When you work outside of your home to keep the grass and other foliage looking its best, are you maintaining your lawn or caring for it? This is not actually a riddle. More, it is a legitimate question many homeowners have. What is the difference between lawn maintenance and lawn care?
While this question sounds trivial at face value, the answer actually matters. It is particularly important when you are trying to decide whether you need care or maintenance service for your lawn if you do not want to do the work yourself. Many people do not realize there are even differences in these two types of services, nor in the work, they do on their own lawns as maintenance or care.
What is lawn care?
Care provided for your lawn involves the necessary actions to keep it healthy. This good health includes both the turf and soil. Caring for your lawn involves fertilizing it, controlling weeds, providing for soil health, and managing diseases. As a result of careful attention and labor, your well-cared-for lawn produces lush, green grass. It is disease-free and drought-resistant. This care also increases your home’s curb appeal.
When looking for someone to care for your lawn, you typically face both organic and inorganic service providers. Many of these offer services like pest control for the lawn and garden, fertilization, and weed control. These activities can introduce toxic chemicals to your ecosystem to make things look great more quickly and for longer periods of time.
While the chemicals create beautiful outcomes, a sustainable and chemical-free care program is another option. Organic care for your lawn is safer for children and pets. These organic methods still provide essential nutrition for your soil but using natural fertilizer and organic materials.
Services lawn care companies provide include:
- Pest control
- Weed and crabgrass control
- Thatch control
- Pruning for shrubs and trees
- Root stimulants
- Irrigation system installation
- Soil testing and mulching
What is lawn maintenance?
Maintenance of your lawn typically revolves around keeping your property clean and manicured year-round. Your lawn maintenance company will prepare your lawn for spring, such as by clearing away fall and winter debris. They will also regularly mow the grass and clean up leaves and other debris before winter.
Common services provided as part of your lawn’s maintenance include:
- Pruning of trees and shrubs
- Weed control
- Edging along walkways, patios, and driveways
- Spring and fall yard cleanup
Care vs. Maintenance
Both care and maintenance companies work to improve the overall appearance of your lawn. But this is where the similarities between the two end.
Care works to improve your lawn’s health, through the soil and plants. Your care provider controls pests and conducts soil tests, using horticultural science to keep your lawn healthy and disease-free. These service companies or contractors work to improve and keep your lawn well and thriving.
Your maintenance company provides services that keep your lawn looking well-kept and manicured. Instead of focusing on the science of how your lawn grows, a maintainer performs the necessary actions toward visual beauty. They can help you plan new projects for your landscaping or keep your yard looking its best.
Now that you have an idea of the differences between these two types of professionals and service companies, you can choose the right one for your own lawn needs. You may even choose both to work together for the most beautiful lawn possible.