How to Prepare Your Trees for Hurricane Season

tree branch in heavy rain Regular pruning is an important part of tree ownership. Not only can it improve the health of your trees, but unpruned trees are also a safety hazard. Falling trees and tree limbs can cause serious property damage and personal injury. That’s why it’s important to prepare your trees for hurricane season.

Hurricane season roughly runs from June through November here in Florida. During this time, it’s especially important to make sure your trees are ready for heavy storms. Here are some pruning tips to get your trees ready for storm season:

  1. Remove unhealthy branches. Rot and disease can spread across a tree, making it more likely to fall or break during a storm. Remove all injured, dead, and diseased branches. Only keep healthy areas of your tree.
  2. Remove irregular branches. Branches that touch each other or grow across each other should be trimmed back.
  3. Don’t let branches get too long. Branches should not grow faster or further than the main leader. Trim back or remove these competing branches to keep your tree strong.
  4. Don’t overdo it. Major tree removal or extensive trimming should always be done by a professional. This is as much for your safety as it is for your tree’s health.

If you’re looking for someone to prune your trees correctly, then look no further than Mr. Tree and Lawn Care. We offer landscape maintenance and tree services (including tree trimming, storm damage cleanup, and tree removal) for both residential and commercial Gainesville lawns.

Contact us today for a free estimate!

TLC for Your Trees – The Importance of Tree Trimming

close up of chainsaw cutting branchWe provide a variety of lawn and tree services in Gainesville FL, but one of the most essential services we offer is tree maintenance. Tree maintenance and trimming are important for a variety of reasons, including: 

Appearance

This is probably the most obvious, but it shouldn’t be overlooked. Trimming trees regularly helps them grow into a more attractive shape that will better fit your lawn. Trimming trees can also help correct an issue before it becomes more pronounced.

Health

Tree trimming isn’t all about aesthetics! Properly pruning dead shoots and branches prevents insects from entering weak areas and damaging the tree. Removing diseased or decaying limbs also allows the tree to better use its energy for growing new limbs, leaves, and roots, instead of wasting valuable resources fighting infection or infestation.

Safety

A healthy tree is more stable, and a stable tree is less likely to fall on your home, vehicle, or family. Removing weakened or dead branches is much better than having them fall during a storm and causing property damage or injury. Removing dead matter and keeping the tree in good shape (literally and figuratively) also helps decrease fire risk.

So don’t put it off any longer! Get your trees expert care with our tree removal and tree maintenance services in Gainesville. We can beautify your home or business, help keep your trees healthy, and help keep your lawn safe. Contact us today for a free estimate!

Surprising Benefits You Get From Your Grass!

green grassEveryone loves a beautiful lawn full of lush green grass, but did you know that lawns have a bunch of amazing benefits for your family and the environment? At Mr. Tree, we’ve been caring for yards throughout Gainesville for over 20 years! That means we’ve seen the benefits of a well-maintained yard first hand.

Check out some of the little-known ways your grass gives back!

Nature’s Air Filter

Did you know that an average sized yard in Gainesville can produce enough oxygen to supply an entire family of four with the air they need to breathe? On top of that, a healthy yard pulls hundreds of pounds of carbon and pollutants from the air every year! Grass also captures dust, dirt, and allergens that float around in our air. So, the next time you step outside, take a nice deep breath and know that your grass has your back.

Absorb the Runoff

Untouched landscapes have natural protections from excess rainfall. However, the more we pave and build, the fewer places we leave for water to go. Grassy areas like lawns, sports fields, etc. can help absorb stormwater and minimize runoff. This leads to less flooding and a healthier overall environment.

Benefits for Your Family

Grass does some other pretty interesting things that you’ve probably never realized. A healthy lawn will act as a noise depressant, dampening street noises and other loud sounds. It also helps to keep the heat down compared to pavement or concrete. The effect is not a minor one either. Having a lawn full of vibrant, green grass can save you hundreds or even thousands on the electric bill every year by keeping your home cooler and reducing the workload of your AC.

There are so many more awesome and interesting ways your yard creates benefits for you and the world around you. For more information, give us a call at Mr. Tree and find out what you can do to keep your yard in tip-top shape!

Classic Lawn Games for Summer Fun

Summer is here, and that means it’s time for long days and nights outside, enjoying the beautiful Florida weather. This year, liven up your outdoor fun with some of our favorite classic lawn games! Most of these are simple and don’t require a lot of specialized equipment, but they’re all fun.

