Getting most veggies wet leads to quicker spoilage. For root crops harvested in the fall such as carrots, turnips, radishes, beets, and additionally, for green beans, getting them wet will shorten their shelf-life.
After digging root crops, wipe dirt off with a dry paper towel or cloth and remove the green tops. Root crops will last up to 3 months if kept unwashed in a ventilated plastic bag in the coolest part of the fridge. Carrots picked now will last until Thanksgiving!
If you have a cool basement, it can provide excellent storage for root crops plus potatoes, cabbage and tomatoes. Caution: keep carrots away from apples, potatoes and any other veggies that produce ethylene gas as it will make them bitter.
Harvested lettuce and other non-root crops such as peas, corn, broccoli, cauliflower and summer squash, need to breathe and have air circulation to keep them from wilting. Avoid wrapping them tightly in a plastic bag. Instead, use ventilated plastic bags and keep produce in the refrigerator. The coolness shows down metabolism and prolongs freshness.
For lettuce and herbs, insert a moist towel in storage bags. It will add moisture to help prolong freshness without making the greens soggy.
Following these tips can help you enjoy this fall’s harvest well into the months ahead!
The calendar may still say summer. But after Labor Day, the thermometer reads fall-like, especially in overnight temperatures which slow plant growth and signal autumn is approaching.
As nights cool, daily high temps will also become cooler as daylight hours get even shorter. Cooler nights combined with fewer hours of daylight slow lawn growth considerably. These changes mean it’s already time to decrease watering times on the irrigation system and it will soon be time to back off weekly lawn mowing. Grass in fall mode needs less water and less frequent mowing the closer we get to official start date of fall on September 22nd just two weeks away.
Use the shoulder season between summer and full-on fall to do a few lawn care chores that will mean a healthier, more vibrant lawn when spring arrives next year. Use the time you save by mowing less often, to plan and complete these end-of-season tasks:
Apply a fall application of fertilizer. According to turf scientists at Colorado State University, the most effective lawn fertilization program begins in early fall and not early spring. Since plants do not distinguish between nutrients supplied by granular, liquid or organic fertilizers, they recommend selecting the product based on nutrients, convenience and price. And remember more is not better. Too much fertilizer over stimulates top growth.
Core aerate the lawn before winterizing the sprinkler system. Aeration pulls plugs of soil and sod out of the lawn and these holes open the soil so that roots can take in maximum moisture during the winter.
Zap turf weeds. Here’s your last chance this year to get after turf weeds. Giving one last round of control will pay off next spring with fewer weeds popping up at the start of the season.
Get expert help if you had fungus or other turf disease or insect problems this summer. Cultural practices such as fertilization and aeration go a long way to maintain a healthy lawn that resists disease. If you have persisting problems, have them properly diagnosed so you know what to do now and perhaps early next spring to get problems under control for good.
Enjoy the change seasons as petunias fade into pumpkins!
Plants are vital to the existence of our lives and maintaining a green and clean environment is the moral responsibility of every person. This blog highlights various environmental benefits that our lawns provide us thereby facilitating us live healthier and better lives.
A beautiful garden or a lush green lawn enhances the visual appeal of the property. It provides you a space in the lap of nature, where you can de-stress and spends quality time with your family and friends.
Maintaining a great-looking lawn requires dedicated efforts, regular care and troubleshooting problems in an expert way as they arise.
Here are five secrets of irrigation and sprinkler system that will help you maintain your yard in the best way possible.
Water Your Lawn Properly: A beautiful lawn requires periodic watering. When it comes to watering your lawn, you should consider the right time of the day, the proper amount of water and frequency of watering. Considering the weather conditions, you should water your lawn in the early morning and fewer times to a depth of 4-6 inches for the development of a healthy root system.
Learn How to Tune Up Your Manual or Automatic Sprinkler System: An efficiently designed and well-tuned sprinkler system saves 30-50% of water. You need to check your sprinkler system and ensure that there are no crooked or clogged heads, broken lines, leaks, and proper coverage by your heads.
Get Sprinkler Shut-Down and Winterization Service from Expert: Shutting down your irrigation system by the first week of November and preparing it for winter months (Winterization) to prevent freeze damage would require availing services of an expert and licensed technician.
Upgrade Your Old Sprinkler with a Smart Controller: If you are using a conventional in-ground sprinkler system with the existing controller then it is high time to replace the timer with the new, smart controller. This will set the watering time as per the weather conditions and details about your yard. This will save a considerable amount of money on your watering bill.
Use Moisture Manager to Reduce Your Watering Bill to Half: BestYard’s new water-saving technology Moisture Manager can help you reduce your water bill up to 50 per cent, prevents diseases and help maintain a healthy lawn. The moisture manager is actually using patented tiny granules of a wetting agent that attract water molecules out of the air and surface areas and deliver moisture to your lawn’s root system for 3 months.
BestYard is one of the most reputed and award-winning lawn and garden maintenance, landscaping company that has provided comprehensive support and services to its clients related to maintaining a beautiful lawn or garden. You can feel free to contact the expert by calling on 720-851-7550, or sending an email at Customer-Service@BestYard.com.
This growing season has had more than its share of heat-filled days. Our hot days and warm evenings don’t always grow the best veggies.
Tomatoes, in particular, suffer during hot days combined with warm evenings. At 85 degrees, pollination and fruit set will be affected. At 95 degrees when nighttime temps are at 75 or above, flowers may fall off the plants. Prolonged days with temps as we have seen this year above 90 degrees, can slow ripening.
Cucumbers in heat stress can drop their blossoms, develop deformed fruit and have a bitter flavor.
For squash, peppers, melons, pumpkins and beans,successive days in the 90s may cause them to drop their blossoms and temporarily shut down.
Cool season crops such as broccoli, cabbage, lettuce and spinach will bolt in the heat. Wait to replant when cooler days are here to stay.
Other heat-related problems
Blossom end rot is common during hot weather when blossoms set and when watering is not consistent. You’ll often see it in tomatoes, peppers and squash. End rot is first visible as light tan, water-soaked lesions on the blossom end of the fruit which can enlarge and turn black and leathery.
Spider mites also show up during hot, dry weather and one sign they are active is leaves that look stressed. Check for spider mites by holding a sheet of white paper under the leaves and tapping the plant. You may see specs move on the paper. The specs are mites and if you run your hand over the paper, you will see streaks. To control spider mites, consider applying an insecticidal soap according to label instructions. Note if there are precautions that apply to edibles.
TLC for heat-stressed plants
Check soil moisture often and water so soil remains uniformly moist so that plants do not wilt.
Apply mulch around plants to keep the soil cool and to retain moisture.
Consistent care and proper moisture for any plant variety reduces stress, diseases and insect infestations.
Keeping your pet cool and properly hydrated in the scorching heat of summer of Colorado is essential but it may be difficult in case you do not follow the proper methods. This blog highlights some easy-to-follow methods/ steps that will help people keep their pets cool and comfortable.