4 Tips for Winter Landscaping

A beautiful landscape is possible, even when it’s cold outside. Here are a few tips on how to make your yard stand out this winter.

You don’t have to sacrifice a gorgeous yard just because it’s not spring or summer. Winter landscaping can mean your yard stands out, even when everything isn’t green and blooming. Here are four tips for beautiful landscaping this winter.

Tip #1: Understand Your Planting Zone

Created by the USDA, Plant Hardiness Zones help determine what plants and trees will thrive in different areas of the country based on climate and temperature. Knowing your zone helps you plant things that will grow throughout the year. A good landscaping professional can help guide you on choosing the right things for your zone.

Tip #2: Don’t Stop Watering

Even when your yard appears dormant, it’s still growing and losing water. Winter water is an integral part of winter lawn care and can help your landscaping look great even during the colder months and stay healthy and strong year-round.

Tip #3: Plant for Winter Beauty

Trees such as crabapple and plants like holly look great in the winter because the fruit stays on the branches. Knowing what looks good in what season can help your yard stand out.

Tip #4: Install Landscape Lighting

One of the best ways to make your landscaping stand out in the winter is by including some landscape lighting. You can highlight what continues to thrive in the winter without emphasizing things that go dormant, such as your grass and flowers.

Winter lawn care can help your lawn and winter landscaping stand out, even when it’s cold outside. For the professional guidance you need to make your yard look great all year, contact the experienced team at W.P. Law, Inc.

Protecting Your Plants in the Winter – What You Need to Know

Winter plants

Even in South Carolina, where the climate is mild, protecting plants in the winter can help them make it through the cold months. Here’s what you need to know.

Add a Blanket of Mulch

Mulch acts like an insulating blanket year-round, but in the winter, it can protect your landscaping and plants from cold snaps and extreme temperatures. When the ground goes from warm to cold and back again, it can push up the soil, exposing the roots. Mulch can help keep the temperature of the root system consistent and protect it from the freeze-thaw cycle.

Keep Watering

It might seem counterintuitive to water in the winter when trying to protect your plants from the cold, but water can help guard against damage from the cold. Plants and trees, though dormant, lose a large amount of water in the winter. Winter watering can help them remain strong and resilient and protect them against the cold.

Bring Container Plants Indoors

Even plants designed for colder weather can suffer in the winter if they live in a container. Plants in the ground have added insulation from the soil around them, but container plants are more exposed to the temperatures. Bring them indoors for the winter, or at least during cold snaps and extreme temperature drops. If you can’t get them indoors, consider adding insulation around the pots to help prevent them from the shock of the cold.

Contact W.P. Law, Inc. today for help keeping your winter plants alive and thriving all year.

Irrigation Controller Settings for Winter

sprinkler controller

The winter months mean the leaves are off the trees, the flowers are all gone, and the grass is brown and dormant, especially in cold climates. Here in South Carolina, with our mild climate, things may look similar. Understanding what to do with your irrigation controller can be a game changer come spring. 

Prepping Your Irrigation System

While the grass in your landscaping may look dead, it’s anything but. Popular grasses in the south include Bermuda, Centipede, St. Augustine, and Zoysia, all of which become dormant in the winter. And to the casual observer, they do appear dead, but they’re still alive. And they need occasional irrigation, so you shouldn’t completely shut down your irrigation system.

The Right Irrigation Controller Settings for Winter

It’s a challenge to set your irrigation controller for the winter because watering your grass depends on many things, including the weather. For example, if the winter is wet with lots of precipitation, your grass won’t need as much watering. Instead, you can set it to “rain” and adjust it as needed. Another option is investing in a “smart” controller. With soil moisture sensors and weather stations, the system turns itself on when the grass needs water. The controller runs the irrigation cycles based on need, saving you time and money on water while keeping your grass alive and healthy so it can thrive in the spring.

Reach out to W.P. Law, Inc. for more information on sprinkler controllers and how to prep your irrigation controller for winter.

Dos and Don’ts: Winter Water Feature Care

water feature winter care

Winterization of your water feature can mean different things depending on the climate. For example, in South Carolina’s mild climate, we can still get cold and even freezing temperatures in the winter months.

Winter Water Feature Care Dos

  • Do consider leaving the system running through winter. It still requires maintenance, whether you shut it down or leave it on. However, when you keep it running, you get to enjoy the aesthetics of your beautiful water feature every season.
  • Do- clear away the leaves, grass, and debris from the water and filter regularly, especially in the fall when the trees are still shedding their leaves for several weeks.
  • Do trim foliage and landscaping around the stream, pond, fountain, or water feature to reduce the risk of damage.

