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The Ins and Outs of Landscape Maintenance: An Interview with Tom Gillespie of Complete Lawn Care

By Tom Gillespie

Please tell us a little bit about your company and the services you offer.

Complete lawn care is owned by brothers Tom Gillespie, Nick Gillespie and a third partner Mike Hurd. We have been in business since 2001. We started out just offering mowing services with no employees. Today we have branched out to a full lawn, landscape, and irrigation company. We offer year round services including weekly mowing service, weed control and fertilization lawn treatments, outdoor pest control, landscape installation and design, leaf removal, snow removal, Holiday Light installation and more.

Can you briefly describe what you would recommend as a basic property or landscape maintenance program for a healthy yard?

Normally we recommend our 7 step lawn treatment program which offers year round weed control and fertlization. This is the best option to have a thick healthy green turf. Our pest control package consists of 4 treatments a year and covers over 40 different insects.

What are some of the most common areas (or outdoor tasks) that homeowners neglect?

Some of the most common areas homeowners neglect is their turf when it comes to proper watering, weed prevention, and fertilizer. Relying on just rain to water your lawn can cause significant damage to not only your turf but plants and trees as well. The best defense against weeds is a good thick healthy turf. Weed control products from the local hardware stores usually does not control Oklahoma's most difficult weeds such as nutsedge, Dallisgrass, and henbit.

Do you have any tips for keeping Oklahoma lawns green and gorgeous?

Some tips to keeping your lawn green and in good shape is to have a balanced program of proper weed control and fertilizer treatments applied at the right amount and at the right time. Different weeds germinate at different times a year. Therefore different products work at different temperatures. The proper watering and mowing practices are just as important. You should water your lawn about 3 to 4 times a week during the hottest part of the summer for Bermuda Lawns and 4 to 6 times a week for fescue Lawn.

Is there a common misconception that people have about proper yard maintenance?

Some homeowners make the mistake of cutting their lawn too short which hurts the turf and provides an environment for weeds and turf disease. You should only take at most one third of the grass off at each mowing. Leaving the turf a little longer in winter will help it build a "cushion" over the winter and keep roots strong.

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