Spotting Summer Tree Diseases

TreesWhat’s better than sitting in the shade of that big old oak tree in your yard sipping some lemonade and taking in the gorgeous green landscape of Alabama in the summer? We can’t think of much that could top that and at 3am Growers, we want to ensure your trees stay healthy so you can keep enjoying those special moments.

Unfortunately, there are quite a few tree diseases that can affect your landscaping. But most diseases can be treated if caught early. Using our list to identify problems with your trees can save your favorite shade tree and your summer relaxation!

Cankers– There are a lot of different canker diseases that will attack trees. Cankers are caused by a fungus that invades trees with wounded bark. Cankers look like a blister or a burl section on the tree. If a canker is spotted on a limb, the limb should be cut off. More advanced cankers will require a professional tree service.

Molds– Again, there are a lot of different types of molds that can distress and even kill your trees. From sooty mold which looks like chimney soot, to powdery mildew which has a white, powdery appearance, the best way to treat mold is to call in the pros.

Bacterial Wetwood– this infection is also known as slime flux and looks like a wet, weeping section on a tree’s trunk or limbs. It usually appears near a crotch section or near old pruning scars. Unfortunately, there are no proven methods to cure a tree with wetwood. The best action is to make sure your tree’s overall health is as good as it can be so it is better able to fight off the infection naturally.

For more information about spotting tree diseases or to have your trees inspected, give our tree service experts a call at 3am Growers in Tallassee, AL.

Save Your Trees from the Summer Heat

It’s no surprise that it gets hot in the Alabama summer–at 3am Growers we’re already sweating! Your customers aren’t the only ones suffering, though! Trees also need protection from the soaring temperatures and scorching sun in these months. Customer education will go a long way towards creating and retaining a loyal customer base, so make sure you’re keeping yours up to date on how to care for their trees in the summer.

Moisture is one of the first things to go in the heat. Watering should be done during the early morning and late afternoon when temperatures are cooler and water is less likely to evaporate before it does any good. This will also help to conserve water, especially in drought situations. Make sure customers adjust their automatic sprinklers if applicable. Adjust watering schedules based on the weather–if it’s raining a lot, water less.

Proper mulching helps protect surface roots from sun damage and helps to keep moisture in the soil long enough to get used by trees, rather than sucked back up into the atmosphere. And remember not to encourage trimming, especially in a drought situation. Trimming encourages new growth, and that requires a lot more water.

With proper care and management, trees provide shade that helps keep cooling costs down in homes and businesses. They also provide much-needed sources of food and shelter for beneficial insects and animals, and they look so lovely! Help your customers take care of their trees during the hot summer months and everyone will benefit.

Spring’s Beautiful Blooms: Trees, Shrubs, Perennials, & More

spring flowersThe warm weather and blooming flowers are signs that spring is here and winter has passed. With this season, there is more color on lawns, across mountains, and in meadows than any other time of the year. There is a natural beauty about spring that is difficult to ignore.

Although flowers normally get most of the glory, they are not the only element of spring that causes jaws to drop. Take a look at several spring trees, shrubs, perennials, and bulb plants that can transform your lawn into a beautiful oasis:

Spring’s Shrubs & Trees

Most everything about nature’s spring season is pleasing to the eye. But, spring is not all about color; it’s about differing heights, too! With beautiful trees and shrubs layered throughout your lawn, they create a backdrop for the stunning spring flowers that bloom. Several trees and shrubs that bloom during spring include witch hazel, forsythia, and magnolia trees. Adding one or more of these trees and shrubs to your yard will enhance its aesthetically pleasing element and give you, the homeowner, a plethora of benefits.

Spring’s Perennials & Bulb Plants

Underneath the much-needed shrubs and trees are flowering perennials and bulb plants. Perennials are plants that grow every spring and summer but die off during autumn and winter. Perennials, such as a Lenten rose and Pasque flower, are a great purchase because they last for years to come. Bulb plants, such as daffodils and snowdrops, add astounding color to one’s lawn. Combining these plants can create a haven for gardeners and outdoor lovers, alike.

Before spring ends, come to 3am Growers in Tallassee, Alabama, for your greenery needs. Contact us today if you have any questions!

Trees for Bees!

Bees serve a crucial environmental function, and more and more people are becoming aware of that. If your customers are seeking ways to improve conditions for bees in their landscaping, point them to trees! Trees don’t just improve a customer’s curb appeal, provide shade, and protect the soil. The right ones will also make a great home for these important pollinators.

