I don’t know about you all, but the mosquitoes at our house have been atrocious this year. They are plentiful and they are voracious – my poor 8 year old is mosquito attractant and they enjoy feasting on her.
Mosquitoes belong to the same family as flies. They have a single pair of wings and their bodies are covered in tiny scales. And they feast on blood.
They breed in standing water so properties near ponds, marshes or depressions that collect water are at risk. Some are active at different times of the day but most emerge just before dusk and are active at night.
Mosquitoes can transmit several dangerous diseases, including Zika virus, West Nile and several kinds of encephalitis. The CDC states that the number of illnesses caused by mosquito bites tripled between 2004 and 2016. They are not going away but getting worse!
Now, some good news – mosquitoes can’t fly very far or very fast. Most mosquitoes can fly no more than about 1-3 miles, and often stay within several hundred feet of where they were hatched. The top speed for a mosquito is about 1.5 miles per hour.
So how do we combat these little suckers without dousing ourselves in Deet every time we go outside? You can reduce standing water on your property or treat it. The best way we’ve found so far is to spray your property – you can either do it yourself or hire someone. There are some natural alternatives out there that seem to work well. What ways do you use to rid your property of mosquitoes?
Our Design Build Department is in full swimming pool mode. If you love to swim or just relax in the water, there is nothing quite like an inground pool in your own backyard. From design to installation, we handle it all. We like to think the pool is part of the project, not the entire project, and design around the client’s needs/wants, budget, and existing conditions. If a pool is something you are considering, keep us in mind! Check out this pool with waterslide that we installed last year. The possibilities are numerous – let us know if we can help!
Little Henry Itea is a deciduous shrub that gets about two feet tall and wide. Its green foliage turns red, orange, and gold in the fall. The very pronounced white flowers appear in June and will typically last through July. The plant likes to be in full sun and can take wet conditions. The best use of this plant is in a mass planting to take advantage of its Fall color and flowers. If left unchecked, the plant will spread out by root suckers and will fill in an area rather nicely. It has no serious disease or insect problems which make it a great addition to your landscape.
Even with the late start to the mowing season, the crews are making progress through the mulching list. Our goal is to have all of our mulch put down by the end of the month. The reason for that is we are already planning for the next part of the season.
Our Summer pruning will be starting soon. You may notice that some of your plants are starting to look a little hairy again. With the Spring we had, the plants were very happy and pushed a lot of new growth. What we are targeting in our next round of pruning is to get the shrubs back under control and get a nice shape to them. We will be doing a slightly more aggressive shaping on the shrubs that were flowering on our first visit. Overall, our goal is to make sure your landscape looks nice through the rest of the season.
Not all shrubs can be sheared into shape though. Pruning shrubs wrong can lead to unsightly plants or even plants dying. A lot of evergreen shrubs can be severely damaged by shearing while others will be fine. Some shrubs like Junipers cannot be pruned back past the green growth. Doing so could lead to spots never growing again. Other shrubs like Boxwood and Yews can be sheared but will need a detailed hand pruning every couple of years to make sure new growth is starting from inside the plant. Shearing a shrub can cause the majority of the growth to be at the very tips of the branches making a harder pruning not possible.
The other thing we look for during this pruning is dead branches. We want to remove these branches to make room for healthy new growth to fill in. While the plant may have a funny shape to it after removing these branches, it will help the plant fill out and a gap is better than looking at a bunch of dead branches.
If you feel that your shrubs are heavily overgrown and in need of a much heavier pruning, just give us a call. We can come out and take a look at them. In most cases, this type of pruning is better done in the late Fall or early Winter. If you are not on the pruning list but would like to be, just give us a call. We are more than happy to get you taken care of this round.