2019-01-10 / Editorial Page

New Year resolutions for the landscape lover

By Brian Tankersley
Lincoln County Extension Service

The beginning of a New Year is a great time to evaluate your lawn, landscape and garden and to for­mulate improvement strategies for the New Year. One of the goals of making improvements around the landscape should be to make your landscape lower maintenance, more time efficient and more eye appeal­ing. By considering and adding some of the following resolutions your landscape and garden area will have less problems and become more attractive and enjoyable:

Select the Right Tree or Shrub

Before planting a tree or shrub this year, make sure you know where you want it to go, the required soil type and how much sunlight it will receive in that location. Also consider how much maintenance including the cleanup and pruning the species requires.

Get Pruning

When pruning your trees and shrubs this season, remember to never remove more than a quarter of a tree’s crown in one single sea­son. Use sharp pruning shears and a pole pruner for high, hard-to-reach branches. Be sure to remove those low hanging branches that interfere with mowing.

Use Water Wisely

This coming new year use your water wisely to keep your plants hydrated and healthy. Try collecting rain water in a barrel. You can also add a timer to your garden hose so you won’t forget to turn off your sprinkler.

Cut Grass to the Correct Height

If you cut your grass to the right height, it will grow healthy and strong. In order to get the proper height, know what kind of grass species you have because different grasses have recommended cutting heights.

Grow More Vegetables

Whether you’re a seasoned gar­dener or a gardening novice, con­sider adding a raised garden bed or an extra planter this spring. You will enjoy more homegrown food and add some extra color and texture to your yard.

Recycle Grass Clippings

In 2019 leave your grass clippings where they fall instead of throwing them away. Grass clippings work as a natural mulch and will decompose and help create nutrient-rich soil.

Plant Some Color

No matter what part of the county you live in, make a New Year’s improvement strategy to find some blooms to add color to your yard. Consider building some planter boxes to house your flowers, grow them in baskets or even plant them among your vegetables for a contrast of colors and textures.

Start Composting

Converting yard debris to compost has many benefits, including reduc­ing the amount of solid waste that must be disposed of and providing an excellent soil amendment that improves our soils in our part of the state.

Add Light

Enjoy your yard at all hours with some outdoor lighting. Whether you add some simple string lights to your patio area, motion sensor lights or some task lighting along a walkway. Lights can add a finishing touch to your landscaping.

For more information on these resolutions or any questions relating to your landscape contact your local extension office.

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