Caring For Your Lawn And Your Trees

With another brutally cold (kidding!) central Texas Winter in our rearview mirror, our attention inevitably turns to our wakening lawns. Although we are a premier tree care service, we are also indirectly a lawn care company too, in that our services can provide noticeable benefits for your lawn too.

Turf density can become thin and patchy due to excessive shading from overgrown tree canopies. Heavily shaded lawns can also have fungus (brown patch, take-all patch) and pest problems (grub worms) during periods of heavy rainfall or sprinker watering due to oversaturated soils. Proper pruning techniques can help to mitigate these potential problems by allowing more sunlight penetration and air circulation for the grass. It can also keep the soil from staying too wet, provided there aren’t other contributing factors at play such as heavy soil compaction , irrigation leaks, or a poor soil grade that contributes to slow drainage.

Selectively pruning out limbs in the crown of the canopy for both thinning and separation (from surrounding tree canopies) will not only be beneficial for your lawn and landscape, but it is also helpful in keeping the trees healthy and beautiful too.

Unfortunately, this is also the time of year when we receive phone calls from homeowners with sick trees due to improper herbicide applications done by themselves or even professional lawn care companies.

Weed and Feed products that contain atrazine have the potential to not only damage your lawn, but tree roots can be susceptible to damage (and death)too. The best way to eliminate weeds in your lawn without putting your trees at risk is through healthy turf and soil management. Examples of healthy turf management include frequent mowings on a higher mower setting, using a sharp (not dull) mowing blade, and low rates of an organic fertilizer or a synthetic fertilizer (slow-release nitrogen source and low salt content preferred). Combined with a yearly (or bi-annual) aeration to break up soil compaction and a soil amendment (composting), your grass should be denser and much less likely to have weeds. If you must use a weed killer, I prefer a well-timed pre-emergent application (such as Dithiopyr or Pendimethalin) versus spraying post-emergent weed killer, as you are much less likely to damage your lawn AND nearby trees.  

A lawn can suffer due to overgrown trees, and on the other hand, trees can suffer from improper lawn care practices. This correlation is undeniable, and being proactive in proper management of both your turf AND trees is critical to having a beautiful outdoor environment around your home.