Truck & Chipper W Tree in background


Renovate Your Lawn For Optimal Health


Lawn renovation is important to keep your lawn strong, healthy and lush. The healthier your lawn the easier it is to keep weeds from growing. In this post we will go over two of the main cultural practices; core aeration and over seeding and when you should have them done.

Core Aeration Process and Results


Core Aeration is the process in which a machine pulls out plugs of soil. The result is small holes which allow air, water and nutrients to reach the turf roots. The soil plugs are left on the lawn which then break down naturally. When the turf roots receive more air, water and nutrients they are able to produce a much more vigorous lawn.

The main reason to aerate your lawn is to reduce soil compaction. Soil compaction is a form of soil degradation. When the soil is compacted it compresses the soil and limits the amount of air and water available to the roots of the turf.

When Should You Aerate Your Lawn?

When to aerate your lawn is the big question. Should you do it in the spring? Summer? or Fall? The answer is anytime during the growing season. This is because during the growing season you will allow the turf roots to expand into growth spaces created during the core aeration process. All lawns need yearly aeration. No aeration can cause compaction issues and a struggling lawn in the future.

Over Seeding


Over seeding is the application of seed over existing lawns to improve the density. Although it seems simple, there is some specifications that you'll want to know when deciding when to over seed.

When Should You Over Seed?

The ideal time to over seed your lawn is in the fall. The reason is that in the fall the soil is still warm but the air is cooler. When the air is cooler and soil is just warm there are fewer weeds for the new grass to compete with.

Signs your lawn needs overseeding:

  • Brown spots spreading across your lawn.
  • You haven't overseeded in the past few years.
  • Your lawn has thin spots or bare areas

It is far more cost effective and efficient to over seed than to remove the existing turf and install a new lawn from seed or sod.

Our lawn care experts can advise you on these cultural practices, and provide the necessary services to improve the health and beauty of your lawn. Please inquire for a free consultation with one of our lawn care pros, and get your lawn looking healthy, lush and strong!

Consult With A Turf Pro

Contact us at 877-308-8733 or

Maintenance Tips For Your Spring Landscape

With temperatures skimming 50 all week I think it's safe to say that winter is behind us. It's time to focus on spring! This is the perfect time to plan your spring landscape so you can enjoy your yard through spring, summer, and fall.

Essential Steps For Your Spring Landscape:

Early Spring (April – Early May)

1.       Inspect trees and shrubs for damaged or hazardous branches

2.       Fertilize trees and shrubs to promote growth and improve vigor

3.       Begin fungicide treatments to Dogwoods, Crabapples, and Hawthornes

4.       Dethatch and core aerate lawn to allow water, soil, and nutrient flow.

5.       Slice seed thin areas in lawn

6.       Fertilize lawn and apply crabgrass control

7.       Apply Horticultural Oil to Hemlocks to control Hemlock Woolly Adelgid


Mid-to-Late Spring (Late April – Mid May)

1.       Treat Austrian and Red Pines for Diplodia Tip Blight fungus disease

2.       Mulch trees and shrubs to retain soil moisture

3.       Treat Birches for leafminer

4.       Treat plants for Winter Moth and Canker Worms

Contact us for a free landscape consultation.

Request a Free Consultation


Faster and Safer Tree Work with our NEW Tracked Lift!

track lift resizedOur mission has always been to offer the best possible professional tree work, landscape design, and lawn care for our clients. We've been doing that for over 60 years and have some of the most delighted clients around. Now we can provide these services faster, safer, and more cost effectively. We're so excited for our newest piece of equipment, our Tracked Lift!

The tracked lift is so compact that it will fit thru a standard single door. The makeup of the lift allows us to move easily over soft, muddy or delicate finished surfaces without the damage that would be done by other types of wheeled equipment. It can even climb stairs!

Carpenter Costin will be using this beauty for things like:

  • Tree removal without climbing
  • Pruning large hedges without need for a ladder
  • Accessing yards that would otherwise be inaccessible because of fences and small gates

Track lift2 resizedLast week we had the perfect project for our new lift. Our client in Salem, MA had a large maple tree that was posing a hazard to a home with a slate roof. Not only do you want to avoid injury by having a tree fall on your house, but in this case it would be very expensive to repair or replace a slate roof! Like many properties in Salem, this home has a narrow driveway and two small garden gates for entry into the backyard. Without our new tracked lift, we wouldn't have been able to access the tree. Thanks to our new machine we were able to quickly and safely remove it for a much lower cost to the client.

We expect the tracked lift to be involved in a lot more projects going forward. If you have tree or yard work that needs to be done but thought it wouldn't be accessible, get in touch! We'll be happy to show this guy off!


Is Your Tree a Hazardous Tree

Trees add so much beauty to our properties and benefits to the environment.   They also require attention and care to keep them healthy and in a safe condition.  If you know what to look for, your trees may have some telltale signs that indicate a potential hazard.  

