5 Biggest Lawn Care Mistakes

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Maintaining a healthy lawn is no easy task. Don’t make it harder on yourself by making these five common mistakes:

Not testing your soil.

Everything about your lawn starts in the soil, which is why it is important to have your pH level tested. Testing your soil will help you determine which type of lawn treatments are required, the best type of fertilizers to use, how much is required, and other important decisions.

Cutting the grass too short.

When mowing your lawn, it’s tempting to set the mower blades as low as possible. After all, the shorter you cut your grass, the longer until it’s time to mow again. However, it is possible to cut your grass too short, leaving it prone to disease and drying out. Set the mower height to about 2½ inches and never cut off more than ⅓ of the grass blade at once.

Bagging lawn clippings.

Do you bag your lawn clippings after mowing? If so, you are essentially throwing away free fertilizer. Freshly-mowed grass clippings are full of nutrients such as nitrogen; leaving them on your lawn can reduce your need for fertilizer by up to 25%.

Watering too much.

When it comes to watering your grass, less is more. Overwatering your lawn not only wastes water, it discourages your grass from developing a deep root system, making it more likely to die in periods of drought. A good rule of thumb is to add ⅓ of an inch of water three times per week. Water early in the morning if possible, as this helps minimize evaporation.

Waiting until it’s too late.

A lush lawn is a year-round commitment. If you wait until the late spring to start prepping, you’re already too late. This season-by-season calendar from House Logic details exactly what you need to do to maintain a healthy lawn all year long.

Devine Bros. offers the widest selection of landscaping and masonry materials in Fairfield County, Connecticut. From mulch to flagstone and everything in between, look no further than us to supply your next project. All of our products are available for pickup and delivery. If you live in Norwalk, Westport, New Canaan, or the surrounding area, call (203) 866-4421 to learn more, or view our product selection online.

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Early Spring Landscaping Tips for a Beautiful Summer Lawn

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One of the most popular quotes in the world of sports is, “championships are won in the offseason.” Similarly, great summer landscapes are made in the spring.

Your lawn is just waking up from the long winter season, and it is hungry for nutrients. If you want a lush, healthy lawn this summer, you need to start working on it now. Here are seven things you should get done before mid-April.

1. Clean your gutters. The start of spring is always a good time to clean out your gutters. A clean gutter system will prevent water from pouring over the edge of your roof and drowning plants close to the perimeter of your home.

2. Remove debris and dead plants. Your lawn and garden have taken a beating from the long, cold winter – it’s time to clean them up. Pick up dead branches that have fallen from surrounding trees, rake up dead leaves, and remove any unwanted growth.

3. Prune trees and shrubbery. Prune any trees and shrubs which look damaged, diseased, or dead from the winter weather. Remove any weak spots and encourage the shrub’s natural shape. Wait to prune spring shrubs until after they have finished blooming.

4. Mulch your garden beds. Mulch tends to decompose or wash away during the winter months, making now the perfect time to restock your garden beds. Using a shovel, rake, or your hands, evenly distribute the mulch until it is 2-3 inches deep.

5. Apply pre-emergent weed killer. Don’t let weeds plague your landscape this season: kill them before they have a chance to grow by applying a pre-emergent weed killer.

6. Inspect landscaping equipment. Lubricate, sharpen, and inspect the various components of your landscaping equipment. If you notice any signs of damage, have it repaired now so it is ready to go when you need it later on.

7. Repair any stone fixtures. You’ve done everything you can for the vegetation in your yard; now it’s time to turn your attention to masonry. If you have any stone fixtures, clean them off and make any necessary touch ups and repairs. If you don’t have any stone fixtures, now is the time to install one.

Devine Bros. offers the widest selection of landscaping and masonry materials in Fairfield County, Connecticut. From mulch to flagstone and everything in between, look no further than us to supply your next project. All of our products are available for pickup and delivery. If you live in Norwalk, Westport, New Canaan, or the surrounding area, call (203) 866-4421 to learn more, or view our product selection online.

 

How To Care For Your Lawn During The Fall Months

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Want a beautiful, healthy, green lawn during the spring? Then don’t forget about your lawn this fall! Early autumn is a great time to repair the damage caused from the summer fun, and also ensure good conditions for the following seasons.

Follow these steps to help you care for your lawn this fall season:

Step #1: Remove The Leaves
Playing in the colorful autumn leaves is something all kids enjoy. Unfortunately, the leaves are no good for the grass – they block light and trap moisture. So, when the leaves begin to fall, rake them away as often as you can. If you don’t, the ground under the pile of leaves will become soggy and decay once spring comes.

