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Published on December 31, 2015, in News.

Happy New Year!

New Year Reminiscing

With the imminent new year, we’d like to take a moment to say thank you to our loyal clients. We have enjoyed working with you in 2015 to resolve your drainage & irrigation problems, create aesthetic masterpieces, & assist you in any way possible to make your lawn the best it has ever been.

In the new year, we would love to meet your friends with some much appreciated referrals! It’s an honor being a local business in this community, because we have the most supportive customers. Enjoy your new year & be safe! See you next year.


Rainy Days Irrigation, Inc. | 115 Sigma Dr. | Garner, NC | (919) 779-9285
Irrigation | Drainage | Backflow | Landscape Lighting

 
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Using Autumn to Prepare for Spring

We’re commonly tricked into thinking that autumn is the perfect time to stop paying attention to our yards. WHOA! Not true. This is the BEST time to prepare your lawn for next spring. Right now, your lawn is absorbing nutrients and water to prepare itself for winter. If you put work into it now, you’ll be much happier to welcome spring as you watch your lawn flourish with little help.

1. Continue giving your grass a haircut | If you thought your days of mowing have come to an end until spring, I have bad news for you. Mow as needed until the end of fall, which is when you should drop the mower’s blades to its lowest settings for the last 2 times you mow. Don’t trim off more than 1/3 of the grass blades at any time though! The trick is to gradually lower the blades until the final 2 cuttings. By mowing this way, you’re letting more sunlight reach the crown of the grass, which makes your lawn less brown during the winter.

2. Let that soil breathe | This is the time to aerate your lawn to get oxygen, water, and fertilizer down into the roots of the grass. If you’re willing to do it yourself, you can rent a self-propelled machine that will aerate your soil and extract plugs of dirt. If you have a large lawn, you might want to hire a landscaping contractor.

3. Pull out the rake | When you let leaves pile up on your lawn, they will become wet, matted, and create a layer that will suffocate your grass and breed diseases (we’ve talked about these diseases before). Don’t wait for all of your leaves to finish falling before you start raking. If you absolutely detest raking, you can collect leaves using a lawnmower with a collection bag. This is most effective with a large yard with deciduous trees.

4. Fertilize | Listen: If you only fertilize your lawn once a year, do it in the FALL. Apply a dry lawn fertilizer in mid-to-late fall. For a more comprehensive guide based on your type of grass and climate, here’s a good resource. The fall is a great time to fertilize because while grass leaves grow slowly, the roots and rhizomes grow quickly regardless. Fertilizing now will deliver essential nutrients for growing deep roots and reserve those nutrients for a healthy spring.

5. Rogaine those bare spots | Nothing sticks out worse than bald spots on a lawn. The best way to fix this is with an all-in-one lawn repair mixture that has grass seed, special lawn fertilizer, and organic mulch. Loosen the soil in the bald spots before spreading a thick layer of the mixture over it. Lightly compact, water thoroughly, and continue watering every other day for a fortnight (ahem, 2 weeks).

6. Weed control | If you’re completely over weeding all those pesky little dandelions and thorny monsters, now is the time to solve your problem. Like all other plants at this time, weeds are absorbing everything that comes their way, including poison. If you apply weed killer now, you won’t worry about weeds in the spring. When you purchase your herbicide, make sure to read the instructions. Most commonly, it’s suggested that you apply during early-to-mid autumn when it’s consistently above 60 degrees F.


Rainy Days Irrigation, Inc. | 115 Sigma Dr. | Garner, NC | (919) 779-9285
Irrigation | Drainage | Backflow | Landscape Lighting

 
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Published on July 3, 2015, in Information & Tips.

Disease Overview

No trickery here, this disease gets it name from the silver dollar sized spots found on green lawns. On home lawns, these spots will be from 3-6 inches in diameter and sport a tan color. The size of these spots have a correlation with the mowing height and blade size of the grass; for example, higher mowing height causes larger spots. These spots usually won’t get bigger than 8 inches and are commonly misidentified as animal urine damage. Your lawn will most likely show signs of this disease when it is low in nitrogen. This means that you may be fertilizing infrequently, using an organic fertilizer with low nutrient content, or a soil problem may be blocking the uptake of nutrients. Be careful, though, because using too much fertilizer can predispose the grass to other diseases.