How to find out if your tree is a Hazardous Tree:

  • Are there large holes in the trunk
  • Have branches fallen from tree
  • Are branches close to a structure or interfering with wires
  • Are there splits or cracks in trunk or branches
  • Are there dead or broken, hanging branches in tree
  • Are there mushrooms at the base of tree
  • Has construction or digging been performed near base of tree


If you notice any of these potentially dangerous conditions, please have your trees inspected and evaluated by a professional arborist.  They are best qualified to advise you on how to keep  your trees in tip top shape and keep them from becoming a hazardous tree.

For more information or to arrange a complimentary arborist inspection of your trees, give us a call at (877) 308-8733.  Please note that we offer a 10% discount on tree work during the winter months.


It's Time to Start Your Spring Clean Ups

Spring is definitely here! Be sure to get your spring clean up done in the next few weeks for a healthy, attractive landscape.

The unusual March weather had many people, plants, pests, and animals confused. With day-to-day temperatures ranging from record highs to brutally cold lows, we saw rapid blooms in the landscape, followed by bitter cold capable of damaging freshly bloomed plants. Despite the unusual weather in March, April is sure to bring more consistency in temperature, and some much needed rain.

I'm sure you've noticed quite a bit of color appearing in your landscape over the last few weeks. Color in the landscape means it's time to get out and do your spring clean ups! Ensure all the leaf litter and fallen debris is cleared from your lawn and flower beds; refine your flower bed edges; and spread some bark mulch to get your landscape looking great.spring clean up

Clearing leaves from your lawn is absolutely necessary to ensure a healthy lawn. Not only do insects and diseases love hanging in leaf litter, but it also slows down the photosynthesis process in your lawn - leaf litter blocks sunlight, effectively preventing photosynthesis and ultimately damaging your turf. Leaf litter is also prime habitat for ticks, particularly deer ticks, so be sure rid your yard of all fallen leaves. Ticks are already proving to be a nuisance this year, so keep your property safe and use effective tick control practices.

Spring clean ups can be a laborious process requiring hours of raking, bending, crouching, kneeling, and lifting; however, with the proper equipment spring cleans up can be a breeze. We utilize experienced crews, with backpack blowers, vacuum trucks, and a bark mulch blower to help make spring clean ups efficient and affordable. If you'd like to tackle the spring clean up by yourself it can be a rewarding experience; however, if you'd like to leave it to the professionals, click the button below for a free spring clean up estimate.


mulch blower

A bark mulch blower spreads mulch quickly and accurately.

Commercial Landscape Management Services for 2012

Attention commercial property managers: it is time to plan your landscape maintenance services for 2012!

If you're a commercial property manager or service manager it is definitely time to get moving on your search for a landscape maintenance provider for the 2012 season. You should have a maintenance provider selected by mid-March at the latest to allow for ample planning and coordination time between the property management and landscape contractor. Some things to consider when selecting a landscape maintenance company are:

  • Quality - is the company well-established, and do they have a history of great work? Exceptional quality must be a priority to the provider.
  • Price - price is obviously a deciding factor, but you don't need to sacrifice quality to get a good price. Carpenter Costin emphasizes operational efficiency to keep our prices down.
  • Insurance - be sure your provider is insured. Many smaller maintenance providers can offer great quality and price, but if they aren't insured you'll be risking it big time!

Comprehensive landscape maintenance service is not easy to provide. Maintenance contractors need to have skilled labor, efficient equipment, and effective processes in order to provide superior services. Here at Carpenter Costin, we utilize our wide range of services and state-of-the art equipment to provide exceptional quality in our maintenance programs. In addition to the standard clean-up and weekly lawn mowing, we provide turf management treatments, shrub pruning, road sweeping, and irrigation services. We also offer our expert tree care services and landscape design at a discounted rate for our commercial properties.

commercial mulching service

Our "bark blower" increases our mulching service dramatically, while maintaining great quality throughout.

commercial flowerbed cleaning

With skilled crews, our spring and fall clean-ups are a breeze.

commercial lawn mowing

Our fast mowers can service large properties quickly.

commercial property sweeping

We'll even make sure your roadways are free of winter debris.

If you're still looking for a commercial landscape maintenance provider on the North Shore, Merrimack Valley, or Greater Boston area we encourage you to meet with one of our commercial specialists. You won't be disappointed.


Cover Shrubs with Burlap for Winter Protection

Don't get burned by cold winter wind - Protect your shrubs with burlap.

Despite the mildness of this fall; the cold, whipping winds of winter will be here before you know it. Without proper protection, your shrubs can be severly damaged by cold winter wind. One method of defense is to use anti-transpirants; however, in areas with excessive wind, a burlap cover or wind screen may be your best bet.

