November 2011 News Letter

November Lawn Care

It's that time of year. Leaves fall and grass stops growing. Many ask, "What do I need to do for my lawn this time of the year?"
The answer: "Lots!"

First there is the matter of leaves. You got plenty of time and lots of bags? Most of our valued clients do not. That's why we work hard this time of year to keep your lawn clean. Many people think they can leave the leaves until they all fall and then get them up. Two main problems with that are:

  • If you have tried this at any time you almost certainly don't want to do it again.grass It will probably take you more time to get them up later. They are much easier to get up before they get heavy, wet and sticky.
  • A thick layer of leaves will block the sunlight and air from your lawn. "One thing you want to keep in mind is that you don't want a really thick layer of leaves anywhere," says Melissa Hopkins of the National Audubon Society. "Because sunlight can't get to what's beneath it, and moisture will kill what's underneath."
Another thing most home owners fail to consider is that your grass grows all year round! Warm season grasses grow this time of year, they just grow down! The roots of your Bermudas and Zoysias are growing. They are looking of nutrients to help keep your grass healthy through the dormant season so it can come back flush in the spring. This is the time of year that we feed the roots. Fertilizers high in nitrogen cause your grass to green up. We do not use those this time of year. We use fertilizers high in phosphorus. Phosphorus is needed for energy transfer and storage in plants. It also promotes strong root development and winter hardiness helping grass withstand the environmental stresses of winter.

Then there are those pesky winter weeds! Winter annual weeds such as annual bluegrass, henbit, common chickweed and speedwell and winter perennials such as wild garlic and wild onion are unsightly and can be a problem for your turf. They fight for the sunlight and nutrients your grass needs. Winter weeds die when the weather warms up, but now the best way to treat them is to mow. We won't cut your grass as often in the winter months but we will cut it periodically. This not only keeps your lawn looking fresh, it also helps to kill some of those obnoxious weeds. Some will be arriving later. This is why right now we are treating your lawn with preemergence herbicides, a good management process to prevent weeds from becoming established.

We've faced a challenging year in 2011. This time of year we are busy removing your leaves, preparing autumn fertilizers with just the right balance of nutrients to boost root development and strengthen growth before the onset of winter, and applying pesticides to control most of those winter annual weeds. The way you lawn has performed this year it deserves the investment.

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November Holidays Have Many Attitudes

The second Tuesday of November which falls on the eighth in 2011 is "National Young Readers Day" which is a day to recognize the joys and benefits of reading. Grade schools in the USA often take advantage of this holiday to promote the importance of reading to their students. It is a very good time to encourage our youth to not only learn to read, but to make it a habit, which will also look good on future resumes. The holiday was actually founded in 1989 by both Pizza Hut and the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress. This holiday has a purposeful attitude.

vets

November eleventh is Veterans Day which honors all the valiant members of the United States Armed Forces who served and died while defending our country. On November 11 at the precise time of 11:11 in the year 1921, England, France and the USA all buried an unknown soldier with great ceremony in order to remember those who died in World War I. That is the time and date in 1918 when the fighting in WWI ceased. President Eisenhower changed it to "Veteran's Day" in 1954 after the second World War in order to honor all the men and women who have served and sacrificed to preserve freedom in many quarters of the Earth and at many times. It is tradition, also, to stop what you are doing on November 11 at 11:11 for a moment of silence. Decorate a grave and fly your flag on November 11 and observe the moment of profound silence in honor of all our veterans, especially those who gave their lives for our present peace of mind. This holiday has a solemn and remembering attitude.

Look out all you eligible bachelors! November thirteenth is Sadie Hawkins Day which began in Al Capp's "Lil Abner" cartoon in the 1930's. While this is not really a holiday, the cartoon was so popular people began to mimic the race, especially on college campuses. On Sadie Hawkins Day all the single men in the town of Dogpatch were given a small head start and then the single women took out after them. If a man was caught, he had to marry the girl who latched on to him. The race was initiated because the mayor's daughter was so ugly he feared she would never marry - thus the race was meant to give her a good future and happiness with the man of her dreams… or, er, well, with the man she could catch. This holiday has a humorous attitude.

Thanksgiving which falls on the fourth Thursday in November was made a national holiday by Congress in 1941. The first Thanksgiving was celebrated by both the Pilgrim Immigrants and the Indian Natives in 1621 who shared a great feast together giving thanks to God who had given them a harvest which would support all of them through the upcoming cold winter months of New England. Life until that time had been almost gruesome for the Pilgrims, but now they had reason to celebrate, to share, and to thank God for His wonderful harvest.

In modern times the activities of the day rotate around the home, as the Pilgrims and Indians turkeycelebration did back then. When it comes time to sit down to eat it is traditional for most families to begin by saying a prayer of thanks to God for providing all His blessings for yet another year. Many families also take a moment to allow each family member to share what they are very thankful for. After that the eating begins.

Thanksgiving is often the very largest meal that anyone eats in the entire year. Not only is there turkey and dressing, but there are also all the family's traditional trimmings. Most Thanksgiving feasts have a variety of large bowls of mashed potatoes, potatoes augratin, green bean casseroles, steamed broccoli, salads, breads, rolls, and cranberry dishes. Different ethnic or religious groups will have different traditional dishes. There is often not enough room on the table to hold all the different foods, but somehow, it is cheerfully managed.

And that is not all -- after all the family bellies are sufficiently stuffed -- out come the desserts of either pumpkin or sweet potato pie and whipped cream. There may also be apple and mince meat pies, bread pudding, fudge brownies, or Jello with fruit, and all homemade, of course, but let us not be blinded by the gluttony of the day. Let us remember why we celebrate and to whom we give Thanks!! This holiday has an attitude of gratitude. Happy Thanksgiving!!

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