pruning

Spring Pruning Tips to Keep Your Landscaping Looking Fresh

Spring Pruning Tips to Keep Your Landscaping Looking Fresh

What You Should Know About Spring Pruning

The weather is a little warmer, the snow is likely gone for the year, and things are beginning to green up in your yard. Spring has arrived, and with it a few essential landscape maintenance tasks essential to bringing a well-maintained lawn into the warmer months. Among these spring tasks is pruning.

What plants should you be addressing? How, exactly, should you go about spring pruning? Why is spring pruning beneficial? Read on for a quick guide and the answers to these questions.

Why Is Spring Pruning Beneficial?

Proper pruning can remove dead or diseased branches, as well as shape shrubs, bushes, and trees into more aesthetically pleasing forms. Some plants flower only on new growth, so pruning these plants promotes blooming and keeps overgrowth to a minimum. Other plants simply respond better to pruning during the dormant period of early spring, allowing stored nutrients to reach the actively growing parts of the plant.

What is Rejuvenative Pruning?

Spring pruning is advantageous in that it allows you to properly assess a plant’s shape without blooms and new growth so there are fewer obstructions to determining the plant’s final shape. Pruning in early spring also allows the wounds created by the cuts you’ve made to seal properly before the rapid growth to come with warmer days.

Trees

With many trees, such as birches, maples, oaks, elms and crab apples, you should only prune during the winter months, to prevent pests and diseases from accessing fresh cuts, or to prevent excess sap from bleeding out. Prune spring flowering trees, such as dogwoods, only after flowering. You can prune dogwoods down to only a few branches each year.

Evergreens

Both needled and broadleaf evergreens can benefit from spring pruning. Focus on the desired shape of the shrub and trim to fit. Remove overgrown new growth, dead, and unwanted branches, but avoid cutting into old wood since it may not sprout again.

Summer Flowering Plants

Spring is an ideal time to prune shrubs and vines that do not flower in spring, such as crepe myrtle, butterfly bush, and Pee Gee hydrangea, but you must prune before the plant pushes out new growth. Trim to the desired shape and remove excess growth and thickness.

Spring Flowering Plants

Do not prune plants that flower in spring, such as lilacs, most roses, forsythia, most hydrangeas, and rhododendrons, until after they’ve flowered in late spring. Since they bear blooms on wood formed the previous year, prune right after blooming to prevent removing the new growth that will produce blooms next year.

Questions about pruning? Contact us for a consultation at your earliest convenience.


Tree and Shrub Care Specialist DiSabatino Landscaping is Delaware’s #1 Hardscape and Landscape Specialist. We can help advise you what is best way to maintain your landscaping!  Give us a call today! 302-764-0408

rejuvenative pruning

What Is Rejuvenative Pruning and Why Do You Need It?

Over time, your landscaping can become less sharp than it once was. Throughout the changing of the seasons, your shrubs and bushes can begin to lose their shape and look unhealthy around the edges. Fortunately, you can take a few steps to help give your landscaping a facelift. One of these is rejuvenative pruning.

Most shrubs benefit from annual pruning. The practice keeps them from becoming overgrown and producing branches that are unproductive or unattractive. Once a shrub is overgrown, it no longer responds to the typical methods of thinning and trimming. As a result, more drastic actions, such as rejuvenative pruning, become necessary.

Rejuvenative pruning is a good option for shrubs that have not been maintained with annual trimming. When performed correctly, it works as the name implies. It is like replacing the old shrub with a new one. Rejuvenative pruning, at its most basic form, requires cutting the shrub to a height between 6-12 inches and allowing it to grow. However, since it requires a certain technique to be successful, it is best not to attempt rejuvenative pruning yourself.

Hard Versus Gradual Pruning

rejuvenative pruning Rejuvenative pruning, when done correctly, allows a plant to grow new, productive branches after cutting away any productive growth. Two main methods exist for rejuvenative pruning: gradual or hard. A hard prune is the act of cutting the whole shrub down and allowing it to regrow. Gradual pruning, on the other hand, involves the removal of unproductive branches over a period of three years.

Each method has its advantages and disadvantages. The main advantage of hard pruning is that it allows a shrub to rejuvenate more quickly, typically over a growing season. However, not all types of plants respond well to hard pruning, and attempting it on a plant that does not respond well could result in loss of the plant. Additionally, you may have to deal with the unsightly prospect of a bare stub until the plant rejuvenates.

