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Attention Homeowners: Don’t Ignore Your Trees!

If we are being honest with ourselves, many homeowners only think about the trees in their yards when they become a nuisance. The roots have grown under a concrete patio and created cracks, dead tree limbs are threatening our roof or our outdoor space, or worse yet, the limbs are touching power lines, presenting a possible fire hazard.

In actuality, the trees in our yards deserve much more attention from us, as they are the lifeblood of our yards. They absorb and trap harmful carbon dioxide in the air, preventing it from reaching the earth’s upper atmosphere. The trees’ root systems help prevent soil erosion, and best of all, trees provide much needed shade on a hot Texas summer day.

Lack of specific knowledge when it comes to taking care of our trees can cause irreversible harm to them, leaving them susceptible to diseases and weakening them to the point where one … Read Full Post »

How to Keep Brown Recluse Spiders at Bay

It’s a fact that all Houston homes and businesses have spiders lurking in their walls, attics, and other hiding places—even in winter when they tend to seek shelter indoors. Most of them are harmless, and their presence is helpful because they keep insect populations under control. However, one spider, in particular, can be very dangerous when it comes into contact with humans: the brown recluse.

Identifying the Brown Recluse

These non-hairy spiders range in color from tan to dark brown and, once they reach adulthood, are usually the size of a quarter with their legs extended. The brown recluse’s most distinctive feature is a violin-shaped marking on its back. Brown recluse spiders can be found outdoors under piles of wood or debris and indoors in cluttered, dark places such as garages and attics.

The Dangers of Brown Recluse Spiders

Brown recluse spiders rarely wander out into the open unless searching for food so these … Read Full Post »

Flat Enamel Paint And More: Types Of Paint And Their Uses

Flat Enamel Paint

 

Paint is often the cheapest and easiest way to make a big change in your home. Once you have decided to paint your kitchen, bedroom, living room or bathroom, you need to determine what type of paint to use in which rooms and on which surfaces. It can be a difficult decision to make when faced with a huge selection of paint colors and types.

Let’s break down the common paint types and finishes so that you can make an educated decision about what type of paint you need for your next project.

Flat Enamel Paint

Similar to matte finish paints, flat enamel paint also has a nonreflective finish. However, flat enamel paint tends to be more durable than matte finish. Flat enamel is ideal for bathrooms, kitchens or powder rooms, since these surfaces tend to be cleaned more frequently and are exposed to more moisture.

Matte Finish 

Sometimes referred to as flat finish or wall … Read Full Post »

The Benefits of Lawn Aeration

If you’re living in Houston and are not taking advantage of lawn aeration, it’s time to contact a Houston lawn care specialist at ABC. The soil in our region benefits from aeration and can help create a beautiful, healthy lawn.

The benefits of lawn aeration include:

• A reduction in the level of compaction occurring in the soil. If you do not have your lawn aerated regularly, the soil will become compact and challenging to work with in the future. Compacted soil may also cause problems with plants that are already present because of the difficulty that plants may have with growing roots down into heavily compacted soil.

• The primary purpose of lawn aeration is to allow the soil to access the air. Soil needs to be able to access the air in the surrounding atmosphere to remain healthy and in prime condition for growing plants.

• Creating a point where air can … Read Full Post »

Protect Your Property by Taming Your Trees

Those majestic old trees on your property have been growing just fine on their own for decades or even longer, so why do you need a tree service? Trees will perform self-maintenance if left to their own devices in a wooded environment, but the coexistence of trees and people in cities and residential areas requires human intervention to ensure safety and prevent damage to homes, landscaping and the tree itself. For a harmonious existence between you and your trees, turn to the Dallas lawn care and tree care specialists at ABC Home & Commercial Services.Benefits to Your Home and Lawn

Overgrown trees may need pruning for several reasons, such as providing clearance for power lines, buildings, homes or people. Trees may also need to be thinned at the crown to increase the amount of sunlight and air that reaches the foliage, encouraging optimal growth. Thinning additionally helps shed more sunlight on … Read Full Post »

Insects Can Still Present Problems in Winter

Once the first hard freeze hits Austin, you may think that your pest problems are over for a few months, but do you know where the insects actually go? Some insects migrate to warmer climates, while others are designed to tolerate the colder temperatures by overwintering, which is a type of hibernation process. When bugs hibernate in the soil or under leaves, rocks and logs, they do not affect humans at all. However, many insects are likely to seek shelter in your home rather than under a log during the winter months and that’s why you need year-round Austin pest control tips.

