When the daytime temperatures start to warm up it is time for every community association to get their landscaping game on. Here are some things to watch for so that you can know when the game really begins.
When the nighttime temperatures reach and stay consistently above 72°, that’s when nature truly wakes up. Anything that is dormant or semi-dormant comes alive. This is especially true for things in the ground. Above ground everything starts to sprout and blossom. I watch for 3 things: the azaleas, the fruit tree blossoms, and the fleas on my dogs. In condominium associations and homeowner associations, that means your designated dog or pet run areas will come alive with fleas. Make sure your pest control company is ahead of that game. When these three things are in gear, you know that the more destructive insects are about to wake up and do their damage. So get ahead of them, plan for them, and then watch for them.
The Farmer’s almanac says that February 15 is the average yearly date when all is clear from any last freezes for frosts. The length of day is another key factor. Starting from the winter solstice, the days get longer.
If you have over seeded your lawn with ryegrass, it will begin to brown and die out. Don’t be in a big hurry to fertilize. Everything has a cost associated with it and there are intended and unintended consequences. For example, most lawn contracts have a stated a number of cuttings per year. If you fertilized too early, it will make the grass grow, and you may have to pay your lawn care company for more cuttings then what you have in the budget. Waking up the grass prematurely also alerts the lawn destroying insects to begin to eat that much more early and often.
Also as it heats up it also gets drier, so better make sure your irrigation system has been checked in detail now. Don’t wait until the heat really starts, or you will watch (and listen) your grass sizzle with no water. Some have turned their irrigation systems completely off for the brief winter. Make sure that timer is working properly.
So this time of year you should do a walkabout of your property, and make some notes for what you want to accomplish with your landscaping this year. It pays to plan, and now is the time to make those plans.