Symptoms

This lawn disease can show up in a few different ways, such as producing an hour-glass lesion bordered by a purple band, or it might start browning from the tip down. When the roots become damaged, the grass will shed the damaged roots and replace them with new ones, to no avail. The new roots will experience the same cycle, essentially starving the grass. It can be spread easily, by mowing or foot traffic. In extreme cases, these spots can grow up to several feet in diameter and form highly irregularly shaped patches.

Stress

Dollar Spot Lawn Disease will not become severe if treated quickly enough, usually with an application of water soluble nitrogen for blade growth. Grass is more susceptible to disease when it is under stress, such as when it is low in nitrogen, resulting in a struggle to produce chlorophyll and carbohydrates. Another factor that can cause stress is over watering and shallow watering. Only water when the grass is in need of it, and water deeply to wet the soil 3-4 inches down. Shallow watering leads to shallow rooting and the grass then becomes stressed during dry, hot weather. A balanced fertility program is necessary, as well as reducing dampness as much as possible. If reseeding becomes necessary, use a more resistant variety to deter such lawn diseases.


Could our services be the answer to your lawn problems? Call Rainy Days Irrigation today at (919) 779-9285 and one of our trained technicians can advise you on the  best solution for your drainage and irrigation issues.


Rainy Days Irrigation, Inc. | 115 Sigma Dr. | Garner, NC | (919) 779-9285
Irrigation | Drainage | Backflow | Landscape Lighting

 
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Published on June 26, 2015, in Information & Tips.

Disease Overview

Brown patch, or Rhizoctonia Blight, is a lawn disease that becomes active in hot and humid weather. These somewhat circular patches can range from several inches in diameter to 3 feet, leaving behind a circle of brown grass. In older patches with this disease, the center of the grass will sometimes grow back, leaving a frog-eye appearance.

These symptoms can appear overnight when environmental conditions are right. On the outer edges of the patch, you might see a “smoke ring,” a blue-grayish ring that shows the reaction of the grass as it progresses outward to new grass. This ring usually looks water-soaked. This grass fungus also produces mycelium, a substance that looks like a cobweb which will show up in early mornings when dew is present.

Your grass will eventually grow out of this disease as long as it only affects the blade. If it spreads to the crown, however, it will die. Younger lawns stand a significantly smaller chance of surviving this disease.

Factors that favor lawn diseases:

  • Overnight temps stay above 70
  • Daytime temps stay above 85
  • Humidity greater than 86%
  • Abundant rainfall
  • Excessive irrigation
  • Soil stays damp 10+ hours/day
  • Over-fertilized lawns
  • Quick release, water-soluble fertilizers (i.e. ammonium nitrate)

Could our services be the answer to your new home drainage and irrigation problems? Call Rainy Days Irrigation today at (919) 779-9285 and one of our trained technicians can advise you on the  best solution for your drainage and irrigation issues.


Rainy Days Irrigation, Inc. | 115 Sigma Dr. | Garner, NC | (919) 779-9285
Irrigation | Drainage | Backflow | Landscape Lighting

 

 
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Published on May 1, 2015, in Information & Tips.

So, what is a French Drain?

You hear the name as a common drainage solution, but what is it and what does it do to improve your soggy landscape?

For starters, it must be properly installed. That’s where Rainy Days comes in! We bring expert technicians to your problem and leave with a solid solution in place. Our technicians are trained in French Drain installation. Here are some basics:

  • A French drain is a trench filled with gravel or rock or containing a perforated pipe that redirects surface water and groundwater away from an area. A French drain can have perforated hollow pipes along the bottom to quickly vent water that seeps down through the upper gravel or rock.
  • French drains are used to prevent ground and surface water from penetrating or damaging building foundations. They may be used to distribute water, such as a septic drain field at the outlet of a typical septic tank sewage treatment system. French drains are also used behind retaining walls to relieve ground water pressure.
  • French drains can lead to a downhill slope or to dry wells or rain gardens where the extra water is held and absorbed by plants. This is useful when city water systems or other wastewater areas cannot be used.
  • These drains are installed around a home foundation in two different ways: Buried around the foundation wall on the external side of the foundation, or installed underneath the basement floor on the inside perimeter of the basement.
  • External French drains or drain tiles are installed around the foundation walls before the foundation soil is back-filled. It is laid on the bottom of the excavated area, and a layer of stone is laid on top. In many cases, a filter fabric is then laid on top of the stone to keep fine sediments and particles from entering. Once the drain is installed, the area is back-filled and the system is left alone unless it clogs.

