Thursday, October 20, 2016


As Halloween approaches and the carcass of one of the worst lawn seasons comes to a close, I thought I would vent a little on some issues that still irk me.

Buried alive in a shallow grave- This year we were very lucky when we aerated. We didn't hit one shallow sprinkler line or media cable. However, it doesn't change the fact that these are real issues due to some shoddy workmanship. You'd think that Bell and Rogers would bury their lines at least 6 inches down to avoid any mishap but it never seems to be the case. Although I have noticed more signage to call before you dig around their boxes, the practice remains and the shallow lines continue.

Bee horror movie- for the farmers anyway, who have been unfairly targeted for their use of imidacloprid and carbaryl which is said to be killing the bee population. Back before the bylaw when we all used products like Merit and Sevin no one breathed a word about a dying bee population, but here we are years later and suddenly it's an issue. The finger pointing has been going on for some time at our local growers. Haters gonna hate...I guess, but when you tamper with those who supply food you may not like the end result.

The invisible man- Ok, hottest season on record, driest in 75 years. Needless to say lawns suffered a great deal. I know some of ours were awful and from the looks of it no lawn care company came away unscathed. One new twist I noticed this year was, some distressed lawns I saw work being done on, were either not flagged, or the sign was placed backward and in an unobtrusive place as to not call attention to the company involved. I can understand the second option. I mean, who would want the general public to know you are a contributor to the condition of the turf, but not putting notice on a lawn at all after it's treated is a violation of the law.

I know what you did last summer- It has been 7 years and counting since the pesticide bylaw came into effect. One thing remains a constant in this post-pesticide era we find ourselves in, the fantastic job our government has done convincing the populace about the evils of lawn care.

Although I spray organic controls now and make some manufacturers richer by the second, ( Neudorf stock anyone?), I am still confronted seasonally by the douche-rods holding their hand over their faces while I'm performing an application, funny when Fiesta has no smell, or tersely confronting me about the products I use.

Yet, these same people think nothing about filling their vehicles with gas, (fumes are a known carcinogen), or eating their fruits and veggies treated with the chemicals they accuse me of using. Can you say hypocrite?

It is the same planted seed that has people convinced pedophiles lurk around every corner, deadly allergies and viruses plague us at every turn, and the zombie apocalypse is days away.
It's the power of the most influential tool....fear.
The fear has more and more homeowners replacing real grass with artificial turf...

Howling at the silver bullet-

...But fear runs both ways and as one domino falls another is put in motion. Check out this report on the health hazard of artificial turf.

The Chinch bugs that ate 2016- These lawn vampires seem to get worse every year and while we wait for more substantial treatments to appear on the market, the truth is, we can only apply products that will deter this insect, not kill it. Nematodes bred for Chinch do not work and don't be duped into thinking they do. Education, communication and teamwork is what is needed when it comes to dealing with any lawn infestation. This is an insect that loves it hot and dry and 2016 was the perfect storm. Which brings me to my last rant.

Soylent green- The number of people who just gave up on watering and cutting their lawn properly this year was staggering. No candy for you! In some severe cases it ended with a total re-sodding of the lawn, or at least extensive seeding in damaged areas to get the grass to recover. Now sure, this was a hot and dry one and not expected annually, *fingers crossed , but the cost effectiveness of mowing at 3 inches high and watering  deeply once a week pales in comparison when you add hindsight and replacing an entire lawn. The last thing I want to do is turn my sign backwards on a lawn that could have easily been saved by a few simple weekly practices.

Have a safe and happy Halloween.