Like most Bergen County homeowners, you strive to have a beautiful lawn that enhances the beauty of your home. However, keeping your lawn green and healthy year-round requires a lot of time and effort. Whether you take care of your own lawn care needs or hire a professional landscape service, keeping a lush, green lawn requires proper care and year-round maintenance.
What Makes a Lawn Healthy?
Making sure your lawn gets the right nutrients is essential for healthy grass growth, strong root systems and proper weed control. The need for fertilizers, herbicides and pesticides is an essential part of healthy lawn care, but most over-the-counter products contain chemicals that are harmful or even toxic to humans, pets and wildlife. These products pollute the ground water, degrade the soil and release toxic chemicals and fumes into the atmosphere. Is there a good alternative? Yes, green lawn care.
What is Green Lawn Care?
Green lawn care, or organic lawn care, is simply a way of maintaining a green, healthy lawn with chemical-free products. Going green doesn’t mean you have to give up a well-maintained lawn or spend even more time on lawn care. It simply means planting the right type of grass that will thrive in your climate conditions, proper watering and fertilizing and chemical-free products.
Organic lawn care promotes a healthy lawn without the use of harmful chemicals. Since fungi and insects love to prey on unhealthy, weak lawns, a strong, healthy lawn is essential to good weed, disease and insect control. This means that your grass must be well-nourished to produce thick, green turf and strong, deep roots. A conventional lawn defends itself against common lawn diseases and insects with chemical treatments, while an organic lawn creates its own natural defenses with the use of green lawn care.
Growing a healthy, green lawn not only requires a change in fertilizers, but it also requires a change in mindset. When you have an organic lawn, you’re not simply putting down fertilizers three or four times a year; you’re creating a natural way to nurture the soil so it can provide essential nutrients to the grass.
If your existing lawn is currently maintained with traditional over-the-counter fertilizers and pesticides, transitioning to green lawn care may take a little time and money, but in the long run, you’ll save on both. As your lawn builds its own natural defenses, you’ll need less fertilization and other treatments to encourage grass growth.
How Do I Find Reputable Green Lawn Care Services?
There are numerous professional landscape companies that service Bergen County areas, but how do you make sure you find one that’s qualified and experienced in green lawn care?
- Search Online – Begin your search online to look for organic lawn care services in your area. Reputable landscape companies will have a professional website where you can review the type of organic services they provide. You can also review photos of their work and client testimonials.
- Get Referrals – Check with your family, friends and neighbors to see if they use green lawn care services. Personal referrals are always more valuable than internet or area searches. Your friends and neighbors will give you accurate insight into the company’s qualifications, dependability and overall professional reputation.
Important Questions To Ask
Once you narrow down your search, it’s important to ask questions to make sure you find a professional landscape company with knowledge, experience and skill in organic lawn care services for your home. Here are some important questions to guide your search:
Why should I switch to green lawn care?
According to studies by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), 40 to 60% of the nitrogen found in traditional fertilizers ends up in surface water or wells that provide drinking water to U.S. families. 30 % of the water used on the East Coast, including Northern NJ, goes to watering lawns.
Are over-the counter fertilizers and pesticides dangerous?
Pesticides that contain harmful or toxic chemicals can be quite dangerous. These chemicals spill into the ground degrading the soil and polluting ground water. Toxic fumes are released into the air creating harmful gases in the air you breathe. EPA studies show that between 60 and 70 million birds die each year from pesticide poisoning.
Do I need to worry about the use of pesticides around my children and pets?
Organic lawn care is a safe alternative to chemical pesticides. Exposure to pesticides can cause problems especially if used inappropriately.
Does green lawn care control weeds?
Organic lawn care and products promote thick grass which crowds out weeds. Aggressive weeds will take every opportunity to invade your lawn, popping up in any bare spot they find in your lawn. However, even the most aggressive weeds need adequate space and sunlight to grow. A healthy, thick lawn deprives them of both and makes it difficult for weeds to grow.
