Lawn Care, Tree Services, Landscape Design on Cape Cod MA

Professional Landscape Services, Maintenance and Installation On Cape Cod
Guarantee

TERMS & CONDITIONS

WARRANTY OPTIONS

AFTERCARE INSTRUCTIONS

 

INTRODUCTION

This document is your guide to better relations with your landscape and your landscape company.  Please take the time to read through this entire book.  The contents will provide valuable information designed to help you get the most from your landscape.

You will find important warranty information related to new plants and turf installed on your property.  Please read the conditions of the three warranty options.

If you have any questions about these terms, conditions and information please contact us any time for clarification.


PAYMENT TERMS INFORMATION

BILLING:  Contracted installation work will be billed and payment in full shall be made following completion of the job. All invoices are due upon receipt.  A late service fee equal to the lesser of 1.5% per month (18% APR) will be charged on any balance unpaid over thirty (30) days.  A service charge of $50.00 will be charged for any returned checks.  Should it become necessary to bring an action to collect amounts due, you agree to pay all costs of such collection including reasonable attorney’s fees and court costs.

MODIFICATION, TERMINATION OR CANCELLATION OF SERVICES:  You agree to notify Hoxie Landscape Services in the event that you sell the property which is the subject of this agreement.  You may cancel a service any time within 24 hours of the scheduled job in writing (email) or with a phone call to our office during normal working hours of 8 a.m. to 4 p.m Monday – Friday.  You may be held responsible to pay for materials purchased for installation jobs.  This agreement shall be terminated upon receipt of your notice that you would like this work canceled.

If a job is delayed or postponed by you, we cannot guarantee that your job will be rescheduled for the next day.

Your business is appreciated, and you are valued as a customer.  If, for any reason, you are dissatisfied with the work we have performed for you, PLEASE LET US KNOW RIGHT AWAY.  If you do find it necessary to cancel services, we are very interested in knowing your reason.

COMMITMENT TO PROFESSIONALISM:  All work performed and installed by Hoxie Landscape Services will be done as described within the specifications for the job.  The workmanship of our professional staff will meet or exceed the standards established by the proposal or contract and will follow normal and customary practices established for professional landscape installation.

CONTRACTOR’S RESPONSIBILITIES:  Hoxie Landscape Services shall provide all labor, tools, equipment, and materials necessary to perform all of the services described in the specifications for landscape installation.  We hold all applicable licenses and insurance required and shall comply with all laws and regulations in the performance of this work.  If any conflicts exist in this agreement between terms which are contained here and on the front side of this document, the terms on the contract or proposal shall govern.

 


Important Information Concerning the Warranty of Your New Landscape

This warranty covers newly installed trees, shrubs and turf. Throughout this document the word “plant (s)” refers to trees, shrubs and turf.

Option A

  1. STANDARD WARRANTY: Hoxie Landscape Services extends a limited warranty in which we guarantee to the original purchaser the survival of all hardy woody plants, trees and shrubs for thirty (30) days from the date of installation.
  2. GENERAL CONDITIONS: All applicable AFTER CARE recommendations as stated by Hoxie Landscape Services must be followed in a reasonable manner for this warranty to apply.  This warranty does not cover damage due to abnormal weather and winter damage; insects & disease; branch die back or breakage; failure to blossom; plants subject to negligence or abuse; any plants installed after October 30th; plants which fail due to a lack of water, whether caused by negligence, water bans or an act of nature, such as erosion.

SPECIFIC CONDITIONS:

  1. SEED LAWNS:* Establishing a seed lawn is a process which may require two full growing seasons to fill in fully.  A newly seeded lawn will likely need additional seeding to fill in thin areas during the first year of growth.  Hoxie Landscape Services does not guarantee seeded lawns in any way under our standard warranty. *
  2. SOD LAWNS: Newly sodded lawns are guaranteed for 30 days from the time of installation.  All general conditions apply as stated.
  3. NOT COVERED: This limited warranty does not guarantee the establishment or survival of the following: transplanted trees and shrubs, roses, annuals, hardy mums and bulbs.
  4. INSTRUCTIONS: If a plant is not going to survive, it generally becomes apparent within two to four weeks after installation.  If you have a question about the condition of a plant within the 30 day warranty period, notify Hoxie Landscape Services so that we may evaluate the condition of your plants right away and give you supplemental instructions for proper care.
  5. This warranty gives you specific legal rights. In addition to this warranty, you have implied warranty rights such as merchantability, which means that plants are alive and healthy and will endure normal weather conditions.
  6. REPLACEMENT POLICY: To the customer of any guaranteed plant that fails within 30 days of the date of installation, we will install a replacement plant of equal size and character one time only.

 

*We will guarantee seed lawns if we are hired to perform our Lawn Care Program.

