Be Prepared for Leaves

Minnesota offers beautiful fall colors every year but it also means- leaves, leaves everywhere! They can be a hassle, but these tips will help you deal with them this fall.

No one enjoys the back-breaking work of raking. Here is how you can get the job over quickly:

  • Let gravity help you out by raking leaves downhill if possible.
  • Skip raking and move straight to mowing. Chopped leaves can allow for vital nutrients to return to the soil.  
  • Use a leaf blower to create piles to pick up and bag.

Homeowners want to avoid more than 10-20% of their grass to be covered in leaves when the snow falls. Excessive leaf matter going into winter may smother the grass and inhibit growth, as well as promote mold diseases, and encourage turf damage from critters like voles and mice.

Is it beneficial for your lawn to spend time raking and bagging leaves, or should you plan on mowing over everything and mulching the rest? Or simply leave them be?

Raking. Improve your arm strength by raking (or using a leaf blower) to gather a pile, then bag for disposal, or deliver to a compost site. Depending on the size of your lawn and number of trees on site, this may take an hour or a full day. In order to rake efficiently, lawns should be dry and trimmed. Additional bag fees or compost facility charges may deter people from going this route, but the excitement of jumping in a large leaf pile has its benefits too.

Mowing and mulching. Chopping grass and leaves into small pieces (also known as mulching) so they incorporate into your lawn canopy via a lawnmower benefits the soil in a number of ways. Nutrients and organic matter may add nitrogen to the lawn and assist in root growth. Some leaf types have even been shown to reduce weed germination over time. Mulching may require more frequent mowing in the fall, but specialized attachments and mulching mowers can also be purchased to make this job easier.

Leaving it be. If you have no trees and the wind blows away more than 10% of your lawn coverage, you may be off the hook for raking and mowing. Use your extra time wisely before the Minnesota winter hits!

Consult with our experts, purchase sod and find winterizing fertilizer at B&B Hoffman Sod Farms in Elk River by visiting us online or calling 763-434-6572.

Avoid These Common Fall Lawn Care Mistakes

Even though the temperatures are starting to drop, it’s important not to abandon lawn care yet! Help ensure that your lawn is healthy and beautiful this spring by avoiding these common fall lawn care mistakes. 

Leaving Fallen Leaves

Minnesota autumn brings a vibrant display of leaves in hues of red and orange that are beautiful to view. However, once these leaves fall to the ground it can set your lawn up for trouble. You may be tempted to ignore them but too much leaf cover can suffocate your grass and prevent oxygen from reaching its roots. Leaf cover can also trap moisture and prevent oxygen from reaching your lawn, creating a good environment for lawn disease to thrive. Cleaning up fallen leaves or mulching them with your mower will help promote your lawn’s health.

Watering as Usual

As the weather gets cooler and the days grow shorter, your lawn will not need as much supplemental water to survive. Cutting back on how much you water in the fall will help prevent fungal growth and prepare your lawn for winter. However, if you have just installed your sod make sure you are watering adequately. Water your new sod every day for 1 week and long enough so that when you step onto the sod it’s squishy. Then after one week, (in the fall only) you can water every other or every three days; just don’t let it dry out.  Squishy isn’t necessary.  

Forgetting to Fertilize

While many homeowners may think fertilizer should be applied in the spring, fall is an ideal time to refresh your lawn before going dormant in the winter. Fall fertilization will assist in storing food and ensuring strong roots throughout the winter, and greener grass after the spring thaw. Apply fertilizer around the first week in October for the best results. We recommend a blend of 20-10-10, which can be purchased at our shop.

DON’T Avoid Planning Ahead for Spring

If you’ve been holding off until spring to lay sod, there is still time yet this year. Cool temperatures and regular rainfall this time of year encourages our natural sod grass to retain moisture. Consult with our experts, purchase sod, and find winterizing fertilizer at B&B Hoffman Sod Farms in Elk River by visiting us online or calling 763-434-6572.

Can I Install Sod in the Fall? Learn What you Need to Do

Your time outside this summer may have you planning for how you can update your lawn for next year. If your grass is on the list for an upgrade, why not start this fall?! Due to the warm weather, it is often thought that summer is the best time to install sod, but this isn’t true! Sod can be installed at any time throughout the growing season. However, there are a couple of factors to consider when installing sod in the fall. 

