Care & Warranty Notes for Newly Installed Landscapes & A Few Main Important Points to Know

For our Customers : PLEASE NOTE : ANY WARRANTY RELATED QUESTIONS OR PROBLEMS PLEASE DO NOT TEXT, USE EMAILS ONLY !

WE CAN NOT KEEP TRACK OF TEXT MESSAGES AS A COMPANY.

WITH ANY EMAILS, PLEASE INCLUDE PHOTOS OF ANY QUESTIONS OR ISSUES SO WE CAN QUICKLY SEE THE AREA IN QUESTION.

AGAIN, THANK YOU, EMAILS ONLY, NO TEXTS ! FOR ANY PLANT, TREE OR PROJECT QUESTIONS – THIS HELPS US TO BETTER RESPOND, KEEP TRACK AND TO SERVE YOU MORE PROMPTLY.

We would like to take a moment and thank you for your business and one of the things we can do to help your landscape to grow into a long lasting & healthy maturity is to let you know that we are available for questions, service & assistance if needed.

To help your landscape get off to a good start we provide tips on the following aspects of your new landscape dealing with : Watering instructions & guidelines, New Lawn instruction notes,  tips on Fertilizing, Trimming, Weed suppression tips, Irrigation maintenance, Warranty issues & our services of support upon request. After your investiment in a new landscape, we suggest every customer read through these tips that cover these topics from the time of installation to the beginning of long term strategies of care. We also have more specific articles we add to on our website on many common or frequently asked questions in the “Customer’s Corner” of our “Library of Articles” section on our website at  www.universallandscapefl.com  . We hope you may find it a valuable resource as well.  

Watering

Watering : We start with this point as it is the most influential directly following an installation. Our 1 year warranty on the landscape covering bushes, trees, palms, 1 month on new lawns & annual flowers, requires a properly working irrigation system. If you had an irrigation system  one in place that we altered or we coordinated for a new system to be put in, you’re covered in this regard. If there are issues with the landscape, a photo and an email are most helpful for any trouble areas. More detail on this below in our section here on Warranties.

If you are waiting on irrigation, or it is not in place, hand watering, soaker hoses or rotary sprinklers attached to hoses can help through this most important time following the installation.

At the time of your landscape installation, we routinely will set your timer up initially for this heaviest watering phase. Many customers forget to adjust this on their own after a few weeks, so we are hoping this reminder will help here.

Our Recommendations on Watering :

  • 1st   2 to 3 Weeks : Watering from 45 minutes to 1 hour daily per zone of the new landscape.
  • After 3 Weeks : Adjust Sprinklers at timer to begin skipping a day, keeping the same amount of time, 45 minutes per zone.
  • After 3 Months : Adjust watering to 3 times a week, keeping the same amount of time, 45 minutes to 1 hour per zone.
  • Long term : Twice a week at the same time per zone is optional, 3 times per week at most.
  • For more info on how the watering affects the strength of the root systems, how overwatering can be detrimental as well, feel free to visit our article on our website entitled “An Introduction to Your Landscape”
  • NOTES : If larger machine size trees were installed, or your property is drains unusually well, more water time per zone than 1 hour may be necessary. If so, we will adjust the timer upon installation.

If New Sod / Lawn was installed:  

  • We recommend saturating the lawn for the first day it is installed for approximately 3 hours.
    • Also advise to water the next few days for 2 hours per zone where new sod is, & this will help it to acclimate faster.
    • If you don’t have an irrigation system & are uncertain how to do this required watering, you can set up a rotary sprinkler by hose connection or request for us to purchase the necessary hoses & rotary sprinklers & set this up for a cost if needing this assistance.
    • With an irrigation system there are 2 ways this can be done : 1) set your irrigation timer to adjust for the watering times & durations needed or : 2) simply turn on your irrigation system to “Manual” and then later ‘shut off’ the timer after that amount of time – returning the dial or indicator in your timer back to its normal run cycle.
      • By turning back to the irrigation timer’s normal ‘Run” setting, this will return most timers to be ready to go back to work off the systems time & duration of watering settings.
    • NOTE: Make sure if you move the irrigation timer setting to “Manual” that you set it back to the position it was originally in. (Run)

VERY IMPORTANT NOTE ON YOUR LAWN’S WARRANTY : As we provide a 30 day warranty on new lawn installations, if a new lawn is cut before it is rooted in, this will void the warranty.

  • NO LAWN SHOULD BE CUT BEFORE IT IS ROOTED IN AS A MOWER CAN DAMAGE THE NEW LAWN BEYOND REPAIR – IF IT IS NOT ROOTED IN.

