Late Fall 2018 News Letter

Late Fall Newsletter

We wanted to contact you before we started our Late Fall Service. The record rainfall, high temperatures, high humidity and the lack of sunny days prevented the grass from producing chlorophyll in September and early October.  These conditions caused damaged areas on the lawns.  Therefore, besides applying lime, fertilizer and weed control which we normally apply in the Late Fall Service, we will continue to repair the areas of the lawns, that have not recovered, for as long as the weather permits.

To assist in your lawn’s recovery this Fall, please try to remove the heavy leaves that fall on your lawn as quickly as possible.  Leaves that are left on the turf block the sunlight so the grass cannot produce chlorophyll.  This was the same problem that occurred in September and early October.  Since Winter doesn’t begin until December 21st, there is still time for your lawn and landscape to recover this season.

Leaf Removal

The easiest and safest way of removing leaves from your lawn is to remove them with a lawn mower bag while cutting. For heavier amounts of leaves, raking is not a problem on established turf.  Please note on newly-seeded, shady or shallow-rooted areas, heavy raking may be damaging to the lawn.  A suggestion might be to either rake these areas lightly or (if you have one) to use a leaf blower that would remove the leaves off the weak areas onto established turf, driveway, street or sidewalk where they can be raked into bags. It is important that you continue to remove the leaves from your lawn as long as they continue to fall, especially where they can create a problem.  This means raking and clearing right into December and January.  Leaves left on the lawn cause dead areas and other problems.

            If you need any assistance in leaf removal, please contact us early and we will make arrangements for a cleanup.

Mowing Procedures

  1. Use a sharp blade.
  2. Mow with regularity, although you may only need to mow your lawn every 10 to 14 days, but do not wait any longer than that.
  3. Due to the arrival of cooler temperatures and the fact that it is easier to clean up your leaves, you may lower your mowing height to 3 inches at this time; however, please    never lower your mowing height below the 3-inch mowing height.
  4. Continue to recycle or mulch clippings, until such time as the leaves start to fall heavily. At that time, we would recommend bagging the clippings, which will remove the leaves          at the same time.
  5. Alternate mowing directions.
  6. Mow when lawn is completely dry.
  7. Mow the lawn for as long as necessary, especially as the grass continues growing into late November and early December.  It is not healthy for your lawn blades to be very high          and bending over.  In addition, at the regular cutting height, blowing leaves are less likely    to get caught in the grass.

Watering Requirements

After your lawn service is completed, give your lawn a good soaking to water the products into the soil.      If it is too cold to water your lawn after your service, it is advisable to delay cutting your lawn or raking the leaves for a few days to allow the products to work into the soil.  In the Autumn, the lawns become drier than most people realize due to windy days, trees absorbing moisture before winter dormancy and cooler temperatures. Therefore, your lawn should be watered as needed.  If there is no measurable rainfall for a week, make sure that you provide a good soaking, especially if extensive seeding was done in the Fall service. Continue watering until the weather prohibits.

For those customers who have a sprinkler system, you will need to water three times a week because of the amount of time needed to be sure each zone is properly watered – especially if extensive seeding was done in the Fall.  Due to the cooler temperatures this time of year, you need to set your sprinkler to start later in the morning, for example at 10 a.m. rather than 5 a.m.  You may also reduce the amount of time each zone is on.  Please do not set the system to come on the day your lawn is scheduled to be mowed.  Unless directed otherwise by our company, you can schedule your sprinkler system’s winterization after November 15th.

Your Landscape

Evaluate your shrubs and trees at this time to see how they survived the wet conditions of September and early October.  If you need to replace dead or dying plants, the Fall is the best time.   For Deciduous trees that lose their leaves and go dormant, Winter is the best time to have the dead wood cut out and to have the trees thinned to prevent future damage.  Since it is easier to trim trees when there are no leaves on them and in order to keep their crews busy, arborists usually will give you a discount if you do this work during the Late Fall and Winter.

In conclusion, working with the weather is one of the most frustrating parts of our job.  But to put this in perspective, we must remember that because of the unusual weather of September and October, many farmers had crops that rotted in the fields and our neighbors in southern states faced two hurricanes which caused loss of lives, communities and homes.  Therefore, I guess if all we have to deal with is a few dead areas in the lawns, we should be thankful.

This is just a reminder that with the start of our company in February both our email and mailing addresses changed.  So, please be sure to use the following when trying to contact us.

Finocchiaro Lawn & Landscape Inc.
P.O. Box 9524
Wilmington Delaware 19809

Email Address:


Gabe Clouser, President
Eric Plummer, Vice President

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