Chinch Bug Alert

I’m a firm believer that my job is to reduce your stress, not contribute to it, which is why I rarely sent out an alert like I’m doing today.

In recent weeks, we’ve seen chinch bugs in a few of our customer’s lawns and today’s alert is to make sure everyone knows to be on the lookout in their own lawns.

I like to say anytime we have Biblical weather; record setting hot or cold weather, or this year’s four-day winter, we usually have Biblical type plagues. One year we had crazy amount of crickets, another year we had grasshoppers and yet another year we had a Take All Patch, a fungus that attacked St. Augustine.

It seems that the weird weather becomes a perfect storm for some insect and disease to go crazy and this year’s mild winter seems to be no exception because we are seeing chinch bug damaging St. Augustine in our area.

What makes this strange is that chinch bugs are typically only active in our hot, dry months of July and August. In fact, they like hot conditions so much that they frequently start near concrete sidewalks and driveways because that soil is hotter from the heat radiating from the concrete.

How can you tell if you have chinch bug damage? First, chinch bugs prefer St. Augustine grass and rarely damage Bermuda or zoysia grass. You can spot damage by a patch of brown, usually surrounded by a yellow band. The yellow area is where they are actively feeding and the brown area is the grass they have killed.

If you look closely at the yellow band, you might see the chinch bugs running around – they are slightly larger than a pinhead (note this may take a few minutes of staring at the ground and you probably will spot 10 other insects before you see the chinch bugs.)

What makes this tricky to identify, especially in the late summer, is the chinch bug damage can easily be mistaken for a dry area caused by poor sprinkler coverage.

Make no mistake, chinch bugs can cause significant damage to the lawn if left untreated for a few weeks so if you suspect chinch bug activity it is best to treat the area with products that will control chinch bugs such as Bifenthrin.

If you need help with your lawn or have any other questions give us call at 972.495.6990 or email me at ken@villagegreen-inc.com.

0

Landscape Spotlight: Made in the Shade


Village Green has been in business since 1980, and one of my favorite parts about that longevity is the ability to have long term relationships with many of our customers.  A great example is Mr. and Mrs. M. in Plano.

In 2007 we worked on their landscape by focusing on planting around their foundation and adding some plants around the base of their oak trees (which were big back then.)  They love their St. Augustine lawn, but those oak trees provide a lot of shade, and the fact is that causes bald spots in the best of lawns.  The couple have done all they could do to keep their grass thriving, but the reality is those oak trees are much larger today and they were fighting a losing battle.  After replacing the grass a few times, they finally realized it was time to throw in the towel and call Village Green for an update.

David, our landscape architect, redesigned his original drawing for their home, extending their front beds to cover the bare areas caused by the shade.  They love their original stone border so we had Andres, our mason, move it out, re-using their original stone and adding more that matched as needed.  Mrs. M. likes boulders so we brought in a few more and placed them where she wanted them.  We added flirt nandina, a colorful dwarf nandina, along with care grass – all of which will do much better in the shade than their St. Augustine.

The end result – Mr. and Mrs. M. love their updated landscape and Village Green was able to build upon a solid landscape design we did over a decade ago. If that isn’t a text book win-win I don’t know what is!

000103040506


Since 1980, Village Green has specialized in creating extraordinary landscapes for our customers. Our personalized, one-on-one approach allow us to take your ideas and inspiration and transform them into a beautiful landscape that will enhance your home and happiness.  If you’d like for us to help update your landscape or solve a problem in your yard, give us a call at 972-495-6990.  You can also email me at Ken@VillageGreen-Inc.com.  There is no obligation for us to discuss a project and we’re always happy to give an estimate on your projects.  We would love to earn you landscape business.

0

Landscape Spotlight: Wide Open Spaces

A new year, a new year landscape spotlight!  And today’s is perfect.  Like 2017, which is wide open in front of us, Ms. J’s home in Frisco, Texas was the very definition of a ‘wide open space.’

Ms. J called us soon after moving into her newly built home for some recommendations on what kind of plants she should consider installing.  David (our landscape architect,) and I arrived for our initial consultation to find a beautiful new home on a huge corner lot.  I remember being struck with the fact that she had enough land for several soccer’s fields! 

Since Ms. J’s home is a corner lot, her home is one of the first you see coming into this new neighborhood.  This was a key point in our plan, because it was extremely important that her landscaping represent her and the neighborhood well.  Another consideration was that we had to provide her a certain amount of privacy without compromising her wide open space.

Constant_Contact_before_after_JAN1000Before-0101020308060704After-01150912131114

As you will see from our design, our solution was to attack this landscape two ways.  For the areas that would be seen at a distance (people driving into the neighborhood in cars) we went simple beds.  We used fewer large plants.  In the areas where people would be walking post or enjoying the home close-up we used a variety of smaller plants with lots of colors and textures.  The end result is when you drive by you see a stunning landscape that doesn’t overwhelm the eye, while maintaining the majesty of the large lot.  Up close, well you can get lost in the details of the plants, their shapes, textures and colors.

Speaking of plants.  We installed nandinas, irises and a dash of annuals at the entrance.  These plants grow up, but not out, to help direct people to the entrance.  Just beyond that entrance, Andres, our stone mason, installed a flagstone sitting area.  As you can see from the photos, he did a stellar job in making the joints no wider than an inch or so. 

We also installed savanah hollies, little gem magnolias and a couple of vitex trees along the rod-iron fence to screen off the pool area from the street.  Another benefit is that the vitex trees have purple blooms during the summer which add great color.  Around the swimming pool you’ll note we installed fan palms, sages, pink muhly grass and a number of smaller plants.

The end result is a fantastic project for the Village Green portfolio.  More importantly though, Ms. J is ecstatic about her new home and landscape and still has enough room left for a soccer field (or two!)

Thank you Ms. J for allowing me to spotlight this landscape project.  Village Green has been transforming lawns and landscapes in your neighborhood since 1980.  We specialize in creating extraordinary outdoor spaces at all budget points for our customers.  Our personalized one-on-one approach allow us to take your ideas and inspiration and transform them into a beautiful landscape that will enrich your life.  If you’d like more information or an estimate on your project contact us at 972-495-6990 or Ken@VillageGreen-Inc.com.

 

0
Page 1 of 3 123