Spring Planning for Your Garden

Glimpses of spring have filled the air here and there.  Even though temperatures are unpredictable right now, it is the perfect time to plan for your garden.  Ideal conditions, like temperatures and planting zones, vary depending on your location.  The state of Georgia has 5 different plant hardiness zones or geographical areas in which specific plant life is capable of growing based on climate (source).

So what are some simple steps you can do right now to Plan for Your Garden?

  • Clean and perform maintenance on lawn equipment.
  • Check irrigation system.  Make sure that your system is working properly and that water is reaching the desired areas.
  • Get your soil tested.  Testing can help you to know what is crucial to your soil for the results your desire.  Test Your Soil
  • Make a plan.  Don’t just go buy plants on a whim.  Instead, do your research on what plants grow best where/when.  Map out what you want to do.  This will save you time and money.
  • Build raised beds for spring vegetables.
  • Prune shrubs and bushes.  Pruning stimulates growth so make sure to cut 1-2 feet lower than your desired end of season height.
  • Fertilize trees and shrubs.
  • Overseed fescue lawns.

Don’t have time for spring planning for your garden?  Northwest Lawn Care offers FREE lawn care analysis, aeration and overseeding, and tree and shrub services.  Save time and money and let the experts handle your lawn care year round!

Northwest Exterminating
830 Kennesaw Ave MariettaGA30060 USA 
 • 888-466-7849
 

Gardening & Pest Control

Baby playing with dirtThis past weekend I was outside working in the garden when I came across a few unwanted guests.  There were a few spiders, a couple ground beetles, and a large amount of ants.  The ants and beetles were present because my garden provides them with a large amount of food and water.  The spiders were there because my garden provides them food (the other insects).

As most of you know the most common insecticides should not be used in gardens.  Leaving the everyday gardener to reach out to “over the counter” products from their local nursery or hardware store to help rid them of pests.  Although many of these products are effective for short periods of time, they require a minimum time lapse before you can harvest your yield.  As many of you know, at Northwest Exterminating we care about protecting your family from pests in the most natural ways possible.  And when it comes to the family garden our service technicians are trained to stop the pest before they enter the garden area.  That being said, a lot of the garden insects start in the garden area and never leave it – making it hard to control them.  So what can you do?  Below I have listed some natural ways to help assist you in keeping the pest populations down in your family’s garden this growing season.  Following these steps and methods will ensure a healthy garden with minimal pesticide use.

 Environmental Tips:

  • Be careful not to over water.  Excess water will provide a water source that is attractive to most pests.
  • Don’t plant too much.  Dense garden foliage will provide hidden shelter for pests including rodents.
  • Weed your garden regularly.  Eliminating the weeds will allow open spaces that leave pests exposed to other predators.

Natural Plantings You Can Add To Help Keep The Pests Down:

  • Plant some of your herbs in amongst your garden staples.  The strong aroma from these plants can deter harmful pests, and attract predators to some of the damaging pests.  Examples:  Basil, Citronella, Dill, Fennel, and Lemongrass
  • Spread coffee grounds around the garden to help reduce snails and provide an extra source of fertilizer.
  • Use a few peppermint essential oil drops in some water and lightly spray your plants to keep the ants off.
  • Plant onions, marigolds, and radishes around the garden to help as well!

We hope some of these tips help you keep your family garden healthier this season!  For more information on Northwest’s Pest Control and Lawn Care Services visit us at callnorthwest.com

Adam Vannest
Director of Pest ServicesNorthwest Exterminating
avannest@callnorthwest.com

 

Protecting Your Plants from the Cold

You spend a lot of time on your lawn and plants in the warm months.  You enjoy their beauty, their usefulness, and even their taste if you have vegetables in your garden.  So you want to make sure that your plants stay healthy in the cold temperatures of winter.  Rapidly changing temperatures, extreme temperatures, frost, and snow can damage your plants.

Here are some helpful tips to protect your plants from the cold:

  • Cover your plants with clear plastic.  A plastic covering protects plants from snow and frost.  Make sure that the plastic is a bit higher than the plant so the plastic doesn’t freeze to the plant.  Using clear allows you to see through the plastic and monitor your plants.
  • Cover plants with blankets.  An alternative to using clear plastic is using old blankets or sheets to cover your plants.  However, when using this method it is important to keep blankets dry.
  • Use hot caps on vegetables. Hot caps are recommended to protect tender vegetables from frost.  These can be purchased or you can make your own.  Visit http://www.wikihow.com/Make-Garden-Hot-Caps-from-Used-Milk-Jugs
  • Move plants to shelter.  If possible, move plants to a place that offers shelter and warmth from the elements.  This can be inside or even under a covered structure.
  • Use mulch.  Mulch acts as an insulator for plants during temperature swings.

For more information on lawn care, please visit our site at http://www.callnorthwest.com/lawn-care/