What Prices Are Being Used In The Comparison
I will use Green Giants prices only because I know what they are however, most lawn care companies in our area have similar pricing.
I will use Scotts 4-Step Turf Builder program for the Do-It-Yourself comparison because Scotts program is one of the most popular and well-known brands . And, since Scotts products are sold on a retail level, we can easily find their prices.
Scotts products come in different sized bags for different sized lawns. For example, Scotts has a 40.5 lb. bag for a 15,000 square foot lawn and a 13.58 lb. bag for a 5,000 square foot lawn for their Step-1 application. When I refer to a 5,000 square foot bag, I am referring to the square footage that the material is intended to cover .
Don’t Cut Your Lawn Too Short
Tall grass is usually healthier grass. It grows longer roots, which access more water and nutrients. And because it has more leaf area, tall grass is also more vigorous than closely mowed grass. The taller leaves also shade out weeds. To engage in eco-friendly lawn care, note that grasses grow best when kept at least 3 inches tall.
Editor’s Tip: No matter what height you let your grass grow, remove no more than one-third of the grass blade in a single mowing. Removing too much at one time causes stress.
Organic Lawn Care Vs Traditional Lawn Care
Unlike traditional lawn care, which typically incorporates synthetic materials, herbicides, fertilizers, and pesticides to remove, control, and prevent weeds and other lawn issues from occurring, organic lawn care takes an all-natural approach without the use of chemicals.
Though chemical-based lawn care products are effective, they have been proven to be harmful to humans and pets. Specifically, 12 of the 30 commonly used lawn pesticides are associated with birth defects and 25 of the 30 can cause liver or kidney damage.
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Can You Flip Your Point Of View
Traditional lawn-care programs are all about the grass. Products are applied to the top of the lawn with a spreader or sprayer. Each product is designed to chemically perform a certain otherwise natural function, either to prevent or treat a problem or to supply nutrition. Pre-emergents and other herbicides are used for weed control, fertilizers for growth and greening and insecticides to keep lawn-destroying insects in check. Due to these regular inputs, a traditionally managed lawn has few natural defenses and it is unable to nurture or heal itself.
A successful organic system is centered on the soil. A periodontist once told me that I cant have great teeth if I dont have healthy gums. Same thing: Your organic lawn program will focus on building a strong foundation of healthy soil. Your work will build the soil structure, balance the pH so that nutrients are available to roots and reduce soil compaction. The amendments of organic compost that you incorporate will introduce essential life formsfrom the visible to micro-organismsthat were missing. Additionally, youll increase the population of desirable plants through regular seeding, and last, but definitely not least, youll adjust your watering methods so the plants are watered deeply and infrequently. This will enable roots to withstand drought.
Use A Variety Of Ways To Deal With Problems
Pest problems that keep coming back are often a sign that your lawn care practices need to change. These changes can include:
- correcting drainage or fertility problems
- adding lime
- increasing mowing height
- removing thatch
For help in dealing with common problems like weeds, pests, and diseases, see Dealing with lawn problems.
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Where Can I Buy Organic Lawn Care Products
Most lawn and home stores carry a wide selection of organic lawn care products. If you live in the area of a natural or organic lawn care store, youll have more options than many. We recommend visiting your local home or garden center, or a local nursery or greenhouse to find organic lawn care products that work for you.
Organic Lawn Care Vs Chemical: Which Is Better
You care about your lawn and you want to learn more about the difference between organic and chemical lawn care.
Which is better for soil? Which is safer and better for water? Which is more affordable? Which is safer for kids and pets? And finally, which is better for your lawn?
Here are a few key differences between the two options:
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Consider Edible Organic Landscaping
Just because you have some grass lawn in your yard doesnt mean you cant also have an attractive edible organic landscape as well. Nope, planting rows of corn in your front yard probably wont make your HOA or neighbors happy, but there are plenty of edible plants that can be added right into the beds next to your grassy patches in your front yard.
Theres an indescribable joy we get from walking out our front door and picking perennial foods such as elderberries, chestnuts, blueberries, grapes, serviceberries, persimmons, prickly pear cactus, aronia, strawberries, and more.
A summer nights harvest of elderberries from our front yard beds.
Some additional recommended reading if you want to learn more about edible landscaping:
- Book: Edible landscaping with a permaculture twist: how to have your yard and eat it too by Michael Judd
We hope this article helps inspire you to transition to organic lawn care practices. We also hope it helps you go a step beyond
Perhaps this seems like a challenging paradigm shift that will require knowledge and effort. As with all things worth doing, it will.
Regenerative home landscapes and hyperlocal food grown a few steps from your front door wouldnt that be delicious? Please start today and hit us up with any questions as you get growing!
