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Company FAQs

How long have you been in the lawn and landscape business?

The Master’s Lawn Care has been serving North Florida since 2004, and many of our team members have been in the green industry for over 30 years. We have well over a combined 300 years of experience on our team.

How many of them will be working on my job?

Our team size varies slightly based on the service and your property, but most of our services only require 1-3 of our staff on the job at a time. Commercial properties can be larger based on property size.

What language does your staff speak? (it's very important that you are able to communicate with the people on your property)

All of our team members speak English for great communication with clients, although some of our team members are bilingual.

What services do you provide and what are your specialties?
  • Full-Service Weekly Lawn Service
  • Lawn Health and Weed Control Programs
  • Tree and Shrub Health Programs
  • Household Pest Control
  • Landscape Design and Installation
  • Paver Patio Installation
  • Irrigation Service, Installation, and Repair
  • Landscape Lighting Design & Install
  • Pressure Cleaning, Power Washing, and Gutter Cleaning
  • One-time Landscape Clean-ups
  • Tree Arborist Services and more.

Please see our services tab above for more info on any specific service, and some services are not offered to all locations due to staffing. 

What are your hours of business and contact information?

Gainesville Phone: (352) 378-5296 

St. Augustine / Ponte Vedra Phone: (904) 813-5296

Website: http://www.themasterslawncare.com

Email: info@themasterslawncare.com

Office Hours: Monday - Friday 8 AM - 4 PM

Gainesville Address:

11417 NW 59th Terr
Gainesville, FL 32653

St. Augustine / Ponte Vedra Address:

101 Marketside Ave 404-99
Ponte Vedra, FL 32081

 

Are you licensed? (Being certified by the state will mean that we are accountable and operating legally.

Yes, we are licensed by the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) fora Lawn and Ornamental Pest Control (L&O) and General Household Pest Control (GHP) .The number is JF273447. We are also Licensed by the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) for Fertilizer application. We also hold Florida's Water Star accreditation for Irrigation and are certified backflow inspectors by the State of Florida.

Many of our individual team members hold licenses and certificates for landscape design, pest control, irrigation, drainage and other green industry certifications through ongoing trainings and annual continuing education units (CEUs).

Are you insured?
We are fully insured and can provide information upon request. We have a $2 Million Liability Insurance Policy, Workman’s Compensation Insurance, and a Commercial Auto Policy for all of our vehicles. We are bonded as well for your protection. NOTE: If a company isn't insured properly, you could be liable for accidents or injuries during their time on your property.
Do you have any references?

Yes, we gladly provide information for locations that we service upon contacting our office. We also have extensive client reviews posted on Angie's List, Yelp, Google, and Facebook.

    Do you provide a printed agreement with details of your project clearly laid out and prices for each detail? Can I get a quote on changes or possible problems or unseen factors that may arise during the job?
    We will provide you with a written agreement for our lawn maintenance, lawn treatments, and landscape installations describing the details of the work that is included in our proposal. If you schedule an irrigation service call, there will not be a written estimate given unless it exceeds the service call and a couple hours of labor. Similar to a plumbing repair, we cannot know what's wrong with your system until our technician is out there and runs through it to see how it functions. Most residential systems can be repaired within the first 1-2 hours of looking at the system, so most do not need a written proposal. A description of the work completed will be printed on the invoice, though.
    Why does your work stand out from other North Florida lawn companies that do what you do?

    Because we at The Master's Lawn Care take our trade seriously and strive everyday to set the example for our industry. It's about more than just grass and plants to us. It's the first impression of your home, and you never get a second chance to make a first impression.

    What advice do you have for someone hiring a Lawn Care or Landscaping Company?

    The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten.

    You get what you pay for. Don't just hire the cheapest company and expect great results. Look for professionalism and ask for references. Check your contractor's online reviews like Google, Angie's List, and Yelp. Ask for their liability and workman's comp. insurance certificates. Ask to see their irrigation, fertilizer, and pest control licenses.

    What areas of North Florida do you service?

    We proudly service the following two areas:

    • Gainesville Service Area

      • Alachua
      • High Springs
      • Newberry
      • Jonesville

     

    • St. Augustine / Ponte Vedra Service Area

      • Nocatee
      • Palencia
      • World Golf Village
      • Ponte Vedra Beach
      • eTown
      • Durbin Creek
      • North St. Augustine

    Irrigation / Sprinkler FAQs

    What guarantees do you have, what specifically is covered and the length of the guarantee?
    • Irrigation System Installation – 5-year warranty (which is the best in all of Alachua County!)*
    • Low Voltage Lighting – Lifetime on all fixtures which is also the best in Alachua County*
    • Sod / Plants - 1-year warranty as long as it is irrigated corectly correctly.* (Sod must have our Complete lawn pest and fertilization program)

    *See details on your proposal for warranty information. Irrigation system warranties are based on having a pre-agreed upon bi-annual service inspection agreement. 

    When is the best time to run my lawn Sprinkler System?

    It’s best to water in the early morning because it means that more water will penetrate into the soil, before the sun rises and evaporates the water. I typically recommend running your irrigation system around 4 or 5am, if it doesn't wake you up. While many people prefer to water in the evening, this causes the opposite to happen, leaving water on the lawn too long - which can create lawn disease and fungus problems.

    How often should I run my sprinkler system?

    All codes are different based on your county and city. Most county codes have a limit for watering days in the warm season, and less in the cold season. Also, many codes utilize your house number (odd or even) to set watering days. Here are links to local county sites:

    How long should I run each irrigation zone?

    To help illustrate how much this can change even within one lawn, imagine filling a gallon bucket with water and setting it out in your yard. When you check your bucket a week later, you’re going to find it still has water, but you’ve lost an inch or so from evaporation.  That’s what happens to your lawn and landscape plants if the evaporated water isn’t replaced by rain and/or irrigation.

    If you had that bucket of water in full sun, it would experience more evaporation than one in the shade. Also, a bucket put out in summer would lose more to evaporation than one in winter. This is why sprinkler run times are very difficult to give advice on - because it really depends on the season, how much sun your lawn gets, and even what type of soil you have (clay and sand hold moisture very differently from one another).

