The Sarasota area economy prospers when we attract visitors both seasonal and new residents. Everyone who visits our area is impressed with the amazing tropical landscapes with lush exotic plants that line the beachfront homes and neighborhoods of Sarasota and her islands.
With this in mind it’s with a shared responsibility that home owners, businesses and landscape maintenance companies have to keep our landscapes not only beautiful and attractive, but sustainable. The Sarasota area environment seems hardy enough, but is actually quite sensitive. With so many waterfront homes, irrigation and storm water management is essential but with proper planning and maintenance practices we will keep our waterways blue and wildlife attracting visitors into the future.
Below are a few essential points to address during the design and ongoing landscape maintenance that will go a long way to producing a beautiful yet sustainable Florida friendly landscape.
1 – The Right Plants In The Right Places
It seems simple enough and it really is. Nothing can do more to ensure a sustainable and healthy landscape or Garden than having plants in places they will do well, without too much work. With the sheer number of plants that will grow in Florida however it can be overwhelming, the temptation for many is to rush out and grab that palm tree or fruit tree or tropical shade shrubs because they are stunning without researching the best spots.
A consequence of planting in the wrong spot could be , you have to waste money by watering a bush or tree much more frequently than you would like to keep it healthy, because that spot on your property is too hot and dry for it. This is a common mistake, and over-watering has have many negatives including, costing you more money, adding nutrient into our bays and canals, and having to either waste time watering the plant, or over-irrigate with your landscape irrigation system to keep the plant healthy.
By researching both your property’s conditions, and the plant’s will requirements, it’s a simple thing to plant your selections in the right place.
2 – Water Efficiently
If you have chosen the correct plants for the particular spot, and grouped plantings with similar water needs together, than you have taken major steps to ensuring efficient water use. However things can go awry without a properly designed irrigation system or watering schedule. Be sure your watering at the right time of day! By running your irrigation system in the early morning hours, the water has time to soak in before the hot Florida sun comes up. By Watering in the early morning rather than evening you also reduce the chance for mold and mildew problems that can result if the plants stay wet all night.
Be sure your irrigation system is properly tuned up, and that your irrigation controller is set to adjust for daylight savings time and reduced water use during the rainy season and cooler months. Having a properly tuned irrigation system with the correct irrigation technology will not only save you money, but with more water use restrictions like in Florida’s future, it’s also great planning.
3 – Fertilizer – The Right Type, Right Amount at The Right Time
With Florida’s generally poor sandy soil, most plants that are not Florida-native will require fertilizer as part of a complete landscape maintenance program, to be in top health. A well-planned fertilizer program can really make a difference in the growth rate and beauty of your plants, but a poorly designed one can cause problems for the plant and pollute the waterways that are a big reason many of us decided to come here in the first place. The soil is a living ecosystem and as such the fertilizer needs change over time and depending on the season. The goal of any fertilizer program is to deliver only what is needed by the plants and nothing more. Too much or the wrong kind, can not only be bad for plants but will eventually find it’s way into Sarasota Bay causing algae blooms and even red tide.
Grants Gardens landscape maintenance technicians are experts at determining the correct fertilizer program for your land’s specific conditions, and coupled with keeping the plants mowed, and pruned to the right height for the current season, we can keep your yard both stunningly beautiful and Florida-friendly.