Could the popular French drain be the solution to your landscape needs?

You may be saying “Rain, Rain Go Away!” lately as the southeast experiences heavy rain fall. There are some things you can look for. Common signs of lawn drainage problems:

  • Mildew/Mold in Crawlspaces and Basements
  • Settling Foundations
  • Loss of Plant Material
  • Insect Problems
  • Mechanical Damage from Mowing Equipment/Footprints
  • Soil Compaction
  • Standing Water or Puddles
  • Yellow Grass or Plants that Wilt or Appear Unhealthy

Ask our professionals at Rainy Days Irrigation to provide a consultation.

Let our 29 years of service history help you! (919) 779-9285


Rainy Days Irrigation, Inc. | 115 Sigma Dr. | Garner, NC | (919) 779-9285
Irrigation | Drainage | Backflow | Landscape Lighting

 
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The Garner NC area has seen an extremely wet Winter this season. Our soil is already soggy and moist going into Spring, which is typically a wet season for our area as well. You may be noticing your yard is staying wet in areas, bubbling or squishing when walking on grass, and your plants may not be growing or blooming like they usually do. These can be signs of significant drainage problems with your landscape.

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Proper drainage in the landscape is just as important as proper irrigation. Excess water in the landscape can lead to some common issues. Improper drainage behind retaining walls can weaken the integrity of the wall and lead to catastrophic failure. Many drainage issues have simple solutions.

Signs of Common Landscape Drainage Problems:

Excessive water not only affects your landscapes but it can also cause issues in and around your home or business, such as:

  • Mildew/Mold in Crawlspaces and Basements
  • Settling Foundations
  • Loss of Plant Material
  • Insect Problems
  • Mechanical Damage from Mowing Equipment/Footprints
  • Soil Compaction
  • Standing Water or Puddles
  • Yellow Grass or Plants that Wilt or Appear Unhealthy

Simple Solutions to Your Drainage Problems:

  • French Drains - A French drain is a trench filled with gravel or rock that redirects surface water and groundwater away from an area.
  • Catch Basins - Catch basins are designed to drain excess rain and ground water from lawns and gutters.
  • Gutter Down Spout Piping - Water collected by a rain gutter is fed usually with a downspout or downpipe from the roof to the base of the structure where it is directed away from the home or building.
  • Sump Pump Installation - Sump pumps remove water that has accumulated in a basin, commonly found in the basement of homes. However, wherever there is puddling water, a sump pump can redirect water away from problem areas.

After your consultation, Rainy Days Irrigation can design and install a complete drainage system to handle all of the water in your landscape.

Give us a call today at (919) 779-9285.

 


Rainy Days Irrigation, Inc. | 115 Sigma Dr. | Garner, NC | (919) 779-9285
Irrigation | Drainage | Backflow | Landscape Lighting

 
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World Mosquito Day is August 20th and is a commemoration of British doctor Sir Ronald Ross’ discovery in 1897 that female mosquitoes transmit malaria between humans. Dr. Ross declared shortly after his scientific discovery that the day should be known as World Mosquito Day in the future.

What should you do to prevent those itchy bites that also carry health risks? Here are some tips:

INSECT REPELLENT

Use insect repellent. Most insect repellent products applied to the skin contain one of three active ingredients:

1-DEET
2-Picaridin (also called KBR 3023)
3-Oil of lemon eucalyptus (a plant-based compound)

These repellents temporarily keep hungry mosquitoes from identifying you as a food source. The higher the concentration of DEET or picaridin in a product, the longer its protection will last. An application of a standard oil of lemon eucalyptus product protects you about as long as a product containing DEET at a low concentration.

