11
Aug

Signs your Lawn is Drought Stressed

Heat Stress or Drought Stress?

 

Drought Stressed or Heat Stressed

There are two general environmental stresses that can affect lawns during the summer: heat stress and drought stress. Depending on conditions, your turfgrass could have one, the other or both at the same time. Understanding the difference between the two, what they look like and how to respond to them accordingly will help you prevent the potential long-term damage that they cause. We will mainly focus on dealing with a drought stressed lawn, however our turf experts want to provide you with an understanding of both. Read the rest of this entry »

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19
Apr

Spring Lawn Transition Questions Answered for California and Arizona Sod!

Spring has sprung and your warm season sod might need a little help with the transition in California and Arizona. Mr. Wise Grass is here to help!  Check out his latest video for tips on how to keep your lawn looking the best in the neighborhood!

IMPORTANT! FOLLOW THESE STEPS FOR A BEAUTIFUL, LUSH LAWN:

Step By Step Transitioning for California and Arizona Sod

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06
Mar

Create a Drought Resistant Lawn with these Arizona and California Sods

Drought Resistant Lawn

Hope all you California and Arizona residents stayed dry from all the rain these last few weeks. The good news is, it looks like we’re finally going to get a break from the rain (for now, at least). However, we still have some time before Spring arrives. So, soak up the wet winter weather while you still can, because it won’t last forever.

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23
Jan

Weed Control Tips for Your California and Arizona Lawn

2017 has started out nicely with some timely rainfalls to keep most of you from having to water your lawn. It has also helped us move closer to getting out of the drought we’ve been suffering from for the last few years. The winter storms are helping us replenish our water supplies but they’re also helping germinate all of those of those summer annual weeds in the soil. The good news is weeds are relatively easy to contain. There are some types such as annual bluegrass, crabgrass, and nutsedge that are a little more complicated but timing pre-emergent herbicide applications can save you a lot of headaches with weed control. In this blog I will go over various weeds and some ways to control them as well as discuss herbicide timing.

Weed control management is a function of several different factors but some of the things you can do to keep your lawn healthy are maintain the proper mowing height, don’t overwater your lawn, fertilize monthly, and aerate the turf when the soil becomes compacted. These items right here can be the difference between weeds slowly emerging in your lawn and taking over your lawn. A healthy lawn will push out weeds and keep them to a minimum. If you have very few weeds emerge during the year chemical application is unnecessary and weeds can be pulled by hand as they appear.

 

Crabgrass

 

Nutsedge

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18
Apr

April Lawn Transition Tips

For most parts of the country spring means a return to warmer temperatures and usually some good rain storms. For the desert southwest this typically means hot temperatures and the occasional rain event. We were lucky enough to get some late season El Niño storms this month which will have a nice impact on our warm season grasses.

The transition season has officially begun and over the next month you will start to see your underlying warm season grass start to push out the winter ryegrass. The hot temperatures will start to take their toll on the ryegrass and it will start to die out. It’s not uncommon to start to see dry patches emerge in your lawn that looked perfect the week prior.

As much as it may pain you to see sections of your beautiful lawn start to die back remember this is a good thing. Sections of your lawn will always dry out before others areas simply because of the soil texture, compaction, or sprinkler coverage. It’s important to rule out sprinkler issues and if it is merely a transition dry spot rest easy. For these spots I recommend taking a hard toothed rake and rake up the dead ryegrass that lies on the surface. This dead material is shading out the bermudagrass down below and preventing it from getting water and sunlight. Keeping your lawn mowed below ¾” during this time of the year and power raking or verticutting will also help remove dead material from shading your summer grass.

dog-sleeping

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15
Jan

El Nino, Drought, and Your Lawn

We have been hearing about El Nino for some time now and it’s finally upon us. To most of us it spells relief that the drought may finally come to an end. We have been battling one of the worst droughts in history the last few years, and snow and rain will allow many to breathe a sigh of relief. By no means are we out of the woods yet as a few days of snow and rain won’t take care of the problem.  It appears the weather models will be correct for this spring. It’s going to be wet spring which will bring back a lot of landscape areas that were put into seasonal dormancy to save water.

