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Philadelphia Tree Services and Landscaping

Landscaping Blog

Grass Seed: Why, How & What Kind To Use

Are you worried that neighbors are gawking at your unsightly lawn? Perhaps, you’d simply like to expand the amount of “green” around the perimeter of your home.

These are just two out of many cases in which a homeowner would like to bulk-up and optimize their grass. Today I’ll be discussing with you what options are available once you decide to go down this road.

Grass Seed VS Sod


So, you’ve decided to take the plunge and upgrade your lawn. However, this begs to question “do I go with grass seeds, sod, or some other combination?”

Sod is when you transplant already mature turf that is rolled out across your lawn in strips and usually requires a professional with special expertise to do it properly. If you go the seed route, it involves planting the seeds and sprouting your very own grass from the jump. Since planting seeds is less complicated, this can be done yourself or hired out if you wanted someone else to take care of it. The biggest difference is pricing.

Sod is by far the most expensive option. You can get the “Rolls Royce of grass seed” for significantly less money than you would spend for sod. Assuming you’re on a budget – let’s explore the option of planting your own grass seed for the remainder of this article.

Types of Grass Seed


Now that you’ve decided to plant your own grass seed – you’re probably wondering what kind you need to get, how much it will cost, etc. If you take a top-down approach, you’ll come to find that there is two main categories of grass seed – warm season and cold season.

The warm season type is made up of species hailing from the south of the country and they grow best in hot weather. This type of grass tends to go dormant in the winter time, degrading into a brownish color until spring arrives.

Cool season grass has its origins in the northern half of the country. Cool season grass tends to grow rapidly throughout the spring and fall. On the downside this kind of grass tends to turn brown during periods of intense heat during the summer.

Beyond this, there are all types of seeds with subtle differences and it would probably be best to speak with the associate at your local retailer so they can suggest the best combination of quality, value and function to fit your needs.

Grass Seed Planting


It’s best to plant warm season grass seed in late spring. The cool season seeds should be planted in late summer or early fall. Once you’ve determined when to plant and what seed to use – it’s time to get your hands dirty.

First off, you’ll want to prepare the soil by loosening up the top few inches, removing stones / debris and breaking up any clumps of dirt that are bigger than a golf-ball size. Following the preparation, it’s time to begin planting the seed. You can spread it evenly across the designated area either by hand or using a seeder, following a guideline of about 16 seeds per square inch. Don’t put too many seeds too close together, though, as they will be forced to fight for nutrients.

After your seeds are snuggled away in the dirt you will want to cover them with a very thin layer of soil. Covering them will hold them in place and help retain moisture so they grow healthy. Keep your grass seed moist to push the germination process along, while being careful not to make the ground oversaturated which will drown the seeds.

Grass Seed Wrap-Up


Hopefully you’ve gained some insight into why, what and how to go about bulking up the green grass around your home or optimizing the grass you already have. This is a great way to get outdoors and occupy your time in a healthy, productive way. You can even get your kids involved and make a family project out of it.

Landscaping and lawn care is our passion and we hope to inspire you with a little bit of our enthusiasm so you too can enjoy the wonders of Mother Nature.

cta-liberty-tick

March is here, the weather is warming up, and we’re all getting excited for the spring and summer ahead! But don’t forget that with the warmer seasons, bugs, ticks, and their associated problems come a long with them. A little bit of awareness and preparation can go a long way in keeping you and your family safe from tick-born illnesses, meaning you’ll get the most out of the beautiful time of the year.

Lyme Disease in Pennsylvania

Lyme disease is a n increasingly common tick-born illness that brings with it flu-like symptoms and arthritis. Over the past decade, it has become more common in PA as it spreads outward from the Connecticut/New Jersey area towards the Great Lakes. The Pennsylvania Department of Health states that Pennsylvania has led the nation in confirmed cases of Lyme disease for three straight years and for the first time deer ticks have been found in each of Pennsylvania’s 67 counties.

Anyone who spends time outdoors can come in contact with ticks, and many people contract Lyme disease right near their own home. But don’t let all that scare you. By treating your property with tick repellents, wearing the proper clothes, and checking yourself every time you return from a potential tick habitat, you can greatly reduce your risk of contracting Lyme Disease.

Tick Prevention Methods

Spraying your yard with tick control agents will improve conditions in the areas you’re likely to spend the most time in. Our licensed professionals are trained to recognize the various portions of a lawn or property that are most likely to pose a danger, and treat them with the proper type and amount of pesticide. Treating pets and applying repellents directly to your clothing is also highly recommended.