Cool fall temperatures.

Fall usually brings cooler temperatures and the occasional rainfall. Not only are these cooler temperatures easier on your new grass, but it is also easier on you or the laborer laying the sod. By laying sod in fall weather, you have less risk of your sod overheating. You still have to water your lawn regularly, but you will need less water as it isn’t evaporating as quickly. You can still be successful when laying sod in the summer, however, summertime is usually busier and if you’re planning on going to the cabin every weekend, it is probably best to wait for the fall to lay sod. 

When is it too late to Install?

It’s never too late to install sod if we can harvest it in our fields. There are some things to keep in mind when it comes to watering your sod. If you are blowing out your irrigation system, you will still need a water source (think garden hose & sprinklers). If it’s JUST before winter, give it a good soaking and if it freezes it will go dormant and take off in the spring. However, if it warms up again you may need to drag out the hose/sprinklers. This usually occurs in the late October/early November timeframe. We do harvest sod up until the ground is frozen or the snow is too deep, but the rule of thumb is to try and have your project done by end of October as our Minnesota November weather is very unpredictable.

Fall is a great time to lay sod. Follow these steps when installing and caring for your sod in the fall, and don’t forget to fertilize your lawn (mid-October) with a 20-10-10. If you have any questions regarding the installation of sod feel free to contact us at 763-434-8231.

Creating a Yard Your Kids Will Love

With a little bit of planning, low-maintenance landscaping, and the right natural turfgrass in Minnesota, it’s easy to turn your yard into an oasis that your whole family can enjoy. If you have young children, consider the following tips to ensure they will love heading outdoors to enjoy your yard.

Creating a Lush Lawn

Your lawn is the starting point for a kid-friendly backyard– it provides a soft, comfortable area for all kinds of activities. Whether your kids enjoy picnics outdoors or want to play a game of touch football, a healthy lawn will make a perfect area. Installing sod in your yard is a great option if you don’t currently have grass, or your existing lawn is unhealthy. Within a few hours, turfgrass sod transforms bare soil to a living carpet of grass with a mature density that looks great instantly.

Kid-Friendly Landscaping Options

Depending on your budget and your yard, there are multiple options for landscaping. Large trees are great for backyards to provide shade. Consider planting flowers that consist of your kids’ favorite colors or giving them their own garden areas to maintain. If you have young children, be sure to research before choosing plants for your landscaping, as some can easily end up in curious toddlers’ mouths.

Fun Options for Play

Kids are sure to love a trampoline, sandbox, or maybe a playground as a fun element in your backyard. Other options could be lawn games such as bocce ball, or corn hole. If your kids (and maybe you) want to stay cool during the summertime, you may want to add a sprinkler or an inflatable pool into your plans.

The options are endless, use your creativity, and create the perfect backyard oasis! If you want a lawn that is family-friendly, and can be enjoyed this summer, beautiful natural turfgrass sod is a great start.

B&B Hoffman Sod is your source for the highest quality sod in Minnesota. Our friendly, knowledgeable staff are committed to answering all of your questions to ensure a stress-free experience with your new Minnesota sod lawn. Whether you wish to sod a small play area for the family or an entire neighborhood or business, B&B Hoffman Sod can help you make it happen. To learn more about  B&B Hoffman Sod Farms and our family business, visit us online at bbhoffmansodev.wpengine.com or call 763-434- 6572.

 

Summer Lawn Care Tips

Minnesota summers are short, sweet and the best time to live life outdoors. But, what fun is your yard if the grass is patchy, weedy, and uncomfortable to walk on? The basis for enjoying the outdoors and your yard is a lush lawn. Spending some time maintaining your grass requires a little more than watering and mowing but it will pay off. To enjoy soft green grass all summer long you will need to manage weeds and pests, and make sure your lawn has the nutrients it needs to handle the summer heat. Below are a few tips on how you can help your lawn flourish this summer and next.

Early Summer

  1. Treat for Pests & Weeds: Check with your local lawn care company about applying weed control and spraying for pests. You can also find weed and pest controls at a local hardware store to tackle it on your own.  
  2. Mow: Mow your grass high in the early summer and leave the grass clippings to break down and help feed the grass.
  3. Feed: Feeding in the early summer helps strengthen your lawn so it has a better chance to fight heat and drought conditions. We recommend a blend of fertilizer similar to 5-14-42 in the summer.

