Monthly Archives: July 2018

Lawn Disease

New Englanders truly enjoy being outdoors during the summer months. Other than grilling out and entertaining family and friends, many homeowners find joy in working on their gardens or nurturing a lawn. Unfortunately, there are many lawn diseases that can hamper this enjoyment and cause brown spots, mushrooms or bare spots. Let’s review some of the more common lawn diseases that inflict damage in our area so you know what to look for and how to treat in the future.

  • Brown Patch – Brown patch appears as circular patches in the lawn that are brownish yellow in color and range from 6 inches to several feet in diameter. It effects all cool season lawn grasses but is especially harmful to ryegrass and tall fescue. This disease is most common during extended periods of heat and humidity – in other words a typical New England summer.
  • Red Thread – This lawn disease appears as red or pink webbing in the lawn. It is common when the nitrogen level in the grass is low and usually indicates that it is time to fertilize. Grasses typically affected include: bermudagrass, bluegrasses, fescues, bentgrasses, and perennial ryegrass.
  • Fairy Rings – An arc or circle of mushrooms is a big sign that you may have Fairy Rings. Irrigation issues or overly moist areas can lead to this fungus problem.
  • Rust Diseases – These irregular brown or yellow splotches on the grass are common in late summer and early fall. They often appear in shady and moist areas of your lawn.
  • Pythium Blight – This water mold disease occurs where irrigation is not draining properly or the soil is overly moist. Pythium blight symptoms include circular areas 1 to 3 inches in diameter and foliage can have a gray, water-soaked appearance and possibly white mycelium on mornings with dew.

If you are working hard to maintain a beautiful, lush lawn and disease is stopping you in your tracks, it might be time to contact our team here at Pro-Tech Lawn Care. Call us at (603) 382-9644 or Toll Free: (800) 313-4733, or visit our website.

 

Lyme Disease

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Lyme disease is caused by the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi and is transmitted to humans through the bite of infected blacklegged ticks and deer ticks. Typical symptoms include fever, headache, fatigue, and a characteristic skin rash called erythema migrans. If left untreated, infection can spread to joints, the heart, and the nervous system. Lyme disease is diagnosed based on symptoms, physical findings (rash or bullseye), and the possibility of exposure to infected ticks. Laboratory testing is helpful if used correctly and performed with validated methods. Most cases of Lyme disease can be treated successfully with a few weeks of antibiotics.

Steps to prevent Lyme Disease include:

  • Using insect repellent such as DEET
  • Completing tick checks nightly
  • Removing ticks promptly
  • Applying treatment programs to your property
  • Wearing protective clothing
  • Avoiding tick habitats such as woody areas

 

Do you know what to look for when completing your nightly tick check this season? The CDC has put together this graphic to help you realize just how small these pests can be. Compare the size of the dime to the size of the adult, nymph and larva ticks!

be vigilant this tick season. Use both your eyes and your hands to feel for potential ticks in areas such as in your armpits, groin area, behind the knees, along hairline and along the neck.

Call Pro-Tech Lawn Care for questions and concerns you may have about ticks in your yard or the woods surrounding your property. We have treatment options for you and your family. Call us at (603) 382-9644 or Toll Free: (800) 313-4733, or visit our website.

 

West Nile Disease

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) West Nile is a virus most commonly spread to people by mosquito bites. In North America, cases of West Nile virus (WNV) occur during mosquito season, which starts in the summer and continues through fall. The World Health Organization states that the symptoms of severe disease include: headache, high fever, neck stiffness, stupor, disorientation, coma, tremors, convulsions, muscle weakness, and paralysis. It is estimated that approximately 1 in 150 persons infected with the West Nile virus will develop a more severe form of disease. Serious illness can occur in people of any age, however people over the age of 50 and some immunocompromised persons (for example, transplant patients) are at the highest risk for getting severely ill when infected with WNV.

The current data on West Nile Disease can be worrisome. As of January 9, 2018, a total of 47 states and the District of Columbia have reported West Nile virus infections in people, birds, or mosquitoes in 2017. Overall, 2,002 cases of West Nile virus disease in people have been reported to CDC. Of these, 1,339 (67%) were classified as neuroinvasive disease (such as meningitis or encephalitis) and 663 (33%) were classified as non-neuroinvasive disease.

For an incident report here is a county-by-county report from the CDC.

