One of Webster’s definition’s of flush is “sudden and usually abundant new plant growth.” Most landscapers define spring flush as “the beginning of a long, hard summer.”
As soil temperatures rise in the springtime, plants begin to come out of their winter hibernation and grow with a vengeance! We call this “spring flush.” Hormones and nutrients that have been stored up throughout the winter come ripping through a plant’s system like steroids in a baseball player (back in the ’90s, of course).
That “abundant new plant growth” that Webster speaks of comes in the form of shrubs, trees, turf and our all time favorite: weeds! You see, landscapers don’t just get hit with a one-two punch combination in the springtime, they also get hit with an uppercut and an overhand right…all at the same time. It’s like fighting a four-armed Mike Tyson!
So how can you manage spring flush on your Atlanta commercial property’s landscape?
Spring Flush: Driven By Temperature
Spring flush is a tricky adversary because it is driven almost solely by temperature — and goodness knows our temperatures fluctuate in January and February (not just year to year but also day to day).
Remember Jan. 12, 2013? The high that day was 74 degrees! Our longest relative warm spell last year was Jan. 7 to 22. That’s 16 consecutive days with above-average temperatures. Seems like I remember single-digit temperatures around that timeframe this year! How do you predict that, much less plan for it?
Prepare, Communicate And Work As A Team
So what does this all mean? It just means we need to be prepared. Spring flush will hit when it’s good and ready, there is nothing we can do to speed it up or slow it down. But communication and teamwork — property management and landscape provider working together — will help prevent spring flush from getting out of hand.
As spring flush hits, many landscapers become extremely busy and don’t take the time to share with property management everything they’re doing, from combating weeds to pruning and mowing. This can lead to property management believing these items are not being addressed. Landscape providers should also help to educate property management on why they are seeing more weeds and new growth on shrubs during this period. Without this type of explanation, it’s easy for property managers to believe that their property is going downhill because the landscaper is slacking on the job — and unless they bring the issues to his/her attention they are not being addressed.
Many times weeds have been pulled and shrubs have been pruned but in two weeks when the property manager sees the area again it looks the same because things are simply growing that fast.
How HighGrove Fosters Teamwork
This need for communication and teamwork is a major reason HighGrove Partners developed our Clients Relations Manager position. Communication and teamwork are critical in a partnership, and having a person from your landscape firm who’s dedicated to those critical tasks can make a huge difference in the amount of time property managers have to spend dealing with landscape issues.
Communication and teamwork help to create a true partnership and that is what beats spring flush and makes that long hard summer a little more enjoyable for everyone!
Want to talk more about working together as spring flush approaches? Get in touch with the Atlanta commercial landscape maintenance professionals at HighGrove Partners. Give us a call at 678-298-0550, or use the contact form to the right.