Mid Summer

  1. Water: Water deeply to ensure strong root growth. The goal is to water long enough to have the water penetrate the soil between 4-6 inches deep.
  2. Mow: Mow your grass to its specified type height, usually around 2 ½ to 3 inches. Taller grass is a natural weed repellent and allows deeper root growth. Shorter grass dries easily, often turning brown and spreading disease.

Late Summer

  1. Sharpen your Mower Blade: Dull blades can tear grass causing it to lose moisture more readily.
  2. Water in the Morning: Watering between 6 and 10 AM helps lessen the chances of water evaporation due to the summer heat.
  3. Watch for Weeds: If weeds reemerge, continue to spot spray.

If your lawn is looking less than desirable and you’re tired of it, give us a call to chat about installing natural turf grass for an instant transformation. Each piece is grown in uniform thickness and bred to be dark green, soft, and durable to withstand harsh climates. As a locally owned business with years of service, we can help you achieve a green, lush lawn that you can enjoy all summer long! Call us today at 763-434-6572 or email us at sales@bbhoffmansod.com

Fall cleanup: rake, mulch, or do nothing?

A common question this time of year is the best way to complete fall yard cleanup. Is it beneficial for your lawn to spend time raking and bagging leaves, or should you plan on mowing over everything and mulching the rest? Better yet, spend a couple of extra hours at the apple orchard or pumpkin patch–and do nothing at all?

The truth is, it’s up to you and depends on your lawn and landscaping needs. Essentially, homeowners want to avoid more than 10-20% of their grass to be covered in leaves when the snow falls. Excessive leaf matter going into winter may smother the grass and inhibit growth, as well as promote mold diseases, and encourage turf damage from critters like voles and mice. Read on for the three most common fall clean up techniques and the pros and cons of each.

Raking. Improve your arm strength by raking (or using a leaf blower) to gather a pile, then bag for disposal, or deliver to a compost site. Depending on the size of your lawn and number of trees on site, this may take an hour or a full day. In order to rake efficiently, lawns should be dry and trimmed. Additional bag fees or compost facility charges may deter people from going this route, but the excitement of jumping in a large leaf pile has its benefits too.

Mowing and mulching. Chopping grass and leaves into small pieces (also known as mulching) so they incorporate into your lawn canopy via a lawn mower benefits the soil in a number of ways. Nutrients and organic matter may add nitrogen to the lawn and assist in root growth. Some leaf types have even been shown to reduce weed germination over time. Mulching may require more frequent mowing in the fall, but specialized attachments and mulching mowers can also be purchased to make this job easier.

Leaving it be. If you have no trees and the wind blows away more than 10% of your lawn coverage, you may be off the hook for raking and mowing. Use your extra time wisely before the snow sets in!

Planning ahead for spring. Already dreaming of epic outdoor parties for next year? Don’t wait to upgrade your lawn! Apply fertilizer every fall to provide nutrients for grass to create deep roots and stay healthy in a dormant season. If you’ve been holding off until spring to lay sod, there is still time yet this year. Cool temperatures and regular rainfall this time of year encourages our Kentucky Bluegrass turf to retain moisture. Make sure to water regularly until the ground is frozen.

Consult with our experts, purchase sod and find winterizing fertilizer at B&B Hoffman Sod Farms in Elk River by visiting us online or calling 763-434-6572.

 

Thanks for supporting our family farm for 30 years

B&B Hoffman Sod farm is celebrating its 30th year of producing high quality sod for Midwest homeowners, landscapers, and builders. As a family run company deeply rooted in the sod growing business, we are committed to producing the best Kentucky Bluegrass turf in Minnesota.

Our sod is grown at one of three farms in central Minnesota, offering a slight variety in temperature and terrain to ensure a fruitful season. Seeds are planted in late summer (a lot of seed, about 70 pounds per acre!) and we irrigate as necessary. Our sod is fertilized regularly to produce lush, beautiful grass. Typically, sod is harvested about 12-16 months after plantings to ensure a hardy root structure.