  • To play bocce all you need are a set of bocce balls and some friends. The goal is to get your ball as close to the pallina as possible without touching it–and if you can’t get close enough, then knock an opponent’s balls away from it. This game is easy to learn but can be surprisingly tricky to master.
  • Horseshoes and ring toss are pretty similar: put stakes in the ground, line up a certain distance away, and toss circular or semi-circular objects onto them. Horseshoes is a little bit more complex, but you can look up the official rules here and simplify the game to fit your family’s needs.
  • Don’t forget about beanbag toss! All you need are two boards with circular holes cut into them and something to prop the boards up at an angle. It seems simple enough, but give it a try and you’ll find this one is deceptively difficult! This game is especially great for young kids because beanbags aren’t likely to break windows or hurt anyone if they escape from little fingers.

Make sure you get your lawn ready for guests and games. Call Mr. Tree for residential landscaping services to enjoy your summer in a beautiful outdoor space!

Master the Backyard BBQ this May

May is one of our favorite times of year at Mr. Tree. Is it because of the beautiful weather? The return of flowers and birds? The end of school? Well yes, we like all those things–but what we’re really excited about is that May is National BBQ Month! Plan your best backyard bbq with these tips from Mr. Tree:

  • What are you going to do about bugs? Nobody wants to leave a party covered in mosquito bites. Make a perimeter of citronella candles or torches.
  • If you’re planning a potluck, make sure that you keep track of what people are bringing. The last thing you want to do is end up with 15 containers of potato salad and nothing else. Ask folks to let you know in advance whether they plan to bring a side, a dessert, or a main dish, and plan other contributions accordingly.
  • Regulate the temperatures of food, especially raw beef and chicken, so you don’t accidentally give your friends and family food poisoning!
  • How does your lawn look, really? You wouldn’t have people over without vacuuming the living room, so call Mr. Tree to spruce up your landscaping before you have a bunch of friends hanging out in your backyard.
  • Set up a safe area for kids to play nearby. A kiddie pool, some lawn games, and their own music will keep them out of adults’ hair, but still let parents keep an eye on them.

Don’t forget to contact Mr. Tree to make your yard look the best it can, and have a great summer bbq!

Healthy Lawn, Healthy Family

April is National Lawn Care Month, and we’re celebrating at Mr. Tree! Residential lawn care isn’t just aesthetically pleasing. A healthy landscape around your home has benefits for you, your family, and the environment.

Personal Benefits

First of all, don’t discount the importance of a beautiful, tranquil place to live. Spending time outside reduces stress, improves quality of life, and helps lead to better overall health. Whether you’re a serious gardener or just want your lawn to look nice, you want your family to have access to a pleasant outdoor spot to spend time. Don’t skimp on proper lawn care for your home!

Environmental Benefits

Healthy landscapes cleanse the air and reduce air pollution just by existing.  Lawns can be up to 30 degrees cooler than asphalt, and 20 degrees cooler than bare soul. They also mitigate the effects of runoff by absorbing dirty water before it can impact water sources, and act as a sound dampener to reduce noise pollution. Not only that, but healthy landscaping provides food and shelter for birds and animals!

What makes a healthy landscape, and how can you achieve it in your home? Healthy soil, plants free of diseases and pests, and few weeds are a good indicator that your lawn is thriving. Mr. Tree’s residential lawn care services are designed to do all that as well as take care of all your aesthetic concerns, even up to debris removal.

Whatever your reason for seeking residential lawn care, Mr. Tree has over 20 years of experience in the Gainesville, FL area. Contact us today for a free estimate!

Winter Landscaping Tips for a Beautiful Spring

It may seem like winter just started, but spring is almost here! With the weather already warming up, it’s a good time to start getting your lawn ready for the change in seasons. Not only will you be spending more time outdoors soon, but spring is prime growing season for many types of plants. These are the things you’ll want to do now to ensure a healthy, beautiful lawn in the spring.

You should have already been removing leaves and debris from your lawn, but if you haven’t, go ahead and do that. Letting leaves, pine straw, and other debris gather on your lawn can trap water, which can lead to disease, mildew, and fungus. If you’ve been a little lax, get it cleaned up now. Leaves can be bagged and discarded, often with your regular trash, or turned into an inexpensive, efficient mulch for your trees and shrubs.

