Learn About Tulips

Learn About Tulips

The perfect time to plant Tulips has arrived!

The reasoning behind planting tulips in the late fall (October- November) is that tulips require 12-14 weeks of temperatures below 40 degrees Fahrenheit in order to bloom in the spring. It is also helpful because the low temperatures suppress the fungal growth in the bulbs. Planting later in the season like November helps avoid the peak of wildlife animals that hoard food for the winter.

Plant in the Fall for Spring Bloom

Tulip bulbs are planted in the autumn before the ground freezes. By planting varieties with different bloom times, you can have tulips blooming from early to late spring. Some types are good for forcing into bloom indoors and most are excellent for cut flowers, too.

Tulip flowers are usually cup-shaped with three petals and three sepals. There’s a tulip for every setting, from small “species” tulips in naturalized woodland areas to larger tulips that fit formal garden plantings from beds to borders. The upright flowers may be single or double, and vary in shape from simple cups, bowls, and goblets to more complex forms. Height ranges from 6 inches to 2 feet. One tulip grows on each stem, with two to six broad leaves per plant.

HOW TO GROW TULIPS

If it rains weekly, do not water. However, if there is a dry spell and it does not rain, you should water the bulbs weekly until the ground freezes.

Rainy summers, irrigation systems, and wet soil are death to tulips. Never deliberately water a bulb bed unless in a drought. Wet soil leads to fungus and disease and can rot bulbs. Add shredded pine bark, sand, or any other rough material to the soil to foster swift drainage.

Apply compost annually to provide nutrients needed for future blooms.

In the spring, when leaves emerge, feed your tulip the same bulb food or bone meal which you used at planting time. Water well.

Deadhead tulips as soon as they go by, but do not remove the leaves!

Allow the leaves to remain on the plants for about 6 weeks after flowering. The tulips need their foliage to gather energy for next year’s blooms! After the foliage turns yellow and dies back, it can be pruned off.

Large varieties may need replanting every few years; small types usually multiply and spread on their own.

 

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Popular service areas include: Lake Holiday, Oswego, Sandwich, Sugar Grove, and Yorkville. (see more areas)

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How to Winterize Your Lawn Mower

How to Winterize Your Lawn Mower

A couple of critical maintenance measures are all it takes for you to prevent major damage.  If you want your mower to last for decades, you’ll be smart to follow the following step:

Clean the Deck – Ideally, you should be in the habit of doing this throughout the season because keeping the blade housing clean helps to ensure optimal mower performance. But the task is essential before winter to prevent moisture in the grass clippings from causing rust and corrosion to the underside of the deck.

A shot with the garden hose might be enough to remove the clippings, especially if they’re fresh. For dried-on clippings, try a plastic paint scraper or an old bristled pot scrubber; wear heavy work gloves to protect your hands from the sharp blade. If you have silicone spray handy, spray the underside of the deck with it to prevent future buildup.

Store the mower in a dry location. When stowing your mower, we recommend putting a container of mothballs near the deck to prevent mice and other rodents from nesting in the dormant machine.

Prep the Mower for Storage

For a Gas-Powered Mower: Stabilize the Fuel
Leaving fuel in the tank all winter can wreak havoc on the engine. Water from condensation can combine with ethanol in the gas, causing clogs, corrosion, and other problems throughout the fuel system. Come springtime, you could be in for a professional carburetor cleaning to the tune of $75 to $100.

If there’s only a little fuel left after the final mow of the season, your best bet is to run the tank dry. If you keep your mower in the basement during the winter, you should remove the fuel regardless of how much is left because storing it inside could be a fire hazard. You can use a turkey baster or siphon to remove larger quantities of fuel.

If you store the mower in a garage or shed, it’s wise to fill the tank with gas and add stabilizer—or even better, use gas that has stabilizer already added. (You may find stand-alone stabilizer, and gas with added stabilizer at home centers or gas stations.) For good measure, run the mower for a few minutes so that the stabilized fuel can work its way through the carburetor.

For an Electric Mower: Remove the Battery
Remove the batteries from electric mowers and store them inside your home to minimize temperature fluctuation. Extreme temperatures can shorten the life span of battery cells and cause them to fail prematurely. Most batteries do best when stored between 40° and 80° F. (Check the owner’s manual for the appropriate range for your mower.)

Routine oil changes will help extend the life of any engine, as will changing or cleaning the air filter. Spark plugs used to be more of a concern, but their improved technology has reached the point where you need to change the spark plugs only every few years.

 

Information provided by:  Consumer Reports

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© 2020 Aztech Landscaping of Sandwich, IL provides landscaping services and decorative stone patios.
Popular service areas include: Lake Holiday, Oswego, Sandwich, Sugar Grove, and Yorkville. (see more areas)

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Fall Lawn Maintenance

Fall Lawn Maintenance

Don’t Stop Mowing Just Yet … Only cut your grass if it is still growing. Once the temperatures consistently drop below 50 degrees during the day, it’s time to put away the mower for the season.

