Landscaping Blog

9 Best Practices for Quick and Efficient Snow Removal in DC

snow removal

Do you battle snow-covered driveways, icy roads, and obscured signage in winter? You’re not alone.

Montgomery County, MD, gets an average of 18 inches of snow every winter. That’s substantial, considering the US average is just 10 inches more.

It’s certainly enough to make snow removal a priority chore for most Montgomery homeowners, commercial property managers, and business owners. But getting rid of snow is a chore most of us hate to do.

What if we told you there were ways to make clearing snow faster, more efficient, and just, well, less of a chore? Read on to learn some best practices now, and be ready when the snow weather hits.

1. Don’t Skip the Prep Work

Well before you even need to start plowing snow, prepare your yard and outdoor areas for the incoming blizzard.

This means removing anything that might get in the way of your tools, like doormats, playground equipment, rocks, and fallen branches. Look carefully at your yard and move anything that could be a hazard.

Ensure your safety and warm weather gear (like goggles and gloves) are in an easy-to-find spot in your mudroom or garden shed.

Clean your tools and hang them in order of use.

2. Get a Snow Shovel

You can use a snow shovel if you don’t have too much outdoor space to clear. However, not all snow shovels are made equal. It’s essential to get the right one for your needs.

If possible, always choose a metal shovel over a plastic shovel. While plastic shovels are lighter, they’re also less durable.

Metal shovels are usually more expensive, but they last a long time and, in many cases, can be repaired if they break. Once a plastic shovel breaks, you have to buy a new one.

If you’re tall, choose a shovel with a longer handle. A handle that’s too short will put unnecessary on your back. If possible, test the shovels out in the shop before you buy them to check the handle length.

Round and flat shovels are used for different purposes. Flat shovels cut into deep snow, while round shovels are suitable for clearing paths. If possible, get one of each.

3. Use Your Tools Correctly

You’ll likely have other tools in your winter arsenal than just a shovel or two. You probably have a snowblower, too!

A snowblower is a powerful machine. Since it’s been a while since you last picked up your snowblower, read through the manual again before the snow hits the ground.

This will give you a refresher on safety and operation.

4. Try Cooking Spray

You’ll need to head to your kitchen for this tip! While you’re there, grab a can of cooking spray.

If you’re having difficulty with melting snow sticking to your shovel, spray it with cooking oil. Then, you’ll be able to push the blade through the snow with less effort.

When you’ve finished, wipe the shovel down well with a rag and store it as usual.

5. Keep Warm While You Work

You can get carried away while clearing out snow and stay out in the cold much longer than expected. You may get hot while working, but that doesn’t mean you’re safe from the dangers of freezing weather.

Create a snow removal uniform consisting of:

  • Sweat-wicking clothing
  • A fleece over-layer
  • A waterproof outer layer
  • Thick socks
  • Gloves
  • A warm hat
  • Waterproof boots

Make sure any extremities are covered to protect them from the cold.

6. Clear Snow From Around Your Pipes

One reason pipes get frozen is that snow accumulates around the perimeter of your house. The piled-up snow takes longer to melt and can lead to cracks and leaks that damage your foundations.

When shoveling snow, pay particular attention to the walls of your home. If there are garden beds or shrubbery right up against your walls, consider clearing the beds before the winter begins.

7. Use a Melt Agent or De-Icer

While rock salt is one of the most common deicing agents, it has detrimental effects on everything from your concrete pavers to your plants.

Instead, consider lower salt liquid sodium, environmentally-friendly sodium acetate, or low-cost calcium chloride.

8. Shovel While the Snow Is Falling

Most people wait until the snow has stopped falling to get out the snow blower or shovel. But the drifts are large by this time, and the snow is heavy.

If you have the time, try to clear the snow from your yard stages—if it’s falling lightly or there’s a break in the snowfall. This might mean getting out there two or three times instead of just once.

9. Know When to Get Professional Help

There are legitimate reasons for investing in professional snow removal.

Perhaps you struggle to use a shovel or snow blower by yourself. You may need to get out the door for work or school in the morning. It could be that your shovel or snow blower broke.

In these cases, calling your local residential or commercial snow removal and plowing service is a good idea.

You can count on these contractors to turn up at your property when snow reaches unmanageable levels. Then, when you leave the house, the snow is cleared for you!

Plus, they use high-grade equipment that does the job quickly, quietly, and without damaging your property.

Snow Removal Tips and Tricks to See You Through Winter

If you want to make the chore of snow removal more manageable, you need to get clever.

Prepare your tools in advance of winter and familiarise yourself with the manuals. Make sure you’re wearing appropriate clothing so you stay warm. Check your pipes regularly and use only safe de-icers.

If you don’t have time or can’t clear all that snow yourself, get in touch with the pros.

Bam’s Landscaping has years of experience cleaning the driveway, pathways, and yards of home and business owners in lower Montgomery County, MD. We’ll be more than happy to schedule a visit with our efficient, cost-effective snow plow.

Everything You Need to Know About Mulch

Being outside in your garden can boost immunity, help you sleep, and make you happy. One way to keep your garden looking its best is by using mulch. 

Mulch is beneficial to the plants and aesthetic of any outdoor space. Although mulch is essential to your garden, it can be confusing to know which type to choose. 

If you are in the market or mulch but aren’t sure how to use it, you’ve come to the right place. We cover everything you need to know about mulch so you can use it effectively in your space. 

