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Project Case Study: Neglected Residential Lawn Cleanup

Project Case Study: Neglected Residential Lawn Cleanup

At J&C Lawn Care, one of our specialties is taking properties that have been neglected and turning them into a beautiful display. When we were presented with an opportunity in the East Portland, OR area to clean up a residential property, we jumped at the chance.

This particular project presented a couple of challenges: the homeowner wanted to keep as much of the original plant life as possible and wanted a yard that looked nice without requiring hours of lawn maintenance and mowing. We took those into consideration when planning out this yard cleanup and landscape renovation.

Property cleanups can help increase your home value as well as your curb appeal. Check out some photos below from this recent project we completed!


Renovating Landscape Beds by Adding New Mulch, Clearing Out Debris

The existing landscape beds had fallen victim to lack of maintenance, and so we went in with a plan to renovate them and eliminate debris while still preserving as many of the existing plants as we could. Our team cleared out yard debris, leaf buildup, and extra weeds so that the landscape plants would have room to breathe.

The landscape beds had also overtaken part of the brick patio that was in the yard. Once we cleaned up the area, we ended up discovering that the patio had a border of a different color, which blended well with the black mulch we chose for the renovated landscape beds. Installing mulch has many benefits for landscape beds, including helping to prevent...

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Rock vs. Mulch: Which Is Best for Your Fall Ground Cover

Rock vs. Mulch: Which Is Best for Your Fall Ground Cover

When choosing a protective fall ground covering, many homeowners face the dilemma of choosing rock or mulch for their landscape beds. While each provides their own unique benefits, choosing the best option for your yard depends on your own personal lifestyle and the type of landscape plants you have.

Here we’ll go over the differences between rock and mulch and which one is best for your fall ground cover in Happy Valley, Troutdale, Gresham, and the surrounding areas.


When Is Rock a Good Choice?

Rock ground cover is comprised of decorative gravel or rocks ranging from pea-sized pebbles to golf ball-sized stones. Rocks come in a myriad of sizes, colors, textures, and shapes. You can choose a porous, lightweight red or black lava rock, or smooth quartz in purple or pink. Rock is great for properties with drainage issues as it allows water to drain quickly through your landscape. Because of its high drainage quality, rocks are best for drought-tolerant plants such as succulents. Rock cover is an easy, no maintenance option if you have open bed areas without plants.


The Benefits of Mulch

Mulch is made of several types of wood bark and can be dyed various colors to achieve whatever look you desire, although the most common colors are black, brown, and red. Mulch retains moisture so you don’t need to water your landscapes as much and is the perfect natural weed repellent as it blocks the sunlight they need to sprout in your garden....

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Why Your Lawn Needs Fall Fertilization

Why Your Lawn Needs Fall Fertilization

Your lawn requires many things to keep it strong, healthy, and green throughout the year. When fertilization is mentioned, most people think about springtime application, as this is when your grass is growing and needs all the food it can get to thrive. What many people don’t realize, however, is that your lawn also needs fertilization applications in the autumn.

Fall fertilization sets up a strong foundation for your lawn to sustain the winter by providing it with essential nutrients and helps your lawn recover from dormancy in the spring. Here are some reasons why your lawn needs fall fertilization in Happy Valley, Troutdale, Gresham, and the surrounding areas of Oregon.


Autumn Encourages Optimum Nutrient Absorption

Fall is the most important time of year for lawn fertilization. Fertilizing in the spring provides your freshly-awoken lawn with a boost of nutrients to help fuel its growth, but fall fertilization provides it with energy reserves needed to sustain itself throughout the cold winter months. Autumn brings with it cooler temperatures and moisture, both of which are needed to help your turf absorb your applied fertilizer. When applied in the fall, your lawn has ample time to break down the nutrients provided by the fertilizer and store these for food and energy to use throughout the winter.


Fall Fertilization Prepares Your Lawn for the Upcoming Winter Months

Fall fertilizer on a lawn in Troutdale, OR.

Unlike spring fertilizer that encourages grass growth, fall...

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Why It's Time to Schedule a Fall Lawn Cleanup

Why It's Time to Schedule a Fall Lawn Cleanup

When the season changes, particularly in spring and fall, many of us begin planning out our seasonal cleaning sprees for the inside of our home. Much like the inside, the outside of our home needs seasonal cleanup too. Seasonal yard cleanups are a vital part of taking care of the look of our property and maintaining its good health.

Seasonal yard cleanups are important for allowing new growth, ridding your yard of weeds, and decreases the number of potential health risks in your yard. Here are some reasons why your yard needs a seasonal cleanup in Happy Valley, Troutdale, Gresham, and the surrounding areas.


