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2015 will be the 17th year for LawnAmerica caring for lawns in Tulsa, Northeast Oklahoma, and now the Oklahoma City area. We care for more homeowners and their lawns than anyone in the entire state of Oklahoma, almost 13,000 customers and growing. For that, I am very grateful. We’ve grown not because I’m such a smart marketer, or by throwing a lot of money into advertising, but rather simply by doing a great job and taking care of our customers. That is done mainly due to the quality of people we have at LawnAmerica. Sure, we do use superior products, but everyone says that. We really do though, and we apply them at the right time at the proper rates. See the article on Pre-emergent Weed-Control for more information.

I think we’ve also grown because people like to do business with local businesses that give back to the community we all live in. We often times don’t like to promote the details of our giving, but suffice it to say, that giving back and helping those in need is just a part of why LawnAmerica exists, and many of our customers know this. We strive to give back 3% of our gross revenues to non-profits, schools, churches, and organizations helping people in need. We do this with cash donations or providing free services. So 3 cents of every dollar you invest in your lawn with us ends up going back into our community and our world in helping people.

LawnAmerica now is a major sponsor of a new non-profit in the Tulsa area, the Oh Be Joyful Farm. I have a vested interest in this, as my wife and I are the founders. We basically are helping foster kids and families in the Tulsa and Oklahoma area out at our little 40 acre farm. Please visit our website at www.Ohbejoyfulfarm.org to learn more. There are kids who will have their lives changed from the Oh Be Joyful Farm, and it would not exist without LawnAmerica and customers doing business with us. So Thank You!

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If mosquitoes are a problem in your yard, consider our new Mosquito Control Program. This consists of a mist spray of control products applied around the outside of your home and landscape every 4 weeks for best results. We use two types of products with our service:

  • Treatment with Permethrin, a widely used and safe synthetic Pyrethroid insecticide that acts in a manner similar to the natural products produced by chrysanthemum flowers.
  • All natural Mosquito Barrier consisting of garlic extract, which naturally repels mosquitos. Totally safe for people and pets.

mosquitoThese products are safe and effective. Consistency is the key, as the product breaks down quickly in sunlight and water, which is one characteristic that makes it a safe choice. We cannot guarantee that you’ll never see a Mosquito all summer with this service, especially if you subscribe to just a few treatments. However, it will greatly cut down on the mosquito population, and the more frequently we can treat, the better the results will be.

If you have a special party or outdoor event, we recommend two treatments, one about three weeks before and a follow-up treatment a few days before the event. For general control for most of the summer, if you subscribe to 5 treatments, you’ll receive one FREE treatment this year, with you final treatment at no charge.

Pricing per treatment is listed below:

  • Lawn and landscape size up to 4000' — $49
  • Lawn and landscape size 4000' to 8,000' — $59
  • Lawn and landscape size 8,000' to 15,000 ' — $69
  • Lawn and landscape size 15,000' to 25,000' — $79
  • Lawn and landscape size over 25,000' — Call Us

In addition to controlling mosquitoes, this service also will do a good job of helping to control fleas, ticks, spiders, and even insect pests in your shrubs and trees. So this is a nice side benefit to this program. For more information, or to subscribe, contact us at 918-249-5296, or visit our website at www.lawnamerica.com

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The best defense against weeds is always a thick, healthy, well-fertilized turf. However, even the best of turf will be invaded by weeds, so weed-control will be needed for a weed-free turf that homeowners desire. We try not to use the term “weed-free” at LawnAmerica, because it’s almost impossible to provide a turf that never has weeds, even under the best of circumstances. We can come pretty darn close though at LawnAmerica with our very best 7-Step Showcase Care Program. With our services, we can control weeds, keep them in check, and prevent them from taking over a lawn and becoming an eyesore.

barricade1The best way to control weeds chemically is with pre-emergent herbicides applied in spring and then again in fall, before the influx of germinating summer and winter annual weeds. We do things a little differently than most of our competitors with this, providing better results with fewer treatments compared to most. The spring pre-emergent, which controls summer weeds such as crabgrass especially, needs to be applied and watered into the soil before crabgrass germinates, which in Oklahoma, usually begins from very late March into April. We use the best product on the market, Barricade or Prodiamine as you will sometimes see it. Other companies may use this same product, but it seems that more and more are applying it at a half rate very early, as in January or February, and then again 4-5 weeks later in March or April.

My question is, “Why does it take two treatments of pre-emergent applied, while charging the customer twice, before crabgrass even germinates?” We apply a one FULL rate of Barricade with our Round 1 treatment, along with a post-emergent for any existing broadleaf weeds, and a very small rate of nitrogen fertilizer for the turf also. So we do in one treatment what more and more of our competitors are taking two treatments to do. It’s a dirty little secret of some lawn care companies, and I think its borderline unethical. The reason they do it is basically for cash flow. At the very least, it’s not giving the customer the best value for their lawn care dollars.

