Ask the Home Expert: Roots Landscape

Why is now the best time to plan your spring landscaping projects?

During the cold winter months living in the Northeast, yard improvements aren’t the first thing on many of our clients’ minds. But it’s actually the perfect time to start planning for your project. Whether it’s a simple landscape plan or a substantial project like a pool or roof structure, doing it correctly can be an undertaking. Receiving client input, submitting to your township for approvals, and making sure the design is fully hashed out can take weeks. Typically, we handle permit planning and submission for our clients. Building and zoning permits are the most common types of you’ll need. In general, hardscape projects require permits, but landscape or planting projects do not. Custom designed projects take time, and winter is perfect for that. So, once we receive approvals sign contracts, we can hit the ground running.

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What are some important factors to consider when planning your landscape?

We follow the mantra ‘Right Plant, Right Place,” and when you are planning your garden or have inherited one from the previous owner, you really want to live by this. Read up and learn about the plants you like, what planting zone you are in, how your property drains, and what the sun or shade does throughout the seasons. This may seem daunting and may take some trial and error, but the more you get to know your garden, the better your garden will flourish. As your garden fills in and the lighting changes with the growth or removal of large trees, you may have to move certain plants to more appropriate locations. Our team of expert horticulturalists and landscape architects takes this into account when planning your garden. We strive to have your landscape thrive in the unique microclimate that is your property.

What is the best time of year to prune your plants?

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Late winter or early spring is the ideal time to cut back any perennials left through winter and thin out trees and shrubs. We do this type of pruning at this time of year because we can see the plant’s structure clearly and selectively prune any dead wood, cross branching, or dangerous limbs without destroying new or emerging buds. You want to avoid cutting any plant material that has set flower buds or has started pushing new, soft foliage. Rhododendrons, Boxwoods and Magnolias are prime examples to avoid pruning in spring. Pruning of ornamentals, evergreens, and hedges is best performed in late June/early July after the spring growth has hardened and after spring flowers have dropped.


What kinds of yard cleanup and maintenance are important as we transition between seasons?

In the fall, be sure to remove excess leaves from the lawn. After about three or four weeks, they’ll kill the grass, especially through the winter. We start with spring cleanups in early March. In the spring, you’ll want to clear out any debris from winter storms. We also re-mulch landscape beds and add pre-emergent to control weeds. In the summer, be careful what you fertilize and when because it’s easy to overdo it – and when it gets really hot, be sure to water regularly and keep things healthy. As for right now, winter is a good time to fertilize, giving lawns, trees, and shrubs a nice kick in the spring.

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Roots Landscape, Inc.
485 Devon Park Drive, Suite 104
Wayne, PA 19087









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