Going Organic Going Organic: Turning your lawn into a naturally beautiful landscape feature and Making your pesticide free, green lawn an asset to your property In Westchester our landscapes are defined and characterized my our lawns and trees. We are truly very fortunate to have so much green space. For many of us as home owners much of our property is lawn or turf grass. Sometimes up to 75% of our total square footage of outdoor space is lawn. That means it is the dominant landscape feature! We don’t always think about our lawn that way. Having been in the lawn business my entire adult life it’s always the first thing I notice when I visit a new property. Same is true when I visit friends or family. Our lawns are not only the first thing we see but the first impression we make. In real estate development we look at what we can do to improve the appearance of a property to increase or maintain value. In landscape and estate management that means we start by looking at the lawn. If the lawn is in bad shape and appears in poor condition it may be an indicator of how a property was maintained inside and out. Consider the amount of time, money and resources that go into maintaining your lawn. Do you mow your own lawn? Do you enjoy it? How long does it take? Do you pay a professional lawn service to mow, fertilize etc.? What is the yearly cost? Are you happy with the results? Is it worth it? Early fall is the ideal time to improve your lawn by going organic. In the northeast the weather is ideal for growing cool season turf (which is what lawns are made of). The key to the success and sustainability of any landscape is planting the right plant of the highest quality in the right place. That applies to grass seed as much perennials, trees and shrubs. When selecting seed types we have many excellent choices, not only in terms of sun and shade but varieties of seed blends which have the additional advantages of insect and disease resistance. For the highest performance lawn in your landscape we recommend using no less than three blends of quality pure live seed which contain at least three varieties of seed. This will ensure the greatest diversity. Soil test are important! Look for at least 5% OM or organic matter and ph range between 6-7. Very often we find calcium is deficient in the soil. For best results use organic, natural source fertilizers and soil amendments to create optimum growing conditions for your lawn. Of course watering is important. One of the challenges we face with professional lawn care is too much or too little water during periods of high humidity. The resources you put into your lawn and landscape determine the ultimate performance and sustainability of landscapes appearance. This is the time to get started! The fall growing season starts in late August and may continue into December! You will see results this year and insure that you will have a thick, lush green, healthy lawn come spring.