The Dangers of DIY Tree Removal

Parke Company dead tree removal

Be Safe and Trust Professionals With Tree Removal

A do-it-yourself project always starts off as a good idea. You may get the opportunity to learn a new skill. You might save money. Plus, you get to revel in the glory of a job personally well done. 

In most situations, however, the best laid plans for a DIY project usually result in a half-completed project and a lot of frustration.

Attempting to complete your own landscaping can pose a lot more challenges than stray fabric scraps or a half-assembled bookshelf. Especially when it comes to tree removal, this is one project you don’t want to do without professional help. 

Here’s what you should know. 

Tree Removal Services

Tree removal is a bit more involved than many of the other common landscaping services you might otherwise be able to complete on your own. 

Those attempting to remove their own trees might go about it in the old fashioned way by looping a chain around the trunk of the damaged tree, attaching the chain to a truck, and putting their foot on the gas. 

While this might seem like a straightforward approach, it is fraught with danger for those removing the tree and everyone around. 

Removing a tree through this method, without proper techniques, puts your car at risk for significant damage. It can be difficult to estimate only through a visual inspection just how strong a tree’s roots are. 

If inaccurately measured, attempting to remove a tree by using a car could mean losing a bumper– and that’s not the worst damage you may suffer. 

For the amateur landscaper, guessing which direction a tree will fall can be a gamble. You might get lucky and the tree will land where you want it to. If Marshall’s law is in effect, the tree is much more likely to fall on your home, your garage, or another place in your yard that puts you in danger. 

Aside from the destruction, attempting to remove your own tree could also involve removing a tree that still has life remaining. An experienced landscaping professional will know how to determine whether your tree can still be saved through simple tree trimming or maintenance, rather than removal altogether. 

Unless you have extensive experience in landscaping, it can be nearly impossible to tell whether you should remove or repair the trees in your yard. 

Even if you want to remove the trees on your property for cosmetic purposes, the dangers of DIY tree removal could result in more cosmetic damage than aesthetic improvement.    

In any case, the most important thing is that you don’t do tree removal alone. The landscaping professionals at The Parke Company have the experience and the skills to meet the unique needs of your property and bring your design dreams to life. 

Our landscaping experts have the skills and experience to keep your landscape healthy using safe and effective procedures. Don’t leave tree removal up to chance. Trust the experts!

For lawn problems, raking leaves, or other landscaping services, give us a call (615-350-6033) or contact us online today to see how The Parke Company difference can work for you.

Fertilizer Options

Parke Company soil in gardener's hands

Know Your Options and Pick the Best Fertilizer for You

As the spring months slip by, so do our chances of preparing our landscapes for summer gatherings and backyard hangouts. Creating a beautiful backyard landscape is a lot more involved than just lawn mowing and sprinkling a few seeds. 

For your landscape to reach its full potential, you need a nourished foundation that can foster healthy, lush plant life. The best way to ensure your soil produces green grass and pretty flowers is through properly fertilized soil. 

Here’s what you need to know about making the right fertilizer choice for your property.  

Inorganic vs Organic

When it comes to nourishing your soil, one of the biggest decisions you will have to make is the choice between inorganic and organic materials for your fertilizer. 

Choosing an inorganic fertilizer does not necessarily mean that you end up pumping your land with dangerous chemicals. 

While inorganic fertilizers are processed to some degree, many of them contain the naturally occurring chemicals that are already at work in the soil on your property, with a little added help for your plants. 

When you look into the components of inorganic fertilizers, you will probably hear terms like carbon, nitrogen, and ammonium. While these may sound like the materials of a mad scientist, they are actually the very components at work to help your plants grow. 

Take this explanation from SFGate, “Balanced inorganic fertilizers, high in all three macronutrients, commonly include products like ammonium nitrate, ammonium sulfate, potassium chloride (potash), triple superphosphate, and magnesium sulfate (Epsom salts) . . . inorganic fertilizers provide this nutrition in plant-ready form immediately.” 

Inorganic fertilizers may be a better choice if you want to add nutrients to your soil at a low cost and quickly improve the overall quality of your foundation. 

Organic Fertilizer

As is the case for many products on the market, fertilizer made of organic components is attractive for a number of reasons. 

While inorganic fertilizers provide nutrients to soil rapidly, organic fertilizers transmit a bit more slowly and their actual nutritional contents cannot be appraised without laboratory testing. That being said, slow and steady does result in a greater improvement in the long term. 

Choosing an organic fertilizer does result in a greater upfront cost, but the longstanding improvements to soil over time may result in a foundation that stays healthier for season after season, making it a cost-effective choice in the long run. 

When it comes to choosing the right type of fertilizer, there are a number of factors to consider. Some individuals want to make quick improvements to their landscape in order to expedite the beautification of their property as much as possible. In this case, inorganic fertilizer is your best option. 

