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1.888.LawnTec Blog


Information, reminders, tips, and more about lawn care, plant health, and outdoor pest control.

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Plant Health Care - Black Knot Disease

What’s this mess on my flowering plum tree?

Dibotryon morbosum or Apiosporina morbosa is a destructive plant pathogen aka: Black Knot Disease. The source of the fungus is usually a wild, unpruned, infected tree releasing spores into the air. These spores then infect ornamental trees found in local landscapes.

Unfortunately, it’s a slow killer to mainly flowering plum trees, but also affects some cherry and other fruit trees. The disease creates rough, black growths that grow on the tree's twigs and branches. These ugly growths, called gals, will eventually kill the affected parts and then the tree over time.

The most common treatments are pruning infected parts and spraying the tree with a fungicide. This is easier said than done, since ongoing pruning and fungicide treatments must be done. These treatments will only help the problem, not solve it. Nearby wild plants with the disease must also be destroyed. It will be more cost effective to let the tree slowly decline and then replace it with a different species.

This is one of the few problems that we cannot cure. However, there are 100’s of other insect & disease problems out there, and we can help!

1.888.LawnTec Plant Health Care Specialists

Preserve the value of your trees, shrubs, and plants! Landscape trees and shrubs can take decades to establish, but can be irreparably damaged in a matter of an instant. In addition to robbing your yard of the beauty in which you take pride, ...

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Spring is the Time to Stop Crabgrass

Pre-Emergent Crabgrass Control Stops Crabgrass Before it Starts

In Berkeley Heights, New Providence, Summit, and other surrounding communities, spring is the time to make one of the most important lawn care applications of the year, pre-emergent crabgrass control. Crabgrass is a nasty aggressive wildgrass that is almost impossible to stop once it germinates. This pre-emergent application is combined with a spring fertilizer to help your lawn come out of dormancy, start to grow and green up!

The pre-emergent crabgrass control creates a barrier within the top inch of the soil, this barrier prevents crabgrass seeds from germinating. Crabgrass seeds germinate in the late spring and summer, so it is important that this barrier is not broken.

Don’t Aerate, Rake, Dethatch, or Seed After Pre-Emergent Applications

Aeration, Raking, Dethatching, and Seeding cannot be combined with this application. If you must seed, only spot seed in the spring, and then do a complete overseeding in the early fall. Early fall is the best time to aerate, dethatch and seed a lawn. In order to succeed with spring spot seeding, you must rake out the damaged spots. Raking will break the pre-emergent barrier, allowing you to then spread a light layer of topsoil and seed.

Other Tips to Prevent Crabgrass

Other tips for a crabgrass free healthy lawn would include mowing the lawn as high as possible and if you have an irrigation system, do not start watering before it’s...

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7 Reasons You Shouldn't Seed Your Lawn During Spring

Our recommendations regarding spring seeding for your lawn.

Spring is here! You plan on planting some new bushes, preparing your vegetable garden, and seeding your lawn. However, did you know the best time to seed is in the fall not in the spring?

In Berkeley Heights, New Providence, Summit, and other surrounding areas in New Jersey, 1.888.Lawntec does not recommend core aerating, dethatching, power seeding, or overseeding in the spring. If you have problem lawn areas that need attention in the spring, consider spot seeding it and then doing a complete job in the fall. Here’s why:

  1. When you seed in the spring, you cannot apply pre-emergent crabgrass control. Newly seeded areas must germinate, mature, and be cut at least 2 to 3 times before pre-emergent crabgrass control can be applied. This takes about 3 months, and at that time, it will be too late to make a pre-emergent application.
  2. Weed killers cannot be used as well or your new seed will be dead.
  3. Once summer arrives, crabgrass and weeds will begin to spread and can damage the new grass. Controlling crabgrass and weeds in the young grass in the summer is not possible.
  4. Well, what if we seed a few weeks after you apply the pre-emergent crabgrass control? It is not possible to apply pre-emergent crabgrass control and then seed a few weeks later. The pre-emergent crabgrass control application creates a barrier on the ground that needs to be there throughout the entire spring and into the...
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10 Benefits of Tree & Shrub Root Feeding

Your trees and shrubs took a beating over the winter. Now is the time to give them a boost with Annual Root Feeding injections!

