Oak Tree = Living Heirloom

It seems that the older I become the more I appreciate trees that manage to survive the test of time.  Oak trees in particular are hardwood trees that can easily outlive us by several generations.  

pacocha-large-oak-tree

Please find a few distinguishing traits that may help you select and plant just the right oak tree for your property.

  • Oak trees are divided in two main groups, white or red oakpacocha-red-and-white-oak-tree-groups
  • Oak trees are deciduous hardwood trees
  • There are nearly 60 different oak tree varieties that are native to the United States
  • White oak leaves have rounded lobes where red oaks generally have leaves that have pointed lobes
  • Oak trees first produce acorns after they reach 20 to 30 years of age
  • White oaks generally have lighter gray colored bark where red oak trees have dark colored bark
  • Fall transplanted oak tree sapling

    Fall transplanted oak tree sapling

    Oak trees can live several hundred years

  • Oak trees have a very substantial tap root that grows deep underground. Most lateral growing oak tree roots are found just under the soil surface (18 inches +/- deep @ 6 to 7 times width of tree canopy)
  • Oaks can grow to become 60 to over 100 feet tall
  • Oak tree canopies can spread 40-70 feet wide
  • White oak trees are slow growers, only 1 foot +/- per year. Red oaks can grow up to 2 feet per year
  • Oak trees like well drained soils
  • Ideally, try to plant an oak tree at least 20 feet away from houses and other structures.
  • Never plant an oak tree under power lines.

Please be sure to contact Pacocha Landscaping Services, Inc. with any questions you may have or if we can help in any other way.  Thank you for visiting and have a great day!

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What is this so called nimblewill you speak of?

Nimblewill is a warm season perennial grass that has a tendency to grow in patches and is occasionally found growing in poorly drained soil and lightly shaded lawn areas.  Nimblewill is considered a weed grass and is never planted on purpose.  Nimblewill can spread by seed and/or by it’s lightly rooted spreading stems (stolons).

pacocha-nimblewill-growing-in-lawn

You can easily notice a lawn that has nimblewill growing in it during the early spring and late fall months (in particular).  Once cooler temperatures and first frost occurs, nimblewill will die back to the ground and change from it’s normal bluish/green summer color to a straw-like tan color.

pacocha-patches-of-dormant-nimblewill-grass

Once identified and only when the target plant is actively growing (May thru August), nimblewill can be completely eliminated by spot applying a selective or non-selective herbicide.  Shortly after the treated nimblewill areas have completely died back (14 to 21 days post non-selective herbicide application), any/all necessary steps can be taken to complete the final lawn repairs needed (additional top soil, grass seed, etc.).

Please be sure to contact Pacocha Landscaping Services, Inc. with any questions or service requests you may have.  Thank you for visiting our site and have a great day!

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Seed Germination Blanket ………… NEVER plant a new lawn from seed without it!!

pacocha-installing-seed-germination-blanketWhenever starting a new lawn from seed, it is highly recommended to cover all improved bare soil/seed planted areas with germination blanket for best results.  Seed germination blanket is a bio-degradable, wood fiber stranded mat-like material that is sold by the roll (4′ or 8′ wide x 150’+/- long) and often times includes nylon netting for strength.  Use germination blanket to cover any/all large seed planted bare soil areas.pacocha-stapling-seed-germination-blanket-to-soil  For smaller lawn repairs (+/- 10 square feet), a simple peat moss covering is still preferred.

Here are a few reasons why you should use seed germination blanket when planting a new lawn from seed.

  • Protect newly planted seed from blowing wind, feeding birds and even heavy rain down pours.pacocha-rear-of-back-yard-lawn-repair-seed-germination-blanket
  • Steel staples (4″ to 6″ long) provide secure attachment of blanket to soil below.
  • Reduce air-borne weed seed from ever contacting soil.
  • Great soil erosion protection (prior to grass establishment in particular).
  • Achieve fantastic seed germination rates!
  • Clean overall appearance.
  • New grass grows directly through blanket covering, no need to remove.
  • Retains water to further aid in seed germination/plant root development.
  • Unwanted debris can be easily blown off blanket covering with little chance of seed disturbance.

pacocha-fitting-seed-germination-blanket

Please be sure to contact Pacocha Landscaping Services, Inc. with any questions or if there is anything we can do to be of additional help.  Thank you for visiting!

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MUSHROOMS are growing in my lawn ………. why my yard??

Every growing season, especially after heavy ground saturating rains, mushrooms start to appear in select lawn and wood mulched landscape bed areas.  Wherever dead buried organic material exists you will eventually find some type of mushroom growing near by.

Pacocha - Multiple Mushrooms Growing in Lawn

Mushrooms are simply the visible top growths extending from buried fungi in the soil below.