Winter Stream Care Don’ts

  • Don’t shut the water feature down when a cold snap approaches. In frigid climates, shutting a water feature down in the winter is essential to prevent the pipes from freezing and bursting. However, the water running through the lines in our mild climate keeps it from freezing, even when the temperature dips.
  • Don’t neglect to invest in a pond heater or deicer, especially if you have fish. It will open a bigger hole than the pump alone will.
  • Don’t hesitate to call on water feature experts if you have any questions or concerns during the colder winter months.

You can winterize your water feature to prevent damage and avoid a complete winter shutdown. With proper water feature winter care, you can enjoy your feature year-round. Contact the W.P. Law, Inc. team to learn more about how to prep your water feature for the cold.

2 Benefits to Irrigating Before a Cold Snap

Taking steps to irrigate before cold weather can be a crucial step to protect your lawn and crops from frost and colder temperatures. It may seem counterintuitive, but experienced farmers know irrigating crops will initially cause the temperature in the fields to decrease as evaporation occurs and then increase as the air temperature lowers during a cold front. However, once you understand how it works, you can use irrigation to your advantage as the temperatures drop.

Here are two noteworthy benefits your plants and lawn experience when you irrigate before cold weather:

#1: Frost Damage Prevention

Because water releases heat at a slower rate than air, watering your lawn can provide natural insulation that prevents frost damage. Irrigating one or two days before a cold snap will allow enough time for saturation and thorough insulation from frigid temperatures. In addition, with the slower heat release, the plants and grass blades have more warmth for longer periods, protecting them from frost.

#2: Root Hydration

Did you know drought-stressed plants are more susceptible to cold damage? Irrigation provides your lawn and plants the moisture they need to become stronger and healthier. Think of pre-freeze irrigation as an immune system booster! The healthier the plant cells are, the stronger the plants are and the more quickly they can fight off damage from frost and cold weather.

Implementing proper irrigation is an excellent way to keep your lawn and crops healthy all year. Contact the friendly irrigation experts at W.P. Law to get started with a plan to irrigate before a cold front and give your plants all the protection they need.

Winter Is Coming: 2 Tips for Maintaining Your Outdoor Kitchen

Are you looking for tips to achieve successful outdoor kitchen winterization? Just because winter is on its way doesn’t mean you have to close your outdoor kitchen for the season. Instead, taking some steps to winterize will allow you to maximize your outdoor kitchen winter use—even in the colder parts of the country. Here are our top tips to guide you, depending on the climate in your area.

#1: Cold Climate Outdoor Kitchen Winterization

For colder climates like in the northern parts of the U.S., here’s how to protect your kitchen and keep using it once winter hits:

  • Use Higher Cooking Temperatures: You can continue cooking in your outdoor kitchen during the coldest season. However, you may have to crank up the cooking temperature for your favorite recipes.
  • Wear Warm Clothing When Needed: Is snow falling? No problem. Bundling up will help you stay safe and comfortable as you work your culinary magic in the outdoor kitchen.  
  • Protect Kitchen Surfaces from Winter Weather: Protect surfaces like islands, countertops, and cabinets, from winter precipitation and freezing temperatures by covering them with a breathable material that doesn’t trap moisture underneath.
  • Winterize the Refrigerator: If the temperature outside is consistently below 40ºF, you will want to remove all food and drinks, clean it out thoroughly, and unplug the fridge. Running the refrigerator during cold weather can damage the appliance’s compressor.

#2: Mild Climate Outdoor Kitchen Winterization

Although you may not experience the prolonged hard freezes they encounter in the northern climates, you’ll still want to perform some basic outdoor kitchen winterization:

  • Maintain Grill and Surfaces as Usual
  • Cover Exposed Kitchen Surfaces as Needed
  • Winterize the Refrigerator

These steps are similar to what you would do in colder climates, but you’ll only need to take precautions if the temps drop. Many homeowners in mild climates can continue to use their outdoor kitchens, as usual, all year long.

Keep on Grilling with Proper Outdoor Kitchen Winterization

Need professional advice on how to perform outdoor kitchen winterization so you can keep grilling and cooking year-round? Contact the professionals at W.P. Law, Inc.

Why You Should Winterize Your Irrigation System

The growing season is over, but have you taken steps to winterize your irrigation system? Doing this is a crucial part of your annual lawn care that many homeowners neglect and then regret.

If you forget to winterize irrigation, it can lead to a damaged irrigation system that won’t work correctly when you need it again in the spring. Take a closer look at the benefits of winterizing your irrigation system and the steps to take for a successful winterization process.

Cold Climates: Winterization for Northern Areas

In the frigid temperatures of northern areas, your irrigation system won’t stand a chance without proper winterization. Water remaining in the pipes will freeze and expand and can cause everything from pipes and backflow devices to sprinkler valves and heads to burst or crack. As a result, you may have to deal with costly repairs and replacements.