Your landscape is an investment that should increase in beauty and value every year as plants mature. However, plants are living things and are subject to constant stress from the harsh environment here in the New Jersey area. For success, your plants need special care before they show signs of distress and decline. This is where Annual Root Feeding comes in.

Benefits of Annual Root Feeding

Annual Root Feeding of landscape ornamentals provides many benefits such as:

  1. Root feeding is a feeding that gets deep down into the plant’s lifeline; its root system. This encourages strong deep root growth that will help plants withstand stress and decline.
  2. This injection into the root zone is by far the best way to feed landscape plants and it is fast acting since the plant can quickly absorb the nutrients.
  3. Root feeding also helps the plant’s health all year long since the nutrients needed for plant health are now available in the soil.
  4. Poor soil conditions will be revitalized and improved.
  5. During the spring landscape, plants use a lot of energy to flower, push out new growth, and seed, leaving them stressed going into the hot summer. So, a spring feeding is very beneficial to overall plant health.
  6. Plants will grow healthier and flower longer with an annual feeding.
  7. Healthy plants will be more resistant to dry weather and...
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How to Protect Your Plants From Winter Damage

Using anti-desiccant spray to protect your evergreen trees and shrubs over the winter.

Start protecting your landscape plants from winter damage with an anti-desiccant spray! Winter damage to evergreen trees and shrubs is caused by desiccation, or drying out. Once the ground freezes plant roots are unable to take up water from the soil. Plants are then forced to use the water stored in their needles, leaves, and stems. Harsh cold dry winter winds and freezing temps will also dry out the water that plants need to survive. This loss of essential plant moisture leads to winter plant damage or even death.

An anti-desiccant spray professionally applied to evergreen trees and shrubs will help hold in this vital moisture throughout the winter. If you have problems with winter plant damage in your landscape the experts at 1.888.Lawntec suggests spraying an anti-desiccant.

Anti-desiccants sprays can also be called anti-transpirant spray, winter wilt proofing spray, or winter protection spray. The application will provide a protective coating that conserves the amount of water that escapes from the plant. These are usually one time applications applied in the early winter, December is ideal. In areas with longer and colder winters, like New Jersey, anti-desiccants are most effective when applied twice, once in November/December and again in February. However, this can get tricky since temps must be above freezing to make an effective application.

Anti-desiccant sprays go...

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Top 10 Winter Snow Removal Tips

Whether you hire a company for snow removal services or do it yourself, consider these tips:

  1. Winter weather and snowfall totals can be unpredictable. Be prepared with food, gas, shovels, de-icing materials and a generator so you can relax no matter what comes your way.
  2. Mark your driveway with reflective posts so your driveway gets plowed and not your lawn and landscape. Figure out where the snow will go and where it will cause problems.
  3. Relax and stay at home until the winter storm is over. Your four wheel drive or all wheel drive vehicle is not as safe as you think. Take a break and stay home until the roads are cleaned. Have an enjoyable snow day off like you did as a kid.
  4. Dress warm and stay alert if you are going out in the storm.
  5. Keep up with the storm. Remove a few inches of snow at a time instead of a large amount. Typically snow removal should be done every 4 to 6” so it’s manageable and so you can get out or people can get in if there is an emergency.
  6. Snow shoveling is like working out, so don’t overexert yourself and stay in the right mindset. Consider using a snowblower, then there will be little to no snow shoveling. Better yet hire a local snow plowing service.
  7. Prevent salt damage by switching from salt to safer ice melting products. Salt destroys everything from grass and plants to walkways and driveways. Spending a few extra bucks for better ice melting products will help prevent more costly repairs from happening in the...
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Our new website has been launched live!

We would like to announce our new website has been launched! We are very excited about new and existing customers being able to find us online, learn about our services and get in contact with us.

Come back often for great lawn care and landscaping information!

Part of our new website is a blog that we'll be utilizing to provide you with lawn care tips, reminders and other great lawn and landscaping information. We encourage you to join in and comment on our posts with your questions, opinions and requests.

The new site will continue to grow!

Since we just launched the website, there are many things we'll be adding into the future. When you see or talk to us, let us know what you think! Your feedback is important as we strive to offer the best lawn service possible.

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