Call Today

The emergency of ticks in the spring can vary based on temperature patterns. If you’re interested in treating your yard , give our experts a call today and learn more about when and how to get started. We also provide measures for reducing mosquitos, which bring their own set of problems and discomforts as the weather gets hotter.

Learn more about our tick and mosquito prevention services here.

Learn more about Pennsylvania’s Lyme disease trends, prevention methods, and warning signs with the resources below:

emerald-ash-borer

This past summer, a voracious pest made its official appearance in the Philadelphia region. The emerald ash borer, an invasive species of insect that has been spreading across the US for the past decade or so, poses a serious threat to ash trees, leading to major concerns from conservationists, property owners, and parks department officials all over the country. With the official spotting in our area, we wanted to spread the word about what the emerald ash borer is capable of, and what can be done to protect your property and the trees in the surrounding areas.

Spotting the Emerald Ash Borer

The Emerald Ash Borer is about a half-an-inch in length, green in color, and a member of the beetle family. Researchers in the area caught their first specimen back in August using traps baited with pheromones, but the effects of this species can be found if you know what to look for.

The insect destroys ash trees when its larvae hatch inside the wood. From there, the hungry young pests eat away at the essential tissues of the tree until it is no longer able to transport water from the roots to the leaves. The infestation can destroy a healthy tree within a couple years, leaving a dead, decaying tree that is both unsightly and dangerous to surrounding property.

Woodpeckers feed on ash borers, and increased activity from these birds can be a sign of an infestation. Small holes where the insects bore out of the bark are usually about ⅛ inch in diameter and are an easy way to spot an infestation.

Exit holes from the emerald ash borer.

If you have an ash tree on your property that you suspect may be infested, call us immediately and one of our licensed arborists can diagnose the problem. If caught in time, your trees can be saved!

Protecting Against The Emerald Ash Borer in Philadelphia

As with many plant health issues, preventing the infestation from taking place is the best way to protect your ash trees. Our experts utilize the latest techniques to inoculate trees against infestation.

If the pests are already present in your tree, it may not be too late. Early treatments can eliminate the infestation, killing off the insects and protecting the tree from future problems.

The emerald ash borer is a serious threat to the health of ash trees throughout the region and we should all do our part to reduce the impact these invading insects. Keep a close eye on the trees in your neighborhood and contact our professionals to prevent infestations and treat existing issues.

We were excited when we got a chance to dig in and tackle this unique hardscaping project. Our client wanted a functional walkway that would follow the curve of their concrete patio and snake past their gardens. Needless to say, we got to work right away and finished off with a project we were proud of and our clients were thrilled with!

Our experts drew out their plans, taking into account drainage needs for the garden and the nearby patio. After digging out the “S” shaped design, we graded the dirt, laid out weed-blocking material, edged the far boundary, and began setting in our materials.

walkway-build-2

We love the way the red gravel contrasts with the grey slate for a beautiful, functional walkway that provides access to the backyeard without disrupting the flow of the landscape design.

walkway-build-1

If you’re interested in building a walkway, patio, retaining wall, or any other hardscaping project in the Philadelphia region, give the professionals at Liberty Tree Care a call and schedule a hassle-free consultation today!

Philadelphia winter tree pruning

Winter Tree Services in Philadelphia

Winter got a late start this year in Philadelphia, but there’s no denying it’s here. Don’t let wild weather sneak up on you and your property. Even modest snow and ice can have a major impact on the trees around your home, leading to downed branches, damaged property, lost power, or worse. Our crews have been working all over the city and its surrounding communities helping to clean up downed branches and reduce the risk of further damage through expert risk analysis and branch removal.

Philadelphia’s Certified Arborists

The professional arborists at Liberty Tree care know the warning signs to look for when diagnosing a property. We’ll assess potential hazards, consult with you about our proposed work and get to the task of pruning problem branches or removing trees entirely if necessary. Removing branches before they become a problem means you’ll save yourself the headache after the fact and it helps promote healthy trees for future seasons.

When winter finally breaks, you’ll be glad you were proactive about the trees on your property. Spring cleanup will be easier, your home will be safe from future storms in any season, and you’ll rest easy knowing Philadelphia’s leading tree care experts and landscape management specialists took care of you.

Call Liberty Tree Care Today!

