In this Wall Street Journal article, Lou Meyer, business developer for Davey's mid-Atlantic region shares gardening tips to help homeowners avoid common mistakes.

Posted: April 04, 2024

The Worst gardening mistake I ever witnessed was unfortunately one I made.

After my husband and I bought our first house on Long Island, N.Y., we decided to lay sod—yes, by ourselves, because how hard could it be?—in our tiny backyard.leaf, arborist, inspection, bush, shrub, flower

We spent a weekend rototilling, raking and carefully arranging velvety green squares of grass on top of fluffed-up soil. We even rented a big lawn roller to iron out air pockets. But two weeks later? The sod had died and shriveled up, exposing stripes of dirt in between the lozenges of brown turf.

“Should we just sell the house?” my husband asked, surveying the horrific results of the misguided DIY project.

“Probably, but who would buy it in this condition?” I said.

So instead we started over—hiring a professional installer, who explained that we should have tested and amended the heavy clay soil with sand before laying sod. We were able to learn a lesson. And continue to live in the house.

But honestly, I would rather have avoided the mistake (and the nightmares I had for years in which I was being chased by a giant sod roller) and leapt straight to the lesson. So with a new gardening season upon us, I think the least I can do is help you avoid other mistakes I’ve made. Here are seven of them, with rectifying tips from experts.

To read Lou's advice, click here.

The Davey Tree Expert Company provides research-driven tree services, grounds maintenance and environmental consulting for residential, utility, commercial and environmental partners in the U.S. and Canada. Established in 1880 and headquartered in Kent, Ohio, Davey has over 12,000 employees and is the ninth largest employee-owned company in the U.S. This year, Davey celebrates 45 years of employee ownership – Join us and apply today! 

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