What Is Mulch

Mulch is a material, usually organic, that people spread over the surface of the soil. People use it to keep the soil moist, to moderate soil temperature, and for decorative purposes. Mulch comes in many forms, each with its own benefits.

Mulch Types 

Organic mulches come in aged or fresh varieties. Older organic mulch, like decomposed wood, breaks down over time. This kind of mulch adds nutrients to the soil. 

Fresh organic mulch, like bark and wood chips, keep weeds away while adding style to your home. You would use this mulch in areas where the soil doesn’t need extra nutrients. 

Inorganic mulches, such as gravel and stones, do not break down and last a long time. Both types of mulch have their advantages and disadvantages. It is vital to choose the right one for your needs.

Bark Mulch 

Bark mulch is a popular choice for gardens and landscaping. It comes in an array of colors which you can use to add visual interest to your garden. 

You’ll find mulch in popular red, black, and brown colors. You can also get mulch custom dyed to match your outdoor style. 

If you choose a brightly colored mulch, it is usually finer in texture than non-colored types. This quality helps it stay shaped longer and on slopes. 

This kind of mulch will keep its color for about a year. After that time, the sun and elements turn it to a gray color. 

Compost Mulch 

You can improve the quality of your soil by using compost mulch. As it breaks down, compost mulch adds organic matter to the ground. As a result, your soil will drain better and your plants will grow larger.  

Rock Mulch 

Rock comes in anything from tiny stones to golf-ball-sized rocks. This mulch usually comes from riverbed rocks. 

Rock mulch is often used in gardening and landscaping. You can use it for decorative purposes, such as creating a border around a garden bed. You can clean your rock mulch using a leaf blower to eliminate pine needles or debris. 

Rubber Mulch 

Rubber mulch is an excellent option if you’re looking for an eco-friendly, durable mulch for your garden. Made from recycled tires, rubber mulch is non-toxic and long-lasting. It also provides great weed control and helps to keep moisture in the soil. 

Rubber mulch can also help to keep the soil warm. This quality makes it ideal to use for growing warm-weather crops.

Where to Use Mulch 

If you are using organic mulch, there are places you won’t want to spread it. Keep organic mulch out of damp areas or areas that are low. These places are moist and will be too wet for plants. 

A very damp area is a recipe for slugs and other creatures. These pests can destroy your plants. 

On the flip side, rock mulch can bake plants with shallow roots. Make sure to use this kind of mulch in areas where plants have deep roots. 

How to Buy Mulch 

Before you buy your mulch, you’ll need to calculate how much you’ll need. To do this, multiply the length and width of the space. Take this number and divide it by three. 

Once you do this, you’ll have the volume of cubic feet you’ll need for mulch. If your space is large, you’ll need more mulch than you can fit in your car. If this is the case, you can have mulch delivered right to your home. 

How to Use Mulch the Right Way 

Mulch is a perfect way to improve the look and health of your garden, but it’s essential to use it correctly. Here are some tips on how to get the most out of your mulch:

Step One 

Many types of mulch are available, so make sure you choose one that is appropriate for your needs. For example, if you are trying to conserve water, choose a mulch that will help keep the soil moist.

Step Two 

Apply the mulch at the right time. In general, it’s best to apply mulch in the spring or fall. This will help protect your plants from extreme temperatures and help the soil retain moisture.

Step Three 

Don’t apply too much mulch. Too much mulch can harm your plants by preventing air and water from reaching the roots. A layer that is two to four inches deep is usually enough.

Step Four 

Keep an eye on the mulch. Over time, mulch can break down, and you’ll need to replace it. Every year or two, check the depth of your mulch and add more if necessary.

By following these tips, you can ensure your mulch is working to its full potential. 

Protect Your Garden and Make It Look Great With Mulch 

Mulch can be a great asset to any garden. It protects the soil and keeps plants healthy while defining the space. It’s easy to use and will keep your garden growing beautifully. 

If you want to add mulch to your yard, BAM’s Landscaping can help. We’ve been helping people make their lawns and gardens look great for over twelve years. Contact us today for your free landscaping quote. 

7 Big Benefits of a Lawn Irrigation System

Have you been growing tired of waking up on Saturday mornings only to immediately go outside before it is too hot to water the lawn by hand? Do you feel like you’re wasting water while finding some puddles on the lawn the next day after you water?

If so, you may want to consider installing a lawn irrigation system for your home. You won’t have to wake up on Saturdays to water the lawn. But you will also gain so many other benefits from installing the best lawn irrigation system as well.

Ready to learn more? Keep reading to learn all about the benefits of an in-ground lawn irrigation system!

1. Helps the Environment

While watering your lawn may seem like a waste of water, with a lawn irrigation system, you can actually help the environment by having a sprinkler system that has a timer and a gauge to know when to water your lawn.

This prevents overwatering which has its own issues.

With a lawn that is watered properly with a lawn irrigation system, there is a multitude of benefits. For starters, a healthy lawn can absorb unhealthy greenhouse gases and exchange them with fresh oxygen. Not only that, but a healthy lawn will also prevent erosion and runoff from occurring.

2. Increase Home Value

Whether you plan to be in your home for a while or are thinking about selling it soon, adding in an irrigation system can increase the overall value of your home.

When you install a sprinkler system, this will help keep your lawn healthy. A healthy lawn means you have better curb appeal! This also means that a potential homebuyer (either now or down the line) will take notice that there is a home irrigation system that they will get with the house as well as an already healthy lawn they don’t have to redo.