How important are bees? Well, approximately one third of the food we eat on this planet is the result of honey bee pollination. That’s a huge amount of food! Think what would happen if that stopped? Bees aren’t just cute and useful–they’re also very industrious. A worker bee will fly over 30,000 miles in their lifetime. That’s bigger than the circumference of the earth.

What kind of trees are best for bees? Native species, of course. Fortunately for those of in the American Southeast, that means beautiful trees like magnolias. Their sweet blossoms will provide food for bees as well as birds and more. Native species will also marry best with the environment to help bees and other beneficial wildlife keep happy and healthy. Make sure your customers know how best to select and position their trees in their landscape.

The best time of year to plant trees is in the fall, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t stock up now. As pollinators return, customers are thinking of ways to make these fuzzy creatures flying creatures welcome. Make sure you’re stocked up with the varieties offered by 3am Growers!

What Gardeners Need to Know for Spring

Spring is here! This is a busy time for nurseries, because it’s a busy time for gardeners. While you’re marketing and selling products this season, make sure that your customers are aware of what exactly they should be doing to prepare their gardens and landscapes this spring.

  • Tools should be seen to. Does anything need to be sharpened, repaired, or even replaced? Remind customers that the last thing they want is to be stuck halfway through a project without working tools. If your nursery doesn’t sell tools, consider partnering with a local business that does–both businesses can benefit from referrals.
  • Soil should be tested and appropriately treated to correct any imbalances. Lawns should be mowed, trimmed, and watered, and emerging weeds should be seen to. This is a good time for your customers to see to any insect problems as well. Make sure your customers also know to look out for lawn fungus and diseases.
  • And finally, plants should be cared for. Obviously, this is the time to plant many types of flowers, trees, and shrubs like the ones we stock at 3am Growers. Gardeners should also be trimming, mulching, feeding, watering, pruning, and checking on the health of their existing plants. Prepare your staff to answer many questions about how to care for plants–and not only the ones you sell.

Educating your customers will not only increase your business in the short-term; it will help to increase their satisfaction and long-term loyalty. If customers know they can trust you to give them good information, they’re more likely to come back and to recommend you to their friends!

Celebrate Trees for Arbor Day

April isn’t only National Lawn Care Month. It also includes Arbor Day on Friday, April 27th. 3am Growers is celebrating the same way we always do: by providing and caring for the trees that do so much to benefit us and our world.

You don’t have to look far from your front door to see the benefits of trees. They provide shade to our homes and lawns, give a degree of privacy to our lives, and insulate our homes against the noise of the outside world. They also improve quality of life in two very different ways, by providing a peaceful spot to rest under, or an exciting place for adventurous souls to climb!

Trees provide benefits for more than just humans, of course. Wildlife like birds, squirrels, and beneficial insects find homes, food, and building materials in their branches. Trees minimize runoff into water sources like streams and rivers, thus decreasing water pollution, and help prevent erosion if planted thoughtfully. Each tree can absorb thousands of gallons of stormwater, helping protect your home from flooding!

Perhaps their most well-known environmental benefit is the improvement of air quality. Not only do trees recycle carbon dioxide into oxygen, but they store carbon in their trunks and branches, decreasing the impact of global climate change. Trees also impact the temperature–they can reduce temperatures up to 7 degrees.

Celebrate Arbor Day and beyond by making sure your customers have access to a rich selection of beautiful, high-quality shade trees like those at 3am Growers.

Customer Education for National Lawn Care Month

April isn’t just the first real month of spring, it’s also National Lawn Care Month. We don’t provide lawn care services at 3am Growers, but that doesn’t mean we don’t know the importance of a healthy lawn. Good landscaping is crucial to healthy trees and shrubs. Now is a great time to educate your customers about the benefits and importance of fertilizing to yield the best blooms in the springtime.

Fertilizer can be tricky to understand, especially for beginners, so helping your customers is important. Your staff should fully understand and be able to thoroughly several important factors, such as:

  • How to read the guaranteed analysis and apply it to their soil after appropriate testing.
  • What the list of ingredients means, and which sources of nitrogen are best for their soil, climate, and plants.
  • What to fertilize, how much to fertilize, and where and when to apply fertilizer.
  • What varieties of fertilizer are only available to professionals, and how those can benefit them.
  • Applicable state, national, and local laws and ordinances regarding the safe use of fertilizer. This includes any HOA ordinances or guidelines. These can change often, so make sure you are completely up-to-date before you pass on any information!

