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Mistakes You Can Make When Maintaining Your Landscaping

Mistakes You Can Make When Maintaining Your Landscaping

For the untrained landscaper, simple mistakes can be made when maintaining your current landscaping aesthetic. Most mistakes can be found in the way plants are cared for on your property, your ground covering for your landscaping beds, and irregular fertilization and weed control.

Unfortunately, many homeowners are unaware of the proper techniques used to maintain a healthy and thriving yard. Avoid making these mistakes when you are caring for your landscaping or consider hiring a professional, such as A+ Lawn & Landscape, to handle your grounds upkeep for you in and around Des Moines, West Des Moines, and Ankeny.

Mistake #1: Improper Pruning/Trimming

Improperly trimmed plants in West Des Moines look unruly.

Plant health is extremely important, however, it is very fragile. Trimming or pruning at the wrong time or in the wrong way can result in a plant that is quickly and easily susceptible to disease, insect infestation, and decay. 

Failing to Prune a Flowering Shrub

Failing to prune flowering shrubs or trees at the right time can cause you to remove the buds that produce the blooms. Pruning a spring flowering shrub or tree should be done immediately following the bloom, however, summer flower and fruit-bearing plants and trees should be pruned in early fall.

Topping and Lion's Tailing

Chopping off the top of the plant (topping) or removing too many lower branches (Lion's tailing) create an aesthetically unpleasing look while also leaving the tree or shrub vulnerable with a weakened branch ...

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3 Reasons Watering Your Lawn with an Irrigation System is Essential

3 Reasons Watering Your Lawn with an Irrigation System is Essential

Does your lawn look slightly grayish or dull? If that’s the case, then it needs more water and that’s its way of showing it. Even if a lawn is well-fertilized, mowed properly, and treated for pests, there are still other factors that can affect the health of your grass.

One of these factors is how your lawn is watered. By installing a proper irrigation system, you can create a better quality lawn while saving money on your water bill. Here are three reasons why having a proper irrigation system in place is essential.

#1: Conserve Water and Save on Your Water Bill

Many homeowners are overwatering their lawns and don’t even know it. By using too much water, you can end up wasting it and spending more on your water bill.

An average lawn only needs around one inch of water a week, according to The Lawn Institute.

Water requirements do vary by grass type and season, as well as wind and shade factors. Another factor when watering a lawn is timing. It’s considered best to not try to water a lawn in the heat of the day, as water will evaporate much more quickly at that point. Watering in the morning is best as it’s cooler.

When you have a proper irrigation system installed by certified contractors like A+ Lawn & Landscape, you can feel safe knowing that your lawn is getting the right amount of water it needs. We take into account all variables when we design your irrigation system.

#2: Avoid Uneven Growth & Standing Water

Our newest irrigation client in Des Moines has seen a vast improvement with their lawn.

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What Services Must Be Done to Ensure Your Lawn Succeeds in 2019

What Services Must Be Done to Ensure Your Lawn Succeeds in 2019

In Central Iowa, we see all kinds of weather during the year, from snowy mornings to blazing summer afternoons.

Through all of that, your lawn and plants are exposed to extreme weather changes as well as other threats like weeds and insects. That’s why you need an expert crew like A+ Lawn & Landscape who knows the area and can help you cultivate a lawn that will stay healthy and vibrant all year long.

When Your Lawn Should Be Fertilized

Fertilizer helps to fortify your grass and plants while providing the nutrients they need to thrive. Having a regular fertilizer schedule gives your lawn a chance to be as healthy as possible.

It’s recommended to have your soil tested in order to determine which nutrients are lacking and then have someone create a fertilizer based off of those results.

During the year, we provide six treatments with custom-blended fertilizer. For optimal health, these treatments should start around early spring and continue every 5-7 weeks through October.

Every lawn is different and requires different blends of nutrients--that’s why custom blended fertilizer is essential!

Why Weed Control Is Important

One of the biggest threats to your lawn’s health is weeds. Weeds are pesky and steal those much-needed nutrients from your grass and plants. By using pre-emergent and post-emergent weed control, we can work to help your lawn stay virtually yard-free.

Weed control treatments should begin in early spring with a...

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Why Fertilizer Is Crucial for Your Lawn

Why Fertilizer Is Crucial for Your Lawn

You know it’s necessary to perform maintenance on the interior of your home such as regular carpet cleaning or dusting the baseboards. But did you know your lawn requires a regular maintenance schedule too?

There are many aspects to maintaining a healthy lawn in areas like Des Moines, West Des Moines, or Ankeny, IA, but one of the most important things you can do for your lawn is to establish a fertilizing routine.

The Benefits of Fertilizing Your Lawn

If you want a worry-free lawn that you can be proud of, then fertilizer is key to getting you there. A well-nourished lawn means you have lush grass where you can walk barefoot, have picnics, and enjoy your outdoor space. Regular fertilizer treatments give your lawn the nutrients it craves.