    With all of that said, here is a basic guideline for sprinkler systems to keep a healthy lawn:

    • Rotor Zones - 40-65 minutes (These are the heads that rotate and cover larger areas of the lawn with one strong stream of water.

    • Spray / Mist Zones - 20-35 minutes (These are the heads that steadily spray a flat stream of water in a concentrated area and do not rotate)

    • Drip Zones - 60-90 minutes (These zones just slowly drip water at the base of root systems and do not put out much water at all. Although concentrated, they need more time to fully wet the plant's rootballs)

     

    How can I tell if my North Florida lawn needs more water?

    Grass Blade Folding - St. Augustine leaves have a crease down the center that act allowing it to open and close as needed. Healthy, well-watered grass will appear almost completely flat and open. When grass begins to dry out, the blade will close in half upon itself, to reduce its exposure to the sun and thus conserve water. This will also give the grass a “hazy” look, as the backs of the blades are not as deep a green as the enclosed fronts.

    Slow Spring-Back - Healthy grass should return itself to the upright position within a few seconds of being walked upon. If your footprints last more than 5 seconds in the turf, this is a guaranteed sign of drought stress.

    When is the best time to water my lawn?

    Watering in the morning (before sunrise) is the best time for your lawn; it's cooler and winds tend to be calmer so water can soak into the soil and be absorbed by the roots before it can evaporate. Although it might seem smart to wait until the evening, watering in the evening is only recommended in very dry seasons. Under normal watering circumstances, watering at night can cause fungus due to sitting on the lawn too long before evaporating.

    How much water does my lawn need?

    Most lawns need 1.5-2.5" of water per week, either from rain or sprinklers to get to the roots. This changes through the seasons as certain times of year, we experience high evaporation (spring and early summer in North Florida) and others we experience low evaporation (fall and winter) due to humidity and temperatures. This also changes within your lawn where certain areas are in full sun (higher need for water) vs. shaded areas (lower need for water). If you're wondering how long you should run your sprinkler zones, please see below.

    Should I water my grass after mowing?

    While it's definitely fine to water after mowing the lawn, you should avoid watering before you mow. Wet grass will just clump up as you mow it, clogging your mower and being a pain in general. This is also why you should avoid mowing right after heavy rains.

    How do I know if my lawn has enough water?

    An easy way to determine if your lawn is wet enough is to push your finger in the soil. If soil does not stick to your finger at all, you should add water. If it is still moist a knuckle or two deep, then it doesn't need water yet. You can also grab a handful of soil and see if any sticks to your hands. If it sticks at all, it has enough moisture. Read our blog post: 4 Signs Your Lawn Has Too Much Irrigation for more information.

    How long do I need to run my sprinklers?

    Most lawns need 1.5-2.5" of water per week, either from rain or sprinklers to get to the roots. This changes based on type of sprinkler head, weather, soil type, amount of sun, and grass/plant type. With all of that said, here is a basic guideline for sprinkler systems to keep a healthy lawn:

    Rotor Zones - 40-65 minutes (These are the heads that rotate and cover larger areas of the lawn with one strong stream of water.

    Spray / Mist Zones - 20-35 minutes (These are the heads that steadily spray a flat stream of water in a concentrated area and do not rotate)

    Drip Zones - 60-90 minutes (These zones just slowly drip water at the base of root systems and do not put out much water at all. Although concentrated, they need more time to fully wet the plant's rootballs)

    How can I tell if my Gainesville lawn needs more water?

    Grass Blade Folding - St. Augustine and Zoysia leaves have a crease down the center that allows them to open and close as needed. Healthy, well-watered grass will appear almost completely flat and open. When grass begins to dry out, the blade will close in half upon itself, to reduce its exposure to the sun and thus conserve water. This will also give the grass a “hazy” look, as the backs of the blades are not as deep green as the enclosed fronts.

    Slow Spring-Back - Healthy grass should return itself to the upright position within a few seconds of being walked upon. If your footprints last more than 5 seconds in the turf, this is a guaranteed sign of drought stress.

    How do I keep my yard healthy when I can only water twice a week?

    In certain times of year (typically, spring in North Florida), we experience low humidity, warm weather, and minimal rain. These 3 factors cause terrible drought stress in sunny areas of the lawn when they can only get watered two days per week. During those dry spells, we recommend watering in the morning AND in the evening of your scheduled days. (2 days a week) and that's still within the watering guidelines. Much of the problem with this time of year is that the water is evaporated and causing drought stress long before the gap between the 2 days is complete.

    For example, if your watering days are Wednesday and Saturday, setting the sprinklers to run at 5am and 9pm both of those days increases the water on the lawn, shortens the gap of stress between the waterings, and keeps you within the watering guidelines.

    HOWEVER-this is a plan only to be used during hot and dry times of the year (spring).

    Why are counties recommending smart controllers in their new code?

    Most people hear "smart" and think of voice activation - like Alexa. Irrigation Smart controllers have nothing to do with voice, but everything to do with saving water. They intelligently optimize your  irrigation system by automatically adjusting to your local weather, effectively helping your landscape and cutting water use. It reads the weather on your WiFi network and then responds to it. For example, it knows if rain is forecasted above 80% for today, it will not water. If it's above 85-degrees, it naturally adjusts with more water, and does the same with deducting from cold temperatures.

    It's not about voice activation it's about saving water and improving the way you water by the changing weather.

    Lawn Fertilization / Pest Control FAQs

    What is Lawn Treatment or Lawn Spraying?
    Lawn Treatment is a term used to describe lawn and ornamental fertilization and pest control. The main purpose of lawn spraying is the health of your lawn - keeping it well fed and free of lawn-damaging insects. My philosophy of lawn spraying is to encourage turf growth with good fertility, protect from lawn-damaging insects like chinch bugs, grubs, and mole crickets; and constantly kill the weeds. And from those three efforts your St Augustine grass will get better and better, with proper irrigation and mowing.
    Does TMLC offer a Gainesville Organic Lawn Fertilization Program?

