Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Thoughts on Gopher Control 

I just read this article from the LA Times garden blogger Emily Green, which presents an interesting but hard to swallow position on gophers in the garden.  Understanding and acceptance of the critters that populate landscaped areas is important; a varied and healthy garden ecosystem keeps pest species in better control; a balanced environment requires fewer chemical and maintenance inputs overall.  This article gives good insights into gopher behaviors which help inform our approach at Centennial Services Inc. which is: the best gopher is one which has been trapped.  Or, eaten by a predator.

An added service we provide to commercial landscape owners is non-chemical gopher control.  We continuously monitor the client's landscape for problems including gopher infestation; the pesky rodents don't get out of control. But from time to time the population-- perhaps in a nearby vacant lot, unused area, or less-pristine landscape--swells and the burrowers spill over onto a site we manage.  Call CSi 714-730-3610 for landscape maintenance services you need.

Our primary method of control is trapping; occasionally we are able to flush out a gopher with water . . . either way, no chemicals are used and the kill is confirmed positively.  No chemicals used results in safety for natural gopher predators like owls as well as the property owner and users.  UC IPM offers some information on gopher biology and control here and here. As stated in both of these guides, habitat modification also helps control and discourage gophers. Regular maintenance activities, as an example, have a dampening effect on gopher incursions.

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Friday, November 04, 2011

Rain Day Water Conservation 

Every once in awhile it rains in southern California.

Today is that day. Can you visualize your rain shut-off device gathering raindrops and sending a "Do Not Water" signal to your irrigation controller? If so, you are on your way to conserving irrigation water.
If you're having trouble with that imagery, maybe your automated irrigation system is in need of updating to help control water use and get your irrigation events in tune with the local weather.

Call us at 714-730-3610. We can assess your system, advise on and install water management technologies.

Rain in southern California is nature's gift of free irrigation to landscapes under water budgeting by your water districts. But rain not only waters plants. It's a often observed phenomenon that rain water perks up plants . . . nutrients in the rain . . . lack of additives and residues as compared with piped or reclaimed water . . . ionic charge . . . magic? A steady rain washes accumulated dust off the leaves and this enables better photosynthesis in the plant, maybe the explanation is that simple.

photos:    1.  freshly washed flowers of Arbutus unedo, Strawberry tree
              2.  raindrop held by surface tension on dried Hypericum balearicum flower
by JT copyright 2011

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Centennial Services, Inc. is a full-service landscape management company based in beautiful Orange County, CA. Call 714-730-3610 for excellent service.

Learn more about our company, our services, or contact us for more information.


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