Hometown Landscape & Lawn Service
P.O. Box 4727, Silver Spring, MD 20914
25 Feb 2020

Premier Landscape Design

A landscape design is always customized to the space you have with the features you desire. Think back to when you were a kid. What was one thing a family member or friend’s family had in their backyard or around their property that made you think, “That will be in my home one day.” Maybe you saw a landscape feature on a TV show or in a movie that you instantly fell in love with. Now look at your yard. Do you have it?

Embracing the outdoors is more important than ever. With technology being integrated into all aspects of our society, having a space outdoors that has the cozy feel of your living room or capabilities of your kitchen bring a new dynamic to your living space. You can install a pavilion with a built-in grill and bar for entertaining friends. With a pavilion, you are able to entertain guests even when it rains. Especially when it rains. You will smell the soothing scent of Mother Nature while listening to the soothing pitter-patter of each rain drop. Can there be a better atmosphere for you and your loved ones to spend time together after being cooped up inside all week? It’s time to look up and see the possibilities your yard can become.

The idea behind landscape design and installation is to create an extension of your home. Your yard has the potential to be the spot where your kids play or a flower-filled atmosphere where you check out from the world. Similar to decluttering the inside of your home from items you no longer use, create an outdoor space you will. Utilize the property you already own by transforming your yard into a space that will be used as much as any other room in your house.

Side Thought for You Parents:
Growing up, my parents always let me bring my friends over our house. I thought they simple didn’t care if my friends and I blasted our music or ran amuck of the kitchen. Wrong. Their motive was really to keep tabs on me. In allowing me and my friends to hang out at home, they would in turn know exactly where I was and who I was with. Make your home a spot where your kids can and want to hang out with their friends.

20 Feb 2019

3 Reasons Why You Should Invest In An Outdoor Living Environment

Majority of homeowners are hesitant when exploring the benefits of making such a large investment, such as investing in a patio, walkway or other outdoor hardscaping features. While installing an outdoor living environment is a big commitment, it is worth it in the end when you see the final product.

While there is a high return on investment when you make purchases for your outdoor living space, adding hardscaping to your home is also one way to bring potential buyers to your front door. Well kept landscaping and beautiful hardscaping has been found to increase the curb appeal of a home and increases its value.

We know that selling your home is probably not at the forefront of your mind if you are considering adding a hardscape project (or two) to your outdoor space. In fact, chances are you are more interested in knowing how an outdoor living environment can benefit you for the now and not just in the future. An outdoor retreat offers you a break from your busy life by providing you with a relaxing and comfortable space. Whether you want to spend time by the pool or read a book on your brand new patio, the options for enjoying your outdoor space are endless.

When the weather is warm, there is no better way to spend time with the people you love than by enjoying the great outdoors. An outdoor living environment is the perfect space to entertain. Also, as an added bonus, you can add a pool, install a fire pit or build an entire outdoor kitchen to keep the party going!

The benefits of spending time outdoors are endless. From increasing your vitamin D levels to adding more physical activity to your daily life, when you invest in an outdoor living environment, you will naturally find yourself spending more time outside than you did before.

30 Oct 2018

3 Ways Hardscaping Can Enhance Your Outdoor Living Space

When you think about adding new features to your outdoor living space, you might be focused solely on generic landscape changes. Whether this means adding new flowers or getting someone to perform tree maintenance, these changes are typical and standard. So, to change things up, consider adding or updating hardscaping features to enhance your property. Not sure what hardscaping is? Hardscaping is the non-living part of your landscape and trust us, it is just as important as the living component of your yard. Here are some ways hardscaping features can completely transform and enhance your outdoor space.

If you enjoy hosting events or parties and notice that your home is getting a little crowded, hardscaping is a great solution to your problem. Additions like a patio or a deck provide you with space to entertain and relax outdoors, while simultaneously extending your living space. Plus, with your new outdoor space, you can put anything you want outside to help entertain, such as an outdoor kitchen to cook or an entertainment system to listen to music or watch television on.

