As the hot and steamy Nebraska temperatures loom on the horizon, it’s time to dig out your gardening tools and turn your attention to the landscape at your home or business so you can enjoy lush green grass, bold, vibrant colors, fragrant aromas, and functional outdoor spaces this summer. The options abound for creating a healthy, beautiful landscape for you, guests, and passers-by to enjoy, but careful preparation and maintenance of your lawn is the first crucial step in creating a masterpiece that’s the envy of the entire neighborhood. If you start with creating a strong foundation at the base of your landscaping, you are better equipped to fill it out with all the bells and whistles that make it stand out from the crowd. Making sure your soil, grass, and fertilizer are working together is crucial to the process—as is the right lawn-care equipment!
Nothing Runs Like a Deere!
The very heart of a live landscape is establishment of a healthy lawn. No matter how much you invest in fancy plants and trees, they always look their best when they are adjacent to green, lush grounds. Regardless of the size of your yard or your landscaping project, AKRS Equipment Solutions (akrs.com) can provide an extensive array of John Deere equipment you need to get the job done right. AKRS offers John Deere turf, compact utility tractors, and compact construction equipment, plus a host of attachments, to accomplish any yard or acreage project. Preparing the ground in the spring is critical to bringing it all to fruition, though.
“Be sure to apply the first treatment of fertilizer and pre-emergent to your yard in the spring to stop early-season weeds and get the grass growing,” said AKRS Turf and Commercial Product Manager Travis Harrison. “Rake and remove any large clumps of dead grass or leaves to give the yard access to sunlight and room to grow. Start your sprinkler system and adjust to cover your entire yard with water. Get all your mower blades sharpened, fresh oil, and air filter, and all tires aired up, so you’ll be ready to cut the grass as it begins to grow.”
When it comes to choosing a mower or keeping up with lawn maintenance, AKRS is in your corner. The John Deere equipment they sell offers the lowest cost of ownership in the industry, and their mowers have, over the years, proven to operate longer with fewer repairs, and maintain their value better than any other product on the market. AKRS even has a service available to keep your equipment in top working order.
“AKRS Equipment offers a Ready to Mow Service in the Omaha and Lincoln communities, where we will come to your home or business and perform routine maintenance on-site and ensure that your equipment always performs well,” Travis said. “For larger repairs, we offer pickup and delivery to one of our AKRS locations.”
For commercial mowing, one of the hottest trends in mowers is the John Deere QuikTrak Stand-on Mower, which AKRS offers. These stand-behind movers serve up advanced maneuverability and speed to allow you to mow more and feel less fatigued at the end of the day. On the residential side, the John Deere line of Lawn Tractors provides mowing with a variety of attachments to make landscaping chores simple and easy.
AKRS Equipment Solutions is a Nebraska-owned John Deere dealership serving Omaha and the surrounding community with two locations—one in Elkhorn and another in Gretna near the Nebraska Crossing shopping center. As you start planning your landscaping maintenance, call on one of these AKRS stores and get equipped to create the envy of the neighborhood.
“Customers can stop in at their convenience and learn what equipment best fits their needs,” Travis said. “The earlier they pay us a visit, the sooner we can get them up and running with the guidance and equipment they need to maintain the best lawn in the neighborhood. Come see us and take a test drive on any John Deere product. After all, Nothing Runs Like a Deere!”
A To-Do List
The National Association of Landscape Professionals (NALP) provides a checklist for getting started on building a healthy lawn for the summer of 2021. Begin by inspecting your trees and shrubs, remove broken branches, and prune them or have a professional do it. You should also test your soil every few years to maintain a proper pH balance and nutrient mix, which you can get done through a local testing lab like Midwest Laboratories in Omaha. This testing can help you determine the nutrient needs of your soil so that you can choose a fertilizer that matches your lawn’s specific needs.
Spring is the optimal time to fertilize in a warm climate like Nebraska delivers. The NALP recommends using a slow-release or controlled-release fertilizer to reduce possible losses to the environment and maximize nutrient absorption. Most plants, trees, and shrubs will benefit from proper fertilizing, as well. In some situations, organic materials can also help improve the health of your soil. When you choose the right fertilizer for your needs, be sure to read the label and know the exact size of your lawn: Using too much can harm your lawn and increase your costs, and using too little won’t deliver the results you’re hoping for.
Weed control is always a challenge, but spring is the right time to apply pre-emergent weed control for things like crabgrass, NALP reports. You’ll also want to rake out the old leaves and debris in planting beds and create neat edges with an edging tool. Placing an inch-thick layer of fresh mulch in the beds and around your trees will maintain a neat look and help retain moisture in the soil and keep roots cool in the summer and insulated in winter. The final item on the to-do list is to inspect your irrigation system to see if it is working properly—or better yet, have a professional in Omaha do it for you.
Benefits of a Healthy Lawn
Many people don’t realize that the benefits of maintaining a healthy lawn go far beyond pleasing aesthetics. It’s a fact, though. For example, grass is much cooler than other surface coverings and acts as an air conditioner of sorts for the area. According to the NALP, lawns can be 31 degrees cooler than asphalt and 20 degrees cooler than bare soil, and trees shading your home can reduce the temperature in your attic by as much as 40 degrees! Grass also plays a crucial role in capturing dust, smoke particles, and other pollutants, and it produces oxygen.
NALP reports that healthy lawns also absorb unhealthy runoff that might otherwise filter into bodies of water, absorb carbon dioxide and break down into oxygen and carbon, and dramatically reduce noise pollution by 20% – 30% over hard surfaces. A recent study by the U.S. Forest Service also found that neighborhoods with tree-lined streets and larger, healthy yards enjoy reduced crime rates, and another study found that green spaces lead to lower incidences of stress, lower healthcare costs, and an overall improvement in quality of life. Picture yourself driving down a neighborhood street lined with lush lawns and orderly greenery. It’s calming just to think about it, isn’t it?
A View from the Deck
After all the hard work you put into your lawn and landscaping, you want a comfortable, attractive place to relax with a beverage and enjoy the fruits of your labor—or invite friends and family over to show it off! Whether you’re in the market for a new deck or yours just needs some TLC, we recommend Gitt Construction (gittdbr.com) for the job. They create wood, composite, and even stone decking and pergolas that complement your home and provide the perfect space for entertaining, relaxing, and dining with family and friends.
Gitt Construction is licensed, bonded, and insured for your protection, and their deck work even comes with a warranty, so you can feel good about having them complete your project. They take every step to do it the right way—the first time—treating every project with care, going above and beyond by sealing the tops of the joists before decking to further prevent any future issues. You’ll be amazed how well they can match a new deck to your existing property—it’s a perfect fit every time!
Getting started on your 2021 landscaping plans begins with creating and maintaining a healthy lawn. Get the right equipment and the right Omaha experts on the job today!