Weeds don’t stop invading your lawn just because the temperatures drop. Beginning their life cycle in late summer, these weeds grow in the winter and die in the late spring or early summer. They will compete with your grass for water, space, light and nutrients. In order to control these unwanted guests, you must first identify what types of weeds you have. Proper identification will ensure the correct control method is applied or performed at the optimum time. Here are a few of the most common winter annual weeds that affect Georgia lawns. Annual Bluegrass (Poa annua) This fast growing, bright green, winter annual is the most common grassy weed in the world. Growing up to 15 inches tall, it thrives in cooler weather. It’s pale, boat-shaped tipped leaves contain thousands of seeds, making its re-seeding rate extremely high. Usually found in Bermuda grass and bentgrass, annual bluegrass is the most problematic winter weed. Common Chickweed (Stellaria media) This invasive weed hosts insects and plant viruses. Growing anywhere from 2-8 inches, chickweed stems have a band of hairs along one side, smooth leaves, and small, white flowers. Fond of shaded areas, it spreads slowly in the winter and then quickly when grass seeds begin germinating. Dandelion (Taraxacum) One of the most easily recognizable weeds, the dandelion’s bright yellow flower transforms into a white seed head, then spreads it’s seeds in windy conditions. Dandelion weeds have zig-zag leaves and a hollow flower stalk filled with a white sap. Henbit (Lamium amplexicaule) Growing to 12-16 inches, the broadleaf weed henbit is one of the most common winter annuals. It is easily spotted by its rounded, flat leaves, hairy stems, and tubular, purplish flowers that blossom in winter. Speedwell [...]
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Maintaining a lawn requires mowing, trimming, fertilizing, and caring for any surprises or problem areas. If you are considering hiring a company to take care of some or all of these tasks for you, here are some questions to ask yourself about what you need from a lawn care company: What services do you need? Do you enjoy mowing but need help getting grass to grow near those trees? Maybe you need help with one or two services, or maybe you need a little bit of everything. Most companies offer fertilizing, weed, pest, and disease control, aerating, mowing, and small tree and shrub maintenance, re-seeding, sodding, soil testing, and aerating. Once you decide what services you need, you can consider service specific criteria. For example, if you're looking for mowing services, think about how frequently you would like the lawn mowed, what your expectations are regarding missed visits, and areas of your lawn that need extra care or caution. Most mowing companies are “mow and go” crews that mow, trim, and blow a lawn quickly and sometimes offer a few additional extras. What’s the purpose of your lawn? Is your lawn a place where pets and children play or a lush, green carpet surrounding your home? A yard that experiences daily wear and tear may lead you to make different decisions regarding chemicals or expensive details. What is your philosophy on chemicals? Laws differ from state to state but when herbicides, fertilizers and other pesticides are applied to your lawn, they should be done by a licensed professional. Many lawn care companies are learning to include organic and natural alternatives to traditional lawn care. If organic lawn care is the choice you wish to make, look for [...]
It is important to reduce the amount of pollutants you are exposed to every day. After making changes to your diet, personal care routine, and cleaning products in an effort to lead a more natural lifestyle, your next step is to change your lawn care. Synthetic lawn pesticides and weedkillers have been linked to birth and reproductive defects, liver and kidney damage, endocrine and neurological disorders, cancers, autism, non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, Parkinson’s disease, and childhood leukemia. Don’t think that these chemicals stop at your lawn after application! They are tracked into your home and drift in through open windows and ventilation systems, where they contaminate the air that you, your family, and your pets breathe. Another negative effect of synthetic fertilizers and chemical pesticides is their ability to devastate the complex system in and around the soil called the “food web.” A healthy organic soil consists of insects, fungi, and a range of microorganisms that nurture the grass. Applications of broad-spectrum biocides kill a large variety of weeds, pests, and insects, but eliminating any part of a lawn’s food web can create more problems and lead to the use of even more chemicals. By eradicating unwanted weeds and insects with synthetic products, the beneficial ones are also eliminated. This endless cycle is devastating to the life of your lawn and binds you to the use of synthetic lawn chemicals indefinitely. A constant attempt at eradication will also lead to increased immunity in those targeted insects and weeds, thus leading to more frequent applications in the future. While “organic” tends to equate to “expensive” in most minds, transitioning to organic lawn care will actually save you money in the long term by building up your soil so [...]
If you have trouble with Anyworms then be sure to check out this article
We call our premium compost “black gold.” It is a fantastic natural source of organic matter and benevolent micro-organisms for your yard. Barefoot Organics compost is healthy food for your lawn! It will support strong root development and encourage nutrient renewal for a healthy environment in the root zone. Our well-balanced humus has the energy values your grass and landscaping need. Feeding your soil a healthy diet that promotes a hearty root system will give you a beautiful, green lawn. As will all BFO programs, we do not use synthetics or harsh chemicals in our lawn composting program. Check out all these compost benefits! 1. Improve soil structure Soil structure specifically refers to the way inorganic particles, such as sand, silt and clay, combine with decayed organic particles like humus. Soil with a healthy structure is crumbly to the touch, allowing plenty of room for air, water and energy to move freely. Adding compost to your yard helps to neutralize pH and improve the soil’s ability to hold the nutrients plants use to grow and thrive. If you’ve had trouble getting certain plants to grow around your home, poor soil structure may be to blame. When soil is hard and clay-like or loose and sandy, young roots have to struggle to get through and obtain the nutrients they need for healthy growth. When used in sufficient quantities, adding compost has both immediate and long-term positive impacts on soil structure by adding humus proteins. These proteins bind soil particles together, allowing the soil to resist compaction and increasing its ability to hold moisture and nutrients. 2. Increase nutrient content When organic material starts breaking down to form compost, the decomposition process produces the best fertilizer you’ll [...]