How to test if a new lawn is rooted in ?  If you can pull up sod in ANY AREA of the new lawn, the lawn should absolutely NOT BE MOWED. Even if the lawn is very tall, much more than normal. If still uncertain, we require an email to notify us or a phone call – do make sure that the new lawn is ready if you are uncertain if the lawn is ready for the first time to be cut after installation.

Important to have a weed control treatment & fertilizing within the first months after a new lawn is installed. We recommend a weed treatment in any lawn 2 – 3 times a year. Without performing weed treatments and fertilizing, any new lawn has the ability to be ruined and infested with weeds even in 6 months time. Preventative maintenance is an important part of keeping a healthy lawn.

Fertilizing

We recommend fertilizing 3 to 4 times per year for the first few years.

There are many products that can be used, different soil conditions may respond better to different products. One that we have used with success that works with many soil conditions is readily available at Home Depot or Lowes Garden Centers.

LESCO  (brand)  8 – 10 – 10           – this is a granular fertilizer used for bushes, trees & citrus        trees.  At least 1 handful per plant drip line below each plant. For trees 3 handfuls for      smaller trees 1” – 2” Calipers.   Cost is approximately $40 per 1 bag. Each bag about 40 lb

  • Example : a 4 – 5 inch caliper , using 4 to 5 handfuls 
  • NOTE : Each handful to measure approximately  ½ cup  = 1 handful of granular fertilizer.

LESCO (brand)  13 – 3 – 13     – this is a granular fertilizer used for palm trees.

  • NOTE : If uncertain, simply follow instructions on the bags.

Our recommended best times of year to fertilize : 2 weeks give or take of the following dates :

  • Groundhog’s Day  (Feb. 2)     * Memorial Day  (End of May)
  • Labor Day  (beg. Of Sept.)      * Thanksgiving Day  (End of November)

Trimming the landscape :  

This is an important part of helping a landscape to grow properly, with a large influence on the fullness and longevity of the landscape.

Our goal is always to provide what we consider a low maintenance landscape, which our standard is a landscape that only requires trimming 3 to 4 times per year.

There are items that can require more maintenance, and those higher maintenance items will need more frequent attention obviously. For the majority of your new landscape, it is important, especially the first few years to trim. At the least, 2 times per year. If you don’t, many bushes can get leggy and thin on the bottom, while growing taller.

We see this especially with hedges as people may wish for them to grow to a desirable height as quickly as possible. In doing so, they opt to not trim off the top (also need a light trim on the sides) and the without the trimming, they become leggy and thin on the bottom. Once thin at the bottom, very difficult for them to thicken up without a hard cut back.

For more info on trimming we have some articles in the “Customer’s Corner” Section of our website, within our “Library of Articles” that we have written to help with many common questions and situations that people come across and ask us about.

Chances are, a good number of your first questions are the same as many others we have had the pleasure to serve for many years. Anticipating your need and also helping to provide new & helpful information to you is part of how we view our service to you. We always would hope to be a resource to you , not only for future projects, but also to help your landscape grow into and maintain a healthy maturity.

Weeding your New Landscape

For those who have taken care of their landscape for years, many know that weeds are a regular, resilient companion of many yards. Some properties are fortunate that they do not have a regular problem with many weeds, some can be overwhelmed, not every property is the same, but all have them.

Some ask for Weed Barrier Fabric to be installed and we strongly recommend against it for a number of reasons. Quickly, first, in the majority of cases we have seen over decades they typically fail within a year to 2 years. Some have had longer success. The overwhelming average we come across is 1 to 2 years and then they fail. After that time it is like the fabric isn’t even there and you have to tend to weeds the same as without it. . 2nd major reason, to remove the Weed Barrier Fabric when it fails & the weeds come up, is very laborious and can be very expensive to remove. For more reasons how they are not beneficial & from more info and photos on this, please visit our article on “Weed Fabrics and Why We Advise Against Them”

For those who have had new landscapes before, you may have seen an increase in the amount of weed growth after a new landscape has been installed. There are a number of reasons how this can happen; one of them is often the introduction of new topsoils to help lift and provide a fresh source of nutrition for the new landscape.

Many new and renovation landscapes we perform are also installed with new topsoil to help ensure the health and aid in getting the new landscape off to a good start. The downside, with some properties, the topsoils can have besides new nutrients, but weeds that can grow in the new soils.

Topsoils are often made of different composts of yard waste, trimmings, soils and in there are weeds at times. This is a reason why some yards may have an increase in weed growth in the months after a new installation.

Our suggestion is to stay on top of it. Not only with your watering in the first few weeks and months after a new installation, but for the most effective, result based action, we suggest to spray for weeds at least Once A Month in those months following a new installation. ESPECIALLY for those properties where weeds may seem to be overwhelming.