Step #2: Continue Watering
Lawns need water whenever it’s dry – no matter the season. Early morning is the best time of day to water your lawn. The winds are usually lighter, so you will waste less water due to evaporation. Keep your sprinklers or irrigation system running until the end of October – by that time, you will want to disconnect hoses to avoid frozen pipes.

Step #3: Loosen The Soil
You should aerate your lawn once every few years to improve drainage and loosen the soil. Make sure you aerate before you lay down fertilizer – the holes that the aeration process makes will help the fertilizer reach the roots, where it can do the most good.

Step #4: Add Fertilizer
Adding fertilizer to your lawn protects the roots from freezing and gives the grass energy for the spring. It also aids in root growth, disease protection, and drought tolerance. You should add fertilizer in early September and again during late October or early November.

Step #5: Spread Seed
Overseed warm-season lawns with ryegrass each autumn. Ryegrass provides a lush, green lawn throughout the cool winter. Overseeding is one of the most challenging lawn-care chores; you need to make sure they have contact with the soil, are kept moist, and are well established before it gets too cold outside.

Step #6: Stay On Schedule
Each of the above steps need to be done at the proper time for best results. Do you want to aerate in the spring? Unfortunately, spring aeration makes it easier for weed seeds to get established. Want to overseed in late November? The seedlings will become too tender and won’t survive.

Planning on following this process to keep your lawn healthy for the spring season? Contact the professionals at Devine Bros. for all your landscaping supplies! We are Fairfield County’s #1 provider of landscaping and masonry supplies – all available for pickup or delivery. If you live in Norwalk, Westport, or New Canaan, visit our website for more information, or call us at (203) 866-4421.

Are You Making These Common Landscaping Mistakes?

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When it comes to curb appeal, your landscape is equally as important as your home. Even the most beautiful house won’t look as good if it is placed atop a dead lawn with deteriorating decorations.

If you are looking to maximize your landscaping appeal, here are three common mistakes which you must avoid.

Mowing Mistakes

Cutting your grass isn’t as simple as cutting your grass. Mowing your lawn is a science, and one you need to follow closely if you want the best results. There is a best time of the day to mow your lawn, a best technique for doing it, a best height to cut your grass, and more. Here are some tips to keep in mind the next time you start up your lawnmower.

Planting Too Deep

Many people make the mistake of planting their trees, flowers, and shrubs too deep in the ground. The thought is, the more soil the better, but this is not always the case. Submerging your plant too far can prevent oxygen from reaching the roots and cause the plant to die more quickly.

Not Using the Right Supplies

Your landscape will only be as good as the supplies you use to build it. Using cheap supplies will result in a cheap look that will likely not last as long as if you used high-quality materials.

Looking for more landscaping mistakes to avoid? Check out this article from HGTV.

Residents of southwestern Connecticut need to look no further than Devine Bros. for all of their landscaping and masonry needs. We have Fairfield County’s most extensive inventory of supplies, and all of our goods are available for pickup or delivery. Visit our website for more information or give us a call at (203) 866-4421.

6 Tips for Mowing Your Lawn

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Mowing your lawn isn’t as simple as mowing your lawn. Believe it or not, there is a science behind cutting your grass – if you want a healthy, green lawn anyways. Follow these six tips next time you mow to make your yard the talk of the neighborhood.

Don’t Cut it Close

Many people prefer to cut their lawns shorter so they don’t have to mow it as often. Truth is, cutting it too low will leave it vulnerable to diseases and weed infestation. Keep your grass at 2-3 inches for best results.

High & Dry

Cutting your grass while it is dry is just as important as keeping it at the right height. Cutting wet grass can result in an uneven cut, or even worse – wheel ruts.

Stay Sharp

A sharp blade cuts grass cleanly, while a dull blade tears it and creates an uneven edge. It is recommended to sharpen your mower blades at least twice per year.

Take Your Time

Haste makes waste, especially when it comes to your lawn. Running with the mower can cause uneven shearing and leaves behind clumps of clippings.

Early Bird Gets the Worm

The best time to mow your lawn is mid-morning, just after the dew has dried. If you can’t mow at this time, wait until the late afternoon. Avoid mowing in the early morning or evening.

Bag the Bag

Don’t bag your clippings after mowing – let them lay on your lawn instead. Known as grasscycling, these clippings provide your grass with extra nutrients to help keep it green and lush.