3. Reduce Diseases

When plants are overwatered or underwatered, there is a chance that they can become diseased. Either through pests, weeds, or the air, these diseases will eventually cause your plants and lawn to die.

To prevent this, a lawn irrigation system is much better than the traditional use of watering the lawn with a hose. Hose water can sit on the top of the lawn or leaves of the plant and develop fungi. A lawn irrigation system can more efficiently deliver the water, so this is not even a concern.

4. Reduce Costs

A lawn irrigation system has plenty of benefits, but one of your favorite potential benefits is the reduction in costs associated with watering your lawn.

This happens for a variety of reasons. For starters, you won’t be wasting any water. With hose watering or watering by hand, you may use too much water or even water the lawn more often than you should.

By using an irrigation system, the system knows when to water and how much to water without overdoing it. This will save you a ton of money when it comes to your water bill.

Not only that, but because it is watering your lawn properly, there is less of a chance that your lawn or plants will develop diseases or fungi that would cause you to have to redo the lawn overall.

5. Less Worry and Stress When Away

If you travel often or find that you are at work or away when you need to water the lawn, a lawn irrigation system is the perfect solution to this!

You don’t have to be at home or even near your home for it to work. Instead, the schedule keeps the water coming when it needs to – whether you are there or not.

This can also save you money – instead of hiring someone to go over and check our lawn or water your plants, your irrigation system will do it all for you.

6. Preserve Plant and Lawn Nutrients

When you overwater plants and the lawn, this creates runoff. As mentioned previously, this has its own issues – one of which is carrying off essential nutrients with it. However, underwatering will also cause damage to the soil, which will create a lack of nutrients.

When this happens, the lawn and plants have nothing to use to grow and be healthy.

Not only can this lead to disease, but it will ultimately cause your lawn and plants to die. If this happens, you are looking at some hefty costs to replant and refurbish the lawn area.

Having an irrigation system can prevent both of these issues. There will be no underwatering or overwatering, and your plants will have all of the necessary nutrients to grow strong, be healthy, and fight off diseases.

7. Beautify Your Lawn 

If you are tired of looking at your lawn with brown grass and leaves falling off of the plants, it may be due to your irregular watering schedule, lack of watering, or overwatering.

With an irrigation system, your lawn will always be beautiful. You can look out the window and appreciate your yard instead of getting frustrated.

Install a Lawn Irrigation System 

There are so many different benefits to installing a lawn irrigation system for your home!

Not only will you save money and save the environment, but you will also make your home look more beautiful while increasing the value of it.

If you’d like to install a lawn sprinkler system, we want to help! Contact us today so you can start reaping the benefits as soon as possible!

Summer Lawn Care Tips: The Best Lawn Watering Schedule for Summer

lawn watering schedule

There are a lot of direct benefits to maintaining a healthy lawn. Doing so can prevent soil erosion, create a cooling effect, help the environment, and much more. However, in order to properly take care of a lawn, it is important to know how to do so. 

A big part of this is your lawn watering schedule. A poor schedule may leave your lawn with too much or too little water and can even cause grass to become unhealthy. 

In this article, we’re looking at the best way to approach your summer lawn watering schedule. Read on to find out more!

Determine How Much Water Your Lawn Needs

The first step in creating your seasonal watering schedule is to determine how much water your lawn needs and how much it already gets. This will let you know how much additional water you should be providing. 

The amount of water your lawn needs will depend on the type of grass it is made from. Research your lawn to find out what kind of grasses are there and how much water those specific grasses need. Keep in mind that certain grasses need even more water during warmer months. 

However, if you can’t figure this out you should know that, on average, most lawns need about an inch to an inch and a half of rain each week. 

Once you know how much water your lawn needs, you can look into how much water it is getting. Check the average rainfall for your area. For example, the area around Washington DC gets around 42 inches of rainfall each year.

You can get even more specific by measuring the rainfall yourself. Put a can or jar outside and measure how full it gets when it rains. Or, monitor a rain gauge. 

In addition, keep in mind that your grass may need more water when the weather is hot and dry. During these periods, you should probably aim for more than an inch of water each week. This is part of what makes summer lawn care tricky. 

How Long Should You Water Your Lawn?

Once you know how much water your lawn needs, you can start to plan out your weekly schedule. 

First, find out how much water your sprinkler system delivers. You can do this by running the system for a half hour and then measuring the water it provides using methods similar to how you measured rainfall. Make a note of this amount. 

Once you have this number, you can determine how much water your sprinkler system needs to output. For example, if, each week, you are aiming for an inch and a half of water but are only getting half an inch from rain, your sprinkler system should be providing an inch of water. Then, you can run your system for as long as you need to provide this amount. 

If you don’t have a sprinkler system, you will need to be more careful with your watering. If you are watering by hand you will need to time how long you spend on each area. If you are using a portable sprinkler and moving it around, you need to make sure you are moving it around in a consistent fashion. 

This is why a fully integrated sprinkler system is so helpful. It provides your lawn with a consistent amount of water spread evenly over the entire area. So, if you don’t have a sprinkler system, you may want to consider installing one

When Should You Water Your Lawn?

The steps above will provide you with the amount of water your lawn needs each week. However, you don’t need to deliver all of this water at once. When to water your lawn depends on a few factors. 

When you water, check to see how moist the soil is getting. If you notice that the water is starting to pool on the ground, the soil may be saturated. However, if you notice that the water is being sucked up instantly, the soil is probably very dry. 