    Yes we do. We offer an Organic-Based Lawn Program and a 100% Organic Fertilization Program. This helps to lessen disease susceptibility, prevent burning, and encourages consistent growth. The Organic Program focuses less on lawn pest control and more on beneficial nutrients for the lawn to develop resistencies to chinch bugs and other lawn pests.

    What if it rains after my lawn application?

    Rain is beneficial following a pre-emergent weed control, lawn fertilizer, or lawn pest treatment and will not affect results. However, if you’ve had a post-emergent weed control application and it rained with an hour, please wait 7-10 days. If the weeds do not begin to shrivel and die out, please call to let us know and we will gladly re-treat the weeds at no additional cost to you.

    *Please know that extreme rains within a short period of time do affect lawn fertilization. This can move nutrients beyond the turf's root zone and negatively affect our environment. Because of this, our lawn technicians are very careful not to apply anything too close to heavy rains. 

    When is it safe for my children and pets to use the lawn after an application?
    Most of our lawn applications are safe immediately after treatment for pet and child use. However, there are specific products that we use will need to dry before use of the lawn begins. Typically, 1 hour is more than sufficient - but the service notes give all of this pertinent information.
    Is there a charge for follow-up service calls on Lawn treatments?

    Please allow 7-10 days for the fertilizer and weed control to take full effect. If you still have weeds 7-10 days after the application please call our office and we will be glad to return free of charge. If your call happens to arrive within a week of your next scheduled application, the next application will be made rather than a service call.

    Do I have to be home for TMLC to service my lawn?
    No. Most of our lawns are serviced during normal working hours. Unless otherwise instructed, your lawn application technician will complete his work and leave a service slip with lawn health info and what we treated for. It will also give tips on things you can do to help the lawn, such as setting your sprinkler differently, cutting the lawn higher, or removing low-hanging shade limbs.
    What can I do about Mushrooms in my North Florida lawn?

    The presence of mushrooms means there is often decaying organic matter (possibly old tree roots, wood, etc.) and/or excessive moisture (heavy rainfall, over watering, etc) in the soil. Don't worry, mushrooms won't hurt your lawn and unless you are over watering there is nothing you can do to get rid of the mushrooms. Once the soil dries out a little, wait about 3-5 days and the mushrooms will probably go away. In the meantime, you can knock down the mushrooms with your lawn mower if you don’t like to see them.

    Why does my zoysia lawn look spotty in winter - like a "leopard print"?

    Why does my zoysia lawn look spotty in winter - like a "leopard print"?

    In Gainesville zoysia lawns, winter's cooler temperatures will cause Zoysia lawns to go into dormancy. After the first frost, a spotty pattern similar to a leopard print can develop. This anomaly is simply a reaction to colder temperatures and heat dissipation. Do not be alarmed, this is not a disease nor is it in any way harmful to your lawn. When spring temperatures warm back up, the lawn will bounce back. A little fertilization and irrigation will help this in the first couple weeks of March, although it isn't necessary.

    unhealthy leopard print zoysia lawn
    Why should I aerate my North Florida lawn?

    Many Gainesville and St. Augustine lawns benefit from annual lawn aeration. Aeration provides the following benefits:

    • Deeper root growth
    • Increases fertilizer uptake
    • Increases irrigation absorption
    • Increase lawn’s drought tolerance and overall health
    • Reduces soil compaction 
    What happens if I continue to cut my Gainesville, Florida lawn too short?
    That’s called scalping. It should be avoided because it can make your grass thin out, lose color, and introduce more weeds. If a lawn is scalped during our hot summer, it will look yellow and burned out. If your lawn is mowed properly, it will be healthier, have a deeper color, be more resistant to disease and insects, and be less likely to be taken over by weeds.
    Why does my dog's pee cause my lawn to turn yellow in spots?
    Dog urine has concentrated amounts of nitrogen in it, which is similar to the nitrogen used in lawn fertilizer. Unfortunately, many times a dog's urine has more nitrogen than the lawn can handle at one time which causes the yellowing and browning - similar to the effects of over-fertilizing a yard. They key to resolving this issue is watching where your dog uses the lawn, and then diluting it by watering it down. Some pet stores offer dietary supplements, but we have heard mixed reviews on their effectiveness.
    How do I keep moles or gophers from damaging my Gainesville lawn?
    They are most likely moles, as gophers aren't typically affecting Gainesville, Newberry, or Alachua yards. Although some in-gound noisemakers and rodent repellents found online have had some success - we have found that they are not very effective for a majority of applications, unfortunately. Certainly trying these to avoid unnecessary pesticide use is preferred. If those do not work for your yard, there is a mole bait you can use to put in the mole's tunnels that you can buy at the local home improvement store. It is best when applied with gloves so your scent doesn't transfer to the bait. They look just like earthworms, which are the moles' typical food. This, of course, only works if it is still an active tunnel and they travel back down it again, but it has been much more effective for our clients than other methods - if you are comfortable with burying a rodent bait in your lawn. Fighting rodents in the lawn is never fun - and if you find yourself without the time or know-how to DIY, please feel free to contact our office and ask about our lawn pest control service and installing mole bait.
    What can I do about Armadillos in my Gainesville yard?
    One of Gainesville lawn owners largest frustrations is Armadillos tearing up their yard. Due to their food source (earthworms, grubs, and other insects), they root around in the soil with their nose wreaking havoc on a beautiful lawn. The quickest way to remove Armadillos from your yard is by ensuring your backyard is enclosed with proper fencing and free of tunnels to go under the fence. If the armadillo is tearing up your front lawn or an unfenced area, the only other option that consistently works is trapping. If fencing or trapping aren't options, you can try mothballs or ammonia in your yard to create a scent that repels them, but the effectiveness of these methods has been very sporadic.
    Do you provide Gainesville Lawn Aeration?

    We provide Aeration Services to Gainesville, Alachua, and Newberry Lawns. Click here for more info about our aeration services

    On your lawn care program, does the insect treatment cover the mulch beds in addition to the lawn?