One of the main perks of hardscaping is that it creates less maintenance for you to worry about. Living landscape features, such as plants and trees, require watering and constant maintenance to make sure they stay alive, are healthy and flourishing. Hardscaping takes up space that certain landscape features normally would have, thus making there be less for you to maintain. Features like patios and paths rarely need maintenance, so you will be significantly decreasing the number of things on your seasonal to-do list.

You also cannot ignore the fact that hardscaping adds tremendous value to your home. Whatever money you spend on adding hardscaping features can be seen as a home owner investment. Hardscaping features will be a big selling point when you try and sell your home, meaning that the money you spent you will certainly see a return on.

Whether you need maintenance or landscaping services, hardscape, fences or woodwork projects or residential or commercial services, call the professionals at Hometown Landscape & Lawn Service. We pride ourselves on our professionalism, attention to detail and set our goal at exceeding your expectations.

02 Feb 2018

Preparing your garden

Image titled Prepare the Soil for a Vegetable Garden Step 3


One of the first steps in preparing a new vegetable garden is to check the soil PH- a simple kit can be purchased online or at a local retail store. Learning the PH level- if you garden soil is more alkaline or acidic will aid in you sorting out what additives may be necessary for a thriving garden.


Need help with your garden plot? Call Hometown at 301-490-5577

17 Nov 2017

Preparing for the Winter

It may only be the middle of November but it is time to start thinking about snow!

Making sure your home is ready for the winter is very important and can help save you from a lot of headaches…see some tips below:

Get Your Home Winter Ready

  • Winterize your home to extend the life of your fuel supply by insulating walls and attics, caulking and weather-stripping doors and windows, and installing storm windows or covering windows with plastic
  • Winterize your house, barn, shed or any other structure that may provide shelter for your family, neighbors, livestock or equipment
  • Clear rain gutters; repair roof leaks and cut away tree branches that could fall on a house or other structure during a storm
  • Maintain heating equipment and chimneys by having them cleaned and inspected every year
  • Insulate pipes with insulation or newspapers and plastic and allow faucets to drip a little during cold weather to avoid freezing; Running water, even at a trickle, helps prevent pipes from freezing
  • All fuel-burning equipment should be vented to the outside and kept clear
  • Keep fire extinguishers on hand and make sure everyone in your house knows how to use them
  • Learn how to shut off water valves (in case a pipe bursts)
  • Insulate your home by installing storm windows or covering windows with plastic from the inside to keep cold air out
  • Hire a contractor to check the structural ability of the roof to sustain unusually heavy weight from the accumulation of snow or water, if drains on flat roofs do not work
27 Oct 2017

Planting the Fall

Why Fall Planting?

why plant in the fall?

Air temperatures are dropping, but the soil is still quite warm – perfect for root development. Fall temperatures are also more pleasant for the gardener, so grab your favorite spade or trowel and get ready to dig.

Create a Spring Garden this Fall

create a spring garden in the fall

Planting the seed for a beautiful spring garden begins in the fall. Some of the most beautiful plants and flowers to emerge under the warmth of the sun include lilies, hostas, peonies, irises, ferns and ornamental grasses. If you dream of coloring your yard next spring, fall is the time to get started.

  • August through September is a great time to begin shopping and planning.
  • Late September through early November is the time to plant.
  • Spring is the time to watch amazing color bloom from the ground.

Choose from a Selection of Beautiful Flowers

choose from a selection of beautiful flowers

Imagine how wonderful lilies will look once the chill of winter leaves and the refreshing breeze of spring rolls in. If you love lilies, the best time to plant lily bulbs is usually from mid-September through mid-October. They don’t need much care and can grow into a large arrangement of eye-catching beauty.

Hosta (or Plantain Lily)

August is a great time to plant hostas. Once they peek through the ground to greet you this spring, you may notice that some are funnel-shaped, some are bell-shaped and some offer a fragrance while others don’t. You can expect to see hostas in purple, blue, green, yellow, white and white with lavender stripes. They can bloom anytime from June to October.