Call our team today to schedule a consultation. We’ll do our best to work with your schedule to provide the most convenient service. Once we work out your needs and expectations, we can schedule work and have your property ready for nature’s toughest storms in no time. Don’t wait until after the fact to deal with problem branches, call Liberty Tree Care today!

Philadelphia Tree Pruning, Removal, Planting, Mulching, and maintenance.

Starting the Tree Removal Process

As we prepare our lawns and properties for summer, it becomes apparent that it’s time to take care of that project we’ve been putting off. Tree removal is one of those must-do projects that can be pretty intimidating. Some of our clients have no idea where to start with a problem tree, others know they just can’t put it off any longer. While it may seem like an intimidating job, it’s something we do week in and week out, and we’ll make the process painless.

The first step is to schedule a consultation with one of our certified arborists. We’ll explain your options and find out what line of action will work best for you. Our staff live in Philadelphia and the surrounding communities and we understand the various obstacles and concerns homeowners in the area face. Whether you wind up going with a light pruning or full-on tree removal, we’ll be able to explain how effective each job will be in satisfying your needs and we’ll move forward with that job quickly and effectively.

Top-Grade Tree Removal

When it comes to removing trees in Philadelphia, there are only a handful of companies you should trust. Our staff is comprised of experts certified by the International Society of Arboriculture, meaning we know the safest and least intrusive methods for removing unwanted trees. We take pride in our ability to safely take down trees and remove them from your property while leaving behind a minimal footprint.

Call Us Today

If you need a tree removed from your home in or around Philadelphia, we’re the team for you. Give us a call and schedule your consultation today. We’ll answer all of your questions and get moving on a project that will truly transform your property for the better.

At Liberty Tree Care and Management, trees are our world! Our certified arborists have dedicated countless hours to learning about what makes trees tick, and the best ways to care for them to ensure beautiful, long-lasting lives. Many of our arborists grew up in and around Philadelphia – the same communities that we provide tree care and landscaping for today!

Here are a few fun tree facts that might help you out at your next Quizzo night!

  1. Pennsylvania's state tree: The HemlockEvery state has an official Tree. The Official state tree of Pennsylvania is the Hemlock (Source). The conifer tree is in the pine family, and got its name because when you crush its needles, you get a similar smell to the unrelated poison hemlock (Source).
  2. Philadelphia's Fairmount parkForests cover 30% of the planet’s surface. 45% of carbon stored on land are tied up in forest. In Philadelphia, the forest coverage is quite a bit lower, but we’re still lucky enough to have a lot of green spaces including Fairmount Park, which is home to a variety of tree species and plant life!
  3. A mature leafy tree produces as much oxygen in a season as 10 people inhale in a year. That’s what makes them such important resources for everyone! Source: Arbor Day Foundation.
  4. On average 6 million trees are planted each year in the U.S. That’s a whole lot of new growth! Our arborists are proud to have contributed to a small portion of those plantings. Source
  5. Most trees can absorb as much as 48 lbs of carbon Dioxide per year! They’re basically nature’s air purifiers. Source
  6. Trees have been in existence on the plant for 370 million years. Source
  7. Giant sequoias – Sequoiadendron giganteum are the world’s largest living thing by volume and the world’s largest single trees. Source

Trees for wet or soggy areas. Wet soil have low amounts of air spaces, which results in low oxygen levels. Some deciduous trees that are good for wet soils or areas with poor drainage in Philadelphia include:

[ tree name – Scientific name]


Deciduous Trees in Philadelphia

  • American sycamore – Platanus occidentalis
  • American elm – Ulmus americana
  • American hornbeam – Carpinus caroliniana
  • Bald cypress – Taxodium distichum
  • Box elder – Acer negundo
  • Cherrybark oak – Quercus falcata
  • Common alder – Alnus glutinosa
  • Common hackberry – Celtis occidentalis
  • Dawn redwood – Metasequoia glyptostroboides
  • Deciduous hollies – Ilex decidua, I. verticillata
  • Downy serviceberry – Amelanchier arborea
  • Eastern cottonwood – Populus deltoides
  • Fringetree – Chionanthus virginicus
  • Green ash – Fraxinus pennsylvanica
  • London planetree – Platanus x acerifolia
  • Northern catalpa – Catalpa speciosa
  • Paulownia – Paulownia tomentosa
  • Pecan – Carya illinoensis
  • Persimmon – Diospyros virginiana
  • Pin oak – Quercus palustris
  • Red maple – Acer rubrum
  • River birch – Betula nigra
  • Shadblow serviceberry – Amelanchier canadensis
  • Silver maple – Acer saccharinum
  • Swamp chestnut oak – Quercus bicolor
  • Sweetbay magnolia – Magnolia virginiana
  • Sweetgum – Liquidambar styraciflua
  • Thornless honeylocust – Gleditsia triacanthos var. inermis
  • Tulip tree – Liriodendron tulipifera
  • Water oak – Quercus nigra
  • Water tupelo – Nyssa aquatica
  • Weeping willow – Salix babylonica
  • White weeping willow – Salix alba
  • Willow oak – Quercus phellos

