Commercial property owners and managers know that it is important to beautify the outside of their properties. This is of equal importance as maintaining the care for their property inside. This not only good for looks, but also for safety to lessen any chance of mishaps or hazards. It is smart risk management.
Spring is a perfect time to assess any damage the wet and cold winter could have caused. As a Property manager take advantage of the nice Spring weather to get your commercial property and landscape in shape for the season.
While keeping up with the landscaping and maintenance of a commercial property is a year round job, these 8 steps should be implemented in the spring season. Check out our list below and get started making your landscape look well-kept and safe for tenants and guests.
1. Exterior Assessment: The first thing a property manager should do once the winter has departed is to walk the entire property and assess for any damage or hazardous issues. For example, did the freeze/thaw cycle cause any unsafe conditions such as broken or loose paving stones, sink holes, or debris? Property managers need to look for holes in window screens and cracks in the foundation, chipping paint or damaged siding, missing roof shingles that need repaired or replaced. This is also a good time to get a roof inspection to make sure the integrity of the building is maintained.
2. Debris Clean up: Pick up any debris, such as sticks, twigs and trash. Rake up any leaves to allow for fresh air to circulate around the grass which will alleviate any winter diseases and promote growth.
3. Power Wash and Repair Your Hardscape: Winter can be harsh on concrete and pavement, make sure all parking lots, patios and pathways are cleaned and in good repair. This will ensure a longer life span, keep your property looking its best and make it safer for tenants and visitors.
4. Check Irrigation Systems: Soon after the last frost, check the irrigation system’s nozzles, sprinkler heads, valves and controller to ensure the system has no leaks, blockages and is functioning properly.
5. Repair or Replace Turf, Apply Herbicides, Fertilizer and Insect Control: For minor issues, loosen soil and spread some grass seed. Re-sod any large areas that are damaged. Not repairing turf sets a bad precedence, as crab grass and weeds will take over.
Now is the time to apply herbicide before the weeds appear. Applying after the crabgrass and weeds appear is less effective. Take control of insect infestation by spraying for bugs well before they cause a significant amount of damage to your plants and/or property. Spring is the season of growth and the perfect time to apply fertilizer to encourage seedlings and already established plants.
6. Trim and Prune Plants, Shrubs and Trees: Pruning helps a plant keep their shape and prevents them from encroaching on walkways or causing a hazard to passers-by. Dormant pruning (typically of the deciduous variety) is suggested before plants leaf out in spring. Selectively removing vegetation improves plant’s health and growth by eliminating all of the broken and cracked branches plus any rubbing or crossing ones.
7. Plant Annuals and/or Perennials and Mulch: Clean out plant beds and add new flowers to refresh the landscape. Lay new mulch to allow the soil to retain moisture and prevent weed encroachment.
8. Landscape : What’s the first thing that happens when the sun begins to shine, and the weather warms up? People want to be outdoors. Inspect the landscaping at your property to see what needs to be shaped up: trees and shrubs, new soil or lawn fertilizer, flower beds, etc. These tasks are critical for the TLC of your grounds as summer nears.