Insects That Thrive Indoors

Finding flies or ants in your home during the summer months is a common occurrence, especially if you leave doors and windows open, but spotting just one of these pests in the winter could be a sign of an infestation. Adult insects usually lie dormant in … Read Full Post »

Life-Saving Education for Allergic Kids

Childhood is a carefree time when kids are encouraged to play and have fun. Unfortunately, a bee or wasp can bring the fun to an end. In the United States, roughly 3% of children are allergic to insect bites or stings. While many reactions cause mild swelling and discomfort, a bee sting can also cause a life-threatening reaction that requires epinephrine. That’s why it’s essential to teach allergic kids to identify signs of wasps and bees and to act accordingly.

In College Station and many parts of Texas, stinging insects are active all year. As pest control experts, ABC highly recommends treating your outdoor areas during fall and winter through a collective approach that includes landscaping, pest control and lawn care in College Station.

Photos, field guides and online videos are all excellent resources for teaching children how to identify and avoid stinging insects. Children should be aware that wasps don’t only … Read Full Post »

Give Your Pool a Makeover in Time for Spring

Are you planning to leave a pool remodel project until warmer weather? Consider getting your pool makeover finished now to have your pool ready to go when warm weather returns.

Getting the Deck or Patio Prepared

Not all of the action is in the water, so anyone who wants to lounge poolside without swimming needs a relaxing patio or deck space to unwind.

Getting the deck or patio ready adjacent to the pool doesn’t necessarily require renovation. Consider purchasing some outdoor furniture that’s modern, sleek, and high-quality to achieve a relaxing and attractive atmosphere without construction.

Popular outdoor furniture that is functional and beautiful includes hardwood and wicker dark-colored furniture. Real Simple Magazine suggests looking for furniture pieces that are easy to move for convenience, and that can also withstand the local climate.

Pool Re-Tiling

Tiles can get worn out and damaged over time. If you’ve been putting off a pool re-tiling, consider getting it done … Read Full Post »

Stink Bugs Cause a Stink for Gardeners

Most gardeners are eager to share a bountiful harvest with friends and neighbors. There is usually enough to go around, but a few greedy stink bugs can destroy an entire crop in a few short weeks. Take precautions now to deter these hungry bugs from devouring the spoils of your hard labor—even in winter.

Identify the Enemy

Stink bugs are easily recognized due to their brown or green shield-shaped bodies. Their markings vary in color, and triangles on their backs are called scutellum.

Stink bugs leave blemishes the size of pinheads on fruits and vegetables, including winter veggies such as kale and spinach. Sometimes excrement is also present. The damage is more than cosmetic—the area underneath the depression or blemish may not ripen. Some fruits will turn brown underneath the blemish.

Take Precautions

Take steps before the growing season begins to deter stink bugs from settling into the garden. Our Houston lawn care and landscaping … Read Full Post »

Handling Firewood Improperly Can Cause Pest Problems

Heating your Houston home with firewood is cozy, romantic, and environmentally friendly. Unfortunately, if your wood isn’t handled and stored correctly, it can harbor unwanted pests. These insects pose no serious threat to your home in most cases, but a few species could be problematic.

A variety of insects infest wood. The list includes bark lice, millipedes, centipedes, pill bugs, sowbugs, springtails, termites, beetles, carpenter ants, carpenter bees, and wasps. Termites are the biggest threat to your home’s structure, but they’re not usually a problem unless you bring firewood into a moist environment and store the logs against your home. If you find live termites in a wood pile, move the wood as far away from your home as possible.

Wood-boring beetles can be a nuisance if they create noise or wood dust. Bark beetles live inside a tree’s bark or between the bark and heartwood. If infested wood is stacked against … Read Full Post »