We take great pride in mowing every field, every other day. It is one of the most important parts of the growing process, as mowing stimulates root growth. After each field is mowed, we follow up with a roller to compact the soil and counteract any tire marks.

Sod is harvested when the ground isn’t frozen–usually April to November. We prefer to harvest in the morning, so the ground temperature (and therefore the sod temperature) is lower, increasing the shelf life of the product.  We offer two sizes of sod for our customers, small rolls are ideal for homeowners, while large rolls are perfect for wide open spaces or commercial properties. B&B Hoffman Sod offers convenient delivery throughout the Midwest or pickup at our Elk River, MN location.

We are proud to grow about 600 acres of sod every year. Our family name is not just on our trucks, but in every blade of grass we grow, every delivery we make and every question we answer for our customers. We know this is what makes our company so strong.

To learn more about  B&B Hoffman Sod Farms and our family business, visit us online at bbhoffmansodev.wpengine.com or call 763-434- 6572.

Time to spring clean your yard

Spring is the ideal time to get your yard back in shape after a long winter.  As we turn our attention to lawn care, rather than snow removal, it is time to patch dead grass areas, de-thatch, and fertilize.  Check out our easy pro tips on improving the appearance of your yard.

De-Thatch to encourage growth. Remove dead layers of grass, roots, and debris that accumulates between the soil surface and the green grass blades by de-thatching. If not performed regularly, you  may notice portions of grass that form a thick mat, preventing water and air from reaching the soil. To prevent this, de-thatching should be done once a year in the early spring, before grass becomes bright green and thick. De-thatching, which can be done to smaller lawns with a special rake, allows you to get the thatch out of the grass, allowing air to get at the base of the plant and gives it a healthy start in the spring after a long winter. Those with larger lawns may choose to rent a de-thaching machine, which can be either be pulled behind a lawn tractor or there is a push version likely available at a local general rental store.

Replenish your lawn with fertilizer. Fertilizers are important to lawn care because they can expedite plant growth, making plants and crops grow quickly and appear greener, fuller, and healthier. Most nutrients for your lawn are water-soluble and, over time through snow, rain or irrigation, the water will carry nutrients out of your lawn and leave it nutrient deficient. An unhealthy lawn is susceptible to disease, and fertilizer can replenish those nutrients and keep your lawn healthy. Our experts recommend fertilizing early in the spring, following up every four weeks through the month of June.

Repair or replace your lawn with sod. For new lawns, sod is an excellent option to jump-start the growing process, as it gives you an immediate green lawn with mature density and a solid root system. Turfgrass sod creates a soft, clean and safe playing surface for children, lawn games, and family entertaining. Our easy-to-use small sod rolls make laying turfgrass yourself easy and efficient. There is no expensive machinery needed, making small sod rolls the do-it-yourselfers product of choice.

Prevent weeds and over-watering. Pre-emergent weed control should go down when the ground temperature reaches 50 degrees to avoid any seeds that may have dropped last fall to germinate. No need to water your lawn this early in the season just to expedite greening. Spring rains typically produce sufficient moisture for awakening lawns. Only irrigate if grass shows signs of dehydration.

To learn more about spring lawn care and the products that B&B Hoffman Sod Farms offers, visit us online at bbhoffmansodev.wpengine.com or call 763-434-6572.

 

It’s not too late to winterize your lawn!

Many homeowners think October is too late in the season to spend extra time on their lawn, but this is a myth! In preparing for a long, dormant winter, your grass is busy absorbing energy, moisture, and nutrients. Fall is ideal for giving your lawn some TLC to ensure a lush a beautiful lawn come spring.

As you continue to cut and water your lawn this season, drop the blade on your mower to its lowest setting as the season comes to a close. This modification allows more sunlight to reach the grass and less to turn brown over the winter.

Applying fertilizer in the fall provides essential nutrients for grass to grow deep roots and stay healthy until the last snow melts. Using a drop spreader for application provides an even and consistent layer of fertilizer.

If you’ve been waiting to lay sod, now is the time to do so. Cool temperatures and regular rainfall allows sod to retain moisture and root quickly.

And don’t forget to water! Until the ground is frozen plants and grass still need regular watering to stay healthy.

Purchase sod and winterizing fertilizer from B&B Hoffman Sod Farms in Elk River. To learn more about us and products we offer, visit us online or call 763-434-6572.