Mild Climates: Winterization for Southern Areas

Even the mild climates in southern areas have the occasional hard freeze during the early morning hours. Maybe it doesn’t freeze for long, but the water remaining inside the irrigation system can still create irreparable damage to the system. That’s why winterization is crucial to protecting your irrigation, even if you live in the south.

Schedule Expert Services to Winterize the Irrigation System

Professional winterization will ensure the entire irrigation system is empty and ready for the winter, so it will start back up without issues in the spring.

Let the experts at W.P. Law, Inc. help you winterize your irrigation system effectively. Contact W.P. Law, Inc. today.

Seeding vs. Sod: Which Is Best for Your Yard?

Which is better: seeding or sod? It’s a question many homeowners have when they want to ensure their lawn is lush and healthy. The best way to answer the question is to consider your yard’s current factors and conditions.  

How to Decide If Your Lawn Needs Seeding or Sod

Lawn care experts agree that assessing the current state of your yard determines whether seeding or sod is appropriate. First, you’ll need to compare the sections of weeds and dead grass to healthy grass. For example, if the lawn contains more than 40-50% dead grass or weeds, your best option is to start your yard over with new sod.

On the other hand, if 50% or more of your lawn grass is healthy, performing manual weed control and planting grass seed should be sufficient.

Another factor to consider is the grass you are growing on your property. There are more grass varieties for seeding available than sodding. So if you have a specific grass variety you prefer, you’ll need to find out if it’s available in sod or if you will need to stick with seeding.

Sod Installation Is Best Left to the Pros

While you may take a DIY approach to seeding, sod installation is more complicated. It has a brief 24-hour period for transplanting and requires proper installation. Reach out to trusted professionals to set your lawn up for success.

Whether you choose seeding or sod or are still trying to determine the best next steps for your lawn, the team at W.P. Law is here to guide you. Contact W.P. Law, Inc. today to get started.

How to Winterize My Outdoor Fountain

It’s fall, and it’s time to winterize outdoor fountains. If you have an outdoor fountain or water feature, you need to ensure it’s set up for cooler weather so you can still enjoy it when spring and summer roll back around. Here’s what you need to know.

The Climate Matters

South Carolina has a varied climate depending on what part of the state you live in. But, for the most part, it’s mild and doesn’t swing to extremes like the more northern states. Because of this, outdoor fountains and pond winterizing look slightly different than in places where they get a deep freeze.

Basic Winter Prep

Prepping your fountain for Winter in the south can mean removing debris, cleaning the fountain, and inspecting the pump. Then, drain the fountain and do a deeper clean before refilling it for a little more in-depth maintenance. Finally, if worried about colder temperatures, you can opt for a complete shutdown until spring. Shutting it down for the Winter includes unplugging, draining, and removing the pump for winter storage and blowing out the pipes in the system.

Keeping it Running in the Winter

If you decide to enjoy your fountain or pond year-round, it’s a great choice with our generally mild temperatures. The option of floating heaters is one way to ensure the water doesn’t freeze over when the temperatures dip. It’s also important to watch the forecast if extreme weather decides to head our way.

A great way to care for and maintain your water feature, including winterizing your outdoor fountain, is with fountain design, installation, and maintenance experts. Reach out to the team at W.P. Law, Inc. for all your fountain and water feature needs.

Maintaining Warm Season Grasses in the Winter

If you live in South Carolina, you might look out at your lawn and wonder about the best grass for Winter. Can you plant and seed in winter weather? Can you maintain warm-season grasses? Here’s what you need to know.

Which Type of Grass to Plant

There are two primary grass types, warm season and cool season. Warm season grasses green up in the spring and thrive in the summer heat and will go dormant with the first frost in late fall or early winter.  Warm season grasses include centipede, St. Augustine, Bermuda, and zoysia.  Cool season grasses remain green and thrive in the winter months, but suffer during the hot summer months.  Cool season grasses include tall fescue and ryegrass. While most people in SC have warm season grasses as their lawn, a few will overseed their lawn with an annual ryegrass to keep the beautiful green color year round.

To Seed or Sod, that is the Question

While you can add sod in the Winter when the grass is dormant, the roots won’t take hold until the weather warms up in the spring and summer. Fall, however, is an ideal time for seeding cool season grasses. The summer heat can make it hard for the seeds to germinate properly, while the cool temperatures let the seeds root and thrive. Ryegrass is an excellent choice for winter seeding. Once established, it will do well and provide a lush, green lawn year-round. Overseeding in Winter is also a great idea because it improves the grass’s aesthetics and increases the lawn’s resilience.

Maintaining warm-season grass and knowing the best grass for Winter is an art. Still, with the right advice and guidance, you can nurture your grass this Winter for a fantastic lawn come spring. Contact the W.P. Law, Inc. team for the advice you need for winter lawn care.

Stay Connected

Sign up today to keep up with the newest information from one of the Southeast’s leading suppliers of fluid handling equipment!

Interested In