Landscape Installation: Pre-Care and After Care
Prior to the crew showing up you should remove all your belonging that pose a hazard to the workers in your yard and to protect them from accidentally being damaged.
If you have any outdoor pets, please advise Kentucky and clean up after any pets prior to our arrival. Please also remove any furniture or valuable belongings that could potentially be damaged or cause harm. If you have a newly constructed home and require grading, please cut all the weeds taller than 3”.
Tip…. Water the clay along the foundation wall a minimum of 2 weeks before the final grade, which will allow the clay to settle by removing any air pockets under the clay and will reduce the risk of the final grade settling after it has been installed.
At times we may be installing multiple materials and we may have to dump them on the road or in a parking lot. This will be cleaned prior to the completion of the job. If you are a residential customer, please check with the foreman prior to walking on the job site. We want to ensure your safety and may want to escort you around the job site to avoid open excavations or unlevel surfaces.
After we have completed installing your landscape, here are some directions on how to maintain and care for the materials that were just installed.
Make sure to water newly planted trees, shrubs and perennials. Water the roots and the surrounding area. Make sure to water at a slow rate to allow for deeper saturation around the roots. Water consistently for the first few weeks after installation. Do not over water. Over watering removes the air surrounding the root system and will suffocate the plant.
Water your new sod immediately after it has been installed, water your sod evenly to cover all the area’s making sure the water has penetrated through the sod and into the soil below. You can tell simply by lifting a corner of the sod and ensuring the soil below is saturated. This needs to be done consistently for the first couple of weeks to establish the root systems.
Please take note that when watering new sod on top of new soil you will not be able to walk on the sod without creating damage to the grade. It is best to stay off new sod until the root system has been well established.
Watering Grass Seed:
After installing grass seed it is best to water it frequently but not heavily. The objective is to keep the new grass seed wet and not to let it dry out. Certain grass seed varieties take up to 28 days to germinate.
Please note that you may have to adjust your watering in accordance to seasonal elements. If we receive a HEAVY rain fall you want to water less. If we are in a drought you may need to water more often. Prior to freeze up in the fall, water your plants to a minimum 12” to create a block of ice that will protect the root zone of the plant.
Annuals should be watered frequently keeping the soil slightly moist. It is best to add a slow release fertilizer to the planter. Dead head the plants as the flower dies back to allow room for the new flower to grow and also to keep away any unwanted pest.
Perennials will die back every year in the fall season. If you desire, you may leave them as they be and get a winter look, adding another season to your garden and cutting them back in the spring. Perennials can also be cut back in the fall after the plant has completed die back. If you have any disease or pest in your garden it would be best to cut them back in the fall.
These Plants should be heavily watered and protected from the wind before freeze up. Evergreens can still lose moisture during the winter. The leaves will dry out due to the wind and sun. When covering the plant material try not to have the material directly touching the leaves.
Trees and shrubs
Trees and Shrubs should not be pruned the first year of planting. If for a reason they do require pruning contact our ISA Certified arborists to prune the tree correctly. Do not prune more than 1/3 of the tree or shrub in one growth season. Deep Root Fertilization will help the tree remain lush and create vigorous growth helping to keep away unwanted pest. Contact our ISA Certified arborists to provide you with more details and pricing.
Sod should be maintained at a length of 2”-2 ½” after it has been established. Do not cut any more than 1/3 of the leaf at one time. Doing so will cause stress to the plant. Cut your lawn using sharp lawn mower blades.
Fertilizer should be applied at a minimum of 3 times per year. The first 2 applications should be a fertilizer high in nitrogen such as 21-12-12 and the last application should be high in phosphorus and potassium such as 18-18-18. Fertilizing your lawn will provide you with a thick lush lawn and also reduce the soil availability to grow weeds. Use a slow release fertilizer to prevent the lawn from burning.
Tip…… Do not fill the fertilizer spreader on the lawn. If you have an accident or spill, the nitrogen will burn the lawn. Always fill up on a hard surface, that way if you spill you can easily clean it up with a broom and dispose of it properly. Be sure to follow the directions on the label.
If weeds become excessive you may want to use a herbicide to control the growth and should have this done by a professional company who are trained and licensed in handling herbicides.
Artificial Turf is a wonderful option to a landscape because it does not require weekly maintenance. If you have a pet, you can wash the urine off simply with a hose. If the urine has a strong smell you may have to apply a product.
Artificial turf should be broomed and cleaned at least 3 times a year to achieve optimal appearance. Contact us to help with the maintenance of the turf using our specialized broom that will help lift the fibers in the turf.
Rock and Mulch Beds
Rock and Mulch beds have a common misconception that they will remain “Weed Free”. The phrase that should be used is “Low Maintenance”. Mulch and rock will help reduce the number of weeds by limiting necessities in which the weed requires to germinate. They should be weeded regularly. This can be done by pulling out the weed including the root and by using a herbicide such as round up or by using both methods simultaneously. If you pull the weed when it is small (just after germination) you have a better chance of removing the root.
If you must use herbicides, make sure to control your application and not hit the surrounding plant material. Herbicide should be applied in dry conditions. It may take up to 7-10 days before you see the effects of the herbicide. Be patient and do not repeat your herbicide application. Be sure to follow the directions on the label.
At the time of installation, bulk decorative rock will appear much lighter in color than what was expected, and this is normal. This is because a small layer of thin dust that is over the surface from mining and handling said rock. It will wash off over time and have the darker richer color you were initially expecting. Keep organic matter from embedding between the rock and fabric by doing spring and fall clean ups.
Depending on the chosen mulch, the color of the mulch may transfer to a hard surface. This is the dye’s that were used to create the mulch and should wash off the hard surface over time and a few rainfalls. We do not install fabric under mulch as a weed barrier. Over time mulch will decay and will be trapped on top of the fabric giving the weeds a place to germinate. Landscape fabric under mulch will create a smoother surface making it easier for the mulch to slide off the fabric in high winds. Therefore a thick layer of mulch is the proper weed barrier.
Pavers and Retaining Walls
Pavers and retaining walls may show some area’s that appear to be white or milky. These are called efflorescence. The bricks may also look entirely different and lighter than the ones you saw in the catalogue. This is very common with manufactured stone. After these stones have been in place for a year you can use an efflorescence cleaner to remove these spots. A sealer should also be applied to the bricks for protection and are available in gloss, semi gloss, or satin finishes to give the stones a similar look to those you saw in the catalogue.
Contact our landscape department to provide you with more details and pricing.
Lighting transformers should be protected to reduce the amount of exposure to water. Most transformers are water resistant. Keep all the panel doors closed to add another barrier. Read and follow the manufacturers specifications on maintenance and care.
Quality is important to us at Kentucky Blue Grass, if you have any concerns with your new landscape contact us immediately to rectify the concern