Monthly Archives: November 2015

Why You Shouldn’t Hard Prune Crape Myrtles


A properly placed Crape Myrtle is a low maintenance plant needing little or no pruning. Problems with overgrown, misshapen, or misplaced Crape Myrtles can be greatly reduced with proper selection of Crape Myrtle cultivars, proper plant selection at the nursery, and proper plant placement in the landscape.

Crape Myrtle pruning started because there were only a few cultivars available, none of which were “dwarf” or smaller varieties. the only way to keep a Crape Myrtle to a desired height was by hard pruning “topping” on a regular basis. Topping leaves large branch and stem stubs that are not only unsightly, they can also weaken the plant. This practice, known as “Crape Murder” is no longer recommended.

Negative effects of hard pruning:

  1. Delays flowering in the Spring and can shorten the season of bloom.
  2. Stimulates sprouting from the roots of the base of the main stem which takes nutrients away from the tree.
  3. Removes large amounts of starches and other food reserves which weaken the plant.
  4. Dramatically reduces the size of the plant canopy, decreasing its ability to perform photosynthesis.
  5. Increase the risk of wood decay and insect infestations.

Generally, Crape Myrtle pruning of any kind should be avoided unless it improves the plant structure or removes dead or damaged branches and twigs. If pruning is necessary, tip pruning “tipping” is acceptable. Tipping removes small-diameter branches (typically one-year-old) on the outer edge of the plant canopy where the spent flowers and seed capsules are. However, tipping is very time-consuming and impractical on larger Crape Myrtles and has no real benefit to the plant.


Call Grass Roots Lawn & Landscape, Inc. (850)897-3073 Niceville  (850)832-4212 Panama City Beach


November 9, 2015 Press Release


Niceville, FL. November 9, 2015 – Grass Roots Lawn & Landscape, Inc. has joined the National Association of Landscape Professionals’ STARS Safe Company Program, the Nation’s top safety program for the landscape industry, which provides tools to assist companies in their efforts to reduce hazards and injuries and increase workplace safety.

Participating companies make a commitment to excellence in safe work practices by taking the active role in promoting safety throughout their companies and investigating and documenting every job-related injury, incident, or accident. STARS members help increase safety in the entire industry by complying with all OSHA postings and other regulatory requirements, participating in NALP’s Safety Recognition Awards Program, sharing best practices, and encouraging other companies to improve their safety practices.

For more information about the STARS program, visit or call NALP at (800) 395-2522.

About the National Association of Landscape Professionals

The National Association of Landscape Professionals is the voice of 100,000 landscape industry professionals who create and maintain healthy green spaces. The association advocates on issues impacting its members and offers mentoring and education programs that inspire its members to excellence. Many members become Landscape Industry Certified, achieving the highest standard of industry expertise, business professionalism, and knowledge.


November/December Newsletter

Happy Holidays! As we come to the end of another year at Grass Roots we are thankful for all our customers and look forward to another great year in 2016! Please know that with the upcoming holiday season your service day may shift during the week leading up to, or just after, a scheduled holiday. Grass Roots will be closed December 23rd – January 2nd so our employees can spend the holidays with their families. Hope you and your loved ones have a Merry Christmas and a peaceful New Year!

Lawn Maintenance

As the grass begins to go dormant your lawn maintenance crew will continue to focus on removal of all those falling leaves and keeping your turf free of debris. With your November invoice, you also should have received a note about Crape Myrtle Pruning and its detrimental effects to the tree. If you still want your Crape Myrtle pruned, please notify us prior to the end of January so we have your request on file.


If you are an irrigation program customer, we will be coming out soon to shut down your irrigation system and winterize it. Our technician will put a tag on your system to let you know that it has been shut down. Those customers taking care of their own systems will want to make sure to shut down the system prior to the first hard freeze we experience.

Lawn Care and Shrub Care

Your lawn has received its last application for the year, a pre-emergent to help keep winter weeds from germinating, along with liquid Potassium to help prepare your lawn for dormancy. It is still the time of year when your turf is susceptible to a fungus called brown patch, especially if your grass is getting too much water. Please notify the office if you suspect that you have brown patch in your lawn.


As the growing season has ended, our landscaping operations are on “pause” until springtime. If you are interested in having landscaping done in 2016, you are welcome to call the office to set up a time to meet with our landscape designer to plan and discuss projects in early spring.

KathyEmployee Spotlight

Merry Christmas from Kathy and Angelle (and Harley, too) at the Grass Roots business office! Please call or email us with any of your questions. We can be reached by phone Monday-Friday from 8:30 – 5:00. If we are on the other line and you have to leave a message, please be assured it will be returned as soon as possible.

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