LengthofCrabgrasControlAt our rate we use, Barricade will provide 6-7 months of crabgrass control, which is plenty to get us well into summer with good control. With our Round 2, we are applying a quality super slow-release fertilizer to get the turf green and growing faster in spring. We then come in 4-5 weeks later with a unique product named Echelon, which most companies do not use. Echelon has a half rate of Barricade applied in the May/June timeframe, which is a much better way to “beef up” the pre-emergent in the soil compared to applying that booster application of pre-emergent in late winter. And with Echelon, it contains post-emergent weed-control also for superior nutgrass control, along with controlling any broadleaf weeds that have popped up in late spring.

The bottom line is LawnAmerica not only uses the BEST PRODUCTS, we apply them at their PROPER RATES, and at the PROPER TIMES when they are most effective. And, we have the BEST PEOPLE applying these products, which is a real key to great results. And, we have the BEST GUARANTEE…..just contact us if weeds persist after a treatment and we’ll come out for FREE to take care of that, and continue to come out until you are satisfied with the results!

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trees and shrubs

As winter sets in, it’s a nice break from chores in the lawn and landscape. Hopefully you’ve put your mower to bed, the leaves are up, and you are enjoying some time sitting by the fire inside. One task that is very important at this time of year however is providing good soil fertility for your trees and shrubs in the landscape.

The best time to fertilize according to Oklahoma State University is in late fall after the first killing frost. That occurred back in late October or November, so that means that into December is still a great time to fertilize. With this, your trees and shrubs will come out stronger and healthier next spring from the soil nutrients applied over the winter.

At LawnAmerica, we inject into the root zone with a soil probe a liquid solution of fertilizer, consisting of the following:

  • – Both slow and quick-release nitrogen
  • – Other soil nutrients such as phosphorus, potassium, and iron.
  • – Holganix, an organic soil amendment, with hamates and mychorrizal fungi.

These products help strengthen the root system of plants and provide the correct soil nutrients for good plant growth and health next spring. We have found that a properly fertilized tree or shrub will grow more, have better foliage, and resist insect and disease problems much better.

It’s important to place the fertilizer down into the soil where the roots are located, rather than just on the surface. The root system of large trees can extend well beyond the edge of the canopy, so we fertilize about 30% beyond the dripline of the tree, where many of the new feeder roots are located.

Since large trees usually have fescue turf under them in the shade, you’ll see little dark green spots with higher grass where the soil was injected with fertilizer. The turf roots do absorb some of the fertilizer, so this is a response to that. As spring progresses, the turf seems to even out and turn greener and grow more with the warmer weather.

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Maple trees are a popular tree planted in many Tulsa lawns and landscpapes over the past many years. Red and Yellow Maple trees grow farily fast, with a strong central truck, nice round canopy, and with beautiful fall foliage. Unlike the old Silver Maples, they have a single trunk and deeper roots that are not right on the surface. But they do have thin bark, especially when they are less than ten years old. This makes them very susceptable to sunscale injury or southwest winter injury.

Southwest injury refers to damage incurred through the killing of active cells within the trunk and limbs of sensitive trees such as Maples, Honeylocust, Crabapple, Birch, Ash, and other thin-barked trees. Young trees are most susceptible to this damage. This injury occurs when exposed bark on the tree warms up on sunny days, and previously dormant cells within the tree become active in response to the warmth. The newly activated cells lose some of their cold-hardiness and are injured when temperatures drop below freezing during cold nighttime hours. This results in discoloration and cracking of the bark. The portions of trunks and branches facing south and southwest warm the most because they get the most direct sun later in the day when temperatures are warmest.

In severe cases, the tree may die due to the damage caused to the phloem and cambium, which are the living portions of the tree just inside the outer bark. At the very least, the tree will be under stress, and with more areas where pests and disease can enter the plant. Because drought-stressed trees tend to be more susceptible to sunscald injury, make sure trees are well watered in the fall and winter even. It is very dry now in Tulsa, so it's even more important to water trees and landscapes well.

As a tree grows and matures, a thicker outer bark will develop, which will help with the hardiness of the tree. Tree wrap is easy to apply.

After planting a new tree, and for younger trees with thinner bark, I recommend a tree wrap applied every fall so that the trunk is shaded from the sunlight. Wrapping the trunks with a cardboard or plastic wrap is easy to do. It can be purchased at most local garden stores, or even the big box stores. Wrapping in the fall with a light colored wrap reflects the sunlight away from the trunk, which protects it from developing southwest injury. In the spring, the wrap should be removed to prevent garden pests from having a place to hide out.

I love Red and Yellow Maple trees, as they are an excellent selection for the Tulsa landscape. But do spend a little time to wrap them every fall while they are young, or you may be replacing it in a few years due to southwest injury. This winter especially has been up and down with the temperatures….mainly down. So expect to see alot of damage from this.