You’ll also increase your curb appeal with healthy grass, making your home look more attractive to the entire neighborhood.

Still not convinced? A healthy lawn means your grass has more strength to stand up to weeds and combat the heat of that Central Iowa summer sun beating down on it.

What Happens if You Don’t Fertilize Your Lawn

Fertilizer works to fight nutrient imbalance in your soil. If you have areas that are imbalanced, you could end up with patchy brown areas in your lawn. You may also see more weeds pop up, since your grass won’t be as strong to fight them off and keep them away.

If you want a beautiful, bright green lawn, then fertilizing your grass is...

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Garden Center Closes November 21, 2018

Garden Center Closes November 21, 2018

The Garden Center will officially be closed for the season on November 21, 2018. Thank you for your business and we hope to see you all back in the spring!
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Case Study: Appreciation Celebration

Case Study: Appreciation Celebration

Two of our employees discussing the details of a project in Ankeny over lunch.Why one landscape company turned a one-time thing into a monthly event.

What started as a one-time celebration to reward the team for a job well done has turned into a monthly event for A+ Lawn & Landscape, headquartered in Des Moines, Iowa.

A few years ago after a good month, management rewarded the team with a barbecue. It was a hit—more well-received than anyone anticipated.

According to Shawn Edwards, managing partner, the feedback was, “I wish we did this every month,” which prompted the company to make team dinners a recurring event.

That was five years ago. Edwards says the monthly tradition continues, but now it’s more about showing thanks than giving a reward.

“After the success of the first dinner, we started doing it as a monthly event but for no reason—just to show our appreciation,” Edwards says. “When you start tying it to numbers or having to hit a certain mark, we decided it loses something. It’s not the same as just showing appreciation. We wanted show them how much we care.”

Each month A+ has a theme dinner—it could be hot dog night, soup night or something else—cooked and served by management for the rest of the team. When the company tried Mexican night, Edwards says they decided to have it catered since it would be complicated. Surprisingly, despite the delicious food, bringing in a caterer all but ruined the event, Edwards says.

“That was something we...

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Spring Fever?

Spring Fever?






One of our favorite passages by Mark Twain that we shared with customers from West Des Moines.

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Five Landscaping Tips to Help Sell Your Home

Five Landscaping Tips to Help Sell Your Home

Property in Des Moines that has benefited from the landscaping tips and services we have provided.Are you thinking of selling your home this spring? Spring is the best time to sell your home. With warmer weather, longer days, and the need to get settled in before school starts again in the fall, home buying surges in the spring - usually peaking around June - and everyone sees your home from the outside first

We've all seen them. Potential home buyers, driving by slowly, peering through their car windows. They are looking at properties contemplating on whether or not to follow up with an appointment or attend an open house. Are you making the impression you want?

By addressing and stepping up your curb appeal, you have the opportunity to influence how potential buyers feel about your home - even before they step inside. While many people spend time decluttering and staging the inside of their homes, nothing says neglect like an overgrown, unattended landscape.

Did you know studies show that you can add as much as 10% value to your home by taking time to seriously address your curb appeal?


That's why it's important to plan ahead. The best time to start cleaning up your yard is at least one month before you plan to show your home. This way, you give yourself enough time to make sure everything looks just right. You don't want to give the impression that you put things together at the last minute.  

If you're ready to step up your curb appeal, the following five tips will help you ...

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A+ Volunteers at the ARL

A+ Volunteers at the ARL

Who doesn’t love spending some quality time with some fluffy animals? Some of our Garden Center ladies spent their lunch volunteering at the ARL (Animal Rescue League of Iowa) interacting with some of their new arrivals. Looks like everyone had a good time!

Dog from the local animal shelter at the A+Lawn & Landscape office Des Moines

Animal rescue visitors for the day at A+Lawn & Landscape's office.

Fun and games with the animal rescue 4-legged visitors at the A+ Lawn & Landscape office.

Employee of A+ Lawn & Landscape spending her lunch break with rescue dogs from a shelter in West Des Moines.

One of our employees playing with dogs from a local rescue in Ankeny.

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Sharp-N-Lube Mobile Mower Service

Sharp-N-Lube Mobile Mower Service

We know it's still cold out, but the mowing season is just around the corner. Is your mower ready? One of the keys to a thick and healthy lawn is to have your blades sharpened. This will also keep the chances of lawn getting a disease or fungus at a minimum.

It is recommended to have your blades sharpened and balanced every 15-20 hours of mowing. Sharp and balanced blades provide a more even cut ensuring a healthier turf grass plant. Our Sharp-N-Lube Mobile Mower Service can come to your home and provide this service to you along with our "12 Point standard service" which includes the following: cleaning the engine, changing the oil, checking the tires, greasing the wheels, cleaning upper and lower decks, checking the spark plugs, and cleaning the air filter just to name a few. We provide this service for walk-behind mowers as well as riding mowers.

Call our office today @ (515) 289-2020 to get you mower scheduled as the dates are filling up fast.

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