Benefits of Winter Pruning

A lush, Goldberg & Rodler maintained landscape border full of flowering and evergreen shrubs, mixed with perennials and ornamental trees. Extend the life and health of your garden with proper pruning techniques from Goldberg & Rodler. Winter pruning is one technique we use to keep your landscape thriving. Pruning in winter makes it easier to see the structure of an ornamental tree or shrub so we can better address dead wood, crossing branches, dead and diseased limbs, and overall shape to keep the best natural form of your plants.

Pruning will also allow for increased light penetration and air circulation, a must for any healthy plant to flourish, promoting new growth and hearty flowering.

We have just three more weeks of winter left, let’s make them count! Call (631) 271-6460 to speak to our plant healthcare specialists and give your ornamental trees and shrubs a jump start this growing season.

Why Share Your Yard with Pests?

Bothersome is just one of many terms one may use to describe the presence of the dreaded mosquito.  They are particularly annoying for those who enjoy spending the evening outdoors at the pool, puttering in the garden or relaxing on the terrace surrounded by friends and family.

Aedes mosquito. Photo: James Gathany, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)To make matters worse, mosquitoes spread several diseases when they bite, including the Zika and West Nile Viruses.  Mosquitoes can also transmit heartworm to dogs.  There are various ways to protect your family from these pests.  Repelling them is the most environmentally friendly option with the lowest impact on the environment.  The same repellents also deter fleas and ticks.  Fleas can transfer tapeworms in addition to causing uncomfortable itching from their bites.  Ticks are associated with spreading Lyme Disease to both humans and animals.

tick

When there is an infestation, the use of a pesticide on the adult mosquitoes may be needed until the infestation is reduced to a manageable population.  At that time we would switch to repellents.

Spring is coming and if you are looking forward to spending time in your beautiful yard without these annoying pests, you may want to consider a custom tailored program designed by Tree Care of Long Island, a division of Goldberg & Rodler, to repel mosquitoes and other nuisances using environmentally friendly botanical oils. We will let you know if you have hidden breeding grounds on your property by conducting a thorough site evaluation.

Contact us today for a free quote. Call 631-271-6460 or 631-271-TREE.

Written by: Maria Ferrero

 

 

Healthy Landscapes Are the Root of Happiness

 

A great article from our friends at NALP, National Association of Landscape Professionals. Love your landscape! Want to protect your family from ticks, fleas, mosquitoes, and more? Contact us today to protect your property! We have a range of sprays including organic options to protect you and your family. Our newest team member, Chris Tanner, is an expert on caring for your plants. He will make sure everything is pruned properly and at the appropriate time. Concerned about oak wilt? Speak to our arborists about your trees.

 

Protect Your Oak and Other Shade Trees from Deadly Diseases: Prune in Winter!

Oak Wilt has come to Long Island and our precious shade trees may be in danger. DEC Forest Health Technicians confirmed Oak Wilt to be in Brooklyn, Babylon, Islip, Riverhead, and Southold. What is Oak Wilt and why do we need to worry? Oak Wilt is a fungus that acts as a plug inside the tree, preventing water and nutrients from getting to the crown (top) of the tree. An infected tree will start to die from the top down and you will notice browning leaves and branch die back. Leaves can abruptly wilt, or the tree may experience sudden leaf loss during spring and summer. Splits in the bark may also occur.

Goldberg & Rodler wants to help you save your majestic old trees. One of the ways to avoid the fungus getting inside the tree is winter pruning. The DEC says do not wait until summer to prune your trees. During the growing season, recently pruned or broken limbs attract beetles and other insects that carry the fungus. Pruning a tree in winter offers one defense against infection, as beetles (and other insects and fungi) are inactive. There are other benefits to winter pruning. You can easily see a deciduous tree’s branching pattern and structure without leaves. Broken and/or injured limbs are more noticeable. Removing weak and damaged branches can also help reduce limbs breaking off due to snow and ice loads. Pruning in the winter lessens the risk to adjacent plants, especially perennials, as many are dormant. Once spring comes, these trees benefit from winter pruning with a strong and robust burst of new growth. For best results, prune between October and February, when deciduous trees are dormant.