Before and after fall yard cleanup in Gresham, OR.

Autumn Cleanups Prepare Your Lawn for the Winter

When winter rolls around, your lawn can sustain some pretty harsh damage due to the cold and snow. A lawn that has not been properly cleaned up by our experts is already in a weakened state throughout the fall, and when winter hits it can devastate your lawn. Leaves that blanket your yard suffocate your lawn, preventing the grass from going through photosynthesis and slowly killing it entirely. Pests also thrive under wet leaves, as do various diseases, fungi, and mold.

Fall cleanup will rid your yard of all these issues and ensure your lawn has the best nutrition and is in the best health to endure the winter months and grow in strong and healthy in spring.


A Fall Cleanup Allows for New Growth in Spring

Seasonal cleanups and debris removal are essential for ensuring fresh, new...

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How Plants Benefit from Regular Trimming & Pruning

How Plants Benefit from Regular Trimming & Pruning

Hedge and shrub trimming, small tree trimming, and more aren’t just for fancy aesthetics. While these activities may make you think of sculpted landscape gardens, the truth is that hedge trimming is an important part of keeping plants healthy. Even very basic trees and bushes need regular trimming for their health. It also keeps your yard from becoming overgrown.

The owners of J&C Lawn Care were born and raised in Oregon, so they understand the needs of plants in Happy Valley, Troutdale, and Gresham, OR. Our landscape trimming services will be part of a custom maintenance schedule for your yard that will keep your plants growing well and your yard neat.


How Often Should Plants Be Trimmed

Most bushes, hedges, and small trees in this area of Oregon can usually be trimmed just once a year during the fall, just before winter begins. This is when plants have finished blooming but not too close to when it gets cold and plants become prone to damage. Trimming at other times of year could prevent full flowering in spring or interrupt new, healthy growth. Non-flowering plants should, however, be trimmed in the early spring before new growth begins to keep the new growth healthy.

If your yard is completely overgrown and unhealthy, though, it doesn’t matter the time of year - the fastest path to recovery is to start now. We can help you examine your yard and decide on a plan of action for getting it trimmed up and ready to restart healthy...

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Reasons to Use Grass Seed for Your Lawn

Reasons to Use Grass Seed for Your Lawn

There are many reasons to lay grass seed than simply when starting a new lawn. Grass seed is great for repairing your lawn’s bare spots, fixing thin areas, and eliminating weeds from your lawn. Using seed is also great for restoring your lawn’s health and promoting its growth and health.

Here are some reasons why your lawn in Happy Valley, Troutdale, Gresham, and the surrounding areas in East Portland, OR needs grass seed.


Grass Seed Helps Eliminate Weeds & Promotes a Healthy Lawn

Closeup of healthy grass in a Troutdale, OR after grass seeding was performed.

As your lawn matures, it can start to wear out, resulting in weakened grass. Bare spots and dry patches allow for weeds to grow and develop in your lawn. Seeding in these areas fills in missing areas of grass, eliminating room for weeds to grow. Grass seed also restores your lawn and gets it back to being healthy and green, and more resilient to the threat of weed growth.

As a general rule, if your lawn is made up of less than 40 percent weeds, then filling in your lawn with grass seed is a viable option to eliminate existing weeds and help restore your lawn’s health. If your lawn has more than 40 to 50 percent weeds or numerous areas of dead or struggling grass, it’s best to start over from scratch and totally renovate your lawn by laying down fresh grass seed.


Seeding When Your Lawn Needs Repair

Pets, people, weather, and pests can all take a toll on your lawn. Removing weeds and poor turf, preparing and tilling...

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Why Your Yard Needs Routine Lawn Care

Why Your Yard Needs Routine Lawn Care

When you invest in your lawn with regular lawn care services, you are doing more than just making it look pretty. While skipping out on routine lawn care may seem beneficial to your wallet at first, it actually poses many risks to your lawn that require more time and money to fix in the long run.

Routine lawn care keeps your lawn looking nice, keeps it strong and healthy, and saves you time and money. Here are some reasons why your yard in Happy Valley, Troutdale, Gresham, and the surrounding East Portland, OR areas needs routine lawn care.


Routine Lawn Care Keeps Your Lawn Looking Nice

This yard in Troutdale, OR has regularly scheduled lawn care services.