Other property owners may want landscape improvement for the long haul and opt for the environmentally-friendly organic options. 

At the same time, some people just don’t want the mess and odor of organic fertilizers made from manure or compost, so an inorganic fertilizer eliminates some hassle. 

The most important thing when it comes to choosing a fertilizer is that you choose the product that perfectly coordinates with your unique property, your budget, and the aspirations for your landscape. 

A great landscape starts with a nourished foundation. Don’t leave the health of your landscape up to chance, leave it up to the experienced professionals at The Parke Company to help you choose the perfect fertilizer. 

From lawn problems to tree removal, the landscaping professionals at The Parke Company have the experience and the skills to handle lawn problems and answer your landscaping services questions.

Let us meet the unique needs of your property and bring your design dreams to life. 
Give us a call (615-350-6033) or contact us online today to see how The Parke Company difference can work for you.

Common Weeds found in Tennessee

Dandelion weeds in a Tennessee lawn

Watch Out for These Weeds in Your Tennessee Lawn

Blowing on dandelions and watching their fluffy seedlings float through the air is a cherished summertime memory nearly everyone can relate to. But if you remember the joy of playing with dandelions, you can probably also recall the frustration of your mom or dad as they scolded you for spreading seeds across the lawn that would eventually turn into weeds. 

As an adult, you know better. At this point in time, your first thought when you see a weed is how you can keep it from infiltrating your lawn or garden. 

But just like all desirable plants are a little bit different in how they grow, different weeds are kept at bay by different methods. 

Here’s what you need to know to protect your Nashville landscape from weeds. 

Three Categories of Weeds

According to the landscaping experts at Preen, there are three different categories of weeds: broadleaf weeds, grassy weeds, and woody weeds. 

Each type of weed is named for their appearance. Broadleaf weeds are identified by the large leaves they tend to grow. Grassy weeds are similar in appearance to grass, which can make them difficult to identify. Woody weeds get their name from the strong, twig-like stems they grow, making them exceptionally tricky to remove. 

In Tennessee, the most common weeds you’ll find will likely fall into the broadleaf or grassy weed categories. 

Common Broadleaf Weeds

Bull Thistle

If you’ve ever walked through your lawn barefoot, only to feel the shock of a sharp pain underfoot, chances are that you’ve come in contact with some bull thistle.

These weeds have spines that are sharp and stiff and can grow between two and five feet tall. They develop a thick taproot within a year, so be sure to address these quickly. 

Honeyvine Milkweed

This member of the milkweed family has heart-shaped leaves and white veins. Honeyvine can grow to be up to fifteen feet long and will wrap around any nearby vegetation or fences. 

Removing these weeds is crucial for maintaining the health of the rest of your landscape.   

Common Grassy Weeds

Crabgrass

Crabgrass is every property owner’s nightmare because it can present a whole host of lawn problems. 

Crabgrass is often difficult to approach simply because it looks so similar to grass around it. This weed typically spreads outward, but it can grow up to two feet upright. 

Green Foxtail

Chances are that you have seen this weed crawling up the sides of your buildings or creeping out of cracks in the pavement. 

Green foxtail is a weed that forms clumps of grass, growing up to three feet tall with bristly “fox tails” at the top.  

While these four are some of the most common types of weeds you may encounter in Tennessee, the list goes on and on. It is crucial that you have an advanced understanding of exactly what you’re dealing with on your property. 

In any case, don’t leave the health of your landscape up to chance, leave it up to the experienced professionals at The Parke Company. 

From lawn mowing to tree removal, the landscaping professionals at The Parke Company have the experience and the skills to handle lawn problems and answer your landscaping services questions.

Let us meet the unique needs of your property and bring your design dreams to life. Let’s start with those weeds.  

Give us a call (615-350-6033) or contact us online today to see how The Parke Company difference can work for you.

When is the Best Time of Year to Prune?

Parke Company pruning a shrub

When You Should Trim Your Bushes

When your natural outdoor spaces start looking shaggy, some pruning and/or trimming is probably in order. But before you get out there with your shears or hire tree trimming services, consider whether it’s the right time to perform this task. Indeed, certain times of the year present more optimal conditions for pruning trees and shrubs. Pruning during a less optimal season is more than just a hassle — it can have detrimental effects on your foliage, lawn, and potentially your property.

So, when is the best time of year to prune? Generally speaking, late winter through early spring. Of course, the “best time” to prune somewhat depends on what you’re pruning, so the answer isn’t so cut and dry (no pun intended).

What are You Pruning?

Different types of trees, shrubs, flowers, etc. exhibit different growth patterns, and these growth patterns largely determine when it’s a good time to prune them. 

For instance, hydrangeas typically bloom in the middle of spring, so it’s best to prune these shrubs earlier in the summer. Pruning them in the winter or spring will result in removing flower buds. Evergreen shrubs, on the other hand, should be pruned earlier, sometime in March or April, and deciduous trees should be pruned earlier still (February or March).