Even if you do all the landscaping services for your customer base, a little extra education never hurt anyone. In fact, it’s often beneficial. If your customers trust that your staff are knowledgeable, friendly, and open to sharing, they’ll feel secure in their decision to entrust their home and business landscaping to your care.

Spring Highlight: Cleopatra Camellia Shrubs

Spring is finally here to stay, and that means it’s time to highlight some of the best plants for the season. Let’s talk about one of our favorites here at 3am Growers: the Cleopatra Camellia shrub!

Like its name would suggest, the Cleopatra Camellia is absolutely lovely. Its flowers are showy and abundant, with a rich rosy-pink color, and its foliage is rich, glossy, and evergreen. Your customers will be delighted by the combination of colors and will love how low-maintenance these shrubs are. These shrubs are not as popular as other types of camellias, which makes them a unique, fresh addition to any garden.

Cleopatra Camellia shrubs don’t need much to thrive. Give them acidic, moist soil with good drainage, shade or partial shade, and some shelter from urban pollution for best results. These showy shrubs don’t require a lot of pruning, though they will need thick mulching around the roots in the summer and the winter, especially when first planted. They are excellent for planting under power lines because they only grow to about six feet high. Because they thrive in shade and tend to be more compact than other camellias, they can even be potted and planted inside!

All of our shrubs are great for the environment as well as for landscaping aesthetics, and Cleopatra Camellia are a truly splendid specimen. Your customers will love this low-maintenance addition to their spring landscaping. Contact 3am Growers today to order for your nursery, or to answer any questions you might have about selling these pretty shrubs!

Winter Lawn Care Checklist

Spring may seem like it’s still a long way away, but from a lawn care standpoint, it’s right around the corner. February is a great time to start preparing your yard – and maybe even taking a look at some of the new trends in landscaping. Check out the 3AM Growers Lawn Care Checklist to see if you’re on track for a healthy spring lawn!

    • Get it Tidy! First things first: is there junk on your lawn? Leaves, debris, pine straw, residual snow or ice – all these things will contribute to mold, mildew, and lawn disease if left for too long. Regular raking will clean all this up so your yard looks and feels healthier. It will also help to keep your grass from getting trampled.
    • Check Your Soil. Most lawns need to be fed in the early spring, so have your lawn checked for nutrients and pH balance. The earlier you know what the issues are, the better chance you have of correcting them before spring.
    • Stay Sharp. Did you know your lawn mower blades need to be sharpened every year? If it’s been a while, now is the time to get on that. While you’re at it, take a look at all your gardening tools and see if any need repair or replacement.
    • Fight the Weeds. Pre-emergent herbicides are obviously best applied before the weeds appear. If the weather is nice enough, a little old-fashioned weeding is also a great excuse to spend some time outside.

With a little work now, your lawn will give you plenty of enjoyment and pride in the spring and beyond. Contact 3AM Growers with questions!

Planting Trees and Shrubs: A Guide

Now that February is here, it’s time to get busy planting! This is a great time to plant almost everything, so at 3AM Growers we’ve put together a guide to planting trees and shrubs.

A Guide to Planting Trees and Shrubsblossoming tree against blue sky

First of all, make sure you select the right tree for your lawn. This decision is crucial, so don’t neglect proper research! You’ll want to take soil conditions, space, climate, and underground conditions into consideration. A tree or shrub with a wide root system shouldn’t be planted near your septic system, for instance, unless you want to deal with costly and time-consuming repairs down the line. Similarly, tall trees shouldn’t be planted under the electrical wires. The experts at 3AM Growers can help you pick the tree or trees that will best suit your needs.

Once you’ve planted your tree or shrub, your job isn’t quite done. New plantings need extra care, especially watering. Drought shock is common in new trees, even in precipitation-heavy climates. That being said, overwatering is also a problem. If in doubt, dig down to the roots with a trowel and see if the soil is damp before watering. You’ll also need to protect new plantings from deer, weeds, and even grass. It’s best to keep a few feet of vegetation-free space around new trees so that established plants don’t steal all the water and nutrients.

Speaking of research, remember that all types of plants and shrubs are slightly different and will need their own specialized care. When in doubt, contact 3AM Growers and benefit from our experience and know-how!