PLANT CARE TIPS

Helpful Plant Care Tips

Lichtenberg Landscaping is your partner in landscape care and  grounds maintenance, but it's always a good idea to know what's on the schedule, so check out our handy and helpful year-round plant care tips.

Early Spring Tips and Tricks - March

  • Clean up any landscape debris that may have accumulated over the winter.
  • Cut back Liriope and any other perennials before new growth appears.
  • Late in the month apply a pre-emergent herbicide (Preen) to all bed areas.
  • Ornamental grasses should be cut back by early March 4"-8" from ground.
  • Knock Out Roses and other shrub roses can be cut back in half. Cut most plants to approximately 15"-18" from the ground, and they will rejuvenate beautifully.
  • Also clean out the inside of the plant by removing a third of the oldest canes.
  • Apply a dormant oil spray to woody shrubs and trees to kill any over-wintering insect eggs or larvae.
  • Fertilize woody shrubs and trees after the soil temperature has reached 40 F.
  • Prepare lawn areas for spring seeding by raking out thatch.

 Mid-Spring Tips and Tricks - April and May

  • Apply a slow-release fertilizer, such as Osmocote, to perennial planting areas.
  • Cut back any perennials that may have been missed last fall.
  • Apply a soil acidifier (Holly-tone or Soil Sulphur) around the base of acid-loving hollies, azaleas, and boxwoods.
  • If additional mulch needs to be applied to planting areas, be sure not to exceed a 2"-2 1/2" layer.
  • Sawfly larvae will be active on needled evergreens towards the middle or end of the month.
  • Complete any lawn seeding projects by April 15th. (Remember to use a selective pre-emergent herbicide in these areas.)
  • Watch for aphids on tender shoots of perennials and new growth of some woody shrubs and trees.
  • Divide perennials, which can be done effectively through the end of May.
  • Plant new perennials.
  • Install new perennials in May.

Summer Tips and Tricks, Including Watering

June
  • Spray any weeds that may have popped up with a non-selective herbicide.
  • Allow bulb foliage to completely yellow and then cut the foliage back to the ground.
  • Prune any spring-flowering shrubs and trees as needed.
  • Spend time in your garden with your family, pets, or relaxing by yourself.

July
  • Deadhead spent perennial blossoms to encourage re-blooming.
  • Cut back fall-blooming perennials by 1/3 to prevent the need for staking and to delay bloom.
  • Watering: Water deeply and well, rather than shallow and often.

August
  • Order fall bulbs
  • Look for areas to add color with late-blooming perennials, mums, orpansies.
  • Monitor evergreens and other landscape plants for spider mite andaphid activity.
  • Hand prune and destroy bagworms, fall webworms, and tent caterpillars.

Autumn Tips and Tricks, Including Watering

September
  • Monitor soil moisture levels through December.
  • Divide hostas, daylilies and other perennials to replant.
  • Plant fall color in high visibility areas. Mums and pansies are a great choice for late season color.
  • Complete fall lawn seeding projects by late September.

October
  • Cut back perennials after hard frost.
  • Plant bulbs.
  • Decorate for fall - let us help you porchscape your home.
  • Start planning for next year's vegetable garden.
November
  • Cut back any remaining perennials.
  • Top dress perennial beds with leaf compost.
  • Plant bulbs.
  • Water evergreens late in the month to prepare them for winter, if the fallhas been dry.
  • Remove leaves and other landscape debris from planting areas.
  • Lightly rake over mulch in beds.

Winter Tips and Tricks, Including Watering

December
  • Prune evergreens, juniper, and holly, and then use the cuttings for holiday decorating.
  • Make sure soil moisture levels are sufficient to get plantings through the winter.
  • Turn off outside water faucets to prevent freezing through the winter and disconnect your hose.
  • Call us to plan for next year's landscape projects. Now is the time to design and plan to be ahead of the spring rush.
January
  • On a warm day, check the soil moisture around boxwood and holly. These plants tend to dry out through the winter and can sometimes use a supplemental watering.
  • Plan for spring and summer. Start saving pictures and catalogs for inspiration and ideas.
  • Snow can be used as 'white mulch' on perennials and areas where bulbs were planted last fall, as long as it is free from salt.
  • Use branches from your cut Christmas tree as a winter mulch around the base of roses and other less hardy perennials.
February
  • Cut back ornamental grasses.
  • Do dormant pruning of woody shrubs and trees.
  • Check perennials that were planted in late summer or fall. If they are raised out of the soil, push back into the ground.
  • Prune suckers from the base of ornamental trees, roses and shrubs.
  • Tune-up lawn mower and have the blades sharpened before the rush.
  • Cut and force branches of spring flowering shrubs indoors for spring tablescapes.
  • Bagworm larvae will be emerging from any remaining sac-like structures hanging on evergreens, such as arborvitae, spruce, and juniper. This is the only time of year that sprays can be effective. The remainder of the year, the bags need to be removed and destroyed.
  • Plant annuals after the last chance of frost has passed, which is usually mid-May. Just in time for Mother's Day!
  • Cut back any mums that have returned from last year by half.

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