We won’t list every type of tree or shrub here, but the bottom line is that the optimal pruning time will hinge on what’s being pruned. Seek advice from professional tree pruners to get a more concrete answer for your scenario.

Why Prune in Late Winter/Early Spring?

For the vast majority of trees and shrubs, late winter through early spring (February-April) presents the ideal window for pruning. This might be surprising to some. After all, your trees might barely be budding in February, March, or even at the start of April. Indeed, this is exactly why this time of year is the best to trim your trees. 

While your trees and shrubs are still relatively bare, you or your professional pruners can gain a clearer picture of their structure, direction of growth, condition/health, etc. Additionally, most trees and shrubs are dormant during this time of year, just getting ready to start growing with the warmer weather. With all of this in mind, late winter/early spring presents the best opportunity to shape your trees and direct their new growth.

Benefits of Proper Pruning

Pruning your trees and shrubs at the right time isn’t just a matter of enhancing your lawn’s appearance in the short-term. Proper tree pruning yields other benefits as well. First, keeping your shrubs and trees well-kempt is good for their long-term health. Secondly, reducing the expanse of your trees and shrubs helps keep your lawn healthy, too, as this allows it to receive more water and sunlight. And, perhaps most importantly, trimming and pruning your trees helps ensure that large branches and limbs don’t scrape or fall on your property during high winds.

Is it Too Late to Prune Your Trees and Shrubs?

Now that we’re well into April, you might wonder if it’s too late to have your trees and shrubs pruned. The answer is: no! While we’re exiting the peak pruning season for most types of trees, there is still time to get this important task done before spring comes into full force. At the very least, here at The Parke Company, we can inspect your trees, shrubs, and lawn any time and let you know everything we can do for your property. Give us a call today at 615-350-6033.

5 Places to Improve Your Home Landscaping with Lighting Features

Outdoor residential lighting feature in Nashville

Improve Your Landscape with Good Lighting

Whether your house is on the market or you plan to stay there for years to come, a beautiful exterior is just as important as the home’s interior. 

Landscape design projects can be an exciting prospect for creative types. Dreaming up a new backyard filled with water features and picturesque shrubbery is enough to delight even those who only moderately appreciate design. That being said, these projects can also be incredibly taxing when it comes to labor, time, and money. If you’re looking for the best way to spruce up your property over the weekend, a new reflection pond or cobblestone path would be beautiful, but it’ll take a lot to accomplish these feats. 

One of the simplest ways to get the biggest bang for your buck when it comes to design improvement is by using a simple installation: lighting features!

Lighting features rarely require heavy construction and can often pair well with the current design of your property, while adding a refreshing finish. 

Here are five places you can add lighting features to improve the aesthetic quality of your home landscaping. 

Existing Shrubbery 

All the time you spend pruning and caring for your shrubs (or all the money you spend on landscape services) is a bit of a waste if it’s only ever seen during the day. 

One of the best ways to feature your beautiful landscaping during your evening gatherings is by adding lights low to the ground to add a little glow to your shrubbery. This brightens your late-night parties with a splash of color by illuminating your garden and shrubs, even in the dark. 

Walkways and Pavers

Adding lighting features to your walkways and pavers is a good decision for a number of reasons. On one hand, it is an added safety measure: it’s never a bad idea to aid your guest’s vision when they’re walking at night. It can also be a beautiful way to create soft lines and highlight curving patterns in your landscape design. 

Perimeters

Marking off the perimeters of your property with lighting is another way to illuminate your landscape, adding safety and beauty. 

Adding lighting to the borders of your property creates a warm glow to surround your guests and family. Not only is it aesthetically beautiful, but it also helps to define the lines of your property. 

Water Features

The water features in your landscape design are already gorgeous and they can only be improved by adding some light! 

Light and water interact beautifully. As light reflects off of water, it creates interesting shapes and a glittering effect. Placing lights around the borders of water features like ponds and pools can also help to illuminate these features and make them stand out in the dark (this is an added safety bonus as well!)

Add Some Height 

Any design expert will tell you that one of the keys to creating beautiful and interesting spaces is to consider levels. 

Adding taller lamps and lighting features enables you to create some height and bring the eye up from the ground toward the sky and trees on your property. This can also have the effect of making any property seem larger. 

If you’re looking for a simple way to add some glamour to your property, lighting features are some of the easiest and most cost-effective choices, but you shouldn’t do this on your own.  

Hiring the experienced professionals at The Parke Company for landscape services is the first step to ensuring you receive the kind of lawn services necessary to preserve the assets on your property. 

From lawn mowing to tree removal, the landscaping professionals at The Parke Company have the experience and the skills to meet the unique needs of your property and bring your design dreams to life. 

Give us a call (615-350-6033) or contact us online today to see how design experts and arborists at The Parke Company difference can work for you.