Gradual pruning is a slower process than hard pruning, but it has the advantage of visual appeal. These plants tend to look better in your existing landscaping as they regrow, and are better for types of shrubs that do not respond well to hard pruning, such as caning shrubs.

Rejuvenative pruning can be a great way to improve your landscaping, but it requires help from an expert. The landscaping team at DiSabatino can help your shrubs and landscaping reach their full visual potential.


Tree and Shrub Care Specialist DiSabatino Landscaping is Delaware’s #1 Hardscape and Landscape Specialist. We can help build a outdoor fireplace or fire pit to keep you warm over the winter months ahead. Give us a call today! 302-764-0408

Winter Landscape and Gardening Tips

Winter Landscaping & Gardening Tips

2019 is almost here. It’s time to reflect on the year gone by, as well as plan for the one ahead. There are plenty of things we can do in the Winter to keep up progress in our outdoor spaces. Here are some ideas for your consideration.

Winter Landscaping & Gardening Tips:

1) Pruning: After deciduous trees and shrubs drop their leaves we can shape them easier. A couple of dry, mild days and some clean, sharp tools is all you need to tighten up shapes in your landscape.

Why Late Winter is the Best Time to Prune

2) Hardscape: Patios, walkways, and outdoor lighting can all be done well into the Winter with some careful consideration. A fire pit or other fire accents can add to family gatherings and holiday memories.

Preparing Your Patio for Winter

3) Planting: Winter is still a great time to add trees and bling like roses to your property. That way they’ll be ready right from the start for Spring 2019. Often times there are fantastic discounts on landscape material at this time of year.

4 Benefits of Planting ‘Winter Interest’ Plants

Most of all enjoy time with your family and the satisfaction of your hard garden work in 2018. Have a Happy New Year friends!

HOW TO WINTERIZE PONDS AND OTHER WATER FEATURES

Winter Gardening Tips – Sunday Gardener

“The advice to clear snow from shrubs is good, sound, practical advice. In earlier years I have ignored it, thinking this advice was over complicating things when you could just stay indoors in the warm, but snow really does cause damages to the garden, especially shrubs.”


Tree and Shrub Care Specialist DiSabatino Landscaping is Delaware’s #1 Hardscape and Landscape Specialist. We can help get your landscape ready to face the winter months ahead. Give us a call today! 302-764-0408

How to Have Success With Crapemyrtles in Your Landscaping

How to Have Success With Crapemyrtles in Your Landscaping

Anyone who has travelled in the south during mid-summer has surely taken note of the Crapemyrtles throughout the area. The crapemyrtle, often referred to as the ‘lilac of the South’, boasts showy blooms that attract bees and provide habitats for a wide variety of birds.

How to Have Success With Crapemyrtles in Your LandscapingWhy Homeowners Should Be Positive About BEES in Their Landscape

The common crapemyrtle is a native of China and Korea. Crapemyrtles come in a variety of sizes and colors. Thanks to the hybridizing efforts on the part of the National Arboretum and several Crapemyrtle enthusiasts, this colorful specimen has made its way north for the last several decades.

From luscious colors of blooms to smooth bark and dense foliage, the crapemyrtle is the center of attention in any landscape. The tree is not only known for its beauty, but also for it hardiness and dependability.

Those of us at DiSabatino Landscaping would like to share our knowledge with you on have success with your Crapemyrtles in the mid-Atlantic region (zone 5-6). Below is a list of the basics when caring for this hardy tree in your landscaping.

Basic Care of the Crapemyrtle:

Plant in Well-Drained Soil:Planting your Crapemyrtle in a raised bed, berm or sloping area is ideal. Beware of planting flush with the ground, ESPECIALLY if your soil has a high clay consistency. Areas of your landscaping that tend to puddle or stay damp after a rain will inhibit a crapemyrtle from surviving the winter, as the stem tissue will not harden off properly. Crapemyrtles are naturally drought tolerant.

Crapemyrtles Love Heat: A sunny spot in your landscaping is ideal as Crapemyrtles easily abide extra heat that occurs near a south-facing wall or fence. If full sun is not available, they will thrive with ½ day sun.

Fertilize in Spring: A crapemyrtle blooms on current year’s growth, it is suggested to use either ‘Plant-tone’ or ‘Flower-tone’ or a comparable product. Mature plants tend to need less fertilizing. Do not fertilize after July as the resulting new growth will not harden off properly before frost hits and will die back in the winter.

