The unbeatable heat of summer makes yard work a task few want to take on. As the weather cools down, taking care of your outdoor spaces can start becoming a creative, rewarding experience rather than a grueling chore. Many Lincoln businesses are getting geared up to transform your outdoor areas into spaces that you can see yourself spending time in. Whether it is adding an outdoor fireplace or getting a jumpstart on your garden, the possibilities for this new season are endless!
Nothing Runs Like a Deere!
The very heart of a live landscape is the establishment of a healthy lawn. No matter how much you invest in fancy plants and trees, they always look their best when they are adjacent to green, lush grounds. Regardless of the size of your yard or your landscaping project, AKRS Equipment (akrsusedequipment.com) can provide an extensive array of John Deere equipment you need to get the job done right. AKRS offers John Deere turf, compact utility tractors, and compact construction equipment, plus a host of attachments to accomplish any yard or acreage project.
When it comes to choosing a mower or keeping up with lawn maintenance, AKRS is in your corner. The John Deere equipment they sell offers the lowest cost of ownership in the industry, and their mowers have, over the years, proven to operate longer with fewer repairs and maintain their value better than any other product on the market. AKRS even has a service available to keep your equipment in top working order.
“AKRS Equipment offers a Ready to Mow Service in the Omaha and Lincoln communities, where we will come to your home or business and perform routine maintenance on-site and ensure that your equipment always performs well,” said Turf and Commercial Equipment Sales Professional Nick Wessel. “For larger repairs, we offer pickup and delivery to one of our AKRS locations.”
For commercial mowing, one of the hottest trends in mowers is the John Deere QuikTrak Stand-on Mower, which AKRS offers. These stand-behind mowers serve up advanced maneuverability and speed to allow you to mow more and feel less fatigued at the end of the day. On the residential side, the John Deere line of Lawn Tractors provides mowing with a variety of attachments to make landscaping chores simple and easy.
“Customers can stop in at their convenience and learn what equipment best fits their needs,” Nick said. “The earlier they pay us a visit, the sooner we can get them up and running with the guidance and equipment they need to maintain the best lawn in the neighborhood. Come see us and take a test drive on any John Deere product. After all, Nothing Runs Like a Deere!”
Prepare for Fall with Landscape Cleanup
At Luxury Landscape (luxurylandscape-llc.com), they take a lot of pride in educating their customers on what landscaping would be best for their property based on their individual wants and needs. Their knowledgeable and talented team will discuss all the pros and cons of any type of landscape and help the customer make the best decision so that they can get the most from their new space. Luxury Landscape also educates on proper watering and care for new plants and landscape areas that will last for years.
“Fall is a great time to complete a good cleaning to all landscapes and outdoor living areas,” said Owner Jackie Svoboda. “Late fall is when most grasses and perennials should be cut down, but don’t worry too much about removing leaves from planting areas. It acts as a ‘blanket’ to plants throughout a cold winter and provides a home to many pollinators and other good insects. Fall is also a great time to blow leaves, dust, and debris off of patios and other outdoor living areas. This is also a crucial time to ensure all plants and trees, especially evergreens, get a good, deep watering to provide plenty of moisture to the roots to survive winter. In addition, this gives them a hardy start in the spring.”
Jackie really emphasized the importance of her first point: ensure a good cleanup. When it’s delayed or not completed, the brutal winter weather can cause harm to plants and reduce their ability to thrive. Cleanup should include cutting back specific perennials and grasses, as it will allow for new growth in the spring that doesn’t have to compete with dead plant material. Plus, it minimizes the hassle come spring!
“It’s best to treat any outdoor living area just as if it was a space inside your home,” said Jackie. “If a customer would like assistance with winterizing their outdoor space, please reach out now, as our fall schedule is filling up rapidly!”
Fall Lawn Care Checklist
Do you know what aerating is? Well, if you have a lawn, you should! Let us break it down for you with a little help from TDK Lawn Care, Inc. (tdkinc.com): aerating is the process of making finger size holes in your lawn and depositing the removed material on the surface to break down. This allows fertilizer, water, and oxygen to get to the roots where healthy grass originates. In areas where the soil has high clay content, compaction, and thatch buildup is more prevalent, aeration should be done twice a year. This will result in a continued healthy lawn! Contact TDK Lawn Care to aerate your lawn so that it receives a good boost before the winter starts.
