Whether you hired a professional to update your landscaping or you did the work yourself, one of the most important things you should do is plan for maintenance. Unfortunately, many homeowners overlook this necessary step resulting in projects getting overrun with weeds and unwanted growth, or shortened lifespans for any woodwork or hardscapes. So, what should you think about for maintaining your investment?
What needs to be done?
Before you start looking at maintenance services, take a good look at your property and do an honest assessment of what your yard contains. Do you have a wood deck or pergola? Do you have a water feature such as a pond or pool? What kinds of plantings do you have? In addition, think about how much work you are actually able and willing to do yourself. Many people have high aspirations of working in the yard to keep things beautiful but then life and/or work comes up and before you know it you have weeds three feet tall. Taking inventory, in this manner, can help you get a good sense of where you really need help. For instance, when was the last time you trimmed back your hedges or other plantings? Do you have woodwork that needs to be restained? How about your hardscapes, do they need to be resealed? Do you have loose stones or pavers?
Once you have made your list, you're in a good position to bring in the experts. Talking with a maintenance professional, you can review your list and prioritize what needs immediate attention and what can be put off until later. He or she can also help you to determine if there are any underlying issues you might not be aware of or other items they see that you might have missed.
How often should you do maintenance?
In terms of frequency, everyone's property is a little different, and your needs may dictate a schedule that differs from that of your neighbors. However, working with a maintenance professional, you should be able to determine which items need weekly service (such as lawn care), what might be less frequent (such as fertilizing or pruning), and those items that might only be addressed every one to three years.
What will maintenance cost?
Costs for maintenance are driven by the scope of work to be performed and the frequency for which it is completed. Also taken into consideration is the level of difficulty or the amount of labor necessary for your maintenance services. Your maintenance professional can work with you to establish a scope of work, schedule, and budget that will meet your needs.
Are there any special considerations?
Sometimes we see customers who have access issues to their property, meaning there is very little egress for our crews to enter and do the work, especially with backyards. Pets are also to be considered so that you can take proper precautions for keeping them inside and away from our crew. We would hate for your pet to escape your yard or accidentally come in contact with any fertilizers, sealants, etc.
Lastly, make sure you establish the level of communication you would like to have with your maintenance professional. He or she wants nothing more than to make sure you are happy with the service you receive and so understanding ahead of time how often and in what way you'd like to be contacted is important.
Now that we are heading into winter, maintenance might not be at the top of your mind but we hope this information helps. Winter maintenance can make for a better spring lawn and blooms. Please let us know if we can be of service. Contact the Graham Landscape & Design team today at 541-729-8029.
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