People aren’t the only life on your association's property; there are plants, trees, and other living landscaping elements, as well. More than just decoration, these features provide the community a vitality and serene pleasure only nature can provide. And whether you're a sprawling suburban HOA or in the city proper with just a courtyard or tree well, the lawn, trees and flowers in your landscape need regular maintenance throughout the year in order to stay healthy and vibrant, with special treatment each season to suit the stages of their life cycles.
Springtime is Prep-Time
“You'll be able to enjoy your garden through the summer if you prep it in the spring,” says Julie Watson, lead gardener with R&S Landscaping in Midland, New Jersey. After clearing the lawn of any branches, leaves or trash, now is the time to dethatch the lawn, clearing out old, dead grass and organic buildup.
Removing debris that has accumulated over the winter is essential, says David Protell, president of Manhattan-based Chelsea Garden Center, “because it can harbor insects, insect egg casings and fungus spores. So the cleaner the landscape is, the less likely it's going to have problems.” Also, dethatching the lawn allows water and nutrients from fertilizer to penetrate the surface.
Spring is the time to address the damage done by the snow and winds of winter. “It's basically an assessment to see what needs to be pulled and replaced,” says Protell. For one thing, “in winter, the arborvitae's will have been bent over or broken.”
Evergreens and weak-wooded trees are particularly susceptible to snow damage. Unable to draw moisture from the frozen ground, their leaves or needles turn brown. If the winter burn damage is minimal, the brown tips of evergreens can be snipped off. If the browning is more extensive, the shrubs might need to be replaced entirely.