    Our insect control part of the lawn program covers lawn-damaging insects such as chinch bugs, webworms, and mole crickets. Because of these pests not historically residing in mulch, these areas aren't treated. However, our other programs such as fire ant control and flea/tick control do include the bed areas because those pests do utilize mulch beds. 

    On the lawn fertilization plan, does weed control include treating weeds in the mulch beds?

    Although our lawn spraying program includes weed control, it is specifically targeted for weeds growing in the turf areas, not mulch beds. Weed control is mulch is typically offered by your weekly lawn maintenance service, which we offer as well. This is primarily due to weeds in mulch beds needing more than treatment every 6-8 weeks. Weeds in mulch beds (depending on the mulch depth) can need removing as often as weekly when there's nothing to supress them such as pine straw, pine bark, or hardwood mulch. 

    I don't know what is wrong with my lawn, but I don't like how it looks. Can you help me?

    Yes! Our local lawn care service professionals will begin by performing a FREE evaluation and soil analysis to gauge the current condition of your lawn, as well as inspecting for active lawn pests. Our first treatment will be effective at controlling the pest and weed problems and helping the health of your lawn turn around quickly. Our staff will also give tips on other things such as raising the mowing height, increasing/decreasing irrigation times, and other tips to give you the healthiest lawn in the neighborhood. 

    We offer services for lawn pest control and shrub and ornamental fertilization that help maintain and improve your yard’s overall appearance and health.

    What if my lawn issues remain after a visit from the lawn care technician?

    We always guarantee your satisfaction with our service.

    For trees and lawns – if any of our applications of lawn care fail to achieve results that are satisfactory, just let us know. As your North Florida lawn experts, we will either come back and reapply an application at no extra charge or we will resolve it with another service.

    If a new issue develops in your lawn or shrubs before our next scheduled visit, get in touch with our office. We will gladly send a lawn treatment technician out to look into it. 

    Does the lawn pest treatment help control fleas and ticks for my pets?

    There are some outdoor pests that ruin your lawn (chinch bugs and sod webworms), and there are others that can ruin your outdoor experience, such as fire ants, fleas, and ticks. Flea and tick control for your lawn is important because these pests can harm your family and pets.

    Fleas and ticks can cause all sorts of problems for your pets. Fleas feed on your pet's blood and can cause skin irritation, allergic reactions, and anemia. Fleas can also carry tapeworms. Fleas reproduce very quickly; flea eggs are laid on your pet, where they then fall off onto the carpet, grass, or other areas of your home. Flea and tick control is important to prevent these fleas from hatching in your lawn and then getting transferred inside your home via your pet or clothes.

    Ticks also carry diseases such as Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, and other Tick-borne diseases. The diseases that ticks carry can be harmful or even fatal to humans and animals. Ticks are common in Florida, and can often be found in our yards.

    The Master's Lawn Care offers flea and tick control treatments. Our process allows us to eradicate fleas and ticks at different stages in their life cycle, and stop their ability to reproduce. We kill the pest and their eggs. Contact us today to protect your pets and family.

    Why does my grass look darker green after a thunderstorm?

    Why does my grass look darker green after a thunderstorm?

    Nitrogen is the nutrient in the soil that is most responsible for the green in your grass. It’s also a common ingredient in the lawn fertilizers commonly used by North Florida lawn fertilization companies. The Earth’s atmosphere is approximately 78% nitrogen. Yet, nitrogen can’t be used by grass as raw nitrogen; it needs to be combined with oxygen to create what is called a nitrate. The blade of grass absorbs the nitrate and it is used to create more chlorophyll and— POOF! dark green grass.

    During a thunderstorm, every time there is a lightning bolt, electrical energy breaks the strong nitrogen bonds free. The nitrogen then quickly attaches to oxygen, forming nitrogen dioxide. Nitrogen dioxide dissolves easily in water, creating nitric acid, which then easily dissolves to create a magic ingredient: NITRATES. The nitrates fall to the ground inside of the raindrops, seeping into your soil and helping your grass to turn green.

    There is some debate as to how much the electricity in lightning affects the greening of grass. Some people say that not enough nitrates are formed to affect the green. Thus, they believe the darker green is an illusion that is created from the wet grass in the cloudy skies. Either way, your grass will likely appear more green after a lightning storm than after a storm with no lightning.

    Should I fertilize my Gainesville lawn in winter since it's brown?

    It is normal in winter for our grass to look dull green and, in some cases, even brown in a harsh winter  (even if our version of a harsh winter is a spring day to northerners). It also is normal to hope for warm days and green grass to come quick. Late February is an appropriate time to control weeds with pre-emergent and post-emergent weed control products. But winter is not the time to put down a nitrogen fertilizer on Gainesville lawns. In winter, our grass is not actively growing, and it doesn’t have active roots to absorb the nitrogen. This causes the nitrogen to leach into the soil, and water resources that damage our ecosystem. We recommend waiting for the lawn fertilization until it warms up so the fertilizer, and your money, aren't wasted. 

    How much does Lawn Fertilization and Pest Control in Gainesville cost?

    Spraying applications in Gainesville and Ponte Vedra lawns can vary based off of two important variables: the size and the exceptions. The size is the easy one, as it's obvious that a smaller lawn costs less than a larger lawn. Even within the same subdivision, take Haile Plantation for example, you have some homes with lawns under 5,000 sq ft. and some lawns that can range over an acre (44,000 sq ft). 

    The other variable is what is included in the lawn health program. For example, some lawn pest control companies only use insecticides. Others may use fertilizers and insecticides, but no fungicides to control lawn diseases. Some may fertilize the shrubs, whereas others may only spray the grass. Some may use a higher-quality organic based soil ammendent, and others may not include that. Our programs include options of varying inclusions, so that we can make sure we take care of all your lawn concerns.

    To finally answer the question about lawn pest control pricing, most companies range anywhere from $41/month to $175/month, depending on the size and the type of service. Our prices start as low as $42 and go up from there depending on the size of your lawn.

    If we can help provide you with a free lawn health program proposal, please don't hesitate to call our office at (352)378-LAWN, click here to contact us through this site, or read more about our  Lawn Health and Weed Control program.

     

    Can I control Bermuda grass in my St. Augustine lawn?

