They say that April showers bring May flowers, but here in North Texas many of your flowers have probably been in a beautiful bloom for a few weeks now. As there was in April, the month of May can be full of great gardening activities, so get some inspiration and start to create the lawn and landscape of your dreams.
Speaking of inspiration, May is a great time to visit the Dallas Arboretum or the Fort Worth Botanic Gardens. Both venues have plenty of activities during the month and beautiful gardens. Take some of that inspiration back home with you and apply it to your own outdoor areas.
Here is a to-do list for landscaping and gardening in the Dallas/North Texas region to keep your lawn and landscape beautiful.
Lawn Mowing: Continue to mow your warm season turf grasses every 5 to 7 days. Bermuda should be maintained at 1-1/4 to 1-1/2 inches, while St Augustine at 2-1/2 inches in full sun and 3 to 3-1/2 inches in the shade.
Lawn Care: We recommended last month to fertilize your lawn, but if you didn’t get to it, early May is still not too late. You have probably noticed that in late April and early May weeds will start popping up in your lawns, even if you applied pre-emergent in March. While pre-emergent programs are determined to be very effective, some weeds will still emerge, so it’s time for spot treatment of any weeds in your lawn. Use a solution of 1 oz of dish soap to one gallon of vinegar in a spray bottle and SPOT treat the weeds in your lawn. Caution: This solution is non-selective; it will also kill grass or any other plants. Spray the weed only.
New Lawns: Continue to install sod or plant new warm season grasses such as St. Augustine and Bermuda. Keep new turf grass moist until it has well established roots.
Insects, Diseases and Fungus: Warm weather brings the potential for unwanted bugs, plant disease and fungus. For St. Augustine grass, be on the lookout for Chinch Bugs from May through September. Check all ornamental plants for aphids and powdery mildew. Treat with an approved insecticide or fungicide and follow the label instructions. Also continue to check roses for black spot and treat per label directions.
Landscaping Projects: May still represents a great time for landscaping projects, so get started if you want to enjoy your new landscape before the deep summer heat. Projects might include the installation of new landscaping such as shrubs, trees and flowers. Many also consider hardscaping projects like patios, stone borders and outdoor kitchens to beautify their outdoor spaces. You may wish to consider some current trends in landscaping and design, such as creating a more natural and sustainable environment, using native plantings, attracting and sustaining birds and bees, and reducing water and irrigation requirements.
New Plantings: There is lots of opportunity in May for beautiful plantings! Tropical color plants like hibiscus, allamanda, bougainvillea and mandevilla can be planted now. Some ideas for warm season annuals would include trailing lantana, firebush, gomphrena, cosmos, Dahlberg daisy, moss rose, hybrid purslane, pentas, copper plant, purple fountain grass. In shadier spots, consider caladiums, coleus, impatiens, begonias for annuals. Be sure to attend to the water needs of any new plantings.
Plant Maintenance: May is for mulch. If you haven’t already, all of your shrub and flower beds should have 3 to 4 inches of quality mulch in them. Good mulch reduces weeds, conserves water, prevents erosion, and regulates soil temperatures. If your beds need tending, April is an excellent time to add mulch.
Pruning: For your spring flowering shrubs and vines, prune them after flowering to restore good shape through the summer months. Prune climbing roses after their blooms have faded. As we mentioned last month, Oaks are best pruned in the Winter months, and should not be pruned from mid-February until the Fall.
If this list of landscaping and gardening tasks seems a bit daunting, remember to tackle your gardening one step at a time. If you need any assistance, we are here to help. High Quality Landscape Services has been creating beautiful landscapes and providing exceptional service to Dallas residential and commercial customers for 45 years. If you need landscaping services, let us put our experience to work for you to create a beautiful landscape.