In most cases, you will want to divide your watering between multiple days. Figure out how much water you need to deliver to ensure it will penetrate the soil. This will give you an idea of how much you need to split up your watering schedule. 

What Time of Day to Water Your Lawn

Now that you know how long and what days you are watering, you need to know what time of day you should water. 

Make sure to water your lawn in the early morning. Aim for a time right before or right around when the sun rises. 

This is important because it allows your lawn to get just the right amount of water. If you water in the middle of the day, the water will evaporate as you are delivering it. If you water at night, the water can sit in a way that may lead to rot or fungus. 

This is why watering at just the right time is important. It gives your lawn time with the water but not too much time. 

Creating Your Lawn Watering Schedule

If you want to know how to care for your lawn, it is important to know how much water you should provide it. Knowing this will help you build a good lawn watering schedule. This, in turn, gives you a healthy and beautiful lawn. 

If you are interested in landscaping services that can help your lawn further, make sure to contact BAM’s Landscaping.

8 Benefits of Hiring a Landscaping Service for Commercial Property

hiring a landscaping service

According to many studies, landscaping can raise commercial property value by anywhere from 5% to 20%.

So, is it time to spruce up your lawn? Perhaps you’d like to expand your commercial property or try a new thing with your hedges. Hiring landscaping services is the right approach to achieve your objectives, whatever the case may be.

You may be skeptical of the idea – after all, why would you conduct a web search for “landscaping services near me”? Why not perform your own yard work?

The reality is that landscaping is a challenging, time-consuming task requiring skill and experience. Even though you have the knowledge, you may not have the necessary tools.

Continue reading to learn about the significant advantages of hiring a landscaping service.

1. No Finger Pointing

When you hire a landscaping company, you can rest assured everything will be handled accordingly. Thus, you will not have to worry about something going wrong or someone messing with your lawn.

The best landscaping services will provide several landscaping services, including regular landscape maintenance, irrigation, shrub pruning, mowing, tree trimming, and debris removal.

In simple terms, a commercial lawn care service provider will meet your needs. They also ensure no liability issues-don’t work on things not hired to do. However, you should hire a licensed and certified landscaping professional.

2. Keep Property Safe

Commercial landscaping services keep your lawn neat and improve safety on your property.

If you are a busy person, you might not have enough time to know where danger lurks on your property. For instance, dead or dying tree branches may suddenly fall on someone walking down the sidewalks or car.

Some of the ways a commercial landscaping service improves safety include:

• Clearing ice and snow on your walkways during winter

• Trimming tree branches to mitigate storm damage

• Clearing weeds that can host destructive pests

Hiring a professional landscaping company will eliminate any hazards.

3. Provide Expert Service

You might be tempted to do some research and do the landscaping yourself. However, landscaping is a labor-intensive task that requires a lot of patience. Since you may lack adequate time, you may skip some changes; later, a backtrack and redo may be needed.

But professional landscapers have the time and experience to care for your property. They also assign a manager to every lawn who keeps a vigil on your yard’s health. Additionally, professionals have ideas that will support your vision and the ability to make your property beautiful.

Other expert services provided by lawn care experts include:

• Determining the appropriate plants and grass for your yards

• Diagnosing and treating grass

Fertilizing lawn and weed control, among others

4. Have an Eye Toward the Future

Since landscapes are in a constant state of growth and change, your landscaping service providers have an eye toward the future. They regularly inspect your landscape and determine what is needed to ensure uniqueness.

Additionally, landscapers will make recommendations or bring in a talented crew who updates and refreshes your yard. Landscapers also assess possible problems and create a solid plan to address them.

In other words, landscapers are planners or artists who shape the yard’s beauty. They will:

• Identify how your yard will be used

• Create the mood and theme you desire

• Recommends landscaping options

5. Affordable Budget

Landscaping is usually considered a costly endeavor in maintaining your yard. However, if you consider the intensity of labor and time needed, the cost is worth it. If you decide to do the job, you will need to do a lot of research, and you might not achieve to get a beautiful yard.

Landscapers will address not only your concerns and vision but also your budget. Some of the options for landscaping services like irrigation, trimming, and pruning cost a few thousand dollars.

You need to talk to landscapers and tell them about your vision and your commercial landscaping budget. They can help you achieve the landscape you desire at an affordable price.

6. Helps in Establishing a Brand and a Clean Image

 The effort to impress clients doesn’t stop with the first visit because the image is what comes after they establish that first impression. It’s always your objective to keep clients coming back.

When consumers see a well-kept landscape on a regular basis, it communicates the message that you’re detail-oriented and concerned about the appearance of your company.

If you look closely, you’ll see that the most image-conscious professionals — lawyers, surgeons, accountants, politicians, and so on — rarely work in a scruffy environment. This is because they understand that people’s perceptions are their reality. They understand that people’s attitude toward your company is based on how they feel about you.

One of the most effective methods to influence their perception of you is to keep your landscaping clean.

7. Peace of Mind

Some landscaping tasks like making a flat lawn are difficult and require special tools.

Though you can rent tools, you may not be able to achieve the desired standards. However, leaving the job to professionals ensure that all the tasks are correctly handled.

8. Guaranteed Long Life for Your Plants

Professional landscaping services take care of all aspects of your garden. That includes soil balancing, irrigation, watering, fertilizing, and pruning.

Such routine care guarantees a long life for your trees and scrubs. Thus, regular landscape maintenance can save you money in the long run since you will not need to replace plants.