Speaking of mulch, now is a great time to spread it around your existing plants. Mulch helps the soil retain moisture, protect roots from the weather, and give your landscaping a neater, more defined look. You’ll especially want to mulch if you’re planting anything new. Adding spring flowers now means you’ll be able to enjoy beautiful colors, lovely smells, and all the other benefits of flowers in your yard.

If all this seems like a lot, don’t panic! Call Mr. Tree and let us take care of your residential lawn care needs. Our professional staff offers free estimates and even 24-hour emergency service.

The Importance of Landscaping

With so many maintenance tasks for homeowners to tend to, it’s easy for landscaping to fall by the wayside. Don’t let this happen to you! Landscaping is an important component of home upkeep. Check out some of the reasons why:

  • Curb Appeal. You may not be interested in selling your home just yet, but there’s a good chance you will eventually, and good landscaping is crucial to getting a good price. The lawn is the first thing potential buyers will see, after all. You want their first impression to be a good one. It’s also great for your neighbors! Landscaping can increase home values anywhere from 5% to 20%.
  • Disease Prevention. Grass, trees, shrubs, and flowers that are not properly tended can easily fall victim to mildew, mold, and disease. It’s easier to prevent disease than to treat it. Keeping your yard healthy means keeping an eye on it–pruning, watering, moving, and trimming appropriately.
  • Environmental Benefits. Well-planned landscaping, including appropriate use of shade, will help you save money and energy on heating and cooling!
  • Your Enjoyment! Forget about potential buyers for a minute. Don’t you and your family deserve to enjoy your home while you live in it? A beautiful, inviting yard will increase your enjoyment and give you more space for entertaining, spending time with your family, and just living your best life.

Don’t think you have to handle all this alone. Turn to the professional landscaping services offered by Mr. Tree in Gainesville, FL. Contact us for a free estimate and check out the residential lawn care services we offer to see what best fits your needs.

Caring For Your Lawn in the Winter

The winter is in full swing, and that means it’s time for a different kind of lawn care than in the warmer months. Here at Mr. Tree we get a lot of questions about what is and isn’t good for your lawn in the winter. Check out our Dos and Don’ts for winter lawn care!

Do:

  • Mulch and compost to protect your plants’ roots, help lock in moisture, help retain nutrients, and keep your topsoil warm and safe from erosion. Appropriate mulching will also protect against freezing.
  • Bring delicate plants indoors, and water them carefully. With the heater sucking out the humidity in the house, it can be easy for indoor plants to dry out. Remember to place plants near windows so they can still get plenty of sun and stay away from direct drafts from vents.
  • Transplant trees! For most trees and shrubs, now is the time to move them. Check out our tips and more information here, and contact Mr. Tree for more information.

Don’t:

  • Prune! Now is not the time to be cutting back on most plants. If you must, do it carefully.
  • Overwater! You should only water when the soil feels dry, usually after about two weeks without rain. Make sure not to water within 24 hours if you know it’s going to freeze. Ice will damage your plants, so water around noon to make sure all the moisture absorbs before the temperatures drop.

And finally, the biggest DO: call Mr. tree! We offer residential lawn care services to help alleviate winter issues, and also offer free estimates!

How to Transplant Trees and Shrubs in Winter

You know that right now isn’t the time to prune, and you know it’s not a great time to plant, but did you know that there’s one lawn care task you always want to do in the cold? That’s right: winter is the time to transplant trees and shrubs!

winter lawnThe first hard freeze of the season is a sign to many plants to go dormant. Obviously, this isn’t true for evergreens–those will fare best if moved in the late summer–but it applies to most deciduous trees and shrubs. Dormancy is a lot like sleeping or hibernating. Transplanting trees usually requires the cutting of roots, and that can cause a lot of stress. Think about it like this: if you were going to have major surgery, wouldn’t you rather be asleep? Your trees will appreciate it too. Make sure you wait until after the first hard freeze and finish the process before trees and shrubs have started showing new growth in the spring.

Transplanting trees can be tricky, and not just because of timing. You also need to make sure you’ve selected the best new location, have moved enough of the root system, and are moving your tree safely and carefully. There are many pre- and post-transplant tasks that must be tended to, and the process can be very labor-intensive. If you think you’d like to transplant a tree or shrub that’s grown fairly large.

Next time you think you’d like to move something in your yard, call the experts at Mr. Tree! We’ll make sure your tree transplanting goes smoothly.