    This is a common question we hear from homeowners. Unfortunately, there is no guaranteed way to fully control wild bermuda grass in St. Augustine lawns.. Bermuda grass spreads in 3 ways -

    1) seed germination - Seeds that are spread from actively growing Bermuda in or around your lawn. 

    2) Stolons - These are the "runners" that grow above ground in the same way that St. Augustine grass speads to fill in bare areas.

    3) Rhizomes - These are the underground runners that grow like Zoysia grass does, spreading underground like a "Torpedo" and popping up in another area of the lawn a couple inches or even feet away.  

    Pre emergent products are made to prevent the #1 way Bermuda spreads, seed germination. Pre-Emeergent means before the seeds "emerge" or germinate. It will control 75-80% of Bermuda seed from germinating when it is active. However, if the lawn has established bermuda grass in it or neighboring to it, pre-emergent herbicides will not stop the active stolons or rhizomes from spreading.

    Pre-Emergent weed controls will help keep seed germination lower when applied at the proper time (spring and fall, at the correct temperatures). Pre-emergent herbicide typically is not a practical approach in completely controlling bermuda grass due to the #2 and #3 ways they spread.

    St. Augustine is also very susceptible to pre and post emergents whereas bermuda is very tolerant of them, so there needs to be caution used to not damage the healthy turf you want to salvage wehn trying to control the weeds yous do not. Some active ingredients of pre emergents that help with seed germination of bermuda are trifuralin, oryzalin, and pendimenthalin.

    Spraying Non-selective  weed controls on the bermuda and St. Augustine, to follow with resodding typically is the chosen method of control. Typically, due to neighboring lawns and left over unkilled rhizomes, this even leads back to having some bermuda in the lawn. The best bermuda control recommendation is here on one of our blogs:

    http://www.themasterslawncare.com/blog/how-remove-bermuda-my-st-augusti…

    Can you Fertilize my lawn when leaves are down?

    Staying on top of your leaf-raking can feel like a full-time job every fall. If you have a Gainesville lawn care program it can feel more urgent to remove the leaves so they don’t block the fertilizer from reaching your grass. The good news is that there is an appropriate level of leaf cover when fertilizing your lawn.

    The general guideline we follow is that as long as the grass is visible between the leaves, and the leaves are not matted down and wet, then applying fertilizer is fine. Fertilizer pellets don’t stick to leaves for very long. Before long, they roll off the leaves and down to the soil where they belong. There are 3 types of leaf coverage we cannot fertilize over though:

    Wet and Matted Leaves
    If the leaves on your lawn are wet and matted down, then it’s time to get the rake out. Wet leaves are the perfect environment for mold and fungus to grow. If leaves are too wet for too long, then the fertilizer will stick to the leaves and have trouble rolling off to the soil below.

    Matted leaves are never good for lawns and should be removed regardless of any fertilizer schedule you may have. Heavy, matted leaves press your grass down, suffocating the turf and blocking any sunlight from getting through.

    Piles of Leaves
    Piles of leaves are inappropriate leaf cover for your North Florida lawn and will block fall fertilizer from reaching the grass roots below. Having one or two small piles on the corner of your property isn’t an issue for fall fertilizer. However, if you have multiple large piles of leaves throughout your lawn, then some areas of grass will not be fertilized.

    Heavy piles of leaves will block the sunlight from reaching the grass beneath and can cause patches of grass to decline or even die. These dead or struggling areas will be perfect spots for opportunistic weeds to take root.

    Total Leaf Coverage
    If your lawn is completely covered by leaves, with no grass visible, then fertilizer won’t be able to reach the turf. Before a scheduled fertilizer application, check your leaf coverage. If you can’t see any grass through the blanket of leaves, then you’ll need to remove the leaves. In addition, our trained technicians will identify whether or not the lawn is available to treat with fertilizer. If conditions are not favorable then we will reschedule. It’s good to avoid total leaf coverage because leaves are the perfect environment for lawn pests to thrive in.

    How long does my Perimeter Pest Control Application last?

    On average, we see 3-4 months of control with our North Florida perimeter pest control applications. 

    Is my property safe for my pets to use the yard after a pest control application?

    As with all of the products that we apply around the home, we ask that you allow any product ample dry time before you or your pet return to the treated area.

    Does the Rain affect my North Florida Pest Control treatments?

    North Florida Pest control treatments are usually not affected by the rain because most of the exterior walls in your home are protected by overhangs and rarely get wet. Your lawn applications actually work better when they are watered in the majority of the time. 

    What is the value in having pest control treatments if there is no pest problem in my home?

    A regularly scheduled pest service will stop pests before they become a problem. It allows our technicians to watch for and spot possible signs of pest activity and act immediately to eliminate any threat. A preventative, pro-active approach to managing pests will keep your home and family safe from annoying and potentially harmful pests.

    Why do we have exterior pest applications to control pests inside my home or office?

    The Master's Perimeter Pest program is designed to stop pests before they get in your home! We create a barrier around the perimeter of your home or office to decrease an insect’s ability to gain entry. 

    Are your pest control products safe?

    The benefit of our pest control program is that we can help protect you and your home from unwanted bugs and pests by using an accurate application of products to areas where the target pests are known to be attracted to. We also utilize 95% of our pest control products on the barrier around your home (perimeter pest control) rather than inside of it.

    Here is why our pest control programs are the right ones to trust:

    • We follow label directions.
    • We follow sensible IPM (Integrated Pest Management) practices.
    • We choose products and procedures based on training and experience.
    • We carefully consider if the benefit of a professional pest control treatment outweighs the risk of not doing such a treatment. Could there be a better way of controlling a pest situation that doesn’t require a pesticide application? Perhaps non-pesticide solutions like physical alteration (a mechanical barrier to help prevent pests from entering), removing a source of moisture, removing a source of food, or something as simple as just cleaning up, can be done in lieu of a pesticide application. We will also consider if we don’t do a treatment will we be putting people in harm’s way by exposing them to the real threat of bee stings, structural damage, or exposure to vector-borne diseases.