Oak Wilt fungus can also spreoakwiltleavesad through roots systems, especially with Red Oaks, because their root systems have a tendency to fuse together when growing in a group. If you have many Oaks on your property, it is best to call Goldberg & Rodler and have our trained and certified arborists assess your trees. Infected trees can die quickly, anywhere from 3 weeks to 6 months after infection, but the time to act is now.

Interested in keeping your trees healthy? Suspect they may have Oak Wilt? Contact us now and save a place on our winter pruning schedule. Call our main office at (631) 271-6460 or our dedicated plant healthcare hotline at (631) 271-TREE (8733).

Visit the DEC’s website to learn more about Oak Wilt and the areas of quarantine. If you have an infected tree removed, follow
proper disposal guidelines to prevent the fungus from spreading. It is prohibited to move oak and any firewood out of the
infected areas.

Farewell to Summer, Autumn is Here

Records indicate that this summer and, in fact, this year is looking to be the hottest on record.  This extreme heat coupled with very little rainfall has placed our trees, shrubs and lawns, under considerable stress. Irrigation systems, which we tend to over rely on, are not designed to replace Mother Nature, but to supplement her.  Have you ever noticed how much greener and lusher the garden appears after a rainfall?A lush expanse of lawn thrives after recent renovations and some TLC.

To help counter this stressful condition and give our lawn and gardens a helping hand, Goldberg and Rodler has several ala carte services to offer you. These methods have been proven to be very effective in improving the health and beauty of your landscape. The cooler temperature of fall and our special services are a perfect combination.

Right now your lawn will benefit from core aeration and over-seeding. Core aeration is the systematic removal of small plugs of lawn, including thatch and some soil, which are tossed out of the ground by a machine called a core aerator. The small plugs sit on the top of the lawn, distributing the soil and other elements to help promote the growth of the new seedlings which are then over seeded onto the lawn. The cores also bring valuable air circulation to the lawn’s root system.Core aeration follows behind fertilization to reinvigorate existing lawn

You have now relieved the soil of harmful compaction and made an excellent medium for your new grass seeds. The grass seed will be evenly spread over the entire lawn area to make an even, new addition of young, healthy grass.  You have now helped the lawn become healthy, more resistant to drought and also better protected from insects, pests and diseases.

Another option to strengthen your living landscape investment and irreplaceable specimen shade trees are precise soil injections of the proper nutrients delivered by deep root injection and soil drenching.

Providing the proper nutrients into soil is our specialty. We do this when the weather is cooling down in the fall. These treatments will also provide the proper nutrients where they are needed most at the root system and reduce the stress that this past summer has caused.

antitranspirantG&R certified professionals spray anti-desiccant to protect Hollies, Rhododendron and LaurelsLast of all, adding winter protection with an application of Vapor Guard, an anti-dessicant,  on your broadleaf evergreens will help protect your rhododendron, azalea, hollies and laurels by coating the leaves with a beneficial clear wax like substance. This slows down transpiration and therefore helps the plant retain moisture through the drying winds of the winter months.

After a hot, dry season like this one, now is the time to protect, preserve and invest in the future health of your landscape. Call today to arrange a complimentary consultation and reserve a spot for these services in our upcoming calendar.

Written by Gary S. Carbocci

The Truth about Ecological Restoration

Currently, climate change and its validity is a hot debate in this country, but many people are seeing the effects first hand and have no doubt.  The world’s top scientists agree that tides are rising, land is eroding faster, rivers run with heavy metals, and oceans have become our wastebasket.  Climate change is an unstoppable natural process, but we can create a more resilient nation through the Restoration, Reclamation, and Rehabilitation of the landscape.