Reap the Benefits of Hiring a Landscaping Service

There are a lot of benefits to hiring a landscaping service, from handling everything correctly to ensuring that your plants have a long life. However, when hiring a landscaping company, choose landscapers that stand by their work.

At BAMS Landscaping, we provide premier lawn care and landscaping services in Montgomery County, MD. We offer lawn maintenance, fertilization, weed control, mulching, irrigation, snow removal, and fall clean-ups.

Contact us today to get a free landscaping quote.

5 Spring Lawn Care Tips Every Homeowner Should Know

lawn care tips

Every year, people in the United States alone spend more than $115 billion on landscaping services. The industry for landscaping services continues to grow year by year.

This is just one indication of how much people value having a beautiful lawn. That is why many people are also interested in Spring lawn care tips. The right tips can help you start the new season out on the right foot and enjoy a more beautiful lawn until the winter.

Read on to learn all about the most important things to understand about how to properly take care of your lawn this spring!

1. Use Your Lawnmower Correctly

Any good lawn care company will emphasize the importance of using your lawnmower correctly. Some people start up their lawnmower in the spring without checking it for clogs. Making sure to clear out any dirt or dust that might interfere with its proper functioning can help you avoid uneven mowing.

On top of that, it is important to make sure that your lawnmower has enough oil. You may also need to replace or sharpen the blade if it has become dull.

When it comes to lawn care advice, keep in mind that you do not want to mow your grass too short. When you think about it, it makes a lot of sense that cutting your grass is not actually that good for it. Everything that you cut off of a piece of grass has to be regrown using limited resources.

For that reason, make sure that you sent your lawnmower to mow your grass down to approximately 3 inches in length.

It is especially important that you do not cut rough spots on your lawn too short. If you avoid cutting them too short, they will have a better chance of growing in more uniformly.

2. Look Out for Any Spots That Stand Out

Bald or thinning spots on your lawn can spoil an otherwise pristine picture. Along with not cutting them too short, you can take other measures to help bald spots on your lawn grow more quickly.

For one thing, you can buy small spot treatment products. These are specifically designed to help small areas of your lawn grow as fast as possible.

You can also take extra care to water any bald spots on your lawn properly. That means making sure that they have plenty of water, but also being careful not to overwater them.

Of course, all of this only works if you make sure that there is already at least some grass growing in a relatively bald spot. If there is not, you will need to plant grass seeds so that there is something to grow. This may even be helpful if you have a little bit of grass in relatively bald spots, though it is not absolutely essential.

3. Get Rid of Anything That Interferes With Lawn Growth

Many people do not realize that the debris on their lawn can interfere with proper lawn growth. Your lawn will grow best when it has all the room it needs and plenty of access to sunlight and air.

To help provide ideal growth conditions, clear out dead leaves and other debris from your lawn.

4. Help Your Grass Grow More Thickly

If you want your lawn to grow well, you might consider installing an automatic sprinkler system. It is technically possible to water your lawn manually, but most people are not willing to put in that kind of time for their yard care.

On the other hand, if you are only trying to help a small part of your lawn grow more thickly, then manual watering might be feasible.

One of the most important tools a professional lawn care company will use is fertilizer. You can enjoy many of the same benefits by applying fertilizer on your own.

Of course, there are many kinds of fertilizer, and you have to be careful not to use a type that will damage your lawn. Before you purchase a particular fertilizer, make sure to look into any types of grass that it might be bad for.

You might have trouble figuring out exactly what type of grass you have. However, there are types of fertilizer that work for all of the most common types of grass. As long as the fertilizer does not say that it is bad for certain kinds of grass, it will probably be fine for your yard. 

5. Prevent Weeds From Growing

Weeds are one of the main things that can damage your grass in the short-term and long-term. If you currently have weeds, you will need to get rid of them. This is often a difficult process that requires you to apply weed killer many times.

It is much more efficient if you can keep weeds from growing in the first place. Try to catch dandelions before they mature and spread their seeds. Make sure to pull up any weed you find by their roots so that they do not simply regrow.

Fortunately, if you can help your grass grow thicker, it will help ward off weeds all on its own. Weeds have a very difficult time growing in thick grass.  

Understand the Most Important Spring Lawn Care Tips 

We hope learning about Spring lawn care tips has been helpful for you. Many people are frustrated with the condition of their lawns for many years. Fortunately, learning a little bit more about lawn care can permanently improve the quality of your grass.

To learn more about how to properly take care of your lawn in the Spring or to speak with experts in lawn care who might be able to help you, feel free to reach out and get in touch with us here at any time!

What’s the Iciest City in USA and How Do They Treat Their Icy Roads?

icy roads

The coldest temperature recorded in the US was -80 degrees Fahrenheit, in Prospect Creek, Alaska. Yet the most northerly state is not the only cold spot, with freezing temperatures across the country. So how do states deal with these icy blasts?

Combating winter roads efficiently is a matter of life or death. Read on as we discuss the iciest city in the US and how the country deals with icy roads. 

What Is the Coldest City in the US?

Fairbanks, Alaska, is the coldest and iciest city in the US. Situated in the cool northern state it has recorded the lowest temperature of -66 degrees Fahrenheit or -54 celsius.  Its average temperature in the coldest month is -16.9 degrees Fahrenheit or -27 degrees celsius. 

Many of the other cities and towns in Alaska have weather patterns that are dictated by coastal patterns. Fairbanks has the added attraction of winds that blow in from Canada and Siberia. Added to its lack of daylight between November and March and Fairbanks gets some extreme weather conditions. 