Burlapping shrubs protects them from the wind, but still allows air to circulate through the small mesh holes, promoting good plant health throughout the winter. In addition to protecting from harsh winter winds, burlap also helps regulate the shrubs temperature. In 2011, there burlap for shrub coverwas so much snow that our shrubs were actually insulated by snow (much like an igloo). However, in winters with little snow fall, yet extremely cold temperatures, burlapping can be the difference between preserving your existing shrubs, and needing to plant new ones come spring.

Although we offer burlapping services, it is actually very easy to do yourself. Start with quite a bit of burlap and wrap it around a shrub a couple of times. To secure the burlap, it is best to use twine. Wrap the twine over the burlap tight enough that it will not come loose during periods of high winds; however, not too tight that you may compromise the shrub's integrity. An alternative to wrapping the entire shrub would be to create a wind screen. This works exceptionally well with immature shrubs. A wind screen is constructed using wooden stakes and burlap. Put the stakes in the ground on the windward side of the shrubs about three feet apart, for as long as you need to to cover them. Then lay the burlap along the stakes and staple it to the stakes

Protecting your shrubs with burlap will help you get off on the right foot come spring time. Simply unwrap the burlap, or remove your wind screen, and you should find that your shrubs have not been dried or damaged by the winter wind.


Still Time for Fall Clean Ups on the North Shore

This mild November has lengthened the landscape maintenance season. Take advantage of the unseasonably warm weather and prep your landscape for winter.

Unless you're a diehard winter person, or perhaps a frequent skier or snowboarder, this extended warm fall has been a blessing. With temperatures comfortably in the 50s, and even in the 60s in some areas, winter seems a ways away; however, I can assure you it will be here at some point. Utilize the remaining few days that don't require you wear a winter hat and gloves, and care for your landscape.fall clean ups

In addition to extending outdoor activities, this warm weather has also extended our growing season! It seems crazy, but we've actually seen some blooming happening - most notably in pussy willows in our area. One of our Certified Arborists even claims his crabapple still has quite a bit of foliage on it.

Our maintenance crews have been busy doing fall clean ups for the past few weeks, and it looks like they will continue to be able to service residential properties through December since the weather has been so nice. If you haven't cleaned up your yard yet, we suggest you consider our fall clean up services. Our clean ups include leaf removal, flower bed cleaning, and even gutter cleaning. To request your fall clean up, give us a call at 877-308-8733 or click the button below. Enjoy this warm weather while it lasts!


Don't Forget to Clean Those Gutters

As we approach winter, ensure your gutters are free of leaves and debris.

Clearing the fallen leaves and twigs from your lawn and flower beds is absolutely essential in maintaining a great landscape; however, that is the simple part of the fall clean up. Cleaning your gutters of the same fallen foliage and debris is even more essential to ensuring your house and property are safe and in great shape. Gutters clogged with leaves cannot properly dispense the water that runs off your roof, resulting in severe backup and a potentially dangerous situation. The added weight of wet leaves is enough to strain a gutter, but as the temperatures drop, the threat of ice developing in the gutters is something that should not be taken lightly.

I'm lucky enough to sit in a corner office (cubicle) at the Carpenter Costin headquarters, and as I look out the window, I am noticing an increase of fallen leaves thickly scattered across the street, sidewalks, and adjacent properties. There is no doubt in my mind that it is time to start the fall clean up process, and ensure that your gutters are free of all leaves and debris.

Our crews can easily and safely clean gutters during our fall clean ups. The equipment we utilize, coupled with a crew that is not afraid of heights, make gutter clearing a breeze. As you think about your fall clean up, please consider the importance of gutter cleaning, and please proceed with caution if you decide to clear your own gutters. Request your fall clean up and gutter clearing today.


Time For Fall Clean Ups

Carpenter Costin's experienced landscape maintenance crews provide efficient, and effective fall clean up services.

It's hard to believe, but with this morning's chill, I can safely say that winter is on its way. The frost on my windshield made it tough to see the leaves scattered across the lawns in my neighborhood, but as the defroster started to gain on its first real test of the year, I could start to make out the reds, yellows, and browns scattered across many lawns. It is time to start thinking about your fall clean up for the year.fall clean up

The fall clean up is an often-dreaded removal of leaves, twigs, and other debris that has littered your property over the course of the summer and fall. It is a labor intensive activity for home owners, that requires extensive raking, pick up, and bagging of leaves and more. Then, depending on where you live, you may have to bring the bags to a compost center, or consider alternative means of disposal, such as building your own compost pile. The worst part about doing fall clean ups on your own is that it often takes up one of the remaining "nice" days of the fall that can be spent much more appropriately by going for a hike, or long walk, or doing another enjoyable activity, rather than raking.

Let Carpenter Costin do your fall clean up for you. Our clean ups include complete leaf removal, flower bed and lawn clean up, and much more. We will still experience some defoliation of trees, as the abundance of rain seems to have lengthened the season a bit, but as we enter the month of November, it is time to get your property cleaned up. Click the button below and request your fall clean up.



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