This seaside property was restored to withstand the ever changing climate.When you read our blogs here on Outdoor Spaces, we talk about anything and everything landscape.  You might be thinking about all your trees, shrubs and flowers on your property, but the truth is that the term landscape holds a deeper meaning.  Landscapes are far more than the scenery in your backyard, or your neighbor’s gorgeous Crape Myrtle, because landscapes are 3 dimensional compositions of earth, water and atmosphere.  The landscape is our home to share with nature and it is our duty to ensure its healthy longevity.

Globalization in the past decade has been a bitter sweet part of our lives.  We live in a post-industrial society and in the midst of a technological revolution.  Communications are being optimized and almost everyone is carrying a small computer in their front pocket.  Now, more than ever, we can see the evolution of technology manifest within our lifetime.   As a result of this globalization and urbanization, mankind has put an unprecedented amount of stress on the environment.  For example, many rivers have become engineered channels of concrete, and sometimes piped underground, which has reduced their ability to provide ecosystem services.  Ecosystem services are the environmental benefits associated with a functional ecosystem.  This channelization of rivers has increased the number of people living in flood zones.  When a storm surge happens, the capacity of the engineered concrete channel is exceeded, resulting in destruction of the local community.  A solution is to restore the stream to a more naturalistic meandering form, with tidal buffers and constructed wetlands.  This doesn’t mean we abandon engineering.  In fact, environmental engineers can calculate what it takes to build a restored river ecosystem just like an engineered concrete channel.

This residential woodland path creates a space for humans and wildlife to thrive and live in harmony.After Hurricane Sandy, Long Islanders were faced with restoration projects both large and small.  Houses, beaches, canals, streams and properties needed to be repaired and updated to withstand a greater force of nature.  Ecological restoration provides added benefits in addition to an improved aesthetic.  Projects of any scale can restore habitat for flora/fauna, and this directly influences your life.  Some people may think they are isolated from nature in their urban and suburban world, but the truth is quite the opposite.  Humans are just as important for a functional ecological web of life as plants and animals.  When we truly become stewards of the land, we can create a healthy and thriving landscape for all.  Goldberg and Rodler has design experts who are passionate and dedicated to the sustainable environment.  Give us a call if you would like to create a sustainable landscape, and a Goldberg and Rodler designer can help bring your vision into reality.

Written by, Nick Onesto

Beach Restoration: Where did all of the sand go?

Here on Long Island, our precious coastline is a big part of our pride and recreation, weather it’s the scenic beauty of the North Shore bluffs or the pristine sand coast of the South Shore beaches and bays. We’ve got it all. However, our shores are constantly under attack with Nor’easters, hurricanes, tidal surges or even bad wind storms. During these storms, immense power rips away at the bluffs, sand dunes and beaches, compromising our land and homes.

Beach restoration has been a hot topic for many of our communities close to the water. I will address two properties, one on the North Fork and one on a South Shore Bay. Both had been battered with hurricane Sandy, with pre and post Nor’easters.

NORTH SHORE BLUFF:

This property sits high on a bluff which has previously suffered from numerous storms and erosion. Past attempts were made to stabilize the bluff without success. For this property the DEC approved a boulder embankment to stabilize the bottom of the bluff but the slope was still eroding from the top down. We were brought in to stabilize the slope with a network of jute netting and native vegetation, consisting of American Beach Grass, Rugosa Rose, Beach Plum and Bayberry to reflect the existing plants on the adjoining embankment. Within one year the roots took hold, the natural indigenous habitat was restored and the slope is on its way to a full recovery. This has held up well in the past two Nor’easters with no erosion or slippage of the slope.

orient-bluff-before orient-bluff-after

SOUTH SHORE BAY:

