Happy New Year!
Wow, it seems not too long ago we were all talking about Y2K and here it is 2016. December was one of the wettest month ever for Atlanta leaving us .25" shy of a 1911 record rainfall. Mild conditions throughout the month of December left us with warm days, no snow and lots of rain. We have some strange developments due to the warm weather as well as the rainfall. Poa annua and trivialis is a grassy weed that loves wet soils and mild temperatures and have been a heavy germinator in our turf, beds and sidewalk cracks. Crews are busy fighting back these weeds. The wet and mild weather has also brought out turf, flowers and shrub fungal issues that would normally be a non-factor this time of year. We have had to spray turf and flowers with fungicides and more shrubs than normal for leaf and root fungal issues. Seasonal flowers sitting in the wet soils have led to stem and root rots. We have treated all beds with fungicides and will be treating each month. Wet days, cloud cover and warm temperatures with very little sun have caused quite a stir on the Ornamental Boxwood Nursery Market. Boxwood Blight is getting to be more and more of a concern in Georgia and nationally.
Here are some links that have been sent to us from The University of Georgia Extension Service:
The Connecticut Agriculture Experiment Station: here
Virginia Cooperative Extension: here
North Carolina State University: here
There has been some cases of early spring budding of plants like Hydrangeas and Azaleas. We expect that some of these plants may have less blooms in the spring and summer this year.
Our maintenance crews have been carrying extra bags of fescue seed with them last month and this month to touch up bare areas in our fescue turf where we have had wash out due to the rains.
This month we will be applying pre emergent to all bed areas and shrubs to combat weeds and additionally a slow release fertilizer. All shrubs will be sprayed with dormant oil to prevent and smother any eggs or insects that are harboring on the plants leaves or branches. This application will be repeated over the next two months. Using dormant oils is a green approach vs using traditional chemicals. Ornamental grasses and liriope will be cut back this month and finished prior to installing pine straw or mulch. Upon pine straw or mulch applications we will be redefining all bed lines. Pruning this month will consist of crape myrtles, burning bush and other non-winter flowering plants. Tree canopy thinning and small branch elevations can be done now. Heavy cutbacks of hollies and other shrubs typically occur towards the end of the month and carry on through mid April. Tulip bulbs are being finished planting this month.
Thanks you for trusting us with your business. We truly appreciate it.
Please let us know if there is anything that we can do to service you better. We pride ourselves on your satisfaction.
Peter James Copses