We remove trees for all kinds of reasons. If you’ve got a tree on your Philadelphia property that you’re thinking about removing, give us a call and schedule a free consultation right away. We’ll walk you through the process and find a solution that works for you. Here are a few of the most common reasons Philadelphia residents remove trees from their properties:

  1. Major Landscaping work that would require the tree being removed
  2. Adding in a swimming pool, koi pond, or some other addition that requires more space? You may wind up having to remove a tree or two before moving forward. Luckily, our team of certified arborists can take care of the tree removal and our expert landscapers and hardscapers can make sure your property is in the best shape for getting started with whatever project will take up the newly freed-up space.

  3. A tree that Has Suffered Storm Damage
  4. Philadelphia is no stranger to damaging storms. Whether it’s a winter blizzard or a summer wind storm, the trees in our communities are subjected to all kinds of weather that can weaken and damage them over time. If you have a tree on your property that has been damaged or is especially vulnerable to being damaged, it’s a good idea to speak with a trained professional as soon as possible to diagnose the situation.

  5. Declining Tree Health
  6. If you suspect a tree on your property is sick or declining in health, you need to speak with an expert. Our staff is certified by the International Society of Arboriculture. That means we’re able to diagnose a variety of problems trees face, particularly in the Philadelphia area. Often times, we are capable of treating sick trees and bringing them back to a healthy state. If not, we have the tools and know-how to fill remove the tree.

  7. Roots of Trees Causing Threats to Sidewalks, Driveways, or Foundations
  8. The tree you see above the ground is only part of its incredible story. Underground, a vast network of roots seeks water wherever it can be found. Often times, this search for water leads roots to damage building foundations, sidewalks, driveways, and more. Often the only solution to this is to move or remove the problem tree.

  9. Cracks on the Main Trunks of Trees
  10. A crack in the main trunk of a tree is a sign of structural weakness and can lead to further damage and disease and can lead to a dangerous situation. If you have a tree on your property that’s cracked in its main trunk it’s time to talk to a professional about having it removed before the situation worsens.

  11. Tree leaning in the Wrong Direction
  12. Trees can develop leans over time for a variety of reasons. Whether they’re seeking sunshine, being pushed by heavy winds, or loosing grip on loose ground, the results can be dangerous. If you have a tree that’s leaning towards a structure or towards and area that could pore a danger, you need to consider having it removed. Our arborists will be able to tell you why the tree is leaning and look for potential solutions before removing it altogether.

  13. Construction Work That Will Require the Tree Being Removed
  14. Adding a new addition or a guest house to your property? We’ll remove any trees that may be in the way and leave the space ready for the new project. Our team ov experts can remove any tree and leave a minimal footprint behind.

Tree Removal Philadelphia

If you have a tree that fits one or more of the characteristics above, call Liberty Tree Care today and schedule a free consultation. Our experts live in Philadelphia and the surrounding communities and we’re familiar with the various obstacles and concerns of fellow residents.

Tips to consider when choosing a Philadelphia tree service company

1. Insurance: You will be liable for any property damage caused by a Tree service if they do not have appropriate liability and workers compensation insurance. Always choose a Tree service company with the proper insurance certificates.


2. BBB: Only a few Philadelphia Tree service companies receive BBB accreditation. Find out what kind of rating the Tree service company has.


3. A Good Tree service company should have positive online reviews. You can research by performing a simple Google search and learning more the company and their relationships with clients.


4. Get multiple estimates from different tree services to get an idea what the average cost of service will be. We recommend meeting each representative to get a chance to ask questions concerning the project.


5. Ask if a certified arborist will be present during the project. Reputable tree service companies in Philadelphia will have certified arborists who are members of the ISA (International Society of Arboriculture) present at all Tree service projects.