How Do They Treat Roads in Alaska?

Surprisingly, not all roads in Alaska have salt placed on them. Particularly around Anchorage, salt is only placed on the roads in certain circumstances. While it is one of the most well-known substances used to cut through snow and ice, there is a reason it is applied sparingly or not at all. 

The Municipality of Anchorage who manages roads in the area found that the broken down snow and ice would then be hauled away to snow dump sites. When this melted it would disperse into storm drains and the ground, causing environmental issues. 

Salt filtering away would end up in local creeks and ecosystems, killing plants and animal life. In response, they switched to sand, housing it in dry places so it did not freeze in the winter. 

Liquid Salt

That does not mean salt is not used at all. The city uses liquid salt, also known as magnesium chloride. It is used to pre-wet dry products, such as sand, to improve their performance. Less material can be used while the performance of the sand is increased. 

You can buy liquid salt from most good hardware or garden stores. Mix it with sand and rock salt then spread it on paths. The liquid will activate the brining process in the salt, hiking up temperatures and increasing the efficiency of the mix. 

North Dakota

North Dakota has four of the top ten coldest cities in the US. This state is the coldest in the continental US between winter and fall. The coldest cities are the following:

  • Grand Forks
  • Williston
  • Fargo
  • Bismarck

The reason for its cold climate is down to geographical placement. It sits at the northern end of the midwest. As the state is very flat and arid, winds can easily whip across it, picking up speed and bringing cold air with them.  

Other Methods of Road Treatment

Other than liquid salt there are several other products used across the US to treat roads. Many local authorities will decide on the level of precipitation and current conditions to decide on the best method and product. 

Rock Salt

Rock salt is the most well-known and widely used product to treat roads across the US. It comes in large chunks, making it easy to lift, transport, and use in the process of salt spreading. 

It works by breaking up the ice and loosening the bond between it and the road or pavement. You can get it almost anywhere and it is much cheaper than other forms of deicer. 

The only downside is that it is extremely corrosive and can rot cars if not removed from their chassis after winter driving. Over application can cause serious environmental damage, as noted in the example from Alaska. It also does not work well at very low temperatures. 

Liquid Brine

Liquid brine is a mix of rock salt and magnesium chloride. It helps break the bond between snow, ice, and the ground. You will usually find it used as a pre-treatment, being applied to pre-empt snowy and icy weather. 

It is relatively inexpensive with few restrictions. However, like rock salt, when very low temperatures arrive it can hamper its effectiveness. 

Premix

Premix consists of rock salt and calcium chloride. It is often used in areas that are trying to use less salt for environmental reasons. Premix is also effective in very low temperatures so is good for extreme climates. 

One of the benefits is that it is less harmful to the ecosystem and environment. It is more expensive than other products and needs dry storage to be fit for use. 

Sand

Sand is a low-cost material that can increase traction on icy roads. As it does not have any inherent qualities that melt snow or ice, it is often mixed with other products. Without this, it can lose its ability to provide traction quickly. 

One of its drawbacks is that it can clump. This can block drains and waterways, so it must be removed quickly when clearing icy roads

Commercial Property Icy Conditions

While the state deals with major icy roads and highways you still need to keep your business site clear of snow/ice which is a huge slip/fall liability to your operation.  Invest in a team that has your back and keeps your business IN business!  When the winter comes you will be prepared and ready to go. 

If you suffer from snow and ice in the winter months, then let BAM’S Landscaping assist. We can provide commercial snow removal for all your needs. Contact us here for a quote and let us keep you safe this winter. 

Spring Clean Ups: Top Tips and Advice From the Experts

According to surveys that have been done over the years, more than one-third of Americans say that spring is their favorite season. And it isn’t too difficult to figure out why!

The sun starts to stay up for longer stretches of time in the spring. The flowers begin to blossom in the spring. It’s truly one of the best times of the entire year.

Before people run outside and start soaking up everything spring has to offer, though, they need to hold spring clean-ups. It’ll make it possible for them to enjoy the springtime even more than they already do.

Today, we’re going to provide you with some spring clean-up tips from the experts to ensure that you’re able to get your spring yard clean-up done quickly this year. Get all the advice you need on spring clean-ups below.

Start by Removing Any Debris Located in Your Yard

It’s not uncommon at all for those in the Washington, D.C. area to have all kinds of debris scattered around in their yards at the end of the winter season. Winters can be rough in the D.C. area, which is why spring clean-ups should always start with a quick clean-up of any debris in your yard.

There is a pretty good chance that you’re going to have leaves, sticks, branches, and sometimes even garbage scattered around in your yard at the start of spring. You should make it a point to walk around and pick these things up so that you can throw them away.

If you don’t do anything else on this list, this alone will make your yard look 100 times better. It’ll ensure that you don’t have debris littering your lawn in the weeks to come.

Trim Any Trees, Bushes, Etc. That Exist on Your Property

Washington, D.C. winters can really wreak havoc on many of the trees, bushes, etc. in yards. They can make the branches on them brittle and cause them to break once the temperatures begin to get warm again.

With this in mind, you should walk around in your yard at the beginning of your spring clean-up and trim any trees, bushes, etc. that appear to have dying branches on them. It’ll prevent their branches from breaking on you later and filling your lawn with debris again.

It’ll also prevent the thunderstorms that are sure to come in the summer from having an impact on your trees, bushes, etc. You won’t have to worry about their branches breaking off during these storms and doing damage to your home, vehicles, etc.

