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  • Robert Bruce Adams

Landscape Issues

MY GIRLFRIEND’S NEWER LAWN AND GARDENS have been my responsibility for a couple seasons now. After all, this fits right into my background as an educated turf agronomist and certified master gardener where I’ve learned a fair amount about conditions that lead both to healthy and unhealthy landscapes. I’m working on the “spit and polish” to make her yard a pleasant, year-round, showpiece.

My newer approach no longer uses harsh chemicals to manipulate the lawn and garden environment to address blight found when lawns and ornamentals are overwhelmed by fungi, grubs and bugs, and poor soil conditions. Unfortunately, right now, her lawn seems to lack the pleasant green shine and uniformity that the landscaper delivered in the very beginning.

Little does the landscaper know that I now take his name in vain as the marginal soil preparations and inappropriate Kentucky bluegrass sod exhibits itself with uneven color and dead spots here and there. (No, we do not have a dog and the landscaper has conveniently disappeared.)

The pressure is squarely on me to deliver remedial actions to produce a pleasing lawn.

In my younger days I had an arsenal of chemicals in my war chest. Products from DuPont, Monsanto, and Bayer lined my garage shelves. I had a fix for every condition under the sun. But today, I try to manage with the safer home remedies offered in vinegar, baking soda, and Dawn. In the back of my mind, I’m always asking what really is the ideal landscape? These are important questions that seem to be at the root of the maintenance protocol that I am attempting to enlist.

My training and knowledge have me believing I can improve the appearance of the lawn. Correcting deficiencies is the bottom-line. I will attempt to alter the soil chemistry with the addition of a few drops of Dawn dispersed in my watering can. Sprinkling the lawn should make the roots happy again. This magic has something to do with wetting properties in Dawn addressing the hydrophobic conditions that have caused localized dry spots that are stressing the plants. We all need soap and water and less stress.

Here’s to Nancy’s green lush lawn and gardens.


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