 

EXTENDED CONDITIONAL WARRANTY

OPTION B

  1. EXTENDED WARRANTY: Hoxie Landscape Services will offer an extended conditional guarantee for the establishment and survival of all newly installed trees, shrubs and turf under contract for our exclusive Tree and Lawn Care Program.  Your extended warranty is only available while your plants are enrolled in our customized Plant Health Care Program.
  2. CONDITIONS: The Tree and Lawn Care Program is designed to provide optimum care and routine maintenance for your landscape plants and/or turf.  You are required to follow all of the recommendations for care within the program and your account must be current to validate the terms of the extended warranty.  Failure to do so shall make this warranty void.
  3. The Extended Conditional Warranty does not cover damage due to abnormal weather and winter damage; damage caused by animals; breakage; failure to blossom; plants subject to negligence or abuse; any plant not paid for according to our terms of sale. Plants will not be covered during a lapse of your Tree and Lawn Program due to non-payment for the service.  Plants and/or turf which die or are damaged due to a lack of water, whether caused by negligence, water bans, or an act of nature, such as erosions, will not be replaced under the warranty.
  4. NOT COVERED: This guarantee does not cover transplanted trees and shrubs, roses, annuals, hardy mums and bulbs. Perennials are covered for 30 days after planting.
  5. INSTRUCTIONS: If you have a question about the condition of a plant within the 30 day warranty period, notify Hoxie Landscape Services so that we may evaluate the condition of your plants right away and give you supplemental instructions for proper care.
  6. This warranty gives you specific legal rights. In addition to this warranty, you have implied warranty rights such as merchantability, which means that plants are alive and healthy and will endure normal weather conditions.
  7. REPLACEMENT POLICY: To the owner of any plant or turf area that fails during the first year, who has fulfilled all of the obligations of this warranty, we will install a replacement of original size and character at no charge.  A new lawn will receive supplemental seeding and routine fertilization during the first twelve months to insure a healthy reasonably thick lawn.

 

PURCHASED EXTENDED CONDITIONAL WARRANTY

OPTION C

  1. EXTENDED WARRANTY: Hoxie Landscape Services will offer an extended conditional guarantee for the establishment and survival of all newly installed trees, shrubs and turf for an additional fee.  This fee will be added to the overall cost of the landscape installation and must be paid in full upon completion of the job.  Newly installed plants and turf will be guaranteed for one full year.
  2. CONDITIONS: Your account must be current to validate the terms of the extended warranty. All required after care procedures must be followed. Failure to do so shall make this warranty void.
  3. This warranty does not cover damage due to abnormal weather and winter damage; breakage; failure to blossom; plants subject to negligence or abuse; any plant not paid for according to our terms of sale. Plants and/or turf which die or are damaged due to a lack of water, whether caused by negligence, water bans, or an act of nature, such as erosions, will not be replaced under the warranty.
  4. NOT COVERED: This guarantee does not cover transplanted trees and shrubs, roses, annuals, hardy mums and bulbs.  Specific plants may be included or excluded from this warranty by mutual agreement. Perennials are covered for 30 days after planting
  5. INSTRUCTIONS: If you have a question about the condition of a plant, notify Hoxie Landscape Services so that we may evaluate the condition of your plants right away and give you supplemental instructions for proper care.
  6. This warranty gives you specific legal rights. In addition to this warranty, you have implied warranty rights such as merchantability, which means that plants are alive and healthy and will endure normal weather conditions.
  7. REPLACEMENT POLICY: To the owner of any plant or turf area that dies while enrolled in our Tree and Lawn Care Program, who has fulfilled all of the obligations of this warranty, we will install a replacement of original size and character at no charge.  A new lawn will only be warrantied if we are performing an annual lawn program which includes seeding as needed during the growing season to insure a healthy thick lawn.

 

THE AFTER CARE MANUAL

A SIMPLIFIED GUIDE TO PLANT AND LAWN CARE

This manual contains required practices for maintaining newly installed lawns and plants.  We call this maintenance AFTER CARE.  After Care includes proper watering, fertilization, pruning, mowing, mulching and pest control practices.

The proper timing and application of all these After Care functions is necessary to insure that all newly installed components of your landscape will thrive in their new home.

Any warranty extended by Hoxie Landscape Services on newly installed plants and turf is subject to adherence to the proper After Care instructions presented in this manual.

  1. WATERING The single most important After Care element is watering. Water has become a critical concern for most Cape Cod towns. Many towns periodically impose restrictions on outdoor water use.  Citizens should be aware and strive to conserve water at every opportunity.  Here are some suggestions for making the most efficient use of our valued water supplies.
  2. New Lawns Seed Lawns: Water new seed lawns (in lieu of rainfall) 3 to 4 times per day for 10-20 minutes in order to keep the soil moist for germination of the grass seed. You should avoid watering your lawn in the evening during periods of warm weather to avoid disease problems.  Try to keep all foot and other traffic off the newly seeded lawn.  It is only necessary to wet the top ¼” of the soil during each watering.

Once the lawn has germinated, water 2 times per day until the grass is about 4” tall.  Mow the lawn at this time with a sharp mower blade to a height of 3 inches.  After the lawn is mowed, water 3 to 4 times per week, putting down 1-2 inches of water per week.  (Collect water in an empty tuna fish can to monitor amount delivered to lawn.)  Keep leaves off newly seeded lawns in the fall with a leaf blower.

Sod Lawns: Water new sod lawn 2 times per day for the first 2 weeks.  You should avoid watering your lawn in the evening during periods of warm weather to avoid disease problems.  After 2 weeks, if the turf has reached a height of 4 inches, you may mow the turf with a sharp mower to a height of 3 inches.  Reduce watering to 1 time per day for the next 2 weeks, then reduce watering to 3 to 4 times per week.

  1. Established Lawns Turf that is being cared for under a fertilization program is more resilient during drought conditions. Perennial lawn grasses become dormant and turn brown much as in winter. With the arrival of cooler, wetter conditions the plants become active and put forth new growth. If outdoor watering is limited to the extent that it is not possible to irrigate the lawn properly, it would be advisable not to water at all and allow the lawn to go dormant.

Do not try to water the entire lawn lightly every day.  Frequent light watering encourages shallow rooting, making the lawn more susceptible to drought injury, and it encourages crabgrass and disease.  It is much better to water a portion of the lