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Landscape Maintenance

Landscape Maintenance

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Landscape Maintenance

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  1. Landscape Maintenance

  2. What actions are necessary to maintain a landscape? • Watering • Weeding • Pruning • Deadheading • Mulching • Fertilizing • Proper installation (& removal) of plants • Winterization

  3. Watering • Watering is done for: • Newly installed plants to establish – few times per week – both woody and herbaceous plants • Dry weather periods-once plants have been established at least 1-2 yrs • How to water: • Avoid getting water on leaves – sun will burn leaves & water encourages fungal diseases • Water in early morning if possible – this reduces these problems, as the water will evaporate • Deeply & only when needed - needs to wet soil 12-16” depth • soil should be dry 1” down (under mulch) • Trees/shrubs in ground – once every 2 weeks if established and no rain • Annuals/perennials in ground –depends on plant –every few days/once per week • Overwatering • If you touch the soil 1” below the surface and it is moist – DON’T water • Overwatering suffocates roots & encourages disease • Winter Damage • If trees & shrubs do not get sufficient water in the summer, they will not survive the winter (especially new plantings)

  4. Fertilizing • Fertilize in spring & early summer • Repeat fertilization for annuals & perennials every few weeks in summer (stop perennials in Sept) • Trees & Shrubs only in spring • Do NOT give landscape plants a fertilizer with high nitrogen in the fall • This will interfere with winter dormancy preparation • Trees/shrubs should be fertilized directly below the outer canopy –this is where the active roots are – not near the trunk • Do NOT get fertilizers on the leaves – the sun will hit it & burn the leaves • Over fertilization will cause plants to burn (high concentration of salt) • Liquid fertilizers – immediate results • Plant Tone – organic dry fertilizer – slowly releases nutrients over several weeks

  5. Weeding • Weed = any unwanted plant in an area • Weeds compete with resources of desired plant: • Sunlight • Water • Nutrients • Weeds may also attract insects & diseases

  6. Deadheading • Deadheading = removing dead flowers (& leaves) from herbaceous plants • This is done so the plant focuses it’s energy into living parts of the plants • Deadheading encourages new flowers & leaves

  7. Pruning • Pruning should only be done for the following reasons on trees/shrubs: • Diseased/damage branch • Encourage a fuller plant • Keep good structure - prevent branches from crossing over each other • You should NOT prune to: • Make shapes out of plants • no animals (unless it is a theme park/garden) • no meatballs – keep plants in their natural shape (choose the correct shape of a plant when designing for the area) • Keep a large tree/shrub small (plant the right size) • This is unhealthy for the plant • Herbaceous plants (annuals/perennials) – ok to prune back to smaller sizes – some spread too much

  8. Proper Pruning & Deadheading -Prune/deadhead to the nearest branch/set of leaves that will maintain the shape of the plant -Do not prune when transplanting or plant will go into shock – plant needs its leaves to establish in new area (deadheading & removing damaged branch ok) -If pruning to make a fuller plant, prune in spring: *if done to late in fall, plants may not heal before winter *if pruning flowering trees/shrubs, prune directly after the bloom (this will prevent cutting off the flower buds that are forming)

  9. Mulching • Functions of mulch: • Cools/retains heat in soil • Reduces weeds • Holds moisture • Reduces lawnmower damage • Prevents soil erosion • Nice looking • SOME MULCHES (like Sweet Peet) add nutrients • You must REMOVE old mulch (especially bark mulch) • The soil level will get deeper if you keep piling mulch – then roots can’t breathe • Sweet Peet – usually can leave on without removing old because it decomposes quickly. However you may need winter protection when using Sweet Peet because it decomposes by the winter. • Don’t place mulch in direct contact with the trunk of the tree/stem of plant Will rot away stem/trunk • Mulch should be 3” thick when applied to be effective • Mulch should extend to the canopy line of the tree/shrub – this is where the active roots are

  10. Mulch against the trunk will rot it. Too much mulch will prevent water from getting to the roots & will create anaerobic (toxic) conditions No mulch volcano!

  11. Proper Transplanting • Do not pull the plant out of the container by the stem – turn pot over – use a pruner or shovel to cut slashes on trees/shrubs • Break up the roots – or they will continue to circle & fail to get nutrients, as well as cause the plant to fall over in poor weather • Dig a hole that is slightly bigger than the rootball • Dig a hole to a depth where the new soil level will be at the soil level of the pot – not burying the stem (will rot) – but not so the plant is above the ground (will dry out) • Firm soil lightly after planting (too firm will compact soil =squeeze air out) • Water gently & deeply

  12. Planting • Best Scenario -plant trees/shrubs in fall • Summer – really tough • Plant by mid-Oct so roots can adjust prior to ground freeze • Dig hole diameter larger than rootball, but don’t add amendments (fertilizer, peat) to soil because it actually may inhibit roots from growing out & establishing • If planting balled/burlapped, plant tree/shrub in hole in burlap,untie the burlap and bury it in the soil – be sure it isn’t sticking out • DON’T FERTILIZE WHEN PLANTING unless you are using a slow release fertilizer – too much stress at one time

  13. Dividing • You can divide perennials anytime, but spring is best • Less stress on plant, as it has just begun to grow • Dig up most of the plant – be sure to dig a larger rootball than the plant

  14. Preparing Plants for Winter • General rule – if you have to wrap your plant up in burlap to protect it, don’t bother planting that type of tree/shrub in that area • Broadleaved evergreens shouldn’t be planted in windy areas • For perennials, cover with mulch, leaves, straw, etc to protect plants from when ground heaves from freezing & thawing (roots are left exposed from heaving)