On this property we have a different scenario with the lower elevation and less slope to the shoreline. This south shore property was hit hard with tidal surges from past storms. A previous homeowner had cleared and planted a lawn along the shoreline which did not hold up well in the aftermath of these storms. To restore this eroded area we added a sand and soil mix with jute matting and some boulders to strengthen the area. The DEC does not permit a retaining wall of any sort so we had to slope the area gently and re vegetate. We added American Beach Grass, Bayberry and White Potentilla which fare well with this deer inundated area. The existing vegetation on either side of the eroded area was kept in a natural vegetated state with native grasses and shrubs which absorbed the tidal surges from Hurricane Sandy. Very little erosion was present in the adjacent area that was left natural while the cleared area with lawn was carved away by the storms. This made for a good case study on the effects of removing native vegetation and over development of a shoreline. Two years later the shoreline is stable and the plantings have spread their root system throughout the sandy mix to strengthen the shoreline and blend seamlessly with the adjoining natural habitat.

South Bay Beach before and after restoration.

southbay-before southbay-after

With a professional plan to restore Mother Nature we can revive and care for our waterfronts so we can retain the soil, sand, and vegetation. This protects our parks, beaches, property values and the overall beauty of this magnificent island we call home.

If you want advice or guidance on restoring your waterfront property please contact Goldberg and Rodler and we will connect you with one of our designers to schedule a consultation.

 

Written by Rick Schneider

 

Winter Garden Preparation

antitranspirant

An application of anti-transpirant being made.

“Old Man Winter” is right around the corner and its time to prepare your planting beds for the harsh environment that is about to come.  As soon as we have a good hard frost it will be time to put your garden to bed for the winter.

How do we do that?  The first step in preparing your garden is cleanup and removal.  Cut back dry perennial stems down to the ground and remove any debris like leaves and branches.  Also, remove any summer annuals that are soon to be past their peak and fading fast.

Next, you want to put down a good natural insulating layer in the beds.  Shredded bark mulch is perfect for this.  This mulch layer will protect plants and soil over the winter months. Another good resource for your planting beds is to use the leaves that fall from your trees.  Grind the leaves up and distribute around the garden beds.

If you planted bulbs in your garden, it might be good idea to protect them too.  Using sod staples, pin down evergreen boughs over the bulb planting area to protect the soil from shifting and heaving due to frigid winter weather. The boughs also provide greenery in a mostly barren bed during the winter months and keep the squirrels at bay.

Once the leaves have fallen from the trees, it is a great time to prune your deciduous and evergreen trees and shrubs.  During this dormant time, it is easy to identify the natural form of the tree or shrub and prune accordingly. Pruning during the winter season helps the tree or shrub conserve its energy for the roots where it is well needed for survival.

Winter mulch is applied around the root system of a tree or shrub to help keep the ground from heaving in the frigid weather and also to provide nutrients in the spring.Many people think since there is snow on the ground that their plants are getting water. This is not true. With the ground frozen and lack of percolation and absorption, your plants struggle to survive during the winter. To protect your evergreen trees and shrubs from transpiration (losing moisture through the leaves), use an anti-desiccant (anti-transpirant) spray on the evergreen foliage.  This helps retain much needed water in the plant during the cold dry winter.

Finally, as the snow starts to fall, keep an eye out on evergreen trees and shrubs, the weight of the snow can snap the branches off.  After a large snow fall, knock the snow off the branches starting with the lower ones first.  If you start with the upper branches first, you add more weight to the lower ones and this may cause them to break off.

There are many other methods to protecting your valuable landscape plantings during the winter months. Let Goldberg and Rodler’s team of professionals devise a plan that works best for your property to keep your landscape healthy. Call us now and plan ahead.

Written by Rich Lambert

Fall & Winter Services

As we put our yards and garden to sleep for the colder months, we should consider measures to protect our landscapes just as we do in the growing season. Plants slowly become dormant when temperatures drop. They still need vitals such as light, water, nutrients and pruning. Goldberg and Rodler can tailor a program for these specific needs.

Pansies give us an extended season of color in fall.