Pacocha - Mushroom Growing in Lawn

One way to possibly stop (or slow) new mushroom’s from growing is to remove it’s buried food source.Pacocha - Clusters of Mushrooms Growing in Lawn

Here are just a few of the organic food sources that will eventually lead to new mushroom growth: dead buried roots, buried wood, thick layers of wood mulch, under wood piles, old tree stump areas, etc.

Pacocha - Mushrooms Growing in Mulch Covered Bed                  Pacocha - Single Upright Mushroom Growing in Lawn                Pacocha - Red Colored Mushrooms Growing in Plant Bed

Please be sure to let our team at Pacocha Landscaping Services, Inc. know if we can be of additional help or answer any questions you may have.  Thank you for visiting and have a great day!

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Boo……. THISTLE …….. Boo ……….. GO AWAY ALREADY!!!

Anyone that has had a run-in with thistle around their yard knows how tough this broadleaf weed is and how difficult it is to completely eradicate.  With it’s deep and wide spreading root mass and sharp pointed prickly foliage, it will not pull out of the ground easily (or completely) without a fight.  Pacocha - Thistle Foliage Close UpThe only effective and proven way we have found to completely kill mature thistle (in particular) is by applying a selective or non-selective (site dependent) systemic herbicide directly to it’s foliage.  Often times several spot herbicide applications are needed over the course of many growing seasons (3 to 5 years) to completely kill thistle found growing in a regularly maintained lawn (in particular).Pacocha - Large Thistle Found Growing in Bed Along Walkway

Tips on controlling and keeping thistle out of your lawn and landscape.

  • Thistle can have a biennial or perennial life cycle (specific thistle variety dependent)
  • Never plant a new lawn or create new gardens without first completely eliminating any/all resilient thistle plants first.
  • When applying a systemic herbicide, allow plenty of time (4-8 weeks) for the liquid herbicide (selective or non-selective – site dependent) to translocate through the entire plant (from foliage to root mass) thus ensuring a complete kill.
  • It is much easier to chemically eradicate thistle when therePacocha - Thistle Growing in Lawn are no other desirable plants (manicured turf grass, ground cover, vegetables, etc.) located in close proximity to the unwanted weed.
  • Always eradicate thistle found in lawn areas AND adjacent plant bed spaces.  Since thistle spreads by seed, rhizome and/or cut root segments (variety of thistle dependent) it will continue to spread anywhere it can unless totally eliminated.
  • Thistle seed can remain viable in the soil for up to 20 years!!
  • If you have a bird feeder in your yard, try to avoid using bird feed that includes thistle seed.
  • Continue to monitor your property for young thistle plants and try to manually remove them whenever possible.  If manual removal is no longer a feasible option, spot treat them with a systemic selective (lawn areas) or non-selective (areas where no other desirable vegetation is located) herbicide before the plant is allowed to flower and set seed.Pacocha - Multiple Thistle Growing in Lawn
  • Canada thistle (in particular) is considered to be a noxious perennial weed in Illinois and should be controlled by the land owner whenever found (Illinois Noxious Weed Law – 505 ILCS 100/)Pacocha - Thistle Growing in Lawn Adjacent to Plant Bed

Please be sure to contact Pacocha Landscaping Services, Inc. with any questions you may have or to schedule an on-site consultation.  Thank you for visiting and have a great day!

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What is a pop-up drainage emitter anyway?

Pacocha - PVC Drain Fitted with Pop Up Drain EmitterWhen installing an extended underground downspout or sump pump drain, it is always a good idea to direct excess discharged water away from your foundation and into a water safe area several feet away (open lawn area, french drain, dry well, etc.).

Pacocha - Pop Up Emitter AttachmentA great way to finish off the open outlet point of a buried corrugated or PVC drain pipe (directed to an open lawn area – in particular) is with a pop-up drainage emitter cover.  Unlike a standard round grate type drain cover which may allow soil and small debris to flow back into the buried pipe, Pacocha - EZ Flow to Corrugated to Pop Up Drainage Emitter Covera pop-up emitter is a clean looking alternative that remains closed until passing water pressure forces it open.  They blend nicely into any lawn area (green color) and are the perfect outlet cover for any 3″ to 6″ diameter buried drain pipe installation.

Thank you for visiting our site and please be sure to contact Pacocha Landscaping Services, Inc. with any questions or service requests you may have.  Have a great day!

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Tri-Color Beech …… what a unique tree!!

Pacocha - Tri Color Beech TreeIf I have to name one tree as my favorite, it has to be a European Tri-Color Beech.