The best time to plant peonies is in early fall as this allows feeder roots several weeks of growing time before the ground freezes. Peonies are unique in that they can be grown in any garden, and they don’t need much care. Once they’re planted, they only need partial to full sun. Another great feature is that they can live in a variety of climates and soil.


When it comes to garden plants, irises are simply great. They grow in a range of climates and bloom in a variety of colors, including blue and purple, white and yellow, pink and orange, brown and red, and even black, so it’s not surprising that the name iris means rainbow. Make sure your irises receive light.

Ferns are also gorgeous in the spring. When it comes to planting them, keep in mind that it’s important to keep them away from direct sunlight.

Loosen soil to a depth of 12 inches and amend the soil with organic material such as leaf mold.
As you plant the ferns, make sure the roots are covered with about 2 inches of soil.
Make sure there’s at least 15 inches of space between the ferns (24 inches for larger varieties.)
Cover your ferns with leaves or evergreen boughs to protect them from snow and ice. Leave them covered until the threat of frost has ended.

Ornamental Grasses

Many gardeners consider ornamental grasses a favorite. That could be because they come in all colors and sizes and don’t require much work. Another great thing about ornamental grasses is that they attract birds, which can add an accent to any garden.


Blooming bulbs are a symbol of spring, but fall is the time to plant them. Hardy bulbs such as tulip, crocus, daffodil, hyacinth, anemone and iris are cold-tolerant and can easily spend the winter underground .For a great spring-blooming bulb garden, plant several varieties with different bloom times. You’ll enjoy bulbs all throughout the spring season.


20 Oct 2017

Picking the best tree for fall foliage

If you’re looking for a tree with great fall foliage colors- you are in luck! Maryland is a great place to grow beautiful trees!

Maryland is a good state for nine of the 10 most colorful fall trees, according to the Arbor Day Foundation. Each species has different characteristics. Bald cypress is unique because it looks like a pyramidal evergreen when green. Sugar maples are famous for their colors, but really only happy in colder Western Maryland. Sourwood (Oxydendron) and sassafras are smaller trees. Tupelo, red maple and sweet gum all display a range of hues, including brilliant reds. Sweet gum reportedly lasts the longest. All of the top 10 are U.S. natives except Japanese maple, only some of which display good fall color. Be sure to consider shrubs with great fall color and berries that last into winter, such as winterberry, blueberry or spicebush.

06 Oct 2017

Why do leaves change colors?

Why Leaves Change Colors
If you are lucky, you live in one of those parts of the world where Nature has one last fling before settling down into winter’s sleep. In those lucky places, as days shorten and temperatures become crisp, the quiet green palette of summer foliage is transformed into the vivid autumn palette of reds, oranges, golds, and browns before the leaves fall off the trees. On special years, the colors are truly breathtaking.

How does autumn color happen?

leaf 1For years, scientists have worked to understand the changes that happen to trees and shrubs in the autumn. Although we don’t know all the details, we do know enough to explain the basics and help you to enjoy more fully Nature’s multicolored autumn farewell. Three factors influence autumn leaf color-leaf pigments, length of night, and weather, but not quite in the way we think. The timing of color change and leaf fall are primarily regulated by the calendar, that is, the increasing length of night. None of the other environmental influences-temperature, rainfall, food supply, and so on-are as unvarying as the steadily increasing length of night during autumn. As days grow shorter, and nights grow longer and cooler, biochemical processes in the leaf begin to paint the landscape with Nature’s autumn palette.

Where do autumn colors come from?

A color palette needs pigments, and there are three types that are involved in autumn color.

sumac leaves
  • Chlorophyll, which gives leaves their basic green color. It is necessary for photosynthesis, the chemical reaction that enables plants to use sunlight to manufacture sugars for their food. Trees in the temperate zones store these sugars for their winter dormant period.
  • Carotenoids, which produce yellow, orange, and brown colors in such things as corn, carrots, and daffodils, as well as rutabagas, buttercups, and bananas.
  • Anthocyanins, which give color to such familiar things as cranberries, red apples, concord grapes, blueberries, cherries, strawberries, and plums. They are water soluble and appear in the watery liquid of leaf cells.

