Fall is the time for planting in Raleigh, Cary and surrounding areas of The Triangle in NC. If you have been thinking about a new addition or refurbishment to your existing landscape, please give us a call at 919-934-3554 or use our easy contact form on our website. Our Landscape Director will be glad to meet with you and discuss the many options from landscape design to installation and maintenance. We are a FULL service landscape company located in Smithfield NC servicing Wake & Johnston Counties to include Raleigh, Cary, Apex, Holly Springs, Fuquay Varina, Garner, Clayton, Smithfield & beyond. We are a registered landscape contractor with staff that hold certified plant professional and certified turfgrass professional certificates. We look forward to talking with you soon.
Now is the time be completing a Fall Renovation service of Fescue lawns. Our service involves dethatching, core aeration with applications of lime and starter fertilizer and seeding of a triple-blend tall Fescue. For more information or to schedule a free consultation, please call our office at (919)-934-3554 or simply fill out the on-line request form.
Fall armyworms are sporadic pests in North Carolina turfgrass most years. Dry and hot years often make them a more serious problem as the armyworms will migrate towards irrigated turf since everything else is brown and less desirable. So while the numbers may not be any higher, their concentration around turfgrass can be much higher. The following information provides some insight into their biology and management. We will post alerts if we get any reports of actual damage.
The fall armyworm is a continuous resident of Central America, tropical South America and the West Indies. During mild winters, it may overwinter in coastal areas of southern Florida and Texas. Each spring, the fall armyworm spreads from these areas into the United States east of the Rocky Mountains and westward into southern New Mexico, Arizona and California.
The larvae are green, brown, or almost black. The dark head is marked with a yellow inverted “Y”. There is a longitudinal black stripe along each side of the body and a faint narrow middorsal stripe. There are four black dots on the dorsal side of each abdominal segment. Fully grown larvae range between 1.38 and 1.97 in (35 – 50mm) long. The reddish brown – black pupae are about 0.5 in (13mm) long and are found in the soil. Adult moths have front wings that are dark gray mottled with light and dark markings. There is a white blotch near the tip of each front wing. The back wings are white.
The fall armyworm is most commonly associated with damage to bermudagrasses in the southern United States. However, it also feeds on fescue, ryegrasses, bentgrasses, bluegrass, and various small grain and grass crops. Infestations are associated with lush, green, dense grass. Problems most commonly occur in late summer and fall.
Larvae feed on all above-ground plant parts. Younger larvae skeletonize the most tender leaf tissue. Older larvae may consume most or all of the leaf tissue. Larvae move in groups from consumed areas to new areas. After fall armyworm feeding, bermudagrass, with proper management, usually regenerates. Feeding on cool-season grasses such as fescue and bluegrass may result in permanent damage.
Adult moths are most active at night and are attracted to lights. Light-colored objects adjacent to turf, such as flags on golf greens, goal posts, metal gutters and metal fences on athletic fields are favorite sites for egg deposition. Eggs hatch in 2-10 days. After 2-3 weeks, fully grown larvae burrow into the soil to pupate. Moths emerge in 10-14 days. Flocks of birds feeding consistently in turf areas may indicate fall armyworm presence. If no larvae are seen, examine the turf for green fecal pellets and larvae. Soap flushes can be used to bring larvae to the surface. Except for home lawns and golf greens and tees, infested areas of less than 1,000 ft2 (92.9 m2) are seldom treated.
Control of fall armyworms will be improved if you cut the turf prior to treating. A light irrigation prior to treatment may also help as will treating late in the day. Large fall armyworms are difficult to control. Don’t expect 90% control. Pyrethroids will do a reasonable job as will Sevin (carbaryl) and even Orthene (acephate) against small worms. Products like Mach 2 will also control some worms, but don’t expect miracles, especially if the worms are allowed to feed and grow for a week or so before treating. In warm weather the caterpillar can go from egg to pupa in around 2 weeks. If the worms are very large (inch and a half long) then they will go into the soil very soon to pupate and control efforts may be a waste of time.
The key to finishing out this year with success against fall armyworm is to stay on top of the problem.
by Diane Silcox and Rick Brandenburg
Our staff will begin core aerification services very soon.
Aeration is one of the most important cultural practices available for your lawn. Aeration helps control thatch, improves the soil structure, helps create growth pockets for new roots, and opens the way for water and fertilizer to reach the root zone of your lawn. The end result is a beautiful lawn.
HOW AERATION WORKS: Aeration removes thousands of small cores of soil 1″ to 3″ in length from your lawn. These cores “melt” back into the lawn after a few rainfalls, mixing with whatever thatch exists on your lawn. The holes created by aeration catch fertilizer and water. Turf roots naturally grow toward these growth pockets and thicken in the process. Aeration holes also relieve pressure from compacted soils, letting oxygen and water move freely into the root zone.
REGULAR AERATION CAN HELP AVOID COSTLY LAWN RENOVATION: Thatch on your lawn works like a thatched roof. This layer of roots, stems and other plant parts shed water and prevents fertilizers and insect controls from moving freely into the soil. Thatch that is too heavy can make major lawn renovation necessary. Regular aeration helps thatch break down naturally by mixing the soil cores into the thatch and speeding up decomposition. Performed once or twice per year, aeration significantly reduces thatch and improves turf growth. Barefoot and Associates is here to help provide any service your lawn may need, so call us today to discuss how aeration can help keep your lawn looking good!
