Lawn Care

Lawn Care

Fertilsation

Bml garden services utilise a range of commercially supplied specialist lawn fertilisers designed primarily for sports turf and not available in retail stores. Most commonly the fertilisers applied are slow or controlled release pellets which are designed to prevent scorching and provide regulated nutrition over a 3 or 6 month period. Fast release fertilisers can also be carefully applied to provide a greater instant impact dependent on customer preference, lawn and weather conditions. Organic fertiliser can also be applied, again in accordance with customers wishes. 
  
Combined fertiliser/herbicide products (weed and feed type) are available in retail stores but are not used by Bml as they are a much compromised application. 



Moss Control 
The most effective and eco-friendly method of moss control is the application of Lawn Sand (moss killer and fertiliser combination) followed 2-3 weeks later by mechanical scarification. A light fertiliser is then applied immediately after scarifying the lawn. 
  
Mosses, like most lawn weeds, primarily take advantage of bare areas but do not generally kill existing grass. Bare areas in lawn can be the result of several factors. Unsuitable grass varieties, poor drainage, drought, soil compaction, excessive shade, thatch accumulation, poor fertility, diseases and improper mowing are common reasons for turf failure leading to moss or weed problems. 
  
Depending on the extent of moss spread, effective scarification can make a lawn look rough for a period. The application of fertiliser helps the lawn recover from the process although occasionally a degree of re-seeding is required. 
  
Moss control is undertaken during the peak grass growing season from late spring to early autumn. 
  
Liquid mosskiller is occasionally applied later in the growing season as it is a more gentle treatment but this is a less environmentally friendly approach. Moss treatment can be applied to hard surfaces all year round.

Weed Control
Bml garden services staff are licensed by the National Proficiency Tests Council to use a range of specialist professional weed killing materials that control all common and some not so common lawn weeds. Persistent and stubborn weeds often require two weed treatment applications per season for effective control.
  
Weedkiller is most effectively applied when weed growth is most vigorous, i.e. from late spring to late summer, but can be applied all year round to hard surfaces such as driveways and patio areas.

Scarification
Scarification will thin out and remove the thatch and moss invasion that has built up. This is particularly effective following the application of moss killer but can be undertaken on it's own when thatch is a much greater problem than moss, or there is no widspread moss coverage. 
   
Scarifying is a process perhaps best thought of as mechanical raking of the lawn. Its primary purpose is to remove moss and thatch from the lawn although it has associated benefits as well. The machine used has a series of sharp tungsten blades that rotate at high speed and cut into the turf in a vertical manner. The depth can be adjusted to remove as much or as little as required. This machine and process should not be confused with the typical machine available on the domestic market, which is more of a lawn rake, has much less power and limited depth penetration. 
   
A lawn that has developed a large amount of moss or thatch needs to be scarified to remove as much of this material as possible to allow the grass space to grow. Scarifying should be carried out at a time when the grass is growing actively to enable best recovery from this rigorous process, usually spring to autumn. It is advisable although not essential to carry out scarifying before a fertiliser treatment as this will greatly speed the rate of recovery from the process.

Aeration 
Over time most soils will become compacted, squashing the particles together and reducing the ability of grass to grow well. This compaction will itself cause a number of problems. It will increase the likelihood of the lawn becoming water logged or becoming bone dry and rock hard. Compacted soils are much more likely to become infested with either weeds or moss. Grass roots are unable to access the nutrients they require so the grass tends to be thin, weak and pale in compacted soils. 
To combat this, lawn aeration can be carried out at any time of the year provided the soil is neither sodden nor frozen and a number of different types of aeration can be undertaken. 
   
Hollow Tine Aeration is the process of taking small plugs from the lawn, which is the best way of easing compaction and sub-surface thatch, allowing air, water and fertiliser penetration to the root zone. This is particularly effective at the beginning and end of the growing season. 
  
Solid-Tine Aeration or Verti-Cutting is another method of mechanical aeration although these methods are generally not as effective and are often insufficient for badly compacted lawns. 
   
For less compacted soils and smaller areas the lawn can be spiked with a manual spiker or garden fork. 
   
Following any method of aeration, the application of fertiliser is particularly effective as nutrients access the rootzone. Additionally grass seed and a top dressing (see below) can be applied 
   
In contrast to franchise companies, Bml garden services offer to remove the cores after a lawn has been hollow tined. While harmless in themselves, cores left lying on a lawn look unsightly, can be trod into the turf thereby causing some damage and will clog up a lawn mower if the grass needs cut anytime up to several months after aeration. The presence of cores also prevents the highly recommended application of top dressing following aeration.
 
Top Dressing
Top dressing corrects surface irregularities and improves the quality and drainage properties of difficult soils, consequently encouraging greater rooting, healthier growth and thickening of turf. Top dressing is typically a 70/30 mix of rootzone or horticultural sand and an organic material such as moss peat, compost or certified fine soil. Proportions and materials can be varied according to particular lawn needs. 
   
Top dressing can be applied on its own or applied very effectively following the aeration process, often in combination with fertiliser and grass seed. Top dressing can be applied anytime of the year but the grass really should be dry so this generally rules out winter application. 

Insect and Disease Control
Bml garden services is licensed by the National Proficiency Tests Council to use a range of commercially supplied specialist insect and disease control materials unavailable to the domestic customer in retail stores. Treatment type and application time depend on the nature of the problem but in the case of insect infestation, insecticides are applied when the insects and grubs are active near the lawn surface commonly late summer.