“We recommend aerating your lawn before the end of September to ensure that it has time to create a strong foundation,” said Owner Lee Schumacher. “Combine this with another service we specialize in: over-seeding. This is an easy way to bring new grass seed into your lawn, as the seeds will fall into the holes created when aerating and mix in with the broken down soil deposits on the surface. Not only will this fill in the bare spots on your lawn, but it will improve turf density and lawn color. This is an easier and less expensive alternative to buying and laying new sod.”
TDK Lawn Care, Inc. also offers mowing, fertilizing, and snow removal services. Their nearly 20 years of experience in the industry proves that they know landscaping and can get you great results with great customer service!
The Gardening Experts
What’s landscaping without a little gardening? With all the different types of plants out there, it’s wise to get help from a professional to guarantee your plants will survive the months to come. Get in touch with Earl May Seed & Nursery (earlmay.com) to renovate your landscape with beautiful plants that are sure to brighten up and color your property.
“Fall is the best time of year for planting trees and shrubs,” said Jessica Jasnoch, manager of Earl May’s South Lincoln Garden Center. “The cool nights and warm days help push plants to get their roots established before winter. Fall is also a great time to over-seed or fill in sparse areas in the lawn.
Fertilizing trees and shrubs in the fall is the best way to ensure that they will have the energy to leaf out in the spring. It’s also a great time to protect the bark on young trees from animals such as deer and rabbits.
“One of the most frequent questions I get asked is how much water should be given to trees and shrubs,” said Jessica. “This is a great question. Trees that have been planted in the last couple years should receive approximately 15 gallons of water every week. Continue watering trees and newly planted shrubs and grasses into November. This is very important, because if they are allowed to dry out during cold weather, they will be susceptible to winter burn and may not recover in the spring.”
‘Tis the Season to Plant Trees!
Fall is great for a lot of things: football games, pumpkin patches, apple cider, cozy sweaters, and much more. Fall is also the perfect time to plant a tree, fruit-bearing or otherwise. Eagle Nursery (eaglenurseries.com) Owner Tom Scharfen told us all about why planting a tree is a beautiful and rewarding task for fall landscaping.
“An advantage to installing trees, particularly larger trees, into your landscape is that you have instant curb appeal, plus shade,” Tom said. “Other projects can take years to add the same value that a single large maple or oak, for example, can add overnight. Fall is the perfect time to take on those large projects—particularly when it comes to ‘spaded trees,’ or transplanting larger trees that are already well-established.”
According to research conducted by the USDA Forest Service, trees create about three times more economic advantage than their cost due to how much they can raise property value. Each large tree adds about 1% to the value of a house. Plus, they produce energy savings, storm-water runoff reduction, and cleaner air.
When choosing which kind of tree to plant, it can be extremely helpful to work with an Eagle Nursery expert. They will help you choose a tree that will not only survive but thrive in Nebraska’s turbulent weather. Experts at Eagle Nursery have extensive knowledge about native Nebraska species of plants and trees that will help you build a flourishing ecosystem in your landscape. Eagle has 70 acres of trees in production, in addition to five greenhouses for perennials and shrubs, so you’ll absolutely find the ones that will work best with your vision.
Did you know that on average, over half of all domestic water usage goes to maintaining lawn and landscapes? That’s why improving sprinkler and irrigation system efficiency by installing a Water Smart Design from Hunt Irrigation, Inc. (huntirrigation.com) is one of the best and easiest ways for residential clients to reduce their overall outdoor water usage. This will save money and keep your lawn and landscape healthy and beautiful throughout the year.
“Once the installation is complete, our highly qualified and certified staff will familiarize you with your new sprinkler system and demonstrate how to properly operate it for peak efficiency,” explained Owner Jeremy Hunt. “They’ll also discuss how to maintain a seasonally correct watering schedule, and properly conserve and protect our most precious water resources and the environment. Along with our training program, each new installation comes with a computer aided drawing (CAD) or ‘as-built’ for future reference. All our residential systems also come with three-year workmanship warranty and a product warranty up to three years.”
A proper installation is the first step in water conservation. Annual maintenance is just as crucial. An irrigation system should be regularly serviced to maintain the performance and efficiency of the original system design.
“In addition to lawn maintenance, we can also help you upgrade your outdoor living area by adding lighting to the area,” said Jeremy. “We take into consideration the safety, security, and aesthetic components to create a complete and balanced custom design. Plus, we are certified to install systems that are safe and energy-efficient.”