Both chlorophyll and carotenoids are present in the chloroplasts of leaf cells throughout the growing season. Most anthocyanins are produced in the autumn, in response to bright light and excess plant sugars within leaf cells.

During the growing season, chlorophyll is continually being produced and broken down and leaves appear green. As night length increases in the autumn, chlorophyll production slows down and then stops and eventually all the chlorophyll is destroyed. The carotenoids and anthocyanins that are present in the leaf are then unmasked and show their colors.

Certain colors are characteristic of particular species. Oaks turn red, brown, or russet; hickories, golden bronze; aspen and yellow-poplar, golden yellow; dogwood, purplish red; beech, light tan; and sourwood and black tupelo, crimson. Maples differ species by species-red maple turns brilliant scarlet; sugar maple, orange-red; and black maple, glowing yellow. Striped maple becomes almost colorless. Leaves of some species such as the elms simply shrivel up and fall, exhibiting little color other than drab brown.

The timing of the color change also varies by species. Sourwood in southern forests can become vividly colorful in late summer while all other species are still vigorously green. Oaks put on their colors long after other species have already shed their leaves. These differences in timing among species seem to be genetically inherited, for a particular species at the same latitude will show the same coloration in the cool temperatures of high mountain elevations at about the same time as it does in warmer lowlands.

How does weather affect autumn color?

leaf 4The amount and brilliance of the colors that develop in any particular autumn season are related to weather conditions that occur before and during the time the chlorophyll in the leaves is dwindling. Temperature and moisture are the main influences.

A succession of warm, sunny days and cool, crisp but not freezing nights seems to bring about the most spectacular color displays. During these days, lots of sugars are produced in the leaf but the cool nights and the gradual closing of veins going into the leaf prevent these sugars from moving out. These conditions-lots of sugar and lots of light-spur production of the brilliant anthocyanin pigments, which tint reds, purples, and crimson. Because carotenoids are always present in leaves, the yellow and gold colors remain fairly constant from year to year.

The amount of moisture in the soil also affects autumn colors. Like the weather, soil moisture varies greatly from year to year. The countless combinations of these two highly variable factors assure that no two autumns can be exactly alike. A late spring, or a severe summer drought, can delay the onset of fall color by a few weeks. A warm period during fall will also lower the intensity of autumn colors. A warm wet spring, favorable summer weather, and warm sunny fall days with cool nights should produce the most brilliant autumn colors.

What triggers leaf fall?

In early autumn, in response to the shortening days and declining intensity of sunlight, leaves begin the processes leading up to their fall. The veins that carry fluids into and out of the leaf gradually close off as a layer of cells forms at the base of each leaf. These clogged veins trap sugars in the leaf and promote production of anthocyanins. Once this separation layer is complete and the connecting tissues are sealed off, the leaf is ready to fall.

What does all this do for the tree?

treesWinter is a certainty that all vegetation in the temperate zones must face each year. Perennial plants, including trees, must have some sort of protection to survive freezing temperatures and other harsh wintertime influences. Stems, twigs, and buds are equipped to survive extreme cold so that they can reawaken when spring heralds the start of another growing season. Tender leaf tissues, however, would freeze in winter, so plants must either toughen up and protect their leaves or dispose of them.

The evergreens-pines, spruces, cedars, firs, and so on-are able to survive winter because they have toughened up. Their needle-like or scale-like foliage is covered with a heavy wax coating and the fluid inside their cells contains substances that resist freezing. Thus the foliage of evergreens can safely withstand all but the severest winter conditions, such as those in the Arctic. Evergreen needles survive for some years but eventually fall because of old age.

The leaves of broadleaved plants, on the other hand, are tender and vulnerable to damage. These leaves are typically broad and thin and are not protected by any thick coverings. The fluid in cells of these leaves is usually a thin, watery sap that freezes readily. This means that the cells could not survive winter where temperatures fall below freezing. Tissues unable to overwinter must be sealed off and shed to ensure the plant’s continued survival. Thus leaf fall precedes each winter in the temperate zones.