Trim in Early Spring: It is best to trim from mid-March to early May before the new growth appears. While later trimming will not hurt the plant, it may delay or eliminate flowering. A trimmed branch will take 6 to 8 weeks of hot weather before it will bloom. It stands to reason, anything trimmed after June will most likely mean no blooms for the season. A big NO-NO is to trim after July, as the new growth will not be ready for winter.

Treat for Japanese Beatles: Treat for Japanese beetles in June or July if they become an issue in your area.

Except for newly planted Crapemyrtles, do not water or fertilize in the fall. It is best to have drought stress versus too much lush soft growth, as you want the stems to harden off for the winter. Crapemyrtles are the most accommodating plants, thriving in dry, full sun and requiring less maintenance that most trees and shrubs.


Tree and Shrub Care Specialist DiSabatino Landscaping is Delaware’s #1 Hardscape and Landscape Specialist. We can design an outdoor living environment that will add quality to your life and value to your home. Give us a call today! 302-764-0480

The Side Effects of a Late Spring on Your Plantings

The Side Effects of a Late Spring on Your Plantings

Is Spring Here Yet?

By Adrienne Angelucci

As many of you may have noticed, Mother Nature has not quite made up her mind as to whether she wants to continue the blustery saga that characterized winter 2017-2018 or allow us the pleasure of an actual spring.

As a result, we along with the plants in our gardens are frustrated and not quite sure how to dress and how to react. With colder temperatures, random snow showers, and blustery winds, expect the signs of spring and plant emergence from trees to perennials to annual flowers to be arriving later than usual.

Although difficult, we will need to be patient with plants this year and give them time to react to warmer temperatures and weather that is more consistent.

The Side Effects of a Late Spring on Your Plantings One easy way to help determine if plants are simply slow to emerge or dead are a simple scratch test. Using a small knife or even your fingernail, scratch the bark to reveal the internal stem. If green, the plant remains viable; if brown, this portion of the plant may have died back.

The important thing to do is to make sure you test numerous branches in the plant in various locations. This will give you an overall sense, as it is normal for plants to have some dieback here and there. The scratch test may reveal that only the upper portion of the plant is damaged and the internal portion is viable. For this situation, a light pruning will help to promote rejuvenation.

In addition to an overall delay, the highs and lows of this winter were especially hard on broadleaf evergreens (any plant that maintains its leaf in the winter that does not fall into the conifer category). Many plants, including Nandina, Laurel, Azalea, Boxwood, etc.. , subjected to the constant undulation in temperatures, freeze/thaw cycle and harsh winds, are showing signs of winter burn and or defoliation.

EFFECTS  OF A LATE FREEZE ON BLOOMING SCHRUBS AND TREES

You may notice this as some of the plants have brown and rust color areas with plants appearing like they have been singed in a fire. Essentially, the plant is showing damage from dehydrated plant cells.

Unfortunately, there is very little can do to treat winter burn. Recommendations will depend on the severity of the burn. For mild burn, proper feeding (fertilizing) and watering will help.

The reality of winter burn is that patience comes into play again. Waiting to see if the plant pushes new buds and seeing how the plant regenerates is the ultimate answer. Unfortunately, successful rejuvenation can sometimes take an entire season if not more.

At this point, it may be more beneficial to remove the plant and consider replacement. Proper planning is key for winter burn protection; the installation of wind breaks, burlap, or application with anti-desiccants prior to winter can help.

Unfortunately, these methods are not the end all, depending on how Mother Nature is feeling. So a little patience, TLC and fortitude will be needed heading into this growing season. If you have questions, DiSabatino Landscaping has answers. Call us to assess your plantings – we can help identify what ones to nurture and which ones need replaced.


Tree and Shrub Care Specialist DiSabatino Landscaping is Delaware’s #1 Hardscape and Landscape Specialist. We can design an outdoor living environment that will add quality to your life and value to your home. Give us a call today! 302-764-0480

Why Late Winter is the Best Time to Prune

Most would be surprised to learn that winter is the best time to prune your deciduous plants. Though it might be frigid and snowy outside, pruning plants in the winter months while they lay dormant promotes fast regrowth come spring.

Proper pruning can enhance the health and look of your trees and shrubs. Winter is a good time because most woody plants are dormant and so too are the many insects and diseases that could potential invade at the location of the pruning cuts.

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