Outdoor lighting on driveways, pathways, and steps will help you to avoid potential accidents and increase the safety, security, and value of your home, as well as discouraging unwanted guests by illuminating hidden areas.
Fall Lawn Care = Proactive Lawn Care
Before you jump right into applying aesthetic landscaping features, a little lawn maintenance needs to be done. If you don’t have a good foundation of healthy soil and grass, everything in your outdoor space will suffer. Luckily, lawn care can be easier than you think; it just requires some basic knowledge and a little attention week to week. We spoke to Larry Svoboda from Ray’s Lawn Care (rayslawn.com) about how to keep your yard looking great.
“Fall lawn care is all about prevention and being proactive,” said Larry. “For example, if you weed now, you’ll have less weeds and a healthier lawn in the spring. Fall is the time when weeds are in full food storage mode for winter survival, and weed control stops that process. Spraying weeds in the fall helps assure that they won’t survive the winter and continue to wreak havoc on your lawn the next season. At Ray’s, we can do spot treatment for any places in your lawn that need a little more care.”
Ray’s provides Lincolnites with a five-application treatment plan to keep your lawn lush and green all year long. It includes guaranteed grub control, weed control, pre-emergent, post-emergent, fertilizer, and insecticide treatments. They also have additional treatments for fungicides, aerating, and renovation.
“Fertilizing is also something that is great to do in the fall,” Larry said. “The fertilizers will give your grass a shot of plant sugars that will help protect the roots from freezing. This will help your grass bounce back after the snow melts. The trickiest part about tending to a lawn in the fall is making sure you’re on schedule. If you’re unsure of when or how to do something, make sure to plan ahead with an expert. It costs more to fix a problem lawn than it does to prevent a lawn from becoming a problem.”
Essentials for Your Outdoor Living Space
When creating or upgrading your outdoor living area, be sure to connect with Merritt Concrete, Fireplace & Stone (merrittlincoln.com). They offer an assortment of different landscaping materials that includes river rock, limestone (either 3/8-inch or one-inch crushed), sand, sand and gravel mix, road gravel, and mulch. Plus – like their name says – they provide ready-mix concrete that can be used for a wide range of projects such as patios, walking paths, driveways, or even a slab for your next shed.
“Rock is great to place around the foundation of your home,” shared Morgan Drommond, fireplace sales manager. “It really seta the tone for your property. It’s also great to minimize weeds and erosion while tying your whole landscape together.”
This summer, Merritt saw many customers updating their backyards to become a more usable space. Morgan said that installing an outdoor fireplace or fire pit was and still continues to be a popular activity for many homeowners. Plus, temperatures will begin to drop soon, making this the perfect time to transform your outdoor area into a cozy place to relax even after the sun starts to set early. Regardless of what type of outdoor project you want to take on, Merritt is available to help.
“We really pride ourselves on being available for our clients and able to work with their schedules. We also offer delivery with 24-hour notice,” Morgan said. “We are unique in the fact that we are one of the only small batch ready-mix concrete companies in Lincoln! We have no minimums, which allows us to give the customer exactly what they need; it’s the same with our landscaping material. Whether you need one five-gallon bucket or five tons, we can accommodate you. Stop by the store to visit our showroom; we typically always have someone in the store ready to help anyone who walks in.”
Your fence is one of the most important features of your property. It offers safety and privacy, and even accents your landscape. Plus, fences come in a variety of shapes and sizes, allowing you to truly customize it to fit your landscape vision. The possibilities are virtually endless!
Height, style, and material are important choices that can impact the final look of your fencing and, ultimately, your landscape. If you don’t know what type of fencing would best fit your vision both functionally and aesthetically, the experts at Empire Netting and Fence (empire-fence.com) can offer their advice.
“A good fence will provide privacy for your property while also fitting into your ideal design,” explained Owner Matt Warner. “In addition, a fence should offer security and keep your kids and pets within your property. To ensure your fence will be installed properly to satisfy both of these needs, call a professional.”
Empire offers vinyl, wood, chain link, or aluminum fences, in addition to FenceTrac, a system that has virtually endless possibilities with a beautiful aesthetic look that is designed to simplify picket installation.