Choose The Right Grasses
If youre planting a new lawn, keep in mind that lawn grasses need at least 4 inches of good soil in which to sink their roots. Add and/or amend the soil as needed, then aerate it to give grass seeds a better chance of sprouting. Use a mechanical seeder to plant a mixture of grasses adapted to your region. Pay attention to growing conditions as you plant almost all grasses prefer full sun, but a few, including fine fescues, tolerate some shade. Top-dress the newly seeded lawn by spreading coconut fiber, peat moss, topsoil, or screened compost over the surface. Keep the complete area consistently damp for 2 weeks. After 3 weeks, you should be ready to start mowing.
Editor’s Tip: Remember that the best lawns dont have to be all grass. Groundcovers or planting beds may make more sense depending on growing conditions.
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What Is Organic Lawn Care
Organic lawn care is an all-natural lawn treatment option that combines non-toxic ingredients such as seaweed, bone meal, feather meal, and soybeans to maintain lawn health. By using natural products to manage your lawn, you avoid harmful chemicals like organophosphates, phenoxy and benzoic acid herbicides, carbamates, and pyrethroids that can cause respiratory problems and other health effects.
Organic lawn care shouldnt be confused with integrated pest management . IPM focuses on using a natural lawn care strategy to control the biological production of pests, disrupt pest ecosystems, and prevent insects and rodents from damaging your lawn.
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Our Suggested Organic Lawn Care Program:
Easter: Apply our Corn Gluten Meal Blend @10-15 lbs./1,000 sq. ft.Memorial Day: Apply our Custom Blend Organic Fertilizer @5-10 lbs/1,000 sq. ft.Labor Day: Apply our Custom Blend Organic Fertilizer @5-10 lbs/1,000 sq. ft.Thanksgiving: Apply our Corn Gluten Meal Blend @10-15 lbs/1,000 sq. ft.
Weed Problems? We can sell you a Speedy Weedy. This is a tool used to remove weeds manually from your lawn without having to bend over. It is perfect for dandelions. Even without using the Speedy Weedy, our fertilizers will help to create thick green grass that helps crowd out the weeds in the long run. Remember the best weed control is a thick lawn though. So, apply our fertilizers at the proper times, mow high, and fill in bare/thin areas with grass seed preferably in the Fall. We also suggest aerating your lawn once per year.
Diy Organic Lawn Care Tips You Can Start Using Today
Switching to organic lawn care practices can save you time and money while creating a safe, attractive, environmentally-friendly home landscape. Here are seven DIY organic lawn care tips you can start putting into practice today!
Do you know what the largest irrigated crop in the United States is based on total acreage? Corn? Soybeans? Wheat? Nope.
Answer: Grass lawns. There are about 102,000 square miles of lawn in the US, an area 3x larger than any other irrigated crop.
Can you guess which land use practice uses more synthetic pesticides and fertilizers per acre, conventional farms or lawns? Answer: lawns. In fact, the US Fish and Wildlife Service states: Homeowners use up to 10 times more chemical pesticides per acre on their lawns than farmers use on crops, and they spend more per acre, on average, to maintain their lawns than farmers spend per agricultural acre. During a rain, the pesticides and fertilizers you put on your lawn can be carried by runoff and end up contaminating a stream or wetland dozens of miles away. Contaminants can also be carried for long distances through the air and deposited on land and in water by rain or fog. Such examples of pollution are called non-point source pollution.
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Looking For Organic Lawn Care Services In The San Francisco Bay Area Were Here To Help
Here at Smiths Pest Management, were an organic lawn care company that helps residential and commercial properties in Northern Californiafrom Marin to Montereyaccess high-quality, natural lawn services.
Our certified horticulturists and arborists possess the know-how to deliver powerful, tailored organic lawn care that generates results. We also take care of pests that invade your lawn. We offer an organic lawn care program as a comprehensive, soil test driven and soil health program.
Its time to stop dumping toxic chemicals on your lawn. Contact us today to learn more about our services or to schedule your consultation now.
Is Patience One Of Your Virtues
Its a multi-year investment to nurture your lawns sub-surface ecosystem into something approaching balance. In the first few seasons after youve turned off the steady drip of synthetic inputs, your remedial decisions may fall toward the middle of the synthetic-organic spectrum. But with your continuing efforts and learning, the lawns ability to self-correct improves.
Late summer through early autumn is considered the best time to improve your lawn. I guess that means midsummer is high time to read up on current methods. I recommend The Organic Lawn Care Manualby Paul Tukey for the specific steps involved in an organic lawn-care program. It was published in 2007, and to my knowledge there is still none better. For up-to-date guidance on pesticides and their alternatives, I follow Beyondpesticides.org. A lot of information is not zone specific, so make sure to cross-reference the recommendations from your local extension office.
Making a complete switch in your lawn program can seem daunting, but you can start small. Its likely youll find one or two new strategies that are easy for you to incorporate. I encourage you to adopt these simpler methods while you learn more about organic lawn-care techniques. Incremental changes will move you toward a healthier lawn while avoiding a lawn disaster.
