"Your Landscape, Our Passion"
PO Box 620 Norway, ME 04268
Mon-Fri: 07:00 - 5:00
04 Apr 2015

Investing in the soil

“Healthy soil is the foundation of a sustainable landscape.”

Investing in the soil is an integral part of the lawn and gardens ecosystem. A healthy soil provides the plants the oxygen, nutrients and water that’s needed to contribute to a healthy plant. There are a couple of ways that everyone can invest in the soil.

 First, by applying an organic matter, such as compost (approx. ½” coating) to your lawn and raking or watering it down in, to insure that the microorganisms and nutrients get to the soil surface. As the compost is watered in the soil, releasing microorganisms along with a small amount of nutrients into the soil.

The second way is to cover the soil surface with an organic mulch. As microorganisms near the soil surface and break it down, nutrients are released into the soil. The applied mulch will also regulate soil temperature, protecting the plant roots from stress from extreme heat and cold. The mulch will also reduce wind and water erosion and help preserve the soil’s organic matter. Mulch, also helps with water management by reducing the landscape’s need for water by slowing evaporation from the soil surface and decreasing water-hogging weed populations. Organic mulches provide shelter and food for beneficials like ground beetles and toads.

Note: If your soil is compacted, we would encourage you to do a core aeration before adding compost or an organic compost/ mulch mix. Also, you can use loam and we would suggest if you decide to go this route, to use a loam with a 20% compost mix (approx. ½” coating.)

22 Mar 2015

Happy Spring!!

Durgin’s Lawn & Landscape would like to wish everyone a great spring season. A time to get our seed started kits going and plan those landscape projects, as we begin to see signs of grass and flowerbeds.

Here in Norway Maine, we still have a good amount of snow to melt, but slowly things are melting. So in the meantime we’ve been working on our marketing, as well as our lawn care equipment.

Are you looking forward to getting out there and digging in the dirt, planting new flowers, spending time with family as you enjoy your your new outdoor living center? There’s nothing like relaxing around a fire pit under the stars, roasting marshmallows and just letting the cares of the week wash away, even if just for a little while.

Hopefully, you’ve been planning your spring projects or at least tossing around a few ideas for the new season on what your going to plant, whether a perennial garden or a vegetable garden and we wish you a great season.

Also, don’t forget to service your lawn mower, so when the grass starts growing, it’ll be ready to handle your lawn care needs this season.

Happy Planting!!

15 Jan 2015

Do You Compost

Do you compost?
One of the best thing you can do for your garden is to save all the scraps, grass clippings, leaves, weeds and spent plant materials. Pile them up and allow them to slowly decompose, they transform into a rich, dark soil called “black gold” by many gardeners. Spread on your garden soil, it adds nutrients and improves the structure of your soil, resulting in healthier plants.
Just a friendly reminder when starting a Compost Bin is that not everything can be put into your compost pile.
What things should be put in a composting bin?
Fresh Plant Materials:
Include weeds you pull from your gardens, as well as grass clippings when you mow your lawn. The plants left after harvesting vegetables such as green beans, peas, tomatoes, eggplant and peppers can be included in the pile. Also include kitchen trimmings from fruits and vegetables, as well as coffee grounds, tea bags and egg shells. Do not include bones, meats or oils.
Dried Plant Materials:
Add dried plant materials at a volume of approximately one-half the volume of green plant materials added to your compost. Include dried autumn leaves, stalks of ornamental grass when you cut it down in spring and any other plant material that has dried up. Large pieces like the stalks of sunflowers, corn cobs or woody twigs will break down faster if they are chopped up or put through a shredder, although it isn’t absolutely necessary.
Also, shredded paper, cardboard, office paper and newspapers without colored ink can all be added to the compost pile. Count shredded paper or cardboard as part of the total volume of dried plant materials.

14 Dec 2014

Ice Control

Excessive Salt Usage:

Do you primarily use salt for ice control?

Although salt is often used primarily for ice control on walkways, it does have some drawbacks, especially when used in excessive amounts around perennial beds, shrubs and trees.

When salt is used for ice control, it’s ideal to keep it away from tree and plant roots as much as possible, as the salt can desiccate the roots, putting the tree in a drought-like state.

While salt levels during winter may not be apparent in spring once the heavy rains have washed it away, it still can have a negative affect landscape plants.

Both homeowners and contractors should be mindful of the excessive use of salt during the winter months. Not only does it affect your landscape negativity, it also has an affect during spring runoffs, as it enters the storm drainage system.

30 Nov 2014

Warmer Temps & Falling Snow

Watch for the falling snow & ice this winter season!

With the warmer temps coming to Norway Maine this week, the snow will be coming off the metal roofs, blocking entry/exit areas and adding unwanted stress to decks and re-freezing during the over nights, causing potential safety concerns. Be sure to check these areas regularly, shoveling and deicing them as needed.

Also be sure your roofs drainage system is working properly, allowing the snow melt to drain properly without causing any icing or ice buildup on shingled roofs and would recommend roof raking the edges of your roof after each significant storm, allowing for better drainage for the melting snow.

24 Nov 2014

Gutter Cleaning

Do you have a rain gutter system on your home? If so, have you checked them this fall? With the winter months coming soon, now is a great time to do so or have someone check them for you.