For more advice on mowing your lawn, check out this article from DIY Network.

Nobody knows landscaping better than Devine Bros.! Located in Norwalk, Connecticut, we are home to Fairfield County’s largest supply of landscaping and masonry supplies. All products are available for pickup or delivery. Browse through our online inventory or give us a call at (203) 866-4421.

How to Mulch a Garden

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May is for mulching. If you want to take your landscape to the next level, mulching your garden can do just that. Mulch provides plants with nutrients, conserves moisture, provides shade for delicate roots, and enhances the visual appeal of your garden.

Here is everything you need to know about mulching your garden.

What you will need:

  • Mulch – use this online calculator to determine how much will be needed

  • Wheelbarrow to transport mulch

  • Shovel

  • Gardening gloves

How to Mulch:

  1. Transport the mulch to your property. Many companies will deliver the mulch straight to your yard if the order is big enough. To minimize work, you will want the pile of mulch to be in the middle of the areas you will be mulching.

  2. Load some of the mulch into a wheelbarrow. If you don’t have one, a wagon or wheeled garbage can also works.

  3. Using the shovel or your hands, apply the mulch to your garden. You will want about 2-3 inches of depth.

  4. Evenly spread the mulch using your shovel, rake, or hands.

  5. Re-apply a new layer of mulch every two years to keep it fresh.

Additional Mulching Tips:

  • The best depth for mulch is 2-3 inches.

  • Use a mulching lawn mower that leaves your grass clippings on your lawn – they are a good source of nutrients.

  • Leave one-inch of breathing room around all plant stems and tree trunks.

Want to learn more about mulching? Check out this article from WikiHow.

If you live in Norwalk, Westport, or New Canaan, look no further than Devine Bros. for all of your landscaping needs. We have Fairfield County’s largest selection of landscaping supplies, all available for pickup or delivery. From mulch to brick to flagstone and concrete, we truly have it all! Visit our website for more information or give us a call at (203) 866-4421.

3 Secrets for a Lush Green Summer Lawn

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Few things make your home stand out like a perfectly green lawn. Unfortunately, obtaining one is easier said than done for most homeowners. Luckily, the landscaping experts at Devine Bros. are here to offer their expert advice to help you grow the lawn of your dreams. Here are their three secrets for a lush summer lawn…

Secret #1: Test your soil.

Every lawn is different. If you want yours to be the talk of the neighborhood this summer, you should test your soil. You can purchase a home kit to measure your pH level, but if you want nutrient availability information, you are best off hiring a local service to conduct the test. Knowing the key measurements of your soil takes all the guesswork out of maintaining your lawn.

Secret #2: Fertilize during the spring.

A healthy summer lawn starts in the spring, which is the perfect time to fertilize. There is no one-size-fits-all fertilization formula, so take your soil tests to a local gardening center to get their advice on the best fertilizer for your lawn. Opt for a slow-release organic fertilizer, and make sure your lawn is thoroughly coated.

Secret #3: Practice good mowing habits.

Mowing your lawn isn’t as simple as mowing your lawn. For best results, keep the following tips in mind:

  • Sharpen your lawnmower blades every 8-12 hours of use.

  • Don’t cut your grass too short. Ideally, it should be 3 inches tall after a fresh cut.

  • Don’t use a lawn mower with a bag. The clippings from mulching mowers provide your lawn with extra nutrients.

Want more tips for the perfect lawn? Check out this article from This Old House!

If you live in Fairfield County, Connecticut, trust Devine Bros. with your landscaping needs. We offer an extensive selection of landscaping and masonry products, all available for pickup or delivery. Visit our website to learn more, or give us a call at (203) 866-4421.

3 Easy Ways to Incorporate Masonry Into Your Landscape

Spring is the perfect season for home improvements, and one of the most popular projects for homeowners is upgrading their lawns and gardens. If you are looking to spice up your yard, few things can tie a landscape together like a well-placed stone fixture. Here are three masonry projects you can try this season:

Wall” You’re at It…

Stone walls are as versatile as they are beautiful. You can implement them into your landscape in a variety of ways, including using them as a garden bed, keeping unwanted visitors off of your property, or providing a scenic border for your pool.

Lead the WayPetunias on the Brick Pillar

If you have multiple gathering areas in your yard (patio, pool, fire pit, gazebo, etc.), what better way to connect them than with a stone walkway? Not only is a stone path a beautiful addition to any landscape, it is practical too, providing your family and guests with a clear line to walk without damaging your grass.