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Organic Lawn Fertilizer Advantages
Organ lawn fertilizers are made of organic matter that contributes to a healthy lawn.
In addition to delivering nutrients, the organic matter stays in the soil and breaks down to help improve soil structure.
They also encourage the presence of beneficial microbes whose job it is to break down organic matter into chemicals that roots can absorb.
Insect control usually isnt an issue for a healthy lawn. With organic lawn care, homeowners expect that there will be bugs, but most of them are beneficial and feed on the pests. If there is an insect infestation can be dealt with by more insects! Beneficial nematodes and ladybugs are among the beneficial insects that can be purchased commercially. In a pinch, there are some biorational pesticides, which have a low level of toxicity to the environment and their untargeted species.
While organic fertilizers can be more expensive than synthetic ones, organic fertilizers and practices reduce the overall need to apply nutrients and pesticides.
Organic Lawn Care Schedule
In March or as soon as the ground thaws enough for you to dig 4-6 inches deep, get your soil tested. A good lawn has at least 6 inches of soil.
While you can pick up your own soil test kit in the store, its much more accurate if you get it done by your local extension office. If you find your soils pH is below 6.0 add garden lime but if its above 7.0 add garden sulfur. The experts at your local extension office will also be able to guide you in amending your soil and which grass or plants to grow. So dont be afraid to ask!
March or early spring is also a great time to clean up from winter by raking away dead leaves and branches. Learn how to use these in your compost pile here! Lastly, aerate your lawn. This allows water, nutrients and air to get to the grass roots after the snow has compacted your lawn tightly down over the winter.
Its a common myth that you should mow your grass very short so that it will take longer to grow back. But this actually isnt true and will only weaken your lawn and invite weeds to grow. When you cut your lawn short, the grass blades just grow back faster in order to do photosynthesis for the roots. Ideally, for cool-season grasses set your mower blades 3.5-4 inches high and for warm-season grass set your mower lower to 2.5-3 inches.
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Organic Bobs Diy Service
You do most of the labor, we provide the product.
The DIY service includes:
- Free in-person lawn assessment: personalized recommendations, simple trouble-shooting, and maintenance tips
- Products for our tried and true organic lawn care programs: we will deliver the products to your home when its the best time to apply them
Lawn Care In A Nutshell
- Set your mower as high as it will go .
- Water only when your grass shows signs of drought stress and then water deeply .
- Fertilize with an organic fertilizer in the fall and spring. I recommend the Ringer brand.
- Have the pH of your soil professionally tested. Add lime if it is below 6.0 and gardener’s sulfur if it is above 7.0.
- How much top soil do you have? See how deep a shovel will go into the soil. How deep can you dig a hole in one minute? Four inches of topsoil will make for an okay lawn. Eight or more inches of topsoil will make for a great lawn.
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Find Out The Best Height For The Grass Youre Growing
Pro2Pro Tip: Be sure to mow with a mulching attachment or a mulching reel mower and leave the clippings where they fall theyre a natural source of nitrogen as they decompose.
Cut it too short and it doesn’t develop the strong, healthy roots it needs to fend off weeds and disease. So find out the best height for the type of turf you’re growing.
- Cool-season grasses, such as Kentucky bluegrass and red fescue, prefer to be between 3 to 4 inches high
- Warm-season varieties like Bermuda grass can be maintained at 1 to 1 1/2 inches.
Simple Steps To Organic Lawn Care
- Written by KC Morgan on May 01, 2018
Organic lawn care may sound like a difficult, labor-intensive process, but this isnt true. Taking care of your lawn organically can actually reduce the amount of work you do in your yard. By following just a few simple steps, anyone can get beautiful, healthy grass thats completely safe, too. Forget about the pesticides, the expensive watering equipment, and the after-mowing maintenance. Here’s some simple steps to replace them all with.
1. Don’t Mow Your Grass Too Short
Grass is healthier when it’s taller. In fact, you want to mow your grass no shorter than two inches. Taller grass grows longer roots, which can more easily access nutrients and water to maintain a healthy, green appearance. Keep your lawn mower blade short to avoid doing trauma to your grass. You want to make quick, clean cuts. Dull mower blades can damage grass and create ragged edges that are more prone to disease. Replace mower blades regularly, once or twice every growing season.
2. Stop Bagging Your Clippings
If you want to practice organic lawn care, practice leaving your grass clippings on the lawn rather than gathering them up. The grass cuttings work as natural lawn feed. When they decompose, they add their nutrients to the soil to nourish the still-growing grass. This is an extremely simple organic lawn care technique that requires no extra work, and actually reduces a bit of extra work, to boot.
3. Get Rid of Weeds
4. Aerate Your Lawn
5. Water Properly
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