Early fall we still want to maintain our plants and gardens. Goldberg and Rodler can plant annuals for a last burst of color using Chrysanthemums, Cabbage, Kale and Pansies. Pansies do well in the cool months right through Thanksgiving. In late fall, cut down the perennials and remove all annuals. This is done after the first frost.  It is also the time to plant a variety spring bulbs. You’ll be glad this was done once the first sign of spring appears.

Fall is a good the time to core aerate the lawn and seed. This will get your spring lawn off to a good start. Keep your lawn clear of leaves since the lawn is still growing and needs the light for root development and color. Remember that a dry fall can be detrimental for broadleaf plants such as Rhododendron and Skip Laurel. Late season watering may be needed because the roots are still alive.

Winter preparation is a crucial part of your property which is sometimes put on the back burner. Cold harsh winds, frozen ground and snow have all damaged our properties in the past. We recommend an anti-desiccant applied to all broadleaf evergreens in November with a second application in January. This works as a waxy blanket film to decrease the evaporation of water from the leaves and the drying effect of winter winds. Winter mulch applied in December is composted manure with peat moss and should be applied around the base of the plants. This helps keep the plants from heaving in the winter and slowly releases organic nutrients for the plants to absorb when the ground thaws. Winter pruning is an ideal time to get your trees in shape. This not only helps with light and air circulation during the growing season but helps prevent wind blown branches and snow load damage. We have seen both in recent years. Be more proactive in the pruning care of your trees.

Please contact Goldberg and Rodler to discuss our fall and winter services.

Written by Rick Schneider

 

Aerate and Overseed for a Pristine Lawn Renovation

Lawn-Blog1Core aeration follows right behind fertilization

The grass is always greener on the other side.  Well that doesn’t have to be so true anymore.  Now is a great time to start a lawn renovation and have the best looking lawn on your block.  Fall is the best season to implement a lawn renovation and will result in lush, healthy, green grass for years to come.    Over time lawns can use up their stored nutrients and lose their rigorous growing habit.  That is why it is important to resupply your lawn with fertilizer, aerate and overseed every other year or as your lawn needs it.

A slit seeder makes grooves in the grass and controls seed drop ratioThe process begins with fertilization, and should be done at least once a year.  Immediately after, core aeration is necessary to divide and split the existing lawn root structure.   Core aeration removes plugs of dirt from clay soils, leaving a hole to be filled with seed, water and air. This void is necessary for air and water to percolate the dense soil.   A pocket of nutrients is created for the lawn to revive its root structure because there is more space to form new root growth.  When the plugs are pulled out of the ground, it decreases compaction in the lawn, especially in areas with clay based soils.

Once aerated, the next step is to seed your lawn.  Overseeding can rejuvenate dying lawns, and invigorate new lawns.   Look for areas in the lawn that are thinner, and browning, and focus on these spots to apply new grass seed.  If your lawn is still fairly new, overseeding can be useful to create a consistent new layer of grass, giving it the boost it needs for spring.  Overseeding, when paired with core aeration is the best way to get a greener and healthier lawn because the grass seed gets into the pockets and holds moisture throughout the winter.

Lawn-Blog2

Some essential things to remember when doing core aeration and slit seeding are:

  • Mark out all sprinkler heads and invisible dog fences, they could be damaged by aeration machinery
  • Do not mow newly seeded areas until it has grown to 2- 2½ inches tall
  • Avoid all foot traffic, and keep pets off of germinating areas
  • Consistently water seeded lawn everyday for at least 2 weeks; seed that dries out will not germinate.
  • Fall is the best time to aerate and seed.

If you are not a DIY person, don’t hesitate to contact Goldberg and Rodler today.  We have developed a team of professionals to help with your lawn management and renovation.  Goldberg and Rodler can renovate and install lawns on residential and commercial properties.  We are happy to help you achieve your dream lawn today.

Written by Nick Onesto

The final result is a thriving and lush lawn