We recommend using either a weed killing spray such as “Ground Clear” which can be purchased in the Nursery sections of either Home Depot or Lowes commonly. To Note : Round Up weed killing spray has recently been removed from stores because of dangerous toxins, so you may take note on the spray that you choose to select.

BE CERTAIN TO NOT SPRAY THE PLANTS AS THAT CAN KILL THE PLANTS, and we Do NOT Warranty plants that have been killed by poisons.

When spraying for weeds, spray the open ground areas, again, not the plants and not the leaves of the plants. Be careful to READ THE INSTRUCTIONS ON THE BOTTLE AT LEAST ONCE.

There are many eco friendly and non – toxic solutions that people use, and we have a ‘Board” on Pinterest with many of these green friendly or homemade mixes in our “Gardening” Board if any wish to view.

For quickest results, weed spray will usually do the job within weeks and can last a month to a month and a half or better quite often for the toughest yards with weeds.

NOTE : During times of hotter weather and increased rain, everything grows faster during these times, the lawn, the bushes and trees , and of course, the weeds as well. Once a month spraying during these times may be necessary during these times of increased growth.

After consistently beating back the weeds over time, they should reduce in the quantity they grow in and become more manageable. It can take six months or better with some properties, be vigilant or instruct your lawn care company to stay on top of it.

If you still need help, we do provide help with cleanup services, weeding, trimming, mulching, small planting projects as well. We DO NOT cut lawns, so we don’t have a maintenance schedule.

Some customers call us before a party, get together, holiday event or just at some intervals once or twice a year or more to come and help.

We will talk more about that in the section below about our support services and can provide standard rates to any customer who is interested.

Warranty Issues :

  • If you are having problems with the landscape or you are unsure about something, we ask that you please send any questions WITH PHOTOS of the items IN AN EMAIL – to :  sal@universallandscapefl.com
  • Your photos will help us to quickly see many times if there is something wrong, if it is nothing but natural way of a plant or tree, or if a service call or replacement may be needed.
  • Our warranty offers 1 replacement per item.

PLEASE DO NOT TEXT YOUR QUESTIONS OR PHOTOS  : EMAILS ONLY PLEASE

  • We can not track text messages as a company
  • The emails help us to keep track of any issues and texts while often not received, even if they are, they are not a dependable method for us to track any service questions or issues.

Irrigation Maintenance : It is important to check your sprinklers to make sure they are working, would advise on a monthly basis after installation.

  • Besides the damage to sprinkler heads that can occur from lawn maintenance, weed eaters, lawn mowers, edgers, etc., silt or dirt particles can get into the irrigation system from cracks in pipes that can occur from damage.
  • Sprinkler heads can get clogged as well from silt and even dirt that can enter an irrigation system from the water supply itself. Those that draw water from ponds or lakes or canals should check their systems to make sure the heads are clear from debris more often than those drawing from wells or city water typically.
  • Beyond these problems that can occur with irrigation systems, solenoids, index valves, problems with the timers themselves can occur.

If you may be interested in Irrigation maintenance services to periodically check your system or to perform repairs if needed, we recommend Mike @ Image Sprinklers @ (561) 351 – 9620. We have worked with them for decades and have appreciated their excellent work and competitive pricing. If you do not get a reply from them and need one, please let us know as soon as possible and we will help to coordinate.

Universal Landscape, Inc. : Your ON – Call Yard Help Service ! Your Backstop for your Yard needs

We hope you will enjoy the work for many years to come and in that effort we would like you to think of us as your backstop for the landscape.

If you’re regular maintenance company is not doing a great job with the details of the trim or the fertilizing, some customers call upon us to come in and do a cleanup, fertilize or mulching once a year or so.  We don’t schedule these types of projects, but are a phone call or email away if you’d like us to come in.

If you have a party, it’s a holiday or you just want to spruce up or renovate a section of the yard, let us know. Some small projects may be able to be done in a week’s time, sometimes a few weeks out. Just depends on our scheduling at the time.

  • NEW ARTICLES TO HELP WITH YOUR QUESTIONS : Another point we look to serve is to help with your questions and any challenges you might have.
  • We add to our “Library Of Articles” on our website throughout the year at different times with questions customers might have or new conditions we might see. When we do add an article we will include a link to it in our “Fertilizer – email reminders” that we send out to you at a few different times throughout the year.
  • The “Customer’s Corner”  section of our website is a source for many common questions and we hope you will use it as a tool and that you find it helpful.
  • If any have questions or suggestions, we are open to your feedback.

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Once again, we would like to thank you for being our customer and we hope that we have met your expectations. We also hope you are happy with our service and like the yard !

Enjoy !   Any questions, we hope you’ll let us know.

Sincerely,      

From all of us at Universal Landscape, Inc.