Pacocha - Tri Color Beech Tree LeavesThey are such beautiful trees with their colorful variegated leaves (sometimes pink-white-purple-green or rose colored) which make it a complete stand-out in the landscape.  They like part shade and do not fare well in full sun exposed areas.  Try to avoid mid-day sun (in particular) when deciding where to plant.  Due to their somewhat shallow root system, slightly moist well drained soil becomes critical to their long term survival.  They are slow growing trees, but try to give them adequate space to grow and spread out a bit (Max 30′ height – Max 20′ spread).  Pacocha - Tri Color Beech Trees at NurseryBe sure to purchase from a reputable nursery for the best quality plant possible.

If you can find just the right spot in your landscape, I highly recommend planting a European Tri-Color Beech tree!Pacocha - Tri Color Beech Tree Leaf Close Up

Thank you for visiting and please be sure to contact Pacocha Landscaping Services, Inc. with any questions you may have.  Have a great day!

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Proper Routine Mechanical Lawn Maintenance = A Happy Lawn!!

One way or another, if you are the proud owner of property that happens to include a lawn, you need to understand that it will require a certain level of on-going mechanical care in order for it to be healthy and survive for the long term.Pacocha - Dense Lawn

We are asked many times a year from new potential clients (in particular) whether or not our company provides bi-weekly lawn mowing service (once every two weeks), and the answer is simply NO.  Your lawn needs to be maintained/mowed/cleared of debris at least once a week when it’s actively growing for best results.  If you wait too long (2 weeks or more) you will likely end up cutting away too much of the new top growth (well beyond 1/3 of grass plant – recommended limit per mowing) which translates into the plant placing all of it’s remaining energy into top side leaf recovery and not critical root development.Pacocha Turfgrass Root Zone  Just by looking at a lawn from the curb, I can tell whether or not it is being properly mechanically maintained on a routine basis.  A lawn THAT IS NOT MAINTAINED ON A ROUTINE BASIS is usually light green in color, has heavy broadleaf weed populations (dandelion, clover and creeping charlie especially – sometimes even thistle), they are thin and contain multiple bare spots from past injuries and/or stress.When a lawn has a shallow/inadequate root mass it suffers in so many ways.  The grass plant needs to develop a substantial root zone in order for it to survive the occasional challenge from extended periods of drought, weed seed competition for any/all bare soil, compacted soil from foot traffic, disease, insect invasion, cutting too short, fallen leaves left atop/smothering lawn, etc.Pacocha - Lawn Repair by Seed 5-22-14

The bottom line is maintain your lawn properly all season long for a great, healthy stand of turfgrass that you can be proud of.

Please be sure to contact Pacocha Landscaping Services, Inc. with any questions you may have or if we can help in any way.  Thank you and have a great day!Pacocha Landscaping Services Logo

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NEXTDOOR……. the private neighborhood network that everyone can use!

Just a few weeks ago I was told about a pretty unique private website called Nextdoor.

Nextdoor is a FREE local social network that was exclusively created for our unique neighborhoods (across the United States) and the individual residents that choose to reside in them.

Whether it be local classifieds, crime and safety, urgent alerts, free items, event announcements, lost and found, etc. the usefulness of this website appears to be positively growing each and every day.

I have found that even a brief visit to the site can translate into a greater sense of neighborhood awareness.  If you have just a few minutes to spare, check the site out for yourself.  I think you will be pleasantly surprised!

Thank you for visiting our site and have a great day!

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NO WINTER VACATIONS!!

Pacocha - Weather Forecast UncertaintyWe just had quite the winter weather experience here in the Chicago area.  Weather forecasters were predicting anywhere from 5-10 inches of snow for our area.  Over the past 3 or 4 days, all we heard from the major news networks was to prepare for a major winter storm that was heading our way (high winds, heavy snow, etc.).  Ok, fine by us.  We are ready, let’s do it!!  We’ll, fast forward 12 hours and we had basically no accumulated snow on paved surfaces (barely a trace in a few areas), temperatures remained slightly above freezing and the forecasters proved to be entirely wrong yet again.  Of course, no big deal either way.  However, a day in the life of a snow management professional is one that has no guarantee.

Our customers rely on us to make trusted service related decisions while “babysitting” winter weather from November thru early April.  Our clients expect prompt service all winter long and whenever the need arises.

Snow Management Professionals take NO WINTER VACATIONS!  

Pacocha - Snow Melting on Contact - Above FreezingWhether we experience a fast moving ice storm overnight or a multi-day blizzard, we are expected to be properly equipped, ready and able to act in a very timely manner.

On behalf of our team at Pacocha Landscaping Services, Inc., we would like to thank our valued clients for yet another wonderful winter season and we look forward to earning your business well into the future!

Thank you for visiting and have a great day!

 

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