Landscaping and yard work are usually the last thing on the minds of most homeowners in winter. Winter is a great time to plant new trees and shrubs. They get a chance to spread their roots out prior to our spring, summer heat. Any plant, shrub, or tree goes through transplant shock when removed from the cozy pots they were raised in. This issue is compounded greatly if they also have to deal with high ground and air temperatures. Prices on materials and labor are usually better in the winter months too.
During the winter, while grass is completely dormant, you can actually spray roundup on stubborn weeds/grab grass left over from last season.
At this time of year your grass is full of millions of crab grass seeds waiting to sprout in the spring. Therefore, you want to be ready to spray with a pre-emergent about the last week of February, just before the temperature starts to warm up.
However, you don’t want to apply pre-emergent any earlier than February, as it would kill new seeds that you have planted. Also, the chemicals are not be as effective in the cold weather.
Weeds are a constant hassle in North Texas. We seed blow in from all over including west Texas. If left in their own, they often germinate and create either broadleaf weeds or broadleaf grassy weeds. The two are different and treatments are different also. Broadleaf weeds can be treated with granules or liquids. Most opt for granules as they are safer to use for the homeowner. Broadleaf grassy weeds are more than likely going to require a liquid sprayed from a dedicated pump spray container. This takes more time and different equipment.
Granular pre-emergent once wet to activate puts down a chemical barrier at the top of the soil. It is effective for approx 60 to 90 days. This chemical is designed to keep new seeds from the air or other above ground sources from reaching the soil and germinating. Post emergent granular broadleaf weed control is designed to kill the weeds that are already present and showing in the lawn. Once wet to activate, they work to get into the system of the weed and kill it. Fertilizer works to provide nutrients needed to keep grass healthy and green. You might have a soil test done if you are really concerned about applying just the right product. In our area a 15-5 10 or 20-5 10 work well. These numbers will be on the fertilizer bag. Make sure you use chemicals that are good to use on your specific grass type, probably either St Augustine or Bermuda. This will also be on the bag.
Captain Ron’s makes an application approx every other month. Pre-emergent in late fall and early winter, then a weed/feed in early spring, followed by fertilizers.
Pruning of trees and shrubs can be done at various times. Crape myrtles are always a big topic. Some say trim only pencil diameter, never more. Others cut back to stubs 2 feet high.. I am not a proponent of either of these. Crapes need to be trimmed in the full of winter when they are dormant. Tops are trimmed in a mushroom shape NOT straight across. Roses can usually be trimmed prior to Valentines Day(easy to remember). Tree canopies and shrubs we have trimmed successfully all year long. It is better to avoid the heat of July, August, September months.
Now is a great time to clean out your flower beds, removing the fallen leaves and weeds, etc to have the bed looking good and staying healthy. A thick layer of mulch may be added. The mulch helps to minimize weeds, lessen water evaporation therefore keeping the water on the plants where you want it. Another benefit is that it looks great. Mulch type and size is a matter of personal preference.
Contact landscaping professionals
Finally, winter is the ideal time to contact a landscaping company about updating, remodeling, or totally reinstalling your landscape and beds, or planning an early spring resodding project.
Homeowners typically wait until spring to make their initial calls, only to find that most quality landscapers are busy and even scheduled months in advance. Plan ahead to get your best service and prices of the year.
We would love to help you get your desired landscaping projects started.