May Garden Chores

Summer bulb collage - canna dahlia gladiolus begonia lily
The month of May brings longer days, warmer temperatures, and plenty of opportunity to get outside and work on your may garden chores. Whether you’re just getting started in gardening or have years of experience, there are essential garden tasks that should be tackled in May.


  • Pruning – May is ideal for shearing evergreens such as junipers, conifer and cypress. Azaleas, camellias and rhododendrons can also be pruned back to eliminate frost-damaged branches. Remember that cutting back into bare branches or cutting new flowers off before bloom can harm your plants or stop growth, so use care. Want help? We assist with pruning and maintenance for gardens of all sizes. Learn More About Our Pruning Services.
  • Fertilizing – New shrub, tree, and rose plantings will benefit from treatment with fertilizer; remember to water well after application.
  • Flowers – Hardy annuals are safe to plant now, but wait to plant more tender annuals (impatiens, geranium, fuchsia) in the ground until nighttime temps stay up over 50 degrees. All summer-flowering perennials, bulbs and shrubs can be planted now, as well as chrysanthemums for fall color. Have fun!
  • Veggies – Be sure your soil warmed up before you move less-hardy veggie starts into the garden. Having a hard time deciding what to plant in a limited garden space? Check out design ideas featuring retaining walls.
  • Watering – Now’s the time to make sure that your irrigation system is working so that you’re prepared to meet the needs of your garden. Schedule an appointment with us to prep, prime, install, or repair before things heat up this summer. More About Frontier’s Spring Start-Up Service.
  • Lawn Care: De-thatch, dig out perennial weeds or spray, aerate, and overseed with grass. In some cases, applying a thin layer of fine soil helps as well. Call us for more information and guidance on lawn care. Short on time? Let us handle it for you. Check Out Our Maintenance Services for more information.
  • Weeds / Pest Control – Get aggressive and eliminate weeds before they go to bud and seed. Mulching is a great way conserve moisture and prevent weed seeds from germinating; try using hemlock or fir. Eradicate slugs with bait or traps. Clearing vegetation near your garden helps. Examine the lawn for damaged turf; wet or waterlogged areas are particularly susceptible to hungry crane fly larvae. Recovery is faster when issues are caught early.
  • Spring Yard Clean-Up Services – You may be overwhelmed with your landscape debris and growth and need a seasonal overhaul. Frontier Landscaping can remove unwanted yard debris, weeds, and prune trees and shrubs to help bring your yard from eyesore to wow!

April Garden Tasks

What a beautiful time of the year with the rhododendrons, magnolias, camellias, forsythia and other spring flowering plants reaching their peak of beauty. There are a few April garden tasks one can do to keep the garden looking its best this season. Remember what is accomplished early in the season will help cut down on garden maintenance the rest of year.

april garden projectsLAWN CARE

Now is a good time to give some attention to the lawn. The application of a spring lawn fertilizer will perk up the lawn and improve overall color and appearance. If needed, get one that includes moss killer. Most lawns could use aerating now, and, if necessary, a thatching. Applying new grass seed fills in the lawn and deters moss and weeds. Use about one pound per 300 square feet. Call Frontier today to find out how our landscape services can make having a lush, beautiful lawn.


Local garden outlets have their finest selection of fruit trees and berry plants this time of year. All types of fruits and berries do best when planted in full sun – consider a small back yard orchard this year!


Amazingly, it’s time to get the vegetable garden underway in earnest. Plant perennial vegetables like asparagus, rhubarb, horseradish now. You can plant cool weather veggies: peas, carrots, beets, greens of all sorts, cauliflower, cabbage and more. Wait until later this month to plant beans and corn. Don’t put in warm weather crops like tomatoes, squash, cucumbers and peppers until next month.

April garden projectsSUMMER-FLOWERING BULBS

If you missed the fall window for planting spring flowering bulbs such as tulips and daffodils, you needn’t miss this opportunity to plant summer-flowering bulbs including dahlias, gladiolas and lilies. Mix bulb fertilizer, processed manure and peat moss into the soil and check the instructions for proper depth.


There is still time to plant trees, shrubs, perennials and other plants. Rockery perennials and hardy annuals may also be planted at this time.


April and May are ideal for pruning or shearing evergreens such as junipers, conifer and cypress. However, if you cut back into bare branches it can be difficult or impossible for the plant to regrow. Optimize your evergreens with an expert pruning by Frontier Landscaping’s team of professionals.

