Spring is sprung & warmer weather is here to stay!
If you are a Dowco client, many of these services on our May Outdoor To Do List will already be scheduled for you!
Outdoor Trees & Shrubs
Cut back any trees or branches that are touching the siding or roof. Trim groundcover. Prune spring flowering shrubs after bloom to shape plant and encourage flowers next year. More info on when to trim spring flowering shrubs.
When selecting new roses, choose plants labeled for resistance to diseases. Fertilize roses and control rose diseases such as mildew with a registered fungicide.
Remove tree stakes that have been in place more than one growing season. Remove tree wraps for summer growth.
Protect your trees and shrubs from soft bodied caterpillars like tent caterpillars and sawflies. Dowco's tree & shrub clients are protected.
Garden and Bed Maintenance
Apply post-emergence broadleaf weed controls now, as needed. Manage weeds while they are small and actively growing with light cultivation or herbicides. Once the weed has gone to bud, herbicides are less effective. Dowco's bed maintenance clients are protected.
Begin planting warm-season annuals for summer color. Make hanging baskets with annuals for your porch or patio. Plant summer bulbs such as caladiums, dahlias, cannas and elephant ears. Use good quality potting mix in containers.
Do not remove foliage prematurely from spring bulbs until it dies down naturally. Waiting will develop stronger blooms for next year and if you remove now the flower production for next season will decline.
Begin fertilizing annuals. Continue at regular intervals. Fertilize azaleas after they bloom. Use a formulation which has an acid reaction. If needed, fertilize rhododendrons and azaleas with acid-type fertilizer. If established and healthy, their nutrient needs should be minimal.
Remove spent blossoms from spring flowering shrubs.
Control slugs with bait or traps and by removing vegetation nearby.
Monitor aphids on ornamental trees & shrubs. If present, control options include washing off with water, hand removal, or using registered insecticides labeled for the problem plant.
Lawn Care & Turf Care
Mow your lawn regularly (every 7-10 days). After mowing, leave the grass clippings so that they can return into the soil and provide a healthy source of nitrogen for the lawn. Keep bluegrass cut at 1.5 to 2.5 inch height. Mow tall fescue at 2 to 3.5 inch height. Read more about proper mowing here.
Fertilize your lawn. Allow the fertilizer to penetrate the soil by watering afterwards. Use slow release, nitrogen fertilizer on Fescue to promote summer growth if you plan to water this summer.
Trap moles, voles and gophers as new mounds appear.
Check your outdoor hoses and irrigation system. If spring rains have been sparse, begin irrigating, especially plants growing in full sun. Prepare and prime irrigation system for summer. Withhold early summer watering until needed to promote a more drought tolerant environment. Read more about preparing your irrigation system.
Water young plantings as needed.
Other Outdoor Maintenance
Clean your patio furniture and umbrella. Clean your grill so you have no reason not to cook outside.
Watch for fireflies on warm nights. Both adults and larvae are important predators. Collecting may reduce this benefit.
As you review your Dowco maintenance contract for 2014, call us with questions. If you want help crossing off your April Outdoor To Do List and you are not a Dowco client, request a proposal today!