Core-aerification of turf. **Note: If your lawn has irrigation, all heads and valve boxes should be clearly marked and if you have an underground dog fence, the perimeter of the fence should be marked also. We will not be held liable for the underground dog fence if damage occurs.
It’s a fact: No lawn is completely immune to crabgrass. Thankfully, there are steps that can be taken this spring- and throughout the growing season ahead-to keep it under control.
AN UNFAIR ADVANTAGE
Just one mature crabgrass plant can produce thousands of seeds, which are able to grow in the hottest, driest conditions. Even in compacted soil along sidewalks and driveways, crabgrass seeds have no trouble germinating.
SO WHAT CAN BE DONE
The healthier and thicker your lawn, the less crabgrass its’s going to have. Four keys to a lush lawn include:
- Fertilizing regularly
- Controlling insects and diseases as needed
- Removing no more than 1/2 of the grass blade each time you mow
- Making sure your lawn gets 1″ to 1 1/2′ of water per week
A pre-emergent herbicide will also be very effective against crabgrass as long as it is applied at the right time (before the crabgrass seeds germinate). This preventative treatment will form a barrier in the soil, and newly sprouted crabgrass will be killed off before it can emerge aboveground.
With a combination of good lawn care practices and the appropriate herbicides, crabgrass doesn’t stand a chance!
TURF & ORNAMENTALS: Now is the time to begin thinking about applying pre-emergent products in your lawn & ornamental beds or natural areas. We will be applying pre-emergent products in February for the control of crabgrass, goosegrass and foxtail. These major weeds germinate when soil temperatures reach an average soil temperature of 55 degrees. Please note that these pre-emergent products do not control all weeds, (i.e. bahiagrass, dallisgrass, nutsedge and some broadleaf weeds are not covered and if become present in your lawn will require a selective post-emergent product application. If the weeds are spotty in coverage, a spot spray application may be applied and would reduce the cost of application when compared to a entire lawn spray application.
Back in December, I started writing you an email … and then got distracted and it fell by the wayside. In general, I was going to ask you if you had been by the house lately, because … WOW! I have to tell you, man, it is hard to imagine the yard could possibly have looked any better. I mean, the yard looked awesome even in the heart of the summer, even though I know the heat was stressing it out. And I know that the cooler season is better for it, but still – she’s looking good, man.
So, I just wanted to say thanks, really, to you and your entire team. I am 100% satisfied with the service your team provided last year. Even as the hard freezes we have had finally start to take their toll on the yard, it still is the best in the neighborhood. I gotta tell you – I probably get 2 or 3 “inquiries” a year from people wanting to take care of the yard … last guy asked who took care of my yard, I told him, and he asked “you happy with them?” … I instantly replied “hell, yes … have you SEEN my yard?? Why wouldn’t I be??”Thought you would enjoy that. Anyway, just wanted to say thanks. One day I will bite the bullet and get rid of that crappy Bermuda, and then it will all be good! – Matt, Smithfield NC
Barefoot & Associates would like to remind you about our newest company My Propane Butler Inc. Many of you are aware of this new company and are already using our services. My Propane Butler, a subsidiary of Barefoot & Associates Inc. delivers and exchanges propane tank cylinders from 20-100 lbs. We sell new cylinders as well and can accommodate all your small and portable propane needs. We can deliver and exchange a FULL clean new or refurbished tank to you in exchange for your empty tank very simple, safe and convenient. We offer easy simple online ordering through our website at www.mypropanebutler.com. We service all of Wake, Johnston & Harnett Counties.
Raleigh, NC-Eugene Foushee of Barefoot & Associates, Inc. has earned the North Carolina Certified Plant Professional (CPP) certification from the North Carolina Nursery & Landscape Association (NCNLA). Mr. Foushee is currently one of only 2,176 CPPs in North Carolina.
“The North Carolina Certified Plant Professional certification recognizes proficiency in the nursery workforce, upgrades the status of the nursery professional, and provides the public with a means of identifying qualified nursery professionals,” said Ross Williams, NCNLA Executive Director. “NCNLA congratulates Eugene Foushee for demonstrating his commitment to professionalism in the industry.”
Barefoot & Associates and its staff especially are very proud of Eugene’s accomplishment and congratulate him for taking the extra step in further advancing his professional skills.
We are currently working very hard to catch up from last week where all the heavy rains kept us from working. We are seeing new seedling germination in bare spots where wasn’t before the rains. We will be coming back by in the next week or two to touch up any spots slow to germinate and fill in. We are doing a great job of detaching and removing allot of dead turf and thatch of which we are vacuum mowing to remove debris. Our process is more elaborate than most companies in the fact we do dethatch, vacuum mow, aerate and apply lime and starter fertilizer along within seeding. We also use penn-mulch, a type of hydro-seeding product that is clean and you don’t get the weed seed from wheat straw which most companies use. Penn-mulch is expensive though costing nearly $20/bag. If you have any questions regarding our service, please call the office at 919-934-3554