When you invest in your property, whether it be a fresh coat of exterior paint or custom hardscaping, you want it to look its absolute best. However, a gorgeously painted house with custom walkways and patios doesn’t look very nice with a dying, diseased lawn. Homes with lush, healthy lawns tend to look a lot nicer than poorly-maintained lawns and attract potential buyers and increase your property value. A well-manicured lawn and landscape increases the value of your lawn and adds to your home’s appeal.

Routine lawn care also adds to your personal satisfaction. It’s much more enjoyable to come home from a long day of work to a beautiful, healthy yard rather than an overgrown, dead one.


Routine Lawn Care Saves You Time and Money

Irregular, or non-existent, lawn care causes serious damage to your grass, costing you more money in the...

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How Invasive Blackberry Can Destroy Your Yard

How Invasive Blackberry Can Destroy Your Yard

Non-native blackberry plants have taken root and dealt serious damage to properties in our service area and beyond. We have introduced a treatment program that specifically targets these disruptive plants before they can lay waste to your yard.

It’s important to know exactly how invasive blackberry can destroy your yard in order to catch the problem before it gets out of hand. Below you will find a few key signs and symptoms along with descriptions of the damage that can be done if the problem is left alone to fester in Happy Valley, Gresham, Troutdale, and nearby areas.


Himalayan blackberry grows differently than native blackberry, causing sunlight blockage.

There is a distinction between native blackberry (trailing blackberries) and Himalayan blackberries. The native variety does not pose a threat in the same way as the Asian species.

The non-native type can grow thick patches throughout your beds and lawn and will eventually block sunlight and nutrients from reaching your plants. In extreme cases, the growths can completely kill off the plants in your bed, leaving you no choice but to start over from the soil up.


Non-native blackberry roots take up valuable bed space and can lead to soil erosion.

Himalayan blackberry growing in a home's backyard in Portland, OR.

Any weed poses a threat to your existing plants because their root systems can take up valuable real estate in your beds and lawn. Weeds generally have shorter roots than other plants and become entangled with other roots. They...

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What Your Lawn Needs to Survive Summer

What Your Lawn Needs to Survive Summer

During summer, your lawn sees heavy use from kids, pets, friends, and others who are outside enjoying the weather. It's also hotter with the sun beating down on your grass. Each season brings new challenges when it comes to the overall health of your lawn.

Here are some services your lawn needs to survive the summer in the areas of Happy Valley, Troutdale, Gresham, and nearby cities in Oregon.


Fertilization & Weed Control in Summer Is Key to Lawn Health

A healthy lawn in Troutdale, OR after a fertilization treatment.

Your lawn needs to be fortified year-round to stay strong enough to defeat lawn diseases, insect infestations, and more. By adding slow-release fertilizer four times a year, including a summer treatment, we can ensure that your lawn can keep that strength built up over the year.

Weeds are another nuisance that can pop up during the summer. If the correct pre-emergent weed control was applied in the spring, hopefully not many will show up in summer. However, both pre- and post-emergent treatments may be required to get summer weeds out of your yard. 


Routine Lawn Mowing Is Critical for Your Summer Lawn

A routine lawn mowing schedule is one of the best things you can do for your lawn's health. When a lawn is regularly mowed, that means the grass stays at the proper height it should be for maximum health and photosynthesis. 

At J&C Lawn Care, we make sure that your grass is always cut correctly, which means that we never cut off more than one-third of the...

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Is It Safe to Mow During Oregon's Fire Season?

Is It Safe to Mow During Oregon's Fire Season?

In Oregon, summer has begun to be called something different: fire season. Fire season generally begins on June 1 and lasts until state officials declare that it has ended. Along with fire season comes some restrictions that should be adhered to, no matter what. In 2018 alone, the state saw damages from wildfires reaching $514.6 million, according to the Statesman Journal.

Those restrictions include no illegal fireworks or open fires like campfires, charcoal fires, and others. Any motorized vehicles are restricted to improved roads that are free from flammable vegetation and backyard debris burning is prohibited. For a full list of restrictions, visit the Oregon Department of Forestry.

One activity that can face possible restrictions during fire season is mowing. Here is some more information on whether or not it’s safe to mow your yard located in and around Happy Valley, Troutdale, and Gresham during Oregon’s fire season.


The Levels of Fire Danger and Their Mowing Restrictions

There are four levels of fire danger: green, blue, yellow, and red. Green means low fire danger, blue indicates moderate danger, yellow is high danger, and red is for extreme fire danger.

If we are experiencing low fire danger, then there are no restrictions on mowing. It can be done any time for green lawns, dry lawns, or dead grass. With moderate fire danger comes some rules on mowing dried, cured grass. During times of moderate danger, dried lawns...

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