Light Up Your Landscape

Landscape lighting is becoming increasingly popular for homeowners in Norwalk, Connecticut, and it’s easy to understand why. Not only do they accentuate your yard, but they offer safety benefits too – a well-lit exterior can prevent tripping hazards at night and makes your home less of a target for burglaries. Take your lighting to the next level by installing your lamps on top of beautiful stone pillars.

Planning a masonry project for your Fairfield County home? There is only one name you need to know: Devine Bros. With a variety of landscaping and masonry supplies available for pickup or delivery, we are the number one choice for homeowners in Norwalk, Westport, New Canaan, and the surrounding area. Visit our website for more information or give us a call at (203) 866-4421.

5 Landscaping Projects to Try at Home This Spring

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People love landscaping because they can let their imaginations run wild. Anything is possible with the right supplies and a little bit of hard work. If you’re itching to get started on your next landscaping endeavor, here are five projects you can try at home this spring.

Start With a Bit of Maintenance

You know about spring cleaning for the inside of your home, but what about the outside? Before diving into a new landscaping project, do some basic maintenance such as picking up sticks and debris around the yard, pulling weeds, mowing the lawn, trimming your hedges, and washing off outdoor furniture.

Build a Patio

The simple addition of a patio can turn an ordinary backyard into an extraordinary summer escape. Patios can be brick, stone, or concrete, and you can customize the size and design to match the style of your home and yard. Best of all, building a patio doesn’t require a ton of time, knowledge, or money.

Touch Up Your Mulch

If the mulch in your gardens looks old and worn, or is less than three inches deep, a re-mulching is in order. It’s not hard work, most jobs will only require a topdressing – about an inch or so. Before re-mulching, turn the old mulch with a rake to allow air, water, and nutrients to reach plant roots.

Add a Stone Walkway

Do you have a focal point or gathering spot in your yard? Lead the way there with a beautiful stone path. A quick, cheap DIY project for any homeowner, stone paths are a subtle addition sure to spice up any landscape. Make one leading to your pool, fire pit, patio, gazebo, bench, garden, or playground – the possibilities are endless!

Warm Things Up

Nothing says summertime like sitting around a bonfire with your friends and family. A metal fire pit can be bought at your local home improvement store for under $100, or you could make a DIY project out of it. Some awesome fire pits have been made out of stone, brick, and even tree stumps.

Planning any of these projects for your Connecticut home? Be sure to stop by Devine Bros. for all of your supplies! We are Fairfield County’s #1 provider of landscaping and masonry supplies, and all of our products are available for pickup or delivery. If you live in Norwalk, Westport, or New Canaan, visit our website for more info, or call us at (203) 866-4421.

5 Tips for Designing Your Landscape

If it is your first time consciously thinking about your home’s landscaping, it is easy to become overwhelmed with all of the design and plant options available to you. If the process is stressing you out, take a few deep breaths and read the five tips below.

  • Do your research. The first step of designing your new landscape is to do a little bit of homework. Research your climate and learn what plantlife thrives in your temperature and soil conditions. It is also important to get an idea of how much things cost; many homeowners don’t realize how expensive landscaping can be.

  • Make a budget. After you have done a little bit of research, you will want to make a budget. Allocate a specific amount of money to your landscaping project, and force yourself to stay under this number. Having a budget before you begin shopping will help prevent you from overspending.

  • Separate needs from wants. After you designate a budget for yourself, you may quickly realize that you can’t afford to have everything you want; which is why you need to figure out what your needs are. Do you really need that expensive shrubbery, or is it more of a want? A fence to keep animals out, on the other hand, may be more of a priority.

  • Shop around. As with anything that is more than a couple of dollars, you should shop around in order to get the best bang for your buck. Visit local hardware outlets, specialty gardening shops, and even look at online retailers – you will probably find that they have a wider selection than any stores around you.

  • Separate plants by watering needs. No one wants to spend their hard-earned money on vegetation, only to have it die by the end of the season. Grouping your plants together based on their water needs can help prevent under/overwatering.

Looking for more landscaping tips for beginners? Check out this article from Better Homes & Gardens.

Are you planning on redesigning the landscape for your Norwalk, CT home? Get high-quality landscaping supplies for affordable prices from Devine Bros. We have a wide selection of trap rock, mulch, top soil, and even stone and brick for your masonry projects too! Visit our website for more information or give us a call at (203) 866-4421.