    You have to ask yourself what poses the greater risk -  exposure to pests like ticks, roaches, spiders, and fleas, or a professional pest control service. I would safe the latter is much more safe.

    What can I do to prevent pests in my home?
    • Store food in airtight containers.
      • Plastic and paper bags are no match for a rodent’s teeth or tiny insect pests. Products should be stored in insect-resistant packagings such as hard plastic or glass containers with tight-fitting lids. Don’t forget about bird seed and pet food (a favorite of mice) – these should also be stored inside trash can-type containers with tight-fitting lids.
    • Keep garbage cans sealed, cleaned and placed away from your home.
      • Pretty much everything you put in the garbage is going to have a certain allure to wildlife, rodent, and insect pests. Rodents and cockroaches will appreciate the proximity of a good meal to your warm home and will start looking for ways to get in. Therefore, it is best to keep your bins about 10 feet away from the house. This way pest won’t associate the trash with your house and start looking for a way in. Always put trash in garbage bags and rinse out containers – the sugary residue is sure to attract ants and yellow jackets. Finally, fasten the lids with bungee cords. Make sure there’s no slack in the cord to ensure the lids are tight.
    • Inspect and correct any possible sources of moisture or standing water.
      • Water is the enemy. Most pests thrive in high moisture conditions. Some pests, like mosquitoes, requiring standing water to lay eggs and complete their life cycle. Other pests like termite, carpenter ants and wood-boring beetles rely on water to damage and weaken wood before they begin to damage the wood. Plumbing should be checked regularly for leaking pipes. In addition, you should check the seals around your bathtubs and toilets. If the seal is old and deteriorating, caulk it to prevent moisture intrusion and future infestations. Gutters are another source of excess moisture outside the home. Gutters should be free of clogs with downspouts properly draining away from the foundation. Crawlspaces are often overlooked as sources of moisture. Our inspectors have access to moisture meters to determine if conditions in the wood are favorable for infestations. If the humidity in wood is too high, it may be prone to be colonized by termites or wood destroying insects and fungus.
    • Eliminate and reduce clutter.
      • Not only will clutter offer pests a quiet spot to live but it will also make you less likely to notice a problem, and more difficult to treat once a problem has been identified. Stored boxes that are seldom used and disturbed means pest infestations can grow without you being aware.
      • Particular attention should be made when storing wool and natural fiber items as these are a favorite for clothing moths and carpet and dermestid beetles.
      • Silverfish feed on glue, paper, books, and wallpaper. Therefore you should regularly discard newspapers and other items saved for recycling.
      • Anything that must be stored for an extended time should be put in tightly sealed containers after they are washed or dry cleaned.
      • Clean your home regularly.
      • Vacuum carpets and furniture regularly, especially if you have cats or dogs that can pick up fleas outdoors. Wipe counters, wash dishes and sweep the kitchen floor daily. Inspect your pantry and spice cabinets regularly for meal moths and flour beetles that can enter the house in boxed grain products from the store.

    By following these tips, not only can you reduce the abundance of pests around your home, but also the likelihood they will become a problem in the future.

    I still have ants even after treating, what should I do to control them?

    Ants often require a sustained and determined effort. The first thing that needs to be done is identify the type of ant you have. Is it a carpenter ant, fire ant,  sugar ant, acrobat ant, pharaoh ant, etc.? The type of ant will determine the measures necessary to control the ant.

    For example the pharaoh ant. If you try treating the pharaoh ant with the common over-the-counter pesticide you will effectively kill a few ants, and you will effectively make the problem worse. The surviving ants will return to the hidden colony and warn the colony of the threat. This will cause the colony to disperse in many directions. Once the ants settle down they will begin to reproduce in these many new locations. Now you have several nests when prior to treating you didn’t. This is called “budding”.

    We know when to use insect baits, repellent insecticides, non-repellent insecticides, and dust. This is determined by the type of ant, if the location is found, and what location needs to be treated. Understanding the biology and habits of the ant helps us determine the best approach to control the ants.

    Why should a Lawn Fertilization Program Include Soil Amendments?

    Years ago, if our industry had a lawn that just wouldn’t green up, the answer was to apply a synthetic fertilizer with increased nutrients and hope for the best. A majority of the time, you would get a visual improvement - but it wouldn’t last long. This was the most common in homes under 10 years old because of the builders sand used during construction. The problem with builder's sand is there were no soil nutrients to feed the lawn between synthetic applications and no one ever added anything to build the soil's nutrient-levels or beneficial bacteria.

    The answer was to keep bombing with synthetic nutrients.

    That's bad for your lawn long-term, bad for your soil, and bad for the environment as a whole. Unfortuneately, that's still common by some of the larger pest control companies today.

    This is why we use bio-stimulant applications that add carbons, probiotics, beneficial bacteria, and micro-organisms back to your soil, in addition to organic-based lawn fertilizers. We are essentially “rounding out” the old school basic lawn fertilizer program by supplementing the soil with nutrients for long-term health. 

    Think of this like you taking vitamins. You can get 100% of your daily recommended vitamins and minerals from daily synthetic supplements (vitamins, fish oils, etc.) but you still have to eat something of substance or you will starve to death. You can’t live on vitamin supplements and water alone for very long, and the better you eat a well-balanced diet - the more natural vitamins, minerals, and oils you are getting, lessening the need for the synthetics vitamins. 

    Soil is the same way - we need to give it some substance and that is where the sea kelp, humic, biochar, and other fun stuff come in. Even our old friend Milorganite is a soil building supplement because it is derived from microbes that have consumed waste materials. It is organically derived. This is why we do an initial soil test on every lawn before we ever begin a lawn program. 

    Now, this is going down a deep rabbit hole into soil and plant science, and we are probably starting to approach information overload, but I'm a lawn nerd. Sorry I'm not sorry. :)

    Also, when we get too “sciencey” about 80% of people just tune us out because it’s too complicated. So I'll just say, “Trust me, if you use soil ammendments that we recommend, you will be building your soil over time. More and more elements and nutrients will be present there, naturally by having a nutrient-rich soil.”

    But if you do want to get deeper and improve your understanding, John Perry from Greene County Fertilizer did an entire series last year on soils. Here's a YouTube playlist of that series for you here.

