Tuesday, October 24, 2017

15 Lawn Maintenance Items to Address Before Winter

Now is the perfect time to begin preparing your lawn for winter. Not only will the right preparation save you time and energy when spring rolls around, but it's also the best time to ensure a lush healthy landscaping as air temperatures are dropping, but the soil is still quite warm – perfect for root development. Take a look at our checklist of lawn maintenance items to be addressed before winter.

1. Clean out debris.
Fallen leaves and weeds are the perfect place for pests to settle in for the winter. Clear out flower beds to keep the critters at bay. Pay special attention to rose beds, as their foliage can foster disease over the winter.

2. Give it one last mow.
Set your mower to a low setting and give the lawn a close buzz before winter sets in. This helps the soil dry out more quickly in the spring, which leads to a lusher lawn.

3. Aerate.
Break up soil to keep water from pooling and guarantee that nutrients will reach the roots over the winter. A garden fork will do the job for small yards, but larger yards may require a walk-behind aerator, which should be available to rent for a reasonable price.

4. Feed the lawn.
Send your yard into winter with the nutrients it needs to survive the long, cold sleep. Add a fall lawn fertilizer with high phosphorous content to encourage root growth and enjoy a lush, green lawn come spring.

5. Rake and mulch.
Don’t let fallen leaves get the best of you; if left unattended they can suffocate the grass. Rake them up, shred them, and use them as mulch for young trees, shrubs, and flower beds. You might even be able to skip the raking part if you use a lawn mower to mulch the leaves in your yard.

6. Till the vegetable garden.
After the final harvest, pull out old vegetable plants, remove debris, and completely till the whole plot. If you compost, now is the time to add a layer of compost to help nurture your soil for planting next spring.

7. Trim Rogue Branches.
Trim up any large or out-of-place tree branches that may cause trouble during the winter. You don’t want any branches breaking and falling during the snowfall to come.

8. Plant bulbs, shrubs, and fall annuals.
Some plants do best when planted in the fall. If you want to add new shrubs or spring bulbs like hyacinth, now is the time to get them in the ground. Fall annuals like pansies are also a great addition to keep some color in your yard as other plants go to sleep.

9. Prune trees and shrubs.
Trim any dead branches and cut back overgrown trees and bushes. If you have blooming perennials like clematis or roses, now is the time to prune them and train the branches.

10. Divide and cut back perennials.
If your perennials really took off this year, go ahead and spread the love. Divide plants and add them to other beds where they will also do well. This saves money and time in the spring. Fall-blooming perennials like chrysanthemums shouldn’t be divided now — wait and divide them in the spring.

11. Protect cold-sensitive plants.
Keep sensitive perennials, shrubs, and roses in top shape through the cold days of winter. Add mulch to the base and wrap plants in cloth barriers to prevent damage from freezing. Depending on the hardiness of the plant and your climate, you can use a single sheet or blanket or wrap them in a combination of cloth and plastic.

12. Clean out the gutters.
Not all fall cleanup is in the yard. This is the perfect time to clear leaves and other debris from rain gutters. Check for proper drainage, clear out any blockages with a small garden trowel, and rinse with a hose.

13. Protect the deck.
Prevent the growth of mold and mildew by giving the deck a good power wash. If you don’t have a pressure washer, you can rent one from a garden store. Once the deck is clean and dry, add a weatherproofing stain to protect the wood from moisture damage over the winter.

14. Dry everything out.
Drain all water from hoses, fountains, and drip irrigation systems, and store them in a dry place. Water left standing over the winter may damage your equipment.

15. Clean tools and store them.
Don’t throw your gardening tools in the shed and forget about them until spring. Take time to give them a good cleaning and add a light coat of oil to prevent rust during the cold season.

Once these landscaping maintenance items have been addressed, your lawn will be ready to take on the winter months and will be at its peak health to promote a green and lush spring bloom. Now, we know that this is a pretty lengthy checklist, and there are better things you'd rather be doing with your time this fall. So, rather than doing it yourself, hire the best landscaping company at the Lake of the Ozarks to prep your landscaping for winter. We specialize in everything from retaining walls, water features, trees and shrubs, sod, among other features, and oversee the design and full maintenance. For your landscape maintenance needs give us a call at 573-964-6515!

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Tuesday, October 17, 2017

4 Fall Themed Landscaping Design Trends

Just as you do in your home, there's always that desire to marry a decor theme to the season outside the home as well. A great way to do this is to incorporate the season and holidays into your landscaping design. So, to help you decide on some great fall themed landscaping ideas, Paradise Landscaping is sharing with you 4 landscaping design trends to include in your landscaping this fall season!

1. Fire Features
Fire features, such as outdoor fire pits and fire tables (designed so that the flames burst through the center), are the hottest landscape trend of the fall, according to the National Association of Landscape Professionals. This sizzling design trend can also help keep homeowners and their guests warm on chilly nights. Fire features are great accessories for entertaining people of all ages. You can cook some s'mores around them. They're also great for creating a mood and ambience.

2. Classic Fall Plants
Garden mums carry the season with classic autumn hues of orange, gold, russet and bronze. Brilliant fall foliage and fuzzy red berry clusters that linger through winter make sumacs a go-to shrub for fall and winter color. Pansies are versatile in the garden and looks equally enchanting in containers or planting beds. Pansies can even bounce back from light frosts, making them perfect contenders for adding cool-season color.

3. Outdoor Lighting
Since safety is always a concern, and the days are getting shorter, homeowners are installing LED lighting along their walkways to make sure they don't trip and fall in the dark. LED Lighting arounds your landscape and water features is not only an important safety feature, but it helps to create beautiful ambiance as well. Paradise Landscaping offers the Kichler Design Pro LED series of fixtures for virtually every outdoor application.

