Fire Ants

Fire ants, which were introduced to the United States from South America over 70 years ago, have now spread throughout the southern United States. These aggressive ants can be 1/8″ to 1/4″ long, with reddish-brown to black coloring. In general, they build their large, mounded nests in sunny, open areas (often visible along sidewalks and driveways). However, nests may also be constructed around trees and stumps or even under buildings. 

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June Bugs and Japanese Beetles

With the arrival of summer also comes the arrival of a couple very destructive pests: June bugs and Japanese beetles. While very similar and often confused, June bugs are brownish, nocturnal insects, while Japanese beetles are a shiny green and active during the day. In their larval stage as grubs, these pests feast on turf roots. As adult beetles, they focus on the foliage and fruit of over 400 plant species. After emerging from lawns in late June and July, Japanese beetles start to chow down. They have a tendency to cluster in big groups on some plants more than others, and they can completely skeletonize a plant in no time.

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Mosquito Invasion

Nothing takes the fun out of an evening outdoors like a bunch of bloodthirsty mosquitoes biting you and your family. Mosquitoes pose a significant health risk since they can transmit diseases like West Nile Virus, Encephalitis, and the Zika virus.

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Maintaining Your Lawn

Establishing a good watering and mowing schedule can be difficult when you are busy, but this year it is especially important. Helping lawns and landscapes fully "bounce back" from last year's stress will take time, effort and a teamwork approach with your lawn care company. Use the following guidelines for a good start on a great season.

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Spring Fungal Disease

Dollar Spot

Dollar spot affects a wide variety of grasses and will likely make an appearance soon in warm-season turf such as Bermuda and zoysia grass. The fungus is active throughout the growing season, especially when there is low soil moisture and excess surface moisture. This fungal disease, which is most common in the spring and summer, appears as small white patches that are 1-3 inches in diameter (about the size of a silver dollar). Sometimes, a large number of spots can come together and form larger brown areas.
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Core Aeration

Core aeration. It may sound complex, but it's really simple. An aerator punches out cores, or plugs of soil about a half-inch wide and three inches long, across your whole lawn. This lets moisture, nutrients, and most of all, oxygen reach your turf's roots. Aeration also breaks up thatch build-up – that layer of dead grass and debris between the soil and grass that blocks water and fertilizers.

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Large Patch Disease

This time of year, warm-season turf grass, especially zoysia, often suffers from large patch disease. This fungal disease appears as large, circular patches of discolored orange or yellow turf. If left unchecked, it will continue to spread, damaging or killing the turf it infects.

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Insect Invasion

The coming of spring means the coming of a variety of insects. Certain insects such as Grubs, Spittle Bugs, Aphids, and scale can be detrimental to your lawn and landscape. Other insects such as Fleas, Ticks, Fire Ants, and Mosquitoes pose no threat to your lawn but can be hazardous to your health and the health of your pets. 

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Combatting Crabgrass

If you didn't see a single, ugly crab plant, it doesn't mean you're immune this spring. The strength of crabgrass is in its numbers. Each plant that grew in your neighborhood last year produced as many as 4,000 seeds before it died. Those seeds may have found their way into your lawn on the soles of shoes, by being blown on the wind, or by birds. 

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Preventing Grub Damage

When you do all the things necessary to achieve a healthy and robust lawn, you also make your lawn incredibly attractive to one of its biggest enemies. Turf grass needs thick juicy roots in order to thrive. The healthier the roots, the more appetizing they are to grubs.

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Fighting Crabgrass

It Doesn't Have to Be an Uphill Battle

There's no doubt about it…crabgrass is a worthy opponent in the quest to keep your lawn looking its best. This very common turfgrass invader can seriously detract from the beauty and health of your lawn if left untreated. With proper treatments and good lawn care habits, though, crabgrass can be kept under control. The trick is to take care of the problem before the seeds get a chance to sprout.

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Keep your landscape hydrated!

Keeping your lawn thick, green and healthy means doing several things right. The most important is making sure there's enough moisture to maintain growth. This is especially the case with newly seeded lawns.

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Don’t forget to water!

As the Weather Gets Hotter, Don't Forget to Water 

Lawns, trees, shrubs and flowers need adequate water to thrive, and the summer months are the time to be especially aware of your landscape's watering needs. Remember that how often plants need to be watered is closely related to how deep their roots are. 

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Plant Health Care

Health care is getting a lot of attention these days. Almost every day, we're hearing about new ways to live longer and better. The maintenance of our energy and vitality is being recognized as the key to improved health.

The idea of concentrating on prevention, rather than cure, can easily apply to much more than humans. Prevention also plays an important part in the maintenance of your lawn. And one of the best ways to maintain your lawn's health is to practice Plant Health Care. 

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Leaf-Cycling

Step towards a better environment, and a way to help your soil, too

We realize once again that there is no such thing as a free lunch. After enjoying the show, the performers fall down on us and leaf raking time is back. 

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Giving Grubs the Snub

Ever laid eyes on a grub? If so, you know how ugly these pests are. Even uglier, though, is the damage they can do to your lawn. Grubs are the unfortunate offspring of beetles, such as June beetles and Japanese beetles, and they hatch from eggs laid in the soil. After hatching, the grubs (or beetle larvae) start feeding on turf roots. 

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8 Simple Reasons for Maintaining a Healthy Lawn

A well-maintained lawn can help to provide a healthier, more pleasant environment for you, your family and your community. Here are some interesting facts about lawns that you may not be aware of:

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Fireweed (American Burnweed)

Fireweed is a nuisance weed that pops up every spring in Georgia. This rapidly growing weed has a shallow root system and germinates in the thatch layer of lawns. Although easily controlled by post-emergent herbicide treatments, pre-emergent treatments have no effect on this invasive weed. Proper lawn maintenance practices provide the most effective means of control. Weekly mowing with a sharp mower blade at the proper mowing height will minimize Fireweed infestations. Managing your thatch layer is also important. Compacted soil and improper mowing practices can lead to excessive thatch. Spring core aeration will relieve compaction and help manage your thatch layer.

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Rejuvenate your Fescue Lawn

Although warm season lawns are somewhat tolerant of the summer heat, cool season lawns can struggle with the heat, humidity, and periods of drought. Since Fescue lawns cannot spread and repair themselves like warm season lawns, they must be aerated and over-seeded to thicken and repair damaged areas.

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Watering your Lawn

Proper water techniques are often misunderstood. As a general guideline, lawns only need 1″ to 1.5″ inches of water per week. It's best to water 1 to 2 times per week early in the morning to achieve this goal. Watering for a longer period of time less frequently soaking the soil to a 6″ to 8″ depth will promote a deeper root system and improve drought tolerance. Short frequent watering will cause shallow rooting. Shallow rooting will lead to poor drought tolerance and increase disease susceptibility. Its best to water your lawn and landscape plants early in the morning before the sun rises. This will allow time for the water to soak into the soil before evaporation can occur. 

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