At M/I Homes, a new home in the greater Dallas/Fort Worth area includes many interior and exterior features, and part of the latter is typically some form of landscaping. Usually, this includes front and backyard sod, irrigation, freshly planted trees, and shrubs, and the homeowner maintains this annually. Whether your thumb is green or perhaps more yellowish-green, these helpful tips will improve your overall landscaping knowledge and help you take proper care of your newly installed landscaping.

“While your landscaping is alive and healthy at the time of planting, the care and attention provided will determine its ability to live and flourish in the Dallas area climate," Wally Reichardt, Director of Construction states. “The following suggestions are general guidelines received from our landscaping partners to make the job easier, and we encourage all homeowners to seek further information from local landscapers or nurseries as well.”

  • Problem: Trees + shrubs turning yellow
  • Likely Cause: Lack of tree + shrub fertilizer
  • Solution: Fertilize following manufacturer's instructions
  • Problem: Trees + shrubs wilting
  • Likely Cause: Not using proper amount of water
  • Solution: Check soil around base of plant and water accordingly
  • Problem: Newly planted tree or shrub drops all leaves
  • Likely Cause: Shock resulting from transplanting
  • Solution: Continue to water as directed

Proper Watering Procedures

Programming and using an installed sprinkler system?

It’s important to water your lawn effectively for the greatest results. Set all sprinklers to run 20 minutes per station on zones covering large areas of the front and back yard. The zones covering sides and flowerbeds, however, should be set at seven (7) minutes per station. Water twice a day (early morning or late evening to reduce evaporation and increase the amount of moisture the ground absorbs) for the first seven (7) days. After the first seven (7) days, reduce watering back to once a day (preferably in the evening to maximize water absorption) or as needed depending on soil and weather. Remember, all sprinkler heads should be checked and adjusted as needed for proper coverage.

Hand watering or using a movable sprinkler?

When hoses and sprinklers are used to water a yard, they should be left in each section until the ground is wet. The length of time will depend on how dry the ground is. The sprinklers must be moved as many times as needed to for full yard coverage. This should be done daily for the first seven (7) days only. Decrease watering to once a week per section (recommended late evening or early morning), or as needed depending on soil and weather.

Caring for New Trees

New trees require constant moisture, especially during the summer months. When trees are installed, a dirt ring is left around the trunk area. Water the ring of the tree at least four (4) times per week, using approximately seven gallons of water each time. Remember, too much water is as bad as not enough. With the clay base soil in the greater north Texas area, too much water may sit at the bottom of the tree's ball and rot the tree. Plants and trees should be fertilized on a regular basis.

Hand water your new trees daily until soaked for at least the first two weeks. The sprinkler system alone is not enough water for a newly planted tree. After the first two weeks, hand water the tree three (3) times per week for the first year unless adequate rain has been received.

Even with proper watering, any tree that has been transplanted may lose its leaves; however, it should start to show new growth within two months in the spring and summer growing season. This is a natural process.

Ongoing Maintenance

Since each yard is different, you will need to water whenever it is dry. Different types of soil hold moisture longer than others. If trees, sod, or shrubs get too dry, even one time, they may lose their leaves or turn brown, eventually coming back with proper care. And remember, it is necessary to water all year long, at least weekly during winter and fall, if temperatures are above freezing.

Over watering, especially in side yards, can create standing water. Standing water can lead to an increase of mosquitos on your property as well as potentially have a negative impact on the erosion of the lot. Be a good neighbor and coordinate watering with your neighbors on each side to avoid this situation.

Calloway’s Nursery®, a Texas-native nursery, has locations throughout the greater Dallas/Fort Worth area. Calloway’s offers great advice for ongoing maintenance and can provide water schedules for lawns, trees, shrubs, and plants as well.

In drought conditions, be sure to follow watering procedures and times issued by the city that provides your water service to avoid waste and any unnecessary fines.

Lastly, check with a local nursery about suggestions for fertilizing new sod, shrubs, and trees.


What questions do YOU have about lawn care? Contact Chantee for more information on making your lawn lustrous and lush all year long!



Author

Chantee
Chantee Brown

Author

As the Internet Sales Manager for M/I Homes in Dallas/Fort Worth, Chantee is here to help answer any and all questions you have. Having worked in the new home sales industry since 2012, she understands the importance in guiding you through the building and buying process. She has assisted first-time homebuyers, buyers relocating to the Dallas area, move-up buyers, and those looking to downsize later in life. A homeowner as well, Chantee is familiar with maintenance and ongoing homeowner to do’s when it comes to home ownership and properly taking care of a home. When she is not spending time with her 4 children and grandson, Chantee stays active through running and PIYO. Her favorite place to be is with her family at the beach.