"We're having a heat wave, A tropical heat wave..."
It is BLAZING hot in Seattle this week! Usually when people in the Pacific Northwest complain about the weather, I call them wussies and tell them to try out Kansas for a week in December and a week in July, however, the weather out here has gotten confused this summer. We're getting the 101 degree days while my friends in the Midwest are enjoying the 70s and 80s. GIVE ME BACK MY CLIMATE, YOU HEARTLANDERS!!!
The grounds at many of my client's properties look like they are living in Kansas this summer. We haven't had any real sizable rain since about mid June out here, and so it's getting pretty brown and crispy out there. We all know how important curb appeal can be, especially in these high traffic summer months, so I wanted to pass along a tip that I got out of the January 2009 issue of Real Simple magazine. I've mentioned Real Simple here before since I really like a lot of what the magazine has to offer on everything from home tips, to quick fixes, to organization ideas. You might consider getting a subscription for your club house/cabana since it's an easy and non-controversial read!
In an article titled 25 timely tips for 2009, Allegra Muzzillo passes this along for the month of July:
"Let the grass grow. In summer, keep grass tall, which slows water loss by shading the soil. "Raise the mower's blade to three inches or higher from now until Labor Day," says Paul Tukey, author of the Organic Lawn Care Manual."
Because of the substantial rainfall that Seattle normally receives, the roots of our plants stay at a relatively shallow level in comparison to, say, the plants in Nebraska and Oklahoma. Once the top water is gone, the grass starts to brown up and get cripsy like a wonton skin in a deep fryer.
The great thing about this tip though, is that it works for anyone who has
warm summers with sporadic rain. By asking your grounds crew to leave your lawns a little longer this summer, especially in a dry, warm climate, you can save yourself some serious money on the water bills. Since you're not watering as often, but still able to maintain green grass, it allows you to put some of those saved funds in to attending to those wilted flowers by the walk way in front of your offices. (I know they're there, I've seen them!)
Plus, you can let your residents know that you're letting the grass be just a touch longer this summer in an eco-friendly move, which gives you some very literal green marketing power!