    Weekly Landscape Maintenance FAQs

    What height should I mow my North Florida lawn at?

    Mower heights are adjustable for good reason. Depending upon your type of turf, you should be mowing anywhere from 1-1/2" to 4-1/2".

    • St. Augustine Grass - The most common Gainesville and Ponte Vedra turf grass does best when mowed as high as possible, from 3-1/2 to 5".
    • Zoysia grass - The second-most common turf in North Florida yards, does best mowed at 2-1/2 to 3-1/2". which keeps the turf from building too much thatch.
    • Centipede or Bermuda grass- The least common grass for our area, should be mowed the lowest - which is about 1-1/2 to 2-1/2".
    How often should I have my lawn serviced?

    We recommend 43 visits for the best North Florida yard care. This is broken out with weekly visits in Spring, Summer, and Fall (March-October) and biweekly visits in winter (Nov-Feb) as turf slows down growing. This allows for biweekly lawn work to handle leaves and dead branch pruning in winter, and weekly yard care in spring, summer, and fall due to our long growing season in the North Central Florida area.

    Why does it matter if my lawn mowing blades are sharp?

    Your blades should be sharpened at least three times a year, especially in our humid North Florida lawns. A sharp blade means a deeper green color and clean cut. Dull blades cause tearing of the grass, which leaves your yard more susceptible to fungus and disease. We sharpen our commercial lawn mower blades a minimum of twice per week to protect our client's lawns.

     Lawn Mowing with a dull blade is like giving your lawn a bad haircut. Rather than cleanly cutting, a dull mower blade actually rips or tears grass blades. This not only increases the intensity of the plant injury, but also the ragged edges serve as ideal entry points for various lawn pests and diseases.

    Dull mowing is especially visible in hot weather when the tip of each grass blade dries out and turns brown. Multiply this by several billion and your lawn may end up looking more like a field of straw rather than a lush green carpet. When mowing grass that is not wet at the proper height, a sharp blade ensures a clean cut that can seal quickly; which minimizes the potential for disease problems brought on by dull mowing.

    On average, your lawn mower blade should be sharpened 2-3 times throughout the season, depending on the size of your lawn. The easiest way to manage this is to keep a spare blade handy that you can simply change when it’s time to sharpen.

    When is the best time to trim/prune landscape ornamentals?
    Many types of plants, trees, and shrubs should be pruned in the spring. However, some plants must be pruned before there is new growth, so that means by early spring or even in the winter. Crape Myrtles should always be pruned in late winter/early spring to avoid damage to their growth habit. Done properly, with sharp blades and clean cuts, your vegetation will look great for the spring and summer by correct horticultural pruning practices.
    What is chewing on my Ginger?

    More than likely, your Ginger is being chewed by a squirrel. When new ginger stems put out new growth in spring, they are fresh and full of water. Squirrels can sometimes find them tasty or appreciate the water. This is not extremely common, as most ginger goes untouched in Gainesville landscapes that are filled with squirrels - but it has occurred a couple times in the past decade.

    In years of drought, this sort of damage is worse because the squirrels are searching for water anywhere possible. To stop the damage you can try to use taste repellents, which are available online and occasionally in the garden center at your local retail store. This typically makes chewing animals leave the plants alone for a while.

    When is the best time to prune my roses?

    Typically, we use Valentine’s Day as the holiday to remind us to prune roses in your North Florida landscape; even the hardier knockouts and drift roses. 
    It's not the end of the world to prune them well into March - but Valentine's Day signals the starting line for getting them set up for spring's success. We recommend pruning off any twigs and stems that are dead, diseased, injured or spindly. This provides more of the plant's energy to flush out and bloom rather than trying to rejuvenate dead branches. Bring the overall height of the main stems down anywhere from half to a third - sometimes even more drastically if you've missed a few prunings. This hard pruning improves the shape of the shrub and improves air circulation for the plant. Beautiful rose flowers will abound in late April to early May.

    The second holiday we use as a reminder for rose pruning is Labor Day. This isn't a drastic cut and is more shaping and selectively pruning struggling branches - but this allows the plant to continue blooming in your Gainesville lawn through the fall. 

    Landscape Design / Installation FAQs

    Why do Japanese Maples Struggle in North Florida Gainesville landscapes?
    Japanese maple tree

    Gainesville, Florida's climate can be a little tricky for Japanese maples, and that’s why variety selection and finding the right spot in the landscape is critical for the tree's success. These beautiful maples, known for their fall foliage, do best in USDA hardiness zones 5-8. Most of our gardens are in zone 8, so we are a tad bit warm for this ornamental tree. Find a spot in your landscape that has partial shade, or at least shade from the hot afternoon sun, to plant your maple tree. The soil should be moist, but also well-drained. You can consider improving the soil by top-dressing with an inch or two of compost annually too. Be sure you mulch around the root ball of the tree to keep the soil cool. 

    Japanese maples have a beautiful form and can get to a top height of 20'. Some cultivars are much shorter, but those have a hard time with our heat so veer away from the dwarf varities. There are two cultivars that seem to hold up to our hot summers and sandy soils. “Bloodgood” has bright red new foliage that, later in the season, turns to a dark green. “Glowing Embers” has good heat tolerance and, in the fall, the leaves can be orange to yellow.

    Even if your Japanese maple is planted in the perfect spot, you might notice some leaf scorch or browning by September. 

    Can Artificial Grass be repaired if damaged?

    Suppose something happens accidentally with my North Florida artificial grass, is repair possible? Such as replacing a melted patch?

    Fortunately it is not common to happen, but the greatest risk of damage is related to extreme heat, causing melted spots in the grass. Although it has only happened once, it was due to equipment exhaust being set on the artificial turf.

    Any damage to artificial grass can be repaired. The damaged piece of artificial turf is cut out and replaced by a new piece. It is therefore advisable to save any remnants of synthetic turf left over after installation. These can be used for any repairs, if necessary.

    You must be aware of the fact that used artificial grass will look differently than new turf, even when it is the same product. You can compare this with normal carpet. A repair usually remains visible. Over time, this difference will be less and less visible as the wear pattern begins to match.

