Snow and ice storms and rapid temperature drops in winter can wreak havoc on lawns and landscaping.
Cleaning up the mess —whether it’s a brown lawn, broken or weakened tree branches, plants suffering salt damage, or snow mold in your grass —doesn’t always require a professional landscaping company. With spring’s arrival (and the right equipment) business owners, property managers, and DIY homeowners can easily and quickly turn what appears to be a dead yard into the envy of the business park or cul-de-sac.
After a harsh winter, the first step is to survey your property. Look at your trees (for broken or weak limbs), your lawn (for brown spots, holes, and snow mold), your plants (for salt damage), and your landscaping beds (for dead plants and weeds). Once you know what needs attention, it’s time to get to work.
But first, you should know how renting the right equipment can help you bring back that lush landscaping and thick, green, lawn of last year without breaking a sweat.
The first place where many choose to start is cleaning up walkways, fencing, patios, porches, and decks. Pressure washers are easy to operate and will quickly and almost effortlessly remove dirt, grime, and mildew from just about anywhere.
Continuing the clean-up efforts, two more pieces of equipment that could be of use over multiple days are woodchippers, skid steers, or compact track loaders. Whether it’s a downed tree or simply wanting to clean up yard waste, all three machines can prove to be invaluable. Deploying a woodchipper, instead of hauling hundreds of branches and heavy tree limbs to the curb, will make a tough job simple and you can also turn the debris into landscaping mulch.
In overgrown lots or yards that have been neglected, a brush mower can chop it all down quickly. For example, Herc Rentals’ brush mower can clear brush up to six feet in height and two inches in diameter.
For the once-a-year (or once-in-a-lifetime) clean-up of your yard’s dead trees, weak limbs, or shrubs, renting a chainsaw for a few hundred dollars instead of buying one for nearly $1,000 may make more sense. And – if you had to take down a tree and can’t live with staring at a stump in your yard – renting a stump grinder is the most efficient way to do it. Using a grinder will dispose of the entire stump without damaging surrounding grass or vegetation.
For a thick, lush, lawn, by summer, the time to start is in the spring. Once you’ve cleared out the yard waste, the focus should shift to your lawn. Lawns prone to thatch buildup should be dethatched once a year. Thatch is primarily a buildup of grass, leaves, grass roots, stems, and lateral weed growth. When too much thatch builds up, it can inhibit nutrients, water, and air from reaching the roots of your lawn and stifle grass growth. Experts say the best time to dethatch is in the spring when warm temperatures and precipitation work in tandem to promote the growth of plant life. While a good thatch rake can be had for under $50 and might be a good option if your scope of work is limited, purchasing a walk-behind dethatcher for a once-a-year project may not be. That’s why many choose to rent. Not only will you save money by renting the machine, but you won’t have to worry about storing it, sharpening its blades, or maintaining its engine.
Now that the impediments that have kept your lawn from breathing, drinking, and eating have been removed, renting an aerator should be your next step. An aerator, like the one Herc Rentals offers, pokes tiny holes in the turf that allows your lawn to absorb, water, air, and nutrients easily. ProTip: Thoroughly water your lawn a full day before you begin aerating.
PLANTING SEEDS AND MORE
Once you’ve addressed the issues with your lawn, you may want to shift focus to your landscaping (or lack thereof). To build new landscaping, forget the shovel. Instead, rent a tiller. Used to break up hard ground and prepare the soil for planting, tillers utilize blades called tines that can be adjusted to till at different depths and allow its user to cut through the ground faster and easier than doing it by hand.
After you’ve created a landscape island or bed, you probably want to do some planting. For large plantings such as trees or shrubs (or digging holes for fence posts and deck footings), save your back and seek out an auger.
For more on Herc Rentals’ selection of lawn and landscaping equipment. Click HERE.