My kids will be heading to school next week which means summer is over. Now it's time to think about your cedar hedges. It might be nice to give them some shape so they look great for the next twelve months.
Do this work on a cooler day and use sharp shears. Of course, if you need help, all you have to do is call or text.
Below are pictures from a recently completed project. The elderly couple was extremely happy to have their hedges done now so they can enjoy them on their back patio; and when they drive home.
The actual shearing only took a few hours, including raking and clean-up blow.
And while you're at it, why not prune your shrubs and touch up your planted beds.
Landscapers do their very best to make sure their clients' lawns look great. They cut at the proper height with nice laser lines and everything gets nicely edged. Then they step back to admire their work and hope their clients feel the same way. And chances are, they do.
But I found out what really makes the men of the house really happy. Sure the lawns look great but driveway crack weeds are a constant source of irritation because they are hard to get at and they come back.
So in comes landscape pro Vas with his line edger turned on the side and on low power. This destroys all crack weeds; just make sure you wear eye protection and close your mouth because often there are stray pebbles that get propelled out of the cracks.
Do this on lower power so you don't blow out your own windows or damage parked cars nearby.
I expect to do this periodically throughout the season but it's better than pouring down nasty chemicals that wash off into our fish habitat.
If your driveway has nasty crack weeds, line trim them out or give me a call.
Our power shears work really hard from mid-season pruning to fall, when cedar pruning begins. The days are busy and it's very tempting to pack up and go home; or just return your power shears to your garage. But I suggest taking the time to lubricate your blades after every use.
Lubrication is especially important on rainy days. Take your professional lubricant and spray your blades liberally. WD40 might be OK if nothing else is available but it doesn't last as long.
The blades will be cleaned and they will run better next time you use them. I recommend the Stihl lubricant because it also does some cleaning at the same time. So get a bottle from your nearest dealer and keep it handy.
Yes, I know, life is busy and weeding isn't exactly sexy. But it has to get done. When I visit a site and see huge "trophy" weeds, I know that there hasn't been much action there recently.
Huge weeds detract from the beauty of your garden and once you let them mature you run the risk of allowing the weeds to flower and produce seeds. And weed seeds in your garden is not something you want.
So, even if you don't have much time for weeding, at least pick up the huge weeds or call me and I will help you.
Your garden should look beautiful and healthy. Huge weeds detract from the presentation we want so fight them!
Depending on the size of your garden, mid-season pruning can keep you very busy for weeks. But as you shear various shrubs don't go too crazy by shredding ornamental grasses into forced shapes.
Yes, shrubs and laurel hedges must be kept from overwhelming your property but ornamental grasses look great. Don't touch them. Let them grow well into late fall when they look their best.
I did some pruning this week and I left all of the ornamental grasses alone. This created a very -for me, anyway- pleasing effect. The untouched grasses look nice and soft.
I have no objections to stepping stones and pea gravel but always consider maintenance work in your design. I shook my head when I got to this front entrance because there is no way for me to safely line-trim the gravel/grass border. It's asking for trouble with windows nearby.
There must be some sort of barrier between the grass and gravel. So, please consider maintenance work issues when you're designing your garden.
I love working in the landscape on sunny June days when there is lots of colour around. It's always nice to see what people plant in their gardens and, if I don't know a plant, I look it up later.
What's your favourite June plant?
Not all landscape upgrades have to be huge, costly undertakings. Sometimes you can pull off simple and fairly inexpensive upgrades. One recent example involved replacing tired looking rock crush with 1 1/4" river rock.
One half a yard of river rock costs around $30 plus delivery and labour.
The owner was very happy with the new look just a few days away from welcoming long weekend visitors.
This past week I got to observe a new female worker mowing and trying extremely hard to put beautiful laser lines into her lawn. Sure, she didn't set any speed records but she mowed safely and her lines were fine. Gold star!
Something like ten minutes later another worker, having finished his mowing, returned to his truck and took the shortest route in. He went right across the girl's beautiful laser lines, thus committing a classic lawn care mistake.
What's the big deal? Line crossing ruins the presentation. And if you think it's too harsh, I have a true story for you. Some years back one worker crossed his own mow lines at a residential tower. One owner looked down on the lawn in horror and called the company's office to complain.
So, definitely hustle when you mow but exit your lawns with care. Don't cut across your lines. Take the extra seconds and go around the perimeter.
Vas Sladek, B.Sc., CLT