“The best way to get started is to visit our website and click on our ‘Instant Online Quote’ button,” Matt suggested. “Using our online estimating tool, you will be able to draw the layout for the fence and choose what style you would like. When you finish, you will get an email with a printable layout including total linear footage and budget for that specific fence. This will help you get a ballpark estimate on the cost of your fencing project. We will contact you with more questions regarding your project and set up a time to meet onsite to verify measurements and get a good feel about what you want to achieve with your fencing.”
Whether you are freshening up the current exterior color of your home, looking to try a new shade, or trying to really make your outdoor living area pop, a new coat of paint on the exterior of your house can positively change the entire look of your property. In addition to this, according to CertaPro Painters, a good paint job adds value to your home, and quality paint acts as an extra layer of protection from the outside, keeping your home safe from weather, insects, and dust. It can even keep wood from rotting and prevents you from facing larger repair costs in the future. Invest in your home now with Walter’s Painting Inc. (walterspaintinginc.com), and let them both beautify and protect the exterior of your home.
“Our crew here at Walter’s Painting can transform your chipped and peeling exterior into something out of a magazine,” said Jeff Walters, owner. “We can also spruce up your exterior wood, including decks, stairs, or pillars. It’s amazing what a new coat of stain on wood can do for your home, making it look like new while also protecting it from the harsh weather that will inevitably arrive in Nebraska!”
Another great way to freshen up the look of your property is through pressure washing. Walter’s Painting Inc. can pressure wash your home exterior, including pools, fences, hardscapes, concrete, brick, wood surfaces, and decks. When is the last time you washed your driveway? For many of us, the answer is probably never! Walter’s Painting can easily and quickly clean it for you, giving your property a clean, fresh look.
It may still be warm, but before long, temperatures will steadily decrease and pool season will come to an end. Before that happens, make sure your pool is ready to close for winter by contacting Strawberry Springs Pool and Spa (strawberrysprings.com) to help you ensure that your pool is properly maintained and protected for the winter.
Their winter pool closing service includes a thorough vacuuming and removal of debris, water balancing, draining water to an appropriate level, winterizing the plumbing system and equipment, using environmentally safe anti-freeze, installation and inspection of the winter cover, and more.
In six months when you’re ready to take the winter cover off, be sure to contact Strawberry Springs to help you open your pool and prepare for the spring. They also offer other services, including weekly maintenance, weekly chemical maintenance, jetted bathtub repair, hot tub moving, in-ground pool construction, and more, so that you can be a happy swimmer all year long!
Retaining walls continue to gain popularity as they hold both functional and decorative purposes. For example, they can stabilize sloping landscapes and prevent rainwater from flooding your landscape, all while giving your property an aesthetically pleasing look. When installing a retaining wall, use a quality brick locally produced by Yankee Hill Brick (yankeehillbrick.com). They offer a variety of brick in many different colors and styles to perfectly match your landscape. Brick pavers are also a popular trend that continues to grow, with residents opting for this style for their patios, pool decks, driveways, and pathways. Yankee Hill pavers are hard and durable, low maintenance, and long lasting. They come in 15 different colors and can be formed into a variety of patterns to reflect contrast or unity. The products produced by Yankee Hill Brick are a sure way to instantly boost the curb appeal and value of your home.
Hand-Crafted Concrete Creations
Concrete Craft of Lincoln (concretecraft.com/lincoln-ne) can provide nearly endless solutions to bring your outdoor living space to life through their beautiful concrete solutions for patios, driveways, walkways, pool decks, and more. They can transform your patio with exquisite designs and classic looks, or they can banish the boring, plain, gray concrete walkways on your property with stamped concrete in patterns, designs, and colors that bring out the best in your surroundings. Even more, they offer a stamped concrete seat wall and fire pit system that is a fast and economical way to create the outdoor entertaining area of your dreams. This cost-effective method will give you a fire pit that looks like natural stone but is made with the more durable material of stamped concrete.
A stamped concrete driveway, resurfaced concrete driveway, or stained concrete driveway is sure to give your home an impressive entrance and upgrade the overall appearance of your home. With their various stamp patterns and integral coloring processes, Concrete Craft can replicate popular, expensive materials, such as brick, cobblestone, and natural slate. No matter what outdoor concrete project you want to take on, Concrete Craft will help you totally transform your space and become the envy of the neighborhood – all without breaking the bank.
Creating your dream outdoor space has never been easier. With the help of these Lincoln businesses, your lawn, garden, or patio will be ready for anything – and it’ll look pretty great, too! These experts are here to help you get all things outdoors under way. It’s never too early to get started!