Spring Your Hotel's Landscape into Bloom with These Easy Maintenance Tips
By Ken Hutcheson President, U.S. Lawns | January 05, 2014
With spring right around the corner, now is a great time to determine what needs to be done around a hotel's property to make it ready to blossom. It is essential that the irrigation and drainage systems are working properly, that pruning and mulching are done correctly and the best suited perennials for the property are in place to provide a burst of seasonal color. Below are some key tips to remember when it comes to ensuring the property is ready for spring.
Check the Irrigation System Thoroughly
It is necessary for the irrigation system to undergo proper maintenance so as to ensure that water is being used most efficiently. A poorly maintained irrigation system can lead to a significant amount of water never reaching its intended target by being lost to runoff, evaporation, and deep watering below the root zone. A properly maintained irrigation system will decrease pollution from over-irrigation and run-off as well as reduce water waste. It will also improve the landscape's health by ensuring the correct amount of water is applied.
Proper hydration is essential to the health and appearance of the hotel's landscape. Both under-watering and over-watering can destroy plants, resulting in unnecessary expense. With the current trends in water and energy conservation, the protection of local ecosystems, and carbon emissions reduction, proper irrigation is crucial to effective grounds maintenance. A landscape contractor will be able to suggest a watering plan that is appropriate for a hotel's property, and may also recommend adjustments to any irrigation and watering systems already in place.
In addition, irrigation systems should be monitored on a weekly basis in addition to undergoing a monthly full system check, as this can lead to the discovery of potential issues before significant damage can occur. Since watering is often done during off-peak hours, irrigation systems can develop numerous problems that may go undetected if monitoring is not done regularly, resulting in significant water waste and potentially increasing damage to parts. Having a monthly system check performed on the irrigation system will ensure all moisture sensors are programmed correctly, that rain sensors are functioning properly, that all filters have been inspected and cleaned and are free of sediment, and that timers are checked and fully functioning in order to ensure the landscape is watered on schedule and without waste. Failure to properly maintain these individual pieces of the irrigation system can result in increased operational costs due to excess amounts of water being used.
It is also important to ensure all nozzle heads pop up completely and fully retract when the water is turned off as this will help with uniform water coverage. Also, verify that sprinklers are vertical and flush with the soil grade, and check for steady water pressure. Non-professionals can also regularly inspect sprinklers to make sure they are not blocked by grass, plants or other obstacles, and when necessary, clean or replace clogged heads and ensure sure all heads direct water to landscaped areas and not to impervious surfaces such as pavement. Constant vigilance is the best way to determine whether there are ongoing issues with water pressure. If any of these issues are discovered, they should be inspected immediately by an irrigation specialist.