PROTECTIVE CLOTHING

Wear protective clothing. When you’re in an area with lots of mosquitoes, wear:

-Long sleeves
-Socks
-Long pants, possibly tucked into the tops of your socks
-Light colors
-A wide-brimmed hat to help protect your ears and the back of your neck

HOME/LAWN MAINTENANCE

Reduce mosquitoes around your home. Mosquitoes need standing water to breed. To keep your house and yard free of mosquito pools:

-Unclog roof gutters.
-Empty children’s wading pools at least once a week, and preferably more often.
-Change water in birdbaths at least weekly.
-Get rid of old tires in your yard.
-Empty outdoor flower pots regularly or store them upside down so that they can’t collect water.
-Drain your fire pit if water collects there.

I’VE TRIED THAT, WHAT’S LEFT?

Are some people more susceptible to those pesky flying creatures? Some scientists think so. Here are some theories:

BLOOD TYPE

Mosquitoes prefer blood type O. Mosquitoes are nearly twice as likely to land on people with type 0 blood than those with type A, according to a Japanese study. Most people secrete substances that allow mosquitoes to identify blood type before they bite.

BEER DRINKERS 

Beer drinkers beware. Just one bottle of beer can significantly boost your risk of being bitten, according to a study published in Journal of the American Mosquito Control Association.

FULL MOON

Mosquitoes are 500 times more active when the moon is full, reports the American Mosquito Control Association (AMCA). Overall, the highest risk times for mosquito bites are dusk and dawn, with the females of some species migrating up to 40 miles in pursuit of a meal. (Male mosquitoes don’t bite.)

WEARING SOCKS

Keep your socks on. Dirty feet are attractive to mosquitoes, as scientist Bart Knols discovered when he sat in a lab in his underwear to find out which parts of the body the pests are most likely to bite. He found that 75 percent of the bugs homed in on his feet, but after he washed them with deodorant soap, the mosquitoes bit randomly. His team also reported that stinky cheeses, such as Limburger—which has the same odoriferous compound responsible for foot odor—also draws mosquitoes.

PREGNANCY

Moms-to-be get bitten about twice as often as women who aren’t pregnant, increasing their risk for bug-borne diseases, according to a study conducted in Gambia. The researchers hypothesized that since women in the later stages of pregnancy exhale 21 percent more volume, mosquitoes were drawn in by the moisture and carbon dioxide in their breath. They also found that pregnant women’s abdomens are nearly 1 degree warmer, which may cause more volatile substances—released in sweat and attractive to mosquitoes—to be present on their skin.

EXERCISING

Both the carbon dioxide we exhale and substances in sweat, such as lactic acid, help mosquitoes find their prey. Physical activity ups risk for bites by as much as 50 percent, according to AMCA.

DARK CLOTHING

Dark-colored clothing can increase your risk of bites, compared to lighter-colored clothes. In one study comparing the appeal of various hues to mosquitoes, researchers reported  the following results:  black (most attractive); red (very attractive); grey and blue (neutral); khaki, green, light khaki, and yellow (less attractive).


Rainy Days Irrigation, Inc. | 115 Sigma Dr. | Garner, NC | (919) 779-9285
Irrigation | Drainage | Backflow | Landscape Lighting

 
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Published on May 14, 2013, in Information & Tips.

Drainage Issues? We Can Fix That.

With spring now in bloom our crews have been in full swing keeping our customers’ irrigation systems working at peak performance. They have also been busy installing new systems in preparation for the hot summer sunshine. However, with the heavy rain & downpours last week the need for proper drainage became apparent for a lot residential and businesses alike. These types of downpours can bring out more than unwanted mosquitoes in your yard.  When the land is flat, soils are dense or the water table is already high, a well-designed drainage system is a priority. By not having a proper drainage solution in place, water can collect to undermine structures and cause major water damage. Standing water can also drown expensive plants and ruin parts of your landscaping.

We know that no one wants to get wet when it is pouring down outside but it is a great time to look around your yard. Of course, you should do this when it is only raining outside and not storming. It can be a great time to assess the drainage around your house and yard. Giving you a clear perspective of trouble areas and even help you spot clogged gutters or drainage pipes that need to be unclogged. You can also go out right after a heavy rain and look for standing water as well.

If you find issues that are beyond a simple do-it-yourself fix, our drainage experts are here to help. Find out more about our drainage services on our website and check back for future drainage blog posts.


Rainy Days Irrigation, Inc. | 115 Sigma Dr. | Garner, NC | (919) 779-9285
Irrigation | Drainage | Backflow | Landscape Lighting