Clean Out Your Flower Beds and Add Fresh Mulch to Them

Some of the flowers that sit in your flower beds might be starting to bloom right now. But if your flower beds aren’t in the best shape, they might not look as beautiful as they should.

It’ll be important for you to clean out any debris that sits in your flower beds. It’ll also be important for you to think about removing any old mulch that might be in your flower beds.

You’ll be surprised to see how much better your flower beds will look with fresh mulch surrounding your flowers and other plants. This mulch will look great while also ensuring that your flowers and plants get all the nutrients that they need this spring.

Consider Aerating, Overseeding, and Fertilizing Your Lawn

In addition to checking on the condition of your flower beds, you’ll also obviously need to provide your lawn with lots of TLC in the spring. If you want your lawn to look incredible all spring and summer long, it’ll be imperative that you care for it in the spring.

The spring is one of the best times to aerate your lawn. Aerating your lawn will allow it to breathe.

The spring is also one of the best times to overseed your lawn. Overseeding your lawn will get it to grow strong for the foreseeable future.

And if your lawn is in really bad shape, you might want to go as far as to fertilize it in the spring. The right fertilizer can give your lawn a boost and make it as lush as you want it to be.

Begin Cutting Your Lawn on a Regular Basis

Towards the end of spring clean-ups, you can start to cut your lawn. But in the spring, you want to be extra careful about not making any of these silly lawn care mistakes.

In particular, you’ll want to shy away from cutting your lawn too low in the spring. You should try to let your lawn grow a little longer than you might like to beef it up and make it healthier than it is now. 

Hire a Professional Landscaping Company to Assist With Spring Clean-Ups

Some people think that spring clean-ups are a lot of fun and don’t mind tackling them on their own. But others don’t have the time or patience to devote to their landscaping.

If you fall into the second category, you should strongly consider hiring a professional landscaping company to assist you with your spring clean-up landscaping. They can provide the spring clean-up services that you need and make your yard look better than it ever has before.

Clean Up Your Yard This Spring and Make It Look Amazing

If you want to make your yard look great all year long, spring clean-ups will be of the utmost importance. The work that you do on your yard in the spring will affect how it looks during all of the other seasons.

If you aren’t able to do spring clean-ups, we can help you out! Our landscaping experts can deliver all of the services that you need to bring your lawn back to life this spring.

Would you like to get more information on our spring clean-up services? Contact us today to see how we can help you with your yard this spring.

A Quick Guide to the Different Types of Ice Melt

types of ice melt

While it may often seem much longer, the cold season in Washington DC lasts an average of 3.1 months. Anyone who has experienced a DC winter will know the chaos the cold weather can bring. So how do you keep your home or business running?

One way is with the correct products and tools. Read on as we discuss the types of ice melt you need to stock up on this winter.

What Is Ice Melt?

Ice melt is an application used to combat snow and icy weather conditions. It can also be applied before or after the formation of these. This allows a much safer environment to walk and drive across.

The concept is that the ice melt lowers the freezing point of water. Less ice forms and it can break the bond between ice and the ground, making it easier to remove. Although they all have the same principle, they can often work in different ways, serve different purposes, and have different outcomes.

How to Use Ice Melt

The best way to apply ice melt is to preempt the weather conditions. Apply a layer before the advent of snow or ice, then cover after the formation has occurred. If you are using strong products you may want to add an abrasive like sand, to reduce the amount of salt on surfaces.

To prevent lasting environmental damage, scoop away the ice melt, salt and abrasives as soon as the ice melts. This prevents it from harming plants, soil, or pets.

Types of Ice Melt

There are several different types of ice melt you should consider. The type you choose will depend on if you are using them commercially or residentially and how severe your winter conditions are.

Sodium Chloride

Sodium chloride is a very affordable ice melt. It provides traction and helps keep surfaces dry, so is ideal for driveways. Like most melts, it lowers the freezing point of water.

Also known as common rock salt, it only has one downside. Sodium chloride can be corrosive, damages wood, plants, and even corrodes the underside of some vehicles. Removing it after use is essential.

One way to minimize its downside is to buy sodium chloride liquid brine. This is made of 3/4 parts water and 1/4 salt. It uses less salt, minimizes damage, and is cheaper to buy.

Magnesium Chloride

Magnesium chloride is a slow-acting ice melt and needs to be applied in larger amounts. It is easy to clean up.

The substance works using an exothermic reaction. During this process, it gives off heat, which is effective in colder climates. Though more pricey, it is less damaging to the environment and is considered by many to be more pet-friendly.

Calcium Chloride

For lower temperatures, calcium chloride is the most effective solution. It soaks in moisture to form a liquid solution. This lowers the water freezing point and causes heat, making the ice melt.

Calcium chloride is cheaper than sodium but more expensive than other ice melts. It is very good for use on concrete surfaces. The downside is that the heat causes burn damage, so it should be avoided if you have pets, children or are worried about the environmental impact.

Sodium Acetate

Sodium acetate is fully biodegradable. It also contains no chlorides and as a result, is an environmentally friendly option. As it does not cause corrosion to metals, it is the choice of melt for airport runways.

This ice melt also lasts a lot longer, so you don’t need to reapply it as much. Unfortunately, it is the most expensive choice.

Potassium Chloride

Potassium chloride is seldom used for melting ice anymore. While it does work, it is not as effective as other products. You will find it is also more expensive and harmful to the environment.