Fall yard maintenance is all about helping your lawn finish strong so that it can withstand the bitter temperatures ahead. It’s important to continue watering and mowing your lawn as needed. Once the season draws to a close and the temperature begins to drop, you should set your mower’s blades to their lowest setting for the last two cuts of the season. This will allow more sunlight to reach the crown of the grass and allow the soil to dry out faster in the spring.

Aerate and seed your lawn early in the fall with cool-weather grass seed to take advantage of the warmer soil. Overseed and overwater your lawn to maximize the aeration process and give your new grass a quick kickstart.

Is your lawn looking a little patchy? Fall is also a great time to handle any bare, bald spots on your lawn. The easiest way to handle the dead areas in your lawn is to pick up an all-in-one lawn repair mixture from your local home improvement or lawn care store. This solution usually contains a mixture of grass seed, fertilizer, and organic mulch.

 

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© 2020 Aztech Landscaping of Sandwich, IL provides landscaping services and decorative stone patios.
Popular service areas include: Lake Holiday, Oswego, Sandwich, Sugar Grove, and Yorkville. (see more areas)

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Fall planting of trees and shrubs

Fall planting of trees and shrubs

Many times, the ideal time to begin planting trees and shrubs is six weeks before the first sign of hard frost. September through November is the ideal time for tree planting because it allows the roots to become established before the ground freezes and winter sets in.

Fall season planting (mid-August through mid-October) offers many advantages that may outweigh spring planting. Transpiration is low and root generation potential is high. The temperatures are typically moderate to cool and are easier on the plants so there is less chance for the trees to be stressed by extreme heat. The fall moisture (rains) helps the trees and shrubs establish their root systems. When the air temperatures are cooler than the soil, new root growth is encouraged without new top growth. The result is a stronger, better developed root system for the next spring when the plant begins to grow. Mulching with wood chips helps retain the soil’s required moisture.

If you wait too long into the fall season (November – December) to plant, you run the risk of poor root growth and increased failure rate. Conifers, in fact, need a slightly earlier start than hardwoods, preferring the warmer soil temperatures of the summer to early fall.

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© 2020 Aztech Landscaping of Sandwich, IL provides landscaping services and decorative stone patios.
Popular service areas include: Lake Holiday, Oswego, Sandwich, Sugar Grove, and Yorkville. (see more areas)

website design by Willow Marketing Solutions

 

Tips for Hot Summer Weather

Tips for Hot Summer Weather

One of the biggest challenges you can face when maintaining your landscape is creating a design which can withstand a long, hot summer. Hot weather is the sworn enemy of many of the traditional landscaping elements used on residential properties. We wanted to offer some tips to help maintain your outdoor living space that you and your family and friends can enjoy throughout the summer months and beyond. 

#1 – Find Some Shade

It is difficult for some plants to ensure direct sunlight all day long. By putting some of your sensitive plants in portable pots, you can move them into shaded areas during the heat of the day for protection. If you can’t move some of your plants, try erecting temporary shade such as a fabric umbrella which can give the plants a break while the temperatures soar.

#2 – Water Early in the Day

This just might be the most important tip you can receive for landscaping during the summer. If possible, get out and water your property early in the morning. By getting an early start on your watering, you will be able to avoid the issue of having the water evaporate before it has a chance to soak into the soil. Also, you need to avoid leaving your plants soggy overnight, as this is bad for their health. By watering early in the day, the water will have evaporated by the time night rolls around, and you will be ready to repeat the process tomorrow. Of course, if you don’t have time in the morning to water manually, you can consider setting up an automatic sprinkler system to do the work for you.

#3 – Use Plenty of Mulch

Mulch is one of your greatest allies in the battle against summer heat. With at least a couple inches of mulch in your beds, you will be able to keep the temperature down under the surface, and the moisture level will stay higher as well. In addition to the functional benefits, mulch also looks great.

#4 – Keep the Grass Long

Cutting your grass short is asking for trouble in hot weather. Even if you like the look of short grass, let it grow to at least three inches in the summer to avoid the risk of burning up the blades. Short grass will have nowhere to hide under the sun, and you may scorch the roots as a result. Get into the habit of cutting the lawn long during the summer months and move back shorter (if you wish) as autumn arrives.

#5 – When You Water, Go Deep

Instead of frequently applying just a bit of water to your lawn, try watering less often but adding more water when you do. By watering deeply, you will reach the roots, which is the entire point of watering the lawn in the first place. If watering by hand, it will take a bit of time to add enough water to get down to the root level – but your patience will be rewarded with a beautiful lawn.

 

Aztech Transparent logo

885 Piper Way 

Sandwich, IL 60548

815.786.7647 Office

815.786.6654 Fax

 

unilock logo

icpi logo

 

© 2020 Aztech Landscaping of Sandwich, IL provides landscaping services and decorative stone patios.
Popular service areas include: Lake Holiday, Oswego, Sandwich, Sugar Grove, and Yorkville. (see more areas)

website design by Willow Marketing Solutions

 

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