4. Plant Trees
Mature and well-maintained trees can add thousands of dollars to the value of your home. Also, placed correctly in your backyard landscaping plan, trees can keep you cooler in summer and warmer in winter, saving money on energy bills. Take time choosing trees. If fall foliage is your priority, select deciduous trees like sugar maples and sweetgums.

There you go, you now have 4 fall themed landscaping design trends to try out this year! Don't forget to hire a landscaping company at the Lake of the Ozarks to ensure the perfect design for your lawn. Paradise stands by the motto, “Maintaining your Paradise is our Business.” We help you create your dream oasis at the beautiful Lake of the Ozarks. We specialize in everything from retaining walls, water features, trees and shrubs, sod, among other features, and oversee the design and full maintenance. So for all of your lawn and landscaping needs, count on the best landscaping company at the Lake of the Ozarks to make your landscaping dreams a reality!

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Thursday, October 12, 2017

Fall Improvements That Will Transform Your Pool

Whether you're upgrading your personal pool, or managing a community pool that needs some improvements or upgrades, we can help. And fall is the best time to get started on these types of projects! You've likely either already winterized the pool for the season, or it's on the books to be done. So why not go ahead and have the best landscape design company at the Lake of the Ozarks handle the job of making some upgrades and improvements while the time is right? Check out some of the possible improvements that'll transform the look of your pool!

Upgrading the Patio Around Your Pool
This is the time to upgrade and update the area around your pool. Then, when summer swim season rolls around, you will have brand new poolside space to enjoy with family and friends. If your patio area feels a bit bland, and not quite like the oasis you'd like it to be, there's several things that can be done to spruce up the space and make it into a luxurious paradise getaway. By having a professional landscaping design company create a beautifully planned out design for your outdoor living area, you'll find that you miss spending days poolside entertaining guests and basking in the sun. Summer can't get here soon enough!

Installing a Tanning Ledge 
Add a tanning ledge to extend your recreation and relaxation options! There's a multitude of ways you can do this depending on your desired use. Some people prefer to have what are called thermal ledges, which are only about 4-5 inches deep so that the water temperature is warmer from the sun. Most people, however, prefer them to be around 12-16 inches deep for lounging and for a safe place for children to play. Tanning ledges are perfect for lounge chairs, kids’ play area, or shallow water sunbathing. Plus, a tanning ledge adds an element of running water and turns the entire pool into a water feature.

Adding in New Steps
There are several step types that can be added to an existing pool; depending on the pools’ structure and configuration. Sure you could go with a "drop in" step, but they can cause problems. This step sits on top of the pool floor, has a weighted bottom to hold it down, has some movement when stepping on it, and over time causes liner abrasion which damages the liner. The best choice for adding new steps to an existing pool is to have steps installed that are connected to the pool wall. This process is more costly, but they are more stable, longer lasting, and adds more value. This is also a good time to think about whether your pool is handicapped accessible. Managing a community pool? Perhaps it's not just a set of steps that you need - maybe your pool could benefit from a redesign that would accommodate ALL of your guests!

So before you dismiss your pool for the year, take a good hard look around. Think about some of the upgrades that your pool and outdoor entertainment area could use, because there's no better time than now to get started! If you're looking for a Lake of the Ozarks pool maintenance and landscape design company, count on the company who's got more than 84 combined years of experience! Visit our website at www.DesignYourParadise.com or give us a call at 573-964-6515 to discuss your landscape design project needs!

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Friday, October 6, 2017

3 Reasons to Winterize Your Pool

With summer behind us and fall here to stay for a while, it's time to start preparing your pool for those months when you won’t be using it. Getting your pool ready for the winter is more complicated than simply tossing a pool cover over it. Properly closing a pool requires time, equipment, and technical expertise that many pool owners simply don’t have. If you're questioning the importance of having a professional pool maintenance company at the Lake of the Ozarks winterize your pool, read on to see why this process is so important.

1. Keeps it Clean
Algae becomes dormant at low temperatures, and the rate of photosynthesis and growth is very low once temperatures drop into the low 60’s. For this reason, it's recommended to wait until your pool water temperature is below 65° before closing the pool. The chemicals used for winterization prevent algae from growing in your pool during the fall and spring. If left untreated, algae can multiply and cause discoloration and unpleasant odors. Properly winterizing your pool allows you the chance to deep clean your pool, removing leaves and bugs.

2. Avoids Freezing
One of the reasons why winterization is so important is to protect against the damage of freezing water. Ice can cause your pool's pumps, pipes and filters to freeze. A big part of winterizing your pool is draining and drying out equipment such as pumps, heaters, and filters. Blowing and plugging pool pipes flush out excess water to avoid freezing. It is also recommended that you lower the water level of your pool to below the skimmer mouth to allow for expansion, but draining your pool completely isn't recommended.

3. Makes Opening Easier
Getting your pool back in shape for closing is a great way to ensure an easier pool opening, while protecting your smooth, soft and stain-free pool surfaces. Winterizing your pool saves you time and money when the warmer months come back around. By chemical treating the water, you'll have prevented algae buildup during the fall and spring, making the spring cleaning process quicker and easier. You'll also have avoided any damage the equipment or the pool itself.

There are many reasons to opt for winterizing your pool rather than keeping it open all year long, and so many things to consider when winterizing your pool to ensure minimal damage from the cold temperatures. Your pool is one of your favorite investments and we don't want to see it gone to waste or damaged because of a mistake in the winterizing process. That's why we highly recommend hiring a professional pool maintenance company at the Lake of the Ozarks to handle your pool winterization this fall. For more information about winterizations, our lawn care services, or any other services that we offer, visit our website or give us a call today at 573-964-6515. We'll be happy to help you with ALL of your Lake of the Ozarks landscaping and pool maintenance needs!

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