We are proud to announce that Jim Berns, the founder and CEO of Berns Landscaping has recently joined a new peer group with PLANET. PLANET also known as the Professional Landcare Network, is a national trade association which represents over 100,000 landscape professionals. This is the first peer group PLANET has announced since teaming up with the Wilson-Oyler Group in 2012.
This inaugural group is named “The Pioneers”. The group is made up of 6 CEO’s from across the country, including Jim Berns. Members meet a few times a year to discuss the landscaping business. You can view the official PLANET press release, here. Below is an excerpt from the July 2013 PLANET news letter.
[framed_box width=”100%” textColor=”#333333″]Tom Oyler and Bruce Wilson of Wilson/Oyler facilitated the first meeting of PLANET’s inaugural peer group, The Pioneers, in Warren, Mich., at the facilities of Berns Landscaping Services. The meeting was hosted by Jim Berns, Landscape Industry Certified, and his wife Peggy Berns and once introductions were made, the group began a working session to discuss financial information, process refinements, share best practices, and problem-solve. Individuals provided objective advice to help make the best decisions for opportunities and challenged each other in a caring and respectful manner. Pressing market issues and growth challenges took center stage in a discussion of growing leadership in their respective markets. The meeting closed with the owners committing to making changes and/or to adopting new initiatives to help with growth and[/framed_box]
We were happy to host the first meeting of The Pioneers and are looking forward to future meetings. With the forming of this group we are looking to expand and grow to better serve our clients for years to come.
Landscaping during the hot months of summer can bring about a variety of challenges including high temperatures and drought. When we enter a heatwave it is important to keep up on your landscaping to prevent permanent damage. A heatwave is classified as 3 or more days with 90 degree plus weather.
Watering in the early morning hours before 8 AM will help increase water efficiency. Watering in the morning allows plants to soak up the water and keep them hydrated longer throughout the day when temperatures hit their highest points. It will also help decrease the chance of disease, which can occur when watering in the evening before nightfall.
Apply mulch. Mulch is essential to reduce water evaporation and soil temperature. Mulch also helps prevent weeds which will compete for water.
Weed your flower beds. This is essential as weeds compete with surrounding plants for water.
Mow your grass as tall as possible during a heatwave with sharp blades. Mowing longer and more frequent will help prevent your lawn from becoming scalped. Most lawns should be kept above 2.5 inches after being mowed, 3-4″ is the ideal height. Short lawns also have shallow root systems and do not tolerate heat or drought well.
Never cut off more than 1/3 of your lawn at a time. This stresses your lawn and increases the risk of disease and pest.
If possible upgrade to a drip irrigation system, this type of irrigation is much more effective. If you cannot afford to upgrade your irrigation system a soaker hose or 5 gallon bucket with holes punctured in the bottom and set by your trees and bushes will work just as well. This is essential for any newly planted shrubs or trees. Older trees and shrubs have more established root systems and can adapt easier to these conditions.
Marigolds are hardy annual plants, that are available in numerous varieties. Marigolds offer a variety of health and garden benefits. The flowers of the calendula marigold have been used for centuries for their health benefits. While the more common tagetes variety does not offer as many health benefits they do offer gardening benefits.
Planting marigolds in your vegetable gardens will help keep away moles, deer and other animals. Marigolds have also been said to repel insects, however is this not an accurate statement. Marigolds actually attract beneficial insects such as ladybugs, parasitic wasps and lacewings which all prey on harmful garden insects reducing the amount of damaging insects found around your garden.
Marigolds also help eliminate nematodes, with toxins found within the plant. Nematodes, are small microscopic worms that damage the roots of vegetables. This a proven theory, which especially helps with tomato plants which are most affected by nematodes. In addition to these gardening benefits Marigolds are available in a variety of colors, which will help brighten up any garden.
July marks the increase of summer heat and the halfway point for the entire year! Can you believe that 2013 is half way through? We can’t.
July Landscaping Tips
Buds are now forming on your shrubs that will bloom next spring. Don’t prune them now or you will miss the flowers next spring. These plants should be watered 2 to 3 times per week as tree’s and shrubs require less water then the lawn.
Spring bulbs have finished blooming and have now dried up. You can take your chances with what will come back up next spring or remove them and store them for summer.
Spring perennials are fading away, summer annuals are a great way to add more color into your existing landscape. Placing annuals in pots will give you more variety in where to place the additional color.
Water early in the day and later in the evening to prevent water loss. However, watering to close to sunset may cause mold and other diseases to spread at night, which occurs when your lawn doesn’t have the proper time to dry.
New growth on your evergreen shrubs and hedges can be sheared back to one inch of the new growth, as we head into summer new needles will come from the new growth.
Tree’s and shrubs planted within the past 3 years, need additional watering during dry periods.
Remember your container plants dry out more quickly then those planted in the ground and should be watered daily.
Remember to remove all Rose leaves that have fallen to the ground below, they can carry and spread fungus.