It's spring cleanup time. That means things are about to get real busy for commercial landscapers..
Does your commercial landscape maintenance contract include the spring cleanup services your property needs?
Hint: It needs a lot.
Spring cleanup services and mulch often make up 30 percent of the cost of a commercial landscape maintenance contract, says Dave Keffer, a branch manager at Level Green Landscaping.
“It’s a big part of the landscaping services we provide,” he says.
If you’re like most commercial property managers, you can’t wait.
“Our customers realize the importance of curb appeal,” Keffer says. “They’re trying to lease properties. They’re always anxious to get spring cleanup done.”
What spring commercial landscaping services should your contract include?
Keffer walks us through it.
Spring Pruning And Cut Back
Spring is time for pruning and cutback of perennials, perennial grasses, Knock Out roses and any plants, like spirea, where flowers grow on new wood.
Pruning allows proper air flow and sunlight for healthy plants.
Some structural tree pruning, but not much, might be done in spring too, to allow air and sun to penetrate the crowns of flowering trees, Keffer says.
Edging makes your plant beds look neat and tidy. Our landscaping crews create a 2.5 inch, 90-degree edge around all plant beds. They also clean up any leaf litter and debris from beds that could harbor diseases or insect eggs.
Spring Mulching on Commercial Landscapes
Never underestimate the power of mulch. It’s the finishing touch that makes a property’s landscaping really pop.
“Really green grass and nice chocolate brown mulch is a great combination,” Keffer says.
Level Green crews begin applying spring mulch in February, weather permitting.
Level Green uses color-enhanced dark brown bark mulch.
“It holds its color much longer without fading,” Keffer says. “It often still looks great by fall, so it may not be necessary to add fall mulch. That saves you money.”
Our crews make sure the mulch isn’t piled too high around the base of trees and shrubs. Too much mulch can cause rot, inviting insects and disease.
It’s time to give hungry plants and shrubs a good feeding, along with pre-emergent herbicide to ward off annual weeds. Fertilizing should be included as a spring commercial landscaping service.
A messy lawn makes your whole property look unsightly and neglected.
Crews rake any old leaves leftover from fall into the lawn and go over them with a mulching mower. That breaks them down into nutritious bits beneficial to your turf.
The ravages of winter snow, ice and wind cause lots of smaller branches to crack and fall, littering your lawn with debris that needs to be cleaned up.
And A Bonus: Inspecting The Property
Winter is tough on landscaping. Parking blocks might be damaged by snow plows. Signs might be bent.
Your contract might not include property inspection, but we do.
“We look out for any problems on the property and bring them to the property manager’s attention,” Keffer says. “They might not necessarily be related to the landscaping, but we consider ourselves their eyes on the property. A bent sign here, a hole there? We let them know.”
Why Spring Cleanup Matters to Commercial Properties
Of course, you love the tidy, clean look spring cleanup landscaping adds to your curb appeal. But spring cleanup tasks are done for the health of your landscaping, too.
Perennials need trimming so they’ll rejuvenate for spring. Ignore red twig dogwood, Keffer says, and it will get woody and lose its signature red color.
Mulch keeps weeds down and conserves moisture for the hot summer months ahead.
Your turf can’t thrive if it’s clogged with soggy leaves and a blanket of fallen twigs.
Time For Spring Landscape Enhancements
Some enhancements just go hand in hand with spring cleanup services. Keffer recommends a few for this time of year:
- Replace any plants, shrubs or trees that have died. April and May are great for planting.
- Remove any aging plants that have grown out of control or that block windows or signage. Spring is a good time of year to replace them.
- Repair or replace any areas of turf damaged by plows or salt. Snow removal can take a toll on grass. Some customers use salt as opposed to landscape-friendly ice melt products. Patches of salt-damaged turf near sidewalks and driveways may need to be replaced.
- Those perky pansies and violas planted in the fall likely need some attention. Some deadheading and new mulch might do the trick. But after a rough winter like this one, they might need replacing, so your property has spots of cheerful color in April and May. It’s too soon to plant summer annuals, but these cold-hardy beauties will bridge the gap.
- This is the last chance for dormant pruning of trees before they spring to life and it’s too late.
- March 1 is when Maryland allows lawn fertilizing to begin. Our commercial landscaping crews start applying fertilizer and pre-emergent weed killer, as well as post-emergent herbicide to attack any broadleaf weeds lurking in your lawn. This is the time for crabgrass prevention, too.
Level Green Landscaping: Spring Cleanup Services in Maryland, Washington DC, and Virginia
Take a look at your commercial landscape maintenance contract. Does it include everything your commercial property needs to kick off the growing season?
Our experts will make sure your contract includes all the essential spring spruce-ups. Consider these key questions before you sign.
If you’re not already a Level Green Landscaping client, we’d love to add you to our growing list of happy customers.
Our focus is on commercial properties like offices, mixed-use sites, HOAs, municipalities and institutions in Maryland, Washington DC and parts of Virginia.
Contact us at 202-544-0968. You can also request a free consultation online to meet with us one-on-one.
We’d love to hear from you.