Credit: USDA

22 Sep 2017

Why you should hire a professional for your leaf removal

Consider hiring a lawn care company for leaf removal if you have trouble raking leaves in your large yard or do not have the time.

Autumn can be a nice change of pace after a long, hot summer. In many areas of the country, the benefits include cooler, more comfortable weather, apple picking, football and, of course, the leaves changing colors from greens to beautiful reds, oranges and yellows.

But when those leaves begin to fall, fall lawn care can turn into a chore.

Raking leaves is a time-consuming task and can leave many with sore backs and blisters on their hands. There is a solution- bring in a professional for a quick and painless clean up.

Leaves left to sit can kill your lawn

Experts say it’s important not to let leaves collect on the ground for too long.

Excess leaves block sunlight from getting to your grass- they also spawn mold and can spread disease that can wipe out your lawn. You may have noticed a brown patch after you rake leaves into a pile- the leaves slowly choke the grass beneath until it dies.

Professional leaf removal can save you time and resources.

Hometown Landscape offers leaf removal in the Silver Spring, MD area and would be happy to provide a free quote!

301-490-5577 sales@hometownlandscape.com

08 Sep 2017

Do you need to lime your soil?

Like most things in nature, the soil supporting your lawn (technically called turfgrass) must be in balance. In this case, the balance is a measure of pH or acidity. If your soil is too low on the pH scale, adding lime can help restore the balance and promote a healthier lawn. A quick understanding of the basics of pH, how to test your soil and when and how to apply lime are all you need to get started.

Why Use Lime?

Adding lime is the most common method of changing pH of the soil. Soil PH is a measure of a soil alkalinity or acidity. A pH of 7.0 is neutral. Anything below 7.0 is acidic, and anything above is alkaline. Most turfgrasses grow best with a pH of 5.5 to 6.5. If a soil tests lower than 5.5, it likely will benefit from added lime.

Soils can be naturally acidic but can also be acidified over time by natural leaching, the use of some nitrogen fertilizers, excessive rainfall or irrigation, and acidic water sources. Low pH affects microbial activity in soil, making nutrients less available to grass and other plants. As a result, turf declines. Common symptoms of low pH include loss of color, reduced vigor and diminished ability to recover from heat and drought.

Types of Lime

The lime you apply to a lawn is limestone or chalk. The main component is calcium carbonate. There are several types of lime, and a good soil test should tell you which type of lime you need.

Lime with a high calcium content is referred to as calcitic lime and has the benefit of adding calcium to the soil. Some limestone contains a significant amount of magnesium and is referred to as dolomitic lime. Dolomitic lime adds magnesium to the soil and could be used if soil tests indicate a magnesium deficiency.

Most types of lime can be applied with a standard lawn spreader.

How to Test Your Soil

You can buy DIY soil test kits at garden centers and hardware stores. A good kit costs about $15 to $20 and tests for pH as well as nutrients, such as nitrogen and phosphorus. The accuracy of the results is difficult to predict, and the information may not tell you how much lime your lawn needs. For the same amount of money (and a little more time, perhaps 2 to 3 weeks), you can have your soil tested at a local extension service. Most university extensions test soil for about $10 to $20 and usually offer a much more detailed analysis of your soil’s composition and pH level.

Follow the extension’s instructions for gathering the soil sample. It’s usually best to gather multiple samples from each large lawn area and mix the samples for each area together before bagging it for testing. Be sure to let the tester know that you want to learn about liming your lawn. They will likely perform an SMP buffer test on your sample(s) to indicate how much lime to add.

When to Apply Lime

Lime can be applied to a lawn any time of year that soil isn’t frozen, but it is typically done during spring or fall. It’s best to apply lime after aerating the lawn.

This aids absorption and allows some of the lime to reach deeper into the soil.


Don’t want to do the work yourself? Call Hometown today for a complimentary consultation for core aeration and liming! 301-490-5577