When it comes to landscaping, there's an abundance of myths that can make your head swim and your pocketbook weak. As well-meaning neighbors stroll by and impart wisdom about your landscape, it's wise to double (triple?) check the facts. That's why those of us at Green Earth Landscape Services have devised a handy little cheat sheet of the most prevalent myths that persevere no matter how much evidence stacks against them.
Myth #1: 'I'll save time and cut my grass short, so I don't have to mow as often.'
Fallacy: Lowering the mower deck doesn't save you time; quite likely, it'll cause you more of a hassle. Grass needs to be kept at least 2 to 3-inches in height to avoid exposing the root systems to too much sunlight. Shorter than that can prevent the roots from cooling and prevent the leaves from retaining moisture. The result is dried, burnt grass with brown patches that serve as an excellent playground for weeds.
Myth #2: 'Watering the grass during the day is useless.'
Fallacy: Many homeowners mistakenly believe that watering during the night is optimal. This belief is rooted in the idea that the sunshine will suck all the moisture during the day, thereby making an evening watering 'go further.' Unfortunately, this myth is one of the more costly ones. Rather than help things along, the water winds up sitting on the grass, fostering a bevy of lawn fungus and disease to germinate. All too often, this leads homeowners to replace the entire lawn. Most yards only need .5 to 1-inch of water each week. Possibly more during the hot Floridian summers.
Myth #3: 'Landscaping doesn't really matter.'
Fallacy: It's easy to overlook the outside of a house when so much attention is needed indoors. That's why landscaping is often the last item budgeted for. However, when it comes to resale value, a home's curb appeal cannot be overlooked. “I have been asked about this multiple times,” said John Gidding, host of HGTV’s Curb Appeal and Logo TV’s Secret Guide to Fabulous. “I have always heard the number 150 percent, but to me that is conservative. On a ‘Curb Appeal’ project, I put in $20,000, and the sellers got $200,000 more than they had paid for the house just a year prior. The return was astonishing.”
Myth #4: 'With enough fertilizer, my tree will be back to normal.'
Fallacy: There are some problems that fertilizer simply cannot repair. It's best to explore those options before trying to put a figurative band-aid on a headache. If a tree suddenly takes a turn for the worse, consider these possibilities first:
- The tree has been attacked by a disease or a pest;
- It hasn't been irrigated properly;
- The tree has suffered mechanical damage, possibly from a weed whacker or lawn mower.
Myth #5: 'Landscaping is just for show.'
Fallacy: Sure, today's landscapes are often used to add aesthetic beauty to a home. However, they can also serve a practical purpose. There's no better time than now to turn your yard into a wonderland of fun. Whether it be for the kids or adults, your backyard can host parties, play dates, and picnics with the right landscape ambiance.
Myth #6: 'Watering the yard every day is a must in this heat.'
Fallacy: As alluded to earlier, it's best to rid yourself of any notion that more is better when it comes to watering the lawn. Plants and grass suffer if given to much to drink. Moreover, the short bursts of water encourage the grass to form a shallow root system. In actuality, you want a deeper root system that will create the crisp green grass most of us desire.
Get the facts from the pros
Though an unadorned yard is a missed opportunity to craft or enhance your home's curb appeal, a poorly maintained or ill-advised landscape can be detrimental. Before embarking on a landscaping renovation, consider contacting the professionals at Green Earth Landscaping Services. They can help transform your yard into a paradise. Call our Panama City Beach office at (850) 236-1959, or call our Santa Rosa Beach office at (850) 267-0010 to arrange an appointment. You can also complete an online form from our website to schedule a free consultation.