University of Maryland Extension

Home and Garden Information Center

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Liming - Lawns

Return to lawn care Liming is an important step in maintaining a healthy lawn. The optimum pH for turf growth is 6.0 to 6.8. If the pH level falls below 5.5, turf growth will be compromised. Soils in Maryland have a tendency to become acidic over time and a soil test should be performed every three...

Watering - Lawns

Return to lawn care Lawn irrigation is not encouraged, but there are certain times when it is necessary. Water on an as needed basis, not on a regular schedule (this includes when using an irrigation system). Newly seeded, sodded, or lawns less than two years old, should be irrigated. Water if the...

Mowing/Grasscycling - Lawns

Return to lawn care Proper mowing greatly improves the appearance of lawns, promotes a healthy root system, reduces weed encroachment, and lessens disease pressure. Mowing Height: Low mowing is a major cause of lawn deterioration. Remove no more than one-third of the grass blade each time you mow...

Fertilizing - Lawns

Return to lawn care Fertilizer is essential for maintaining healthy, relatively weed and disease free grass. Timing, type, and amount of fertilizer play important roles in properly managing your lawn and helping to be responsible for protecting our natural resources. Our information is based on...

Roughstalk bluegrass

Roughstalk bluegrass Poa trivialis (Photo credit: Perdue University Turfgrass Program: Turf tips 5/2008) Lighter colored Poa trivialis in a darker tall fescue lawn (More lawn weeds) (Control Options) ( General Weed Gallery) Life Cycle: perennial, cool season grassy weed. Growth habit: forms light...

Planted Too Deeply - Trees and Shrubs

(A tree planted too deeply looks like a telephone pole coming out of the ground) Many trees and shrubs are set too deeply from the time of planting (planting holes should be wider than deeper), they can also settle too deeply into the ground over time or are overmulched . These situations can...

Groundcover List

This list offers some suggestions for groundcovers for different sites, however, there are many more options. Plants need to be able to grow on challenging sites, especially when used for slope or bank stabilization and as a grass substitute, are easy-to-grow, and relatively fast growing. Invasive...

Cherry Shot Hole on Flowering Cherries

Photo: Yoshino cherry blossoms Back to Common Problems - Trees and Shrubs Flowering cherries are among the most popular ornamental trees grown in Maryland. When in bloom we know that springtime is here and we marvel at their beauty. Then later in the season the problems start..... Sometimes during...

Climate Change Basics and Evidence

How Do Scientists Know That Climate Is Changing? Many different kinds of evidence consistently point to a warming trend on Earth. The graphic below illustrates some of the indicators measured across the globe over many decades that show that the Earth’s climate is warming (white arrows indicate...

Climate Change and Gardening

Climate change is real and is affecting Maryland now. There is no scientific controversy: 99% of scientists agree that our climate is changing and that global temperatures are increasing as levels of heat-trapping greenhouse gases rise in the atmosphere (CO 2 , methane, nitrogen dioxide, water...

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