    How should Synthetic Turf be maintained?

    Cleaning of Synthetic Grass: It is important to keep artificial turf clean. Remove any leaves, weeds and other debris away every couple weeks.

    Weed control in Artificial Turf: Keeping the artificial turf clean will prevent weed growth. Although weeds can be easily removed by plucking, brushing or raking the grass - they are extremely uncommon. Make sure weeds are removed before they can take root, especially along the edges of the turf. A number of environmentally friendly products can be purchased at home improvement centres and garden centres that kill algae, moss and weeds directly. If the instructions are followed carefully, the artificial turf will not suffer any damage.

    Chlorine on Synthetic Turf: Artificial grass is made with polyamide fibres (PA) and should not come into contact with concentrated chlorine products, as this can discolour the fibres. There are safe cleaning products made to clean the turf without discoloring it.

    What is the effects of SyntheticTurf on the Environment

    Environmental considerations play an important role in the decision to use artificial turf or astroturf because it is kind on the environment. Installing artificial turf means no more mowing, fertilizing, watering and, equally as important, no more lawn applications for lawn upkeep. In the United States, a number of subsidy schemes are available to promote the use of artificial turf, largely due to the water savings achieved. The ban on plasticizers and heavy metals in the production of artificial grass is safeguarded by strict environmental standards (DIN 18035-7 concerning the leaching of heavy metals). Low maintenance: artificial grass does not grow and therefore does not need to be mowed. This results in zero energy costs and zero harmful emissions. Water savings: artificial grass does not need valuable drinking water. Sustainability: artificial grass has a long life span. Choosing a durable artificial grass product ultimately means less wastage and a reduced need for recycling. You may think if everybody has an artificial lawn, this may have a negative effect on the environment. Lucky for us, this is not true!

    REDUCED WATER USE
    From an environmental perspective, the potential for water savings is probably the most significant benefit of artificial turf. Artificial grass needs no irrigation to stay green. The only water used on artificial lawn is to clean it, if necessary.

    REDUCES PESTICIDE AND FERTILIZER
    Since synthetic grass needs no regular chemical treatment, it eliminates a major source of groundwater pollution and human exposure to chemicals. For residential applications, an artificial lawn also offers the benefit of reducing the amount of chemicals (and dirt) tracked into homes.

    Artificial turf chemical-free care may make it especially appropriate for children, because children spend more time than adults in close contact with grass, and they are affected more severely by contact with pesticides.

    SAFE FOR PEOPLE AND ENVIRONMENT
    Synthetic lawn fibres do not contain any plasticizers or heavy metals, making this turf entirely safe for both people and the environment. We guarantee that the fibres comply with the strictest standards. There are no dangers known by having artificial grass in your garden.

    How should I choose a North Florida Landscape Design and Installation Company?

    Factors to consider when hiring a landscape designer include education, experience, creativity and compatibility. Ask what level of formal training the designer has achieved and to see photos of their work. This may be photographs or plans from a portfolio or website, or the designer may refer you to an installed design.
    Equally important is finding a designer whose style and personality are a good fit for your project. Landscape design is a collaborative process, so trust and confidence are vital to a successful designer/homeowner partnership. Ask about the process and for referrals. Ask about their insurance coverages for your protection. Most importantly, check their online reviews (Google, Yelp, Angie's List, and Facebook) and the length of time they've been offering the service. 

    Is there a difference between Synthetic Turf products

    Yes, there is a difference in products. Not all products have the same height, infill, thatch, or material - so ask if the product includes a warranty and if you can see some installations that have been installed for over a year. This will allow you to see their longevity (of which we are very proud of)
    There is also a difference in Gainesville Synthetic grass installations for athletic fields, dog parks, and residential lawns because they all have verying needs and priorities. Those created specifically for residential use have softer and more natural-feeling blades.

    Is Artificial Turf Pet and Kid-Friendly?

    This product is incredibly pet and dog-friendly. Synthetic lawns are used by many playgrounds for children, Humane Society dog parks, and at many daycares. It doesn’t stain and urine drains through it similar to soil. Any mess can be washed off with a hose. Best of all, dogs can’t dig through an artificial lawn! There are also minimal pests due to the nature of the artifial turf not providing food or areas to burrow.

    How much does North Florida Artificial Turf Installation cost?

    Artificial grass comes with a big upfront cost -- $18 to $24 per square foot, installed. However, once it’s down, it’s maintenance-free for the next 15-25 years.

    Professionally laid sod, on the other hand, costs only $2 per square foot installed, however, that’s where expenditures (and upkeep) begin. 

    How long should I wait before sealing my new Paver Patio?

    Typically 60-90 days..  The main reason to wait is so that efflorescence can work its way to the surface and be cleaned off.  The more the pavers get wet, the quicker this happens.  For this reason, the amount of time to wait may vary depending on what time of the year it is.

    The Master's Lawn Care always goes above and beyond for our company (Scorpio Construction). I would recommend them to anyone!

    Alex H.

    We are so happy with our experience from The Master's Lawn Care. They really take pride in their work, and everything is done to perfection. Everyone we have come in contact with was helpful and professional. We will continue to use The Master's for years to come!

    Terry T.

    The crew did an EXCELLENT job on Tuesday. Thank you.

    Carol D.

    The Master's is great! The whole company is fantastic to work with. They are responsive and their work speaks for itself. Any yard, landscaping, or irrigation needs can be met by them!

    Matt C.

    I have used this company for the last two years and I cannot recommend them enough. Herbert and his team are professional and their work is top quality. I have a massive irrigation project that I am planning and I can't think of a better company to handle it than The Master's.

    Tyler T.

    Because of your service, our business has won the City Beautification award!

    Pat G.

    There is so much more to having healthy grass than just cutting it. You need to treat it for bugs and weeds as well as the proper watering. His team educates you on those items, and then shows you amazing results. You can't find a better lawn care company!

    Angela R.

    We cannot thank you enough for the work you have done in our yard! We haven't stopped enjoying it since we hired you guys!

    Heather H.