Does green lawn care control diseases?
Organic lawn care promotes healthy soil, which in turn promotes healthy grass. Plant diseases, usually caused by fungi, thrive on unhealthy grass that’s weak and malnourished. An unhealthy lawn is the perfect breeding ground for plant diseases that can destroy your yard and landscape in a quick time frame if not properly controlled.
Does green lawn care control insects and pests?
Organic herbicides and pesticides control pests and diseases with safe substances and no harmful chemicals. Custom organic fertilizer mixtures promote healthy root systems, increase plant stability and add protection from insects. An organic pest management program provides regular inspections to check for insects and pests and applies appropriate treatments.
How much experience do you have with green lawn care service?
Although organic lawn care is relatively new, interest in green living by U.S. homeowners has caused an explosion of interest in organic lawn care. Look for a professional Bergen County landscape company who has at least five years of skill and experience with organic lawn care procedures and products. A thorough knowledge of organic lawn care is very important.
How much will green lawn care service cost?
Organic lawn care costs will vary based on the size of your property, your property’s existing conditions and the professional landscape company you hire. Good, regular maintenance should include Spring, Summer and Fall applications to keep your lawn healthy and pest-free. Talk to your Bergen County landscape contractor about organic lawn service and costs that are right for your home.
What May Green Lawn Care Include?
Regular Organic Lawn Maintenance
Like any lawn, an organic lawn requires care and regular maintenance. Organic maintenance usually falls into two categories – regular lawn maintenance and seasonal lawn maintenance. Regular green lawn care maintenance includes routine weekly procedures like mowing, watering and fertilizing.
An organic lawn is typically mowed at a higher height, about three inches, which leaves larger grass-blades to perform photosynthesis which feeds the roots and helps shade the soil. It’s watered deeply and less frequently to encourage deep root growth for nutrients. Fertilizing often includes leaving grass clippings on the lawn, a natural way to provide nutrients to the soil.
The Optimum Organic Program
The Optimum Organic Program provides a balanced diet of NPk + 9 nutrients that promote strong, healthy root growth and improve the overall condition of your soil. The Optimum Organic Program includes the Basic Turf Program plus the following:
- Natural Aeration – Done twice each season, it improves the soil and puts essential oxygen and nutrients into the root zone.
- Root Stimulants and Developers – Applied periodically during season, they promote strong, deep roots for protection from drought, insects and disease.
- Natural Thatch Control – It provides 100% natural thatch digestion to stop new growth, but will not eliminate any existing thatch layer in your yard.
- Secondary Micro Nutrients – Applied three times during the season, these essential nutrients are necessary to maintain a healthy lawn.
- Soil Test – A soil test is performed once every three years.
Organic Tree and Shrub Care
Your trees and shrubs can also benefit from green lawn care with proper fertilization. An organic deep-root fertilizer will add nutrients to your soil and promote plant growth and healthy root systems. Trees and plants with healthy, stable root systems grow faster and are less susceptible to insects, fungus and disease. Stronger trees and shrubs will tolerate environmental stresses from extreme climate and weather conditions. Organic tree and shrub services include:
- Natural organic fertilization
- Deep soil conditioning to promote healthy roots
- Deep root fertilization
- Organic disease, insect and pest control
- Special organic treatments for Borer-Weevil control
- Organic winter overcoat protection
- Tree and shrub pruning
Organic tree and shrub care will keep your trees and plants healthy, green and strong year-round, even through cold Bergen County winters. Regular maintenance should include Spring, Summer and Fall care to keep your trees and shrubs chemical-free and pest-free.
A special organic pest management program provides regular inspections of your trees, shrubs and plants to check for insects and diseases, so appropriate treatments can be applied. Visits will include reports that let you know the condition of your trees and plants and what treatments are done. Talk to your Bergen County landscape contractor who can discuss your property needs and give you advice on the green lawn care services that are right for your property.