Glycol Based Ice Melts

Ice melts can often contain two types of glycol. These are ethylene and propylene.

The former is a very effective ice melt. It can reduce the freezing point of water to almost minus 58 degrees Fahrenheit. However, it is poisonous to living organisms and is mainly kept for de-icing airplanes.

Propylene glycol is not harmful to plants, animals, or humans. It takes the form of liquid and is often mixed with something to give traction as a result. This has tended to replace ethylene as it is just as good, if not better, at reducing the freezing point of water.

Mixing with Sand

Many people choose to mix sand with their ice melt. Course sand provides a much rougher surface, giving grip to the surface. It also means in lighter circumstances you can use less icer, so you won’t suffer the damaging effects of some melts so much.

Pet and Child Safety

Ice melt products have the potential to be very harmful, when ingested or even if they are touched. Always ensure children and pets are kept well away from them both either when in use or in storage.

Residue and brine left behind can also cause problems. Make sure children’s hands are rinsed thoroughly, as are the paws of pets. You should even check the ingredients of products that claim to be safe for pets, as what works for one pet may not be suitable for another.

Getting Assistance

Now you know the types of ice melt, you can stock up on the one right for your property. When cold weather comes, you don’t need to do it all yourself. Consider getting some help to clear your drive and pathways.

One way you can prepare is with commercial snow removal. Bams Landscaping has a number of services to help you come winter or summer. Contact us here to discuss your needs.

How to Choose the Best Weed Control Service

weed control service

Weeds can grow several inches in 24 hours, and they will take over if you don’t hire a weed control service. Great service will eliminate the weeds in your yard and keep them under control so that your yard is always looking its best.

Are you in search of the best service for the weeds in your yard? Let’s see exactly what makes a good weed service and how you can find the best one near you.

Choosing The Best Weed Control Service

You could easily do a quick search for weed control services near me and choose the first one that pops up. But, that is not how many of us would choose to find service providers that will maintain our homes.

Conducting a bit of research before hiring a weed control service will show you the best options in your area with reliable service, environmentally friendly products and will provide you with the results that you desire.

Their Coverage Area

Coverage area means that companies will usually only provide service to customers within a certain range from their office. This could get limited to a certain county, town, or amount of miles from their business location.

Companies design their coverage area with the idea that that need to be able to make it to their appointments on time without spreading themselves too thin. A coverage area also helps to provide boundaries that ensure they do not step on other companies’ feet.

Make Sure That They’re Licensed And Insured

Unfortunately, some weed control services out there that are not legit. They might not have insurance, a license to practice, or even be a registered business.

These companies are not the ones that you want to do business with. What would happen if you let an uninsured company do work for you and something went wrong? You would be responsible for the damages caused to your property.

A reputable company will have its license number displayed on its website and its company vehicles. And, any company that gets registered with the state and has a license number must have insurance to protect both themselves and their customers.

Fast, Friendly, And Reliable

You might not ever come directly face to face with the people who kill the weeds in your yard. But, wouldn’t you feel better knowing that the weed control services are friendly and reliable?

A reliable weed control service comes when they get scheduled, do the work that was agreed upon, and are respectful to your property while honoring your contract with them.

If the job is done properly you will be more likely to recommend the company to your neighbors and friends in the area. As we know, word of mouth is always the best form of advertisement.

Services Provided

Services provided by a weed control company may be limited to weed control only. If you are looking to bundle services with another lawn care or landscaping service, you will have to do some research to see what the company offers.

Ask your landscaping service if they also handle weed control to save yourself some time. Having a company that can take care of all of your lawn, landscaping, and weed control needs is the ultimate score.

Remember that if you are in search of weed control services for a commercial property double-check that that particular company can accommodate you, as not all services cover commercial properties.

What Chemicals Will Be Used?

Do you closely monitor the chemical products that are used within your home? For those that like to be aware of everything that is used in or near their home, a weed control service should be investigated before making an appointment.

Of course, it will take something with a decent amount of strength to kill those weeds. But, at the same time, we want to know that the rest of our landscape, our pets, our kids, and the environment isn’t going to suffer because we wanted our weeds gone.

Sprays and powders used on weeds should be used sparingly and in conjunction with trimming and pulling them for the most efficient weed control.

Experience And Knowledge

Just about anyone can come through your yard spraying weed killer all over the place. But, it takes a certain level of education about weeds, how they grow, and pesticides to get the job done properly.

We can even buy weed killers and do the job on our own. Right?

However, the average person does not know all the ins and outs of weed control. This service requires training and knowledge of the field before getting to work.

Comparing Costs

Though cost probably won’t be the deciding factor for many people, it can still come into play when weighing the pros and cons of choosing a weed control agency.

A fair-priced service says a lot about the company. Rather than having an overpriced weed control service, fair prices show that a company respects its customers and values their patronage.

Checking Customer Reviews And Ratings

One guaranteed way to get a direct insight into what a company is like and the quality of their services provided is to check out their current online customer reviews. Unless a company is brand new they will most likely have been rated by at least one customer on Google or another site.

Businesses can not pay to remove ratings so you will get to see both the good and the bad ratings. Take both with a grain of salt, and only use it as a guide as not every bad rating will reflect the true character of a business.

Weeding Out The Bad Companies

After just a few quick questions, you can see which weed control service near you is licensed and insured, reliable, and provides the services that you are looking for. Should you have any questions about BAM’s Landscaping of Kensington and what we can do for your yard, contact us and we would be happy to discuss the details of the job with you.