As I drove into work this morning I saw two common areas that had their sprinklers running while it was raining. It has been raining for the last four days and it doesn’t appear to be letting up until the weekend. While none of us want to interfere, it is important to let your homeowners association or city know that water is still running in these areas. There is only so much water we can save at our residences, but there are others areas we can step in. Most parks have the irrigation clocks set to run daily, and there is not enough man power to check the areas daily or even weekly. One way to fix this problem is the addition of rain sensors or gauges that attach to the irrigation clock to shut off the sprinklers. I know we can’t go back and fix all the parks that were put in past years, but we can make sure that all new areas are doing everything they can to save water. The majority of people are extremely responsible users of water and we need to encourage others to also use water wisely. Read the rest of this entry »

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05
Nov

Tips On Maintaining Your Non-Overseeded Lawn This Winter

As we move through the fall season many of you will choose the option to forgo overseeding this season to save some water. With the prime growing season behind us you’re going to start to see your lawn start to slow down. The days are becoming shorter and your warm season grass is starting to need less inputs. There are a couple areas where you can cut back this winter to save yourself money. I will go into detail what you need to maintain a non-overseeded lawn during the winter, and go briefly over an overseeded lawn watering and fertilizer schedule.

My first suggestion for those that will not be overseeding is to turn your irrigation clock off except on the day you will be watering. Having your lawn set up to automatically run certain days and times during the fall/winter will cause you to use much more water than your lawn can utilize.

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25
Aug

The Drought and Your Grass. How to Have a Lawn and Benefit the Environment.

Let’s face it–there is little one can do to escape the oppressive August heat in Arizona and California. But, did you know your property with grass is a good 30 degrees cooler than your neighbors’ with rocks, and 50 degrees cooler than the ones with artificial turf?  Natural turfgrass has some major benefits!

I thought I would start off today’s blog by giving you some light at the end of the dark tunnel we call “summer.” While we started the summer off with mild temperatures, they have quickly soared making it one of the hottest summers on record. In order to combat the temperatures most people try to stay inside or crank up their air conditioners, but what we should be doing is looking for ways to control the ambient temperature at our properties. Installing grass is one of the best ways for lowering the temperature around your house, and allowing you to stay cool when you’re out enjoying a beverage by the pool.

I know a lot of people are reading that first paragraph and saying we’re experiencing a historic drought–how can we put in a new lawn? Yes, we are experiencing a drought, but the media would have you believe all the water being used is by lawns and golf courses. How about hotels, pools, washing cars, long showers, fountains, air conditioners, increase in electricity usage, washing dishes, and on and on? It’s easy to blame turfgrass for using too much water, but we need to look ourselves in the mirror each day and realize all need to act responsibly during this drought. Some see grass as a luxury, and golf as a silly game that is using our water supply. What they don’t see are the positive effects turfgrass  has on the environment.

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16
Jun

“Don’t Gravelscape L.A.”

We came across this article that ran in the Los Angeles Times last weekend called Don’t Gravelscape L.A.

They make some GREAT points! Before you consider ripping out your lawn, please read this article and we bet you will change your mind! We are in a drought, and we need to be water savvy. But you can still have a lawn!  Really!

People are starting to panic about their lawns. The Metropolitan Water District is adding $350 million to its lawn removal rebate program and homeowners are scrambling to rip out grass and replace it with something easy and oh-so drought tolerant — gravel or artificial turf. At least one lawn removal contractor promises to do it for free (the company cashes in the rebate).

Drought panic and rebates incentivize too many quick and dirty solutions for our water crisis. All over the city — and especially in park-poor areas, where postage-stamp lawns may be the only relief from pavement — we have to think before we act. Will exchanging a living, breathing yard for a bleak gravelscape save water? Some. But is it the only way? Is it the right way?

gravel

Before you call the gravel truck, here are a few things to consider.
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09
Jun

Spring/Summer Transition and Your Lawn

We all know that transitioning from ryegrass back to a warm season grass is difficult (especially for California and Arizona sod), but throw in some cooler than normal weather and now you have a battle. Every year the producers of ryegrass seed seem to make their seed a little more heat resistant in search of that year round turf. The problem with this is that we’re shortening the growing window of our warm season turf. Not to mention that cool season grasses in the desert areas use much more water than the underlying warm season turf. The solution is to aide your lawn in transition, and to get your lawn free and clear of ryegrass in the next couple weeks.

Before I go into techniques to remove ryegrass I want to make a couple points about how the average lawn looks at this time of the year. We all love our winter lawn for its color, texture, and feel, but it’s important to remember that it puts agronomic stress on your lawn. When you have two different grasses competing for nutrients, water, and sunlight you’re bound to have an “ugly period.” The turf world refers to this as the transition period. This is the period of time when the cool season grass is starting to die off slowly and the warm season grass is trying to emerge. What creates the ugly period is the competition.

(BTW...this beautiful turfgrass is NOT going through and ugly stage!)

(BTW…this beautiful turfgrass is NOT going through an ugly stage!)

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