Over the course of a year, hundreds of gallons of water run off our roofs and if our gutter system is clogged up and not draining properly, this can lead to water overflowing and causing not only exterior water damage to your home, but also issues with water in the basement.

By insuring that your gutter system is functioning properly before the winter months, you will help in preventing ice buildup as well on melt days, causing ice dams that will expand up your roof and seep into the shingles, causing interior water damage. So save yourself  a lot worry and some money from costly repairs due to water damage this winter and have your gutters checked.

When you clean your gutters this fall, also, be sure to check your drain spouts as well to insure that they’re clean and open.

 

 

15 Apr 2014

Bark Mulch

Bark mulch provides the perfect backdrop for a beautiful and productive garden. Bark mulch comes in a variety of natural and color-enhanced varieties, allowing you the option to choose the color mulch that creates the perfect backdrop for your garden and landscape.

Mulching helps your plants, shrubs and trees maintain healthy root systems by protecting them from frost, cold and harmful UV rays. It also naturally helps retain soil moisture, saving you time and water. Mulch naturally suppresses weed growth and adds nutrients to the soil for thriving, healthy plants.

Benefits of bark mulch:

  • Inhibit weeds
  • Conserve water
  • Prevent erosion
  • Insulate roots and bulbs from extreme hot & cold weather
  • Add nutrients to the soil
  • Encourage earthworms

 

dark bark mulch

10 Apr 2014

Lawn Aeration

Do you aerate your lawn? Does your lawn lawn have compacted areas?

Compacted soil restricts the root system of your lawn, robbing it of the air, moisture and nutrients they need to grow properly, resulting in thin grassy areas and bare spots. Allowing weeds and dies ease to take hold.

Some of the signs the your soil is compacted are:

heavy foot traffic, vehicles parked on the lawn

water puddling after a rain

heavy thatch

difficulty pushing a screwdriver or pencil into the soil

Aerating your lawn is beneficial to your lawns health. It loosens the compacted soil, allowing air, moisture and the nutrients needed for the grass roots, which results in a stronger root system and helps in breaking down thatch. Giving you a full, lush lawn.

Other benefits of lawn aeration are:

allows air, moisture and vital nutrients into the soil

better drainage

reduced soil compaction

reduced heat and drought stress

thatch breakdown

After aerating your lawn is a good time to reseed your lawn.

Spring is a good time to aerate your here in Maine and northern areas, while early summer in southern areas when the grass is actively growing.

 

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08 Apr 2014

Spring Lawn Maintenance

A healthy summer lawn, begins with spring lawn maintenance. Winter can cause some problems for your lawn like changes in your soils pH levels and soil compaction that will create conditions that are more friendly to both weeds and disease.
As the snow melts and reveals bare spots, snow mold and other problems. Don’t panic, we have a few spring lawn care tips for you.

1) spring Cleanup & Lawn Repair
Once the snow melts and the lawn dries out, lightly rake your lawn, removing any thatch buildup, snow mold, leaves and other debris. This will allow you to get a better idea of any other problems your lawn may have, such as soil compaction and an uneven lawn that will require your attention.
These problems if left as they are will create poor growing conditions for your lawn. Any uneven spots will need to be either filled in or scraped down to help with better drainage.
While any compacted areas will need to be aerated to loosing up the soil, thus creating better soil conditions for the grass plants to grow. If left unattended, both weeds and disease will take over your lawn.

2) Reseeding
After you have done a spring cleanup and have repaired any necessary repairs to your lawn, we suggest that you have your soil tested before reseeding your lawn.
This can be done through your local Co-Operative Extension Office. The soil test will point out any soil deficiencies that may prevent the grass from growing.
Now your ready to reseed your lawn, but don’t forget to regularly water it to maintain the soil moisture needed for the grass seed to grow

3) Fertilizing
Fertilizing your lawn in the spring can encourage your lawn to grow lush and thick. We recommend that you use a slow release nitrogen product once your lawn starts to actively grow.
If you use a fertilizer, be sure to read all the instructions for watering and pounds per 1000sq ft, prior to applying it to your lawn. Overuse of a fertilizer can cause severe damage to your lawn if not used properly.

4) Spring Mowing
Proper mowing height and a frequent mowing schedule are both very important to you lawns health.
Mowing the grass to short is harmful to your lawn and the soil, allowing the soil to dry out and the grass plants to stress out, allowing weeds to take hold and overcome the grass.

5) Lawn Mower Maintenance
Preventative maintenance on your lawn care equipment in the spring with both, save you time and money in the long run.

Be sure to remove any old gas, replacing it with new
Sharpen the blades
Change the oil
Replace air & oil filters
Cleanup the mower deck

These are just a few basic spring lawn maintenance tips to help you give your lawn a great start to the season. We will doing a more in depth articles on these subjects over the course of the spring.

 

spring lawn maintenance

07 Apr 2014

Pruning Roses

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Pruning Roses

In most regions, early spring is the best time to prune your roses, just before the buds appear and always cutting at an angle to ensure that the water runs from the bud itself.

Trimming your rose bushes back encourages strong and healthy shoots that will produce lots of blossoms, while giving the plants a more open area, which helps the plant resist diseases like black spot.