Landscape Care and Maintenance
To keep your landscape looking healthy and to protect your investment, care and maintenance is essential. Budding Branch Landscape and Design recommends and offers a seasonal maintenance service. We’ve been caring for and maintaining properties in Howard County, Maryland and the surrounding areas, including Baltimore, Carroll, Frederick, and Montgomery counties as well as Clarksville, Ellicott City, Glenwood, Glenelg, Cooksville, Fulton, Olney & Brookville for over 20 years. Below is a list of recommendations or you can let us do the hard work for you!
BUDDING BRANCH LANDSCAPE & DESIGN PLANT CARE AND MAINTENANCE RECOMMENDATIONS
Plant care for newly installed plants is critical for the establishment and future health of your new landscape.
Note: An Irrigation system is not a substitute for hand watering
Plants should be thoroughly watered with at least ½” to 1” of water approximately every three to four days. Do not assume because it rained that your plants were well watered. Trees should be thoroughly watered by having a hose trickle over the root ball for 20-30 minutes each. Perennials and groundcovers can dry out quickly because of their shallow root systems; therefore, they need to be closely watched for additional watering. Groundcovers such as Vinca, Pachysandra, Ivy, Liriope and others may need watering every day or two days in the heat of summer. Keep up with a good watering regimen for the first growing season. After the first growing season try to spot water as needed and encourage the plants to become drought tolerant. All evergreens should be watered in the winter to help prevent winter-burn or death. Newly seeded areas must be kept moist for grass seed to have a high germination rate. Water (mist) the surface of the seedbed once or twice daily until the grass is established.
- Trees and shrubs should be fertilized once in the spring and fall.
- Trees can be fertilized with any of the following: tree fertilizer spikes, slow-release fertilizer such as Osmocote(14-14-14), or organic fertilizers such as Hollytone or Plantone.
- Shrubs can be fertilized with any of the following: slow release fertilizer such as Osmocote(14-14-14), or organic fertilizers such as Hollytone or Plantone.
- Acid loving shrubs can also be fertilized with Mir-Acid
- Perennial nutrition – Please refer to the website at www.perennialresource.com for great plant care and individual perennial maintenance.
- Liquid MiracleGro is great to use on groundcovers and perennials
Pruning is a critical step that can beautify or ruin a landscape. Plants pruned at the wrong time can remove that year’s flower buds or promote fungal diseases. Plants being pruned with hedge or hand shears can cause the plant to produce more growth and weaker growth than hand thinning practices would have. Budding Branch prunes in a manner that rarely requires shrubs to need a second pruning, thus lowering your overall maintenance. Trees and shrubs that look heavily pruned are a sure sign that they were pruned incorrectly. Pruning should be performed in a way to enhance the natural character of each plant and not make all the plants look the same.
All perennials should be cut as required by growth conditions. Please refer to www.perennialresource.com for great perennial pruning and other maintenance tips.
Trees and shrubs should not be heavily pruned the first year. Ornamental trees should be thinned and limbed up as needed up to 8’ in height. Please refer to www.arborday.org and www.tree-pruning.com for great pruning and other maintenance tips.
Shrubs should be hand pruned as needed to promote better plant structure and remove any dead material.
The best thing you can do for your garden is to not let weeds take hold. You must do your spring and fall maintenance every year. Mulching helps prevent weeds from easily taking hold of your beds. If you mulch properly and use bed pre-emergent herbicides (PREEN) routinely, you should have very minimal mechanical weeding to do. Nevertheless, you must inspect your beds routinely for weeds and pull them before they spread by roots or by seed. Also, foliar herbicides (Roundup, Weed-be-gone, etc..) can be used as well but you must be careful to not spray your ornamental plants.
There are many insects that can cause damage to your plants. Please use the internet to help identify and provide tips for treatment including environmentally friendly options. The most common and routine insect problems are Japanese Beetles, Tent Caterpillars, and Aphids. Liquid Seven and Seven-dust can be used to treat for these insects. A hose-end pesticide sprayer is recommended to treat large areas and tall trees. These insects love plants in the rose family, such as cherry trees, roses, etc. Needled evergreens can have issues with bagworms and spider mites. The Bayer product line of pesticides can be used to treat for these pests. Visit www.bayeradvanced.com.
Spring Bed Maintenance (March or April)
Prune trees and shrubs as needed. Clean debris out of beds. Fertilize plants with the appropriate fertilizer. Spade edge beds and tree rings to a minimum depth of three inches. Apply bed pre-emergent herbicide (PREEN) evenly over beds as directed. Top dress beds with one to two inches of good quality mulch. Budding Branch recommends using double or triple shredded oak bark mulch.
Note: Liriope should be cut back to the ground in March or April.
Many evergreen and deciduous shrubs can get winter-burn from a cold winter. Winter-burn is very common on broadleaf evergreens. Winter-burned leaves and stems should be pruned back to encourage new growth. Plants with winter-burn can take 2-3 months longer to recover than non winter-burned plants.
Fall Bed Maintenance
Prune trees and shrubs as needed. Cut back perennials to the crown of the plant. Clean debris out of beds. Fertilize trees and shrubs with the appropriate fertilizer. Spade edge beds and tree rings to a minimum depth of three inches. Apply bed pre-emergent herbicide (PREEN) evenly over beds as directed. Optional: Top dress beds with a light dusting of good quality mulch. Budding Branch recommends using double or triple shredded oak bark mulch.
Note: Liriope and Heuchera (Purple Coral Bells) should not be cut back until spring maintenance.
Many spring flowering perennials and foliage perennials need a good cutting back or thinning of stressed leaves to encourage new and better looking foliage. The heat of summer causes many perennials to need a good pruning back. Many perennials will re-bloom if their spent flowers are cut back. Refer to www.perennialresource.com for specific maintenance tips for each perennial you may have.
Special Occasion Landscape Cleanup Service
In addition to seasonal plant care, we offer on-demand landscape care and cleanup for your outdoor events. If you’re hosting a barbeque, wedding, birthday party or any outdoor affair, we can make certain your landscape looks its best for your guests. We can also add pots of annuals for an extra pop of color for the occasion.
Other Landscape Care and Maintenance Services
Additional seasonal maintenance services include:
- Landscape lighting maintenance-replacing bulbs and repairing wiring or fixtures
- Resealing patterned concrete patios and sidewalks
- Pond cleanout and maintenance
- Deck maintenance including cleaning, re-staining, and resurfacing
Contact us or call (410) 442-8208 today, and let Budding Branch Landscape & Design help you perfect “the art of outdoor living”!