Spring garden tasks: Reasons to get outside

Spring garden tasks: Reasons to get outside

witch hazel

Capricious as March may be in her whims of weather, taking on a few of these spring garden tasks – even if between showers – will spruce up your landscape and lay the groundwork for a great growing season.

A clean sweep of decluttering, purging and tidying now will reward you with a fresh palette and greater options going forward.

Remove dead, damaged branches

Tree and shrub branches that have been damaged by cold, snow and wind should be pruned back to live stems; use a handsaw for any larger than ½ inch in diameter.

Prune (some) shrubs

While it’s a good time to prune summer-flowering shrubs, such as Rose of Sharon, before buds swell, the ideal time to prune spring bloomers is right after they flower. However, you can also prune them while in flower and use the flowering stalks in arrangements for inside. Forsythia and lilacs are wonderful examples.

Prune roses

Cut back winter-damaged rose canes to 1 inch below the blackened area. On climbers, keep younger green canes and remove older woody ones; neaten them up by bending the canes horizontally and tipping buds downward. Use jute twine or gentle Velcro fasteners to hold the canes in place. This task is best accomplished with a pair of sharp bypass pruners – and good gloves!siberian iris - dividing (2)

Divide perennials

Prune flowering perennials to a height of 4-5 inches to allow new growth to shoot up. Where soil has thawed, dig up overgrown clumps of perennials, such as daylily and hosta, dividing them into smaller clumps to be shared or transplanted elsewhere.

Clear the decks

Rake fallen leaves and dead foliage from around the base of your plants; they can smother plants and foster disease. Pull up weeds and spent annuals and rake away existing mulch to make way for a new layer after spring planting. Use pins to fasten loose drip irrigation lines and a square-head shovel to give beds a clean edge and keep turf grass from growing into them.


Now is a good time to spread a pelletized fertilizer on the soil’s surface so that spring rains can carry it to the roots. Add 5-10-10 fertilizer around bulbs as soon as they flower to maximize bloom time and nourish next year’s growth.

Compost yard waste

A compost pile can be as simple as a small corral made by joining a section of wire fencing. Collected leaves, cuttings, spent foliage and other debris will decompose and create nutrient rich humus for amending your garden. Branches larger than 1/2 inch in diameter should be cut down or chipped to accelerate decomposition or add a bagged compost starter to the pile. Keep the pile as moist as a wrung-out sponge and aerate it with a pitchfork every two weeks. Early spring weeds may keep growing and go to seed. These and chemically treated plant material should be otherwise disposed of.

Prep lawn for spring seeding

Test your soil’s pH in various locations where your lawn will be and assemble the right amendments. Remove damaged, diseased turf to prepare for the seeding that should follow in a few weeks. You can remove dead turf with a square metal rake, then flip it over to spread compost. Work in a half-inch layer of compost to keep the new seed moist and increase the germination rate. Begin seeding once the forsythia starts blooming in your area.

flagstone path maintenanceClean up paths & patios

Rake escaped gravel back into aggregate walkways and patios and order more to spread in large depressions that often form near the driveway’s apron. Refill joints between flagstones by sweeping in new sand or stone dust; water with a hose to set it, then repeat. If the freeze-thaw cycle has heaved pavers out of place, remove them and replenish the base material as needed before setting pavers back in. Use a pressure washer with a low pressure tip to remove slippery algae spots or leaf stains from patios and walkways.

Restore worn wood fences

Remove badly rotted or damaged pickets, boards or lattice and scrub wood structures with a mixture of 2 gallons water, 2 quarts bleach and 1 cup liquid soap; let dry. Patch rotted sections with wood epoxy; install new wood as needed. Check wobbly fence posts to see if they need replacing. Scrape off old paint, then sand with 60 grit sandpaper to prep for a new finish coat. Once temperatures go above 50 degrees F, brush on a new coat of paint or stain.

Choose Frontier Landscaping for help with your spring landscape cleanup. We are based in Vancouver, Wash., and provide services in the Portland-Vancouver area and throughout Clark County, Washington.

Call today to find out how Frontier Landscaping can grant you the yard you’ve been wishing for.

If the Weather is Fickle, you might get in a Pickle!

If the Weather is Fickle, you might get in a Pickle!

We had a pretty funny February and many people (and plants!) feel like spring is here to stay. Well, we’ve lived in the Northwest for a long time and we know better than to trust a warm February. Even though we’ve had an unseasonably warm and dry winter, we might still get cold temperatures and wet weather and it’s good to be prepared.