Pro-Tech Lawn Care suggests being especially cautious this mosquito season and follow some simple guidelines that we set out in a recent blog on “Preventing Mosquito Bites.” For more information about West Nile Disease and treatment options for your property against this mosquito-borne illness contact Pro-Tech Lawn Care at (603) 382-9644 or Toll Free: (800) 313-4733, or visit our website.

Preventing Tick Bites

Ticks may be tiny, (almost undetectable in some cases), but they sure can cause a heap of trouble. In our region of the United States, Lyme Disease is one of the biggest threats when it comes to tick-borne diseases. Lyme disease is caused by bacteria that are transmitted to humans through a bite from an infected black-legged or deer tick. Symptoms can occur anywhere from 3 to 30 days after the bite and can be wide-ranging, depending on the stage of the infection. In some cases, symptoms can appear even months after the bite. Early signs and symptoms include fever, chills, headache, fatigue, muscle and joint pain, and swollen lymph nodes, all of which are common in the flu as well. In up to 80% of Lyme infections, a rash is one of the first symptoms. If this is not frightening enough, a recent CDC study found that cases of Lyme increased more than 80% between 2004 and 2016 — from 19,804 to 36,429. So how can you protect yourself and your family each time you head outside from tick bites?

 

  • Consider treating your yard for both mosquitoes and ticks through a treatment plan at Pro-Tech Lawn Care.
  • Avoid areas where ticks are likely to hang out. This could include woody areas of your yard, hiking paths, or even just being in your backyard. Ticks love wooded areas with lots of shrubs, tall grasses and weeds, and leaf litter.
  • Use repellant. Products that contain DEET or permethrin can add a layer of protection when outside.
  • Wear protective clothing. This includes: light-colored clothes, which makes it easier to spot them once you have come indoors, as well as long pants tucked into your socks. We also suggest long sleeve shirts and shoes that cover your toes. A hat is a great idea too since they may be difficult to find in black hair.
  • Always check yourself and family members when you come in and at the end of the night. Ticks especially like hairlines, behind the knee and crux of the elbow.
  • Remove any ticks and watch for signs of Lyme and the telltale bullseye.

 

Are you concerned about ticks in your yard? Call Pro-Tech Lawn Care for tick solutions for your property at (603) 382-9644 or Toll Free: (800) 313-4733, or visit our website.

 

Preventing Mosquito Bites

Are you a mosquito magnet and dread going out for fear that these pests will find you and bite you relentlessly? Beyond the itch factor is the danger of contracting a mosquito-borne disease such as West Nile Disease, EEE, or, if traveling to tropical areas, the Zika Virus. Thankfully there are some steps that even the biggest mosquito magnet can do to avoid being bitten this season. Here are a few ideas to prevent mosquito bites in your own backyard.

 

  • Always Use Repellant –  Just like you should always put on sunscreen, you should also always apply bug repellant to both skin and clothes. DEET works well on skin and permethrin or picaridin works well on clothing.
  • Avoid Peak Hours – Generally, mosquitoes are more active at dusk and dawn, although this may differ depending on the species. These are also peak times for exercise and outdoor patio use so use repellant and clothing cautions.
  • Avoid Elevated Heart Rates – According to Prevention Magazine, carbon dioxide (CO2) is the primary thing mosquitoes search for to identify food sources. And when your heart rate is elevated, your body produces more CO2. From exercise to drinking alcohol or eating spicy foods, anything that cranks up your metabolic rate will increase your CO2 production—and make you irresistible to mosquitoes.
  • Use Nets and Fans – Mosquitoes can not land to bite if facing the force of wind so consider putting a fan or two on your porch or deck. In addition, many homeowners find netting a great way of preventing these pests from interrupting a perfectly good BBQ.
  • Remove Standing Water – Standing water is the perfect breeding ground for mosquitoes so be sure to clear out kiddie pools, upside down frisbees, and even pet food bowls. Remove the breeding ground and you will have fewer pests.
  • Dress for Prevention – Wear light weight long sleeve shirts and long pants to avoid the critters who will seek out the heat of your skin.

 

Do you have a mosquito-filled backyard or are you personally a magnet? Call Pro-Tech Lawn Care for treatment options. Call us at (603) 382-9644 or Toll Free: (800) 313-4733 and visit our website.