Rain weather

Protect Plants

Many bulbs, perennials, fruit trees and other plants have woken up early from dormancy, due to temperatures in the mid-60’s this past month. However, if temperatures drop again (and they likely might), plants can incur damage. We recommend keeping your beds mulched to insulate root systems. If we have a hard freeze in the forecast, you can even throw a blanket over vulnerable plants to protect them.

Plant with Caution

Many plants can go in the ground during cold temperatures. Dormant trees, fruit trees, roses and berry plants all do well when planted in winter. However, hold off on planting tender annuals and most vegetables until we get further into spring to avoid frost damage.

Pay attention to the Forecast

A quick look once a day at the low temperatures will help give you a warning if a cold frost is on the way. We also send out cold weather warnings via our email newsletter and on our Facebook page. Stay tuned to both pages to get weather updates and seasonal tips.

Is your Lawn Growing? Spring must be Coming!

 Lawn and Yard Maintenance

The warmer weather in February means that the grass has been growing fast! It’s already time to get mowing! Whether you mow your lawn yourself or hire our maintenance team to take care of it, it’s good to keep an eye on it and not let it get too long! Lawns are at their best when kept weed-free and at a reasonable height. It’s time to get your lawn and landscape ready for outdoor activities and enjoyment. Our maintenance crew can schedule regular visits to keep your yard looking clean and trim.

Schedule Now!

If you would like to have regular mowing and yard maintenance on your home or property, now is the time to sign up and schedule your visits! We are scheduling for the 2015 season now and it’s already filling up. You can choose your level of service to make sure you get the right amount of care for your property to keep it looking beautiful. We serve both residential and commercial properties of any size all around the Vancouver area.

Beyond Mowing

While a well-mowed and trimmed lawn is often an essential component to a beautiful landscape, it’s far from the extent of our maintenance services! We can provide you with a maintenance plan tailored to your specific needs. Our professionally trained maintenance teams offer the following services:

  • mowingPest and Weed Control
  • Plant and Turf Fertilizing
  • Irrigation Repair/Maintenance
  • Low Voltage Lighting Repair/Maintenance
  • Water Feature Repair/Maintenance
  • Lawn Mowing and Renovation
  • Seasonal Yard Clean-ups


Click here to learn more about our maintenance services.

Contact us here or call us today!



Keep Your Plants Healthy and Strong!

Make sure your lawn stays green and your garden well-watered this summer, without all the hassles!

Summer is on its way and it will be rain-free around here by July. It’s odd to think about, as the spring rains soak us, but Northwest summers are notoriously bone dry. But we all still have our landscape investments to keep up and we want to enjoy our yards!

Now is the time to install new sprinkler systems or start up your existing system. Frontier Landscaping will come to your home or business to make sure your sprinklers work properly and are ready to go for the season. Whether you want us to come out one time or begin a continuing service, we can take care of your needs.

Sprinkler Systems for plant care


Spring Start Up: Irrigation Repair

If you have an existing sprinkler system, this is the service for you.  Our skilled irrigation technicians will come test your system for efficiency and get it ready to go for summer!

We perform backflow testing to ensure that your system is not leaching unclean water back into the watershed. We’ll test for evidence of leaks and will address cracks or damages that have occurred. Then we tune-up the entire system to make sure it’s in tip-top condition for the year.

The Spring Start Up service also includes pressurizing your irrigation system, running through all the zones, making minor adjustments for coverage and programming the controller.

water your garden

Sprinkler Installation

If you do not yet have an irrigation or sprinkler system in your home or business, we would be happy to design and install a system that works for your landscape! We make sure that your plants get the water they need, when they need it, without the hassles of dragging the hose around! We install a timer system and work with you to determine the watering needs of your plants. Then you just set the timer and walk away, knowing your irrigation system will keep your landscape in good health.

We install a wide variety of irrigation systems including the Rain Bird line of products from one of the leading irrigation manufacturers in the world. Our high-efficiency systems are designed to be the most cost-effective on the market and can be tailored to your particular property. We install environmentally-friendly water-wise systems that use efficient drip irrigation as well as rain gauges that will turn off your sprinkler timer, when it is raining, to save water.

We are certified to repair and maintain systems as well as perform backflow testing to keep your systems running smoothly all year long. The same technicians that install your system will keep it in top working condition. Click here to read our Landscape and Irrigation Guarantee.

Now is the time to get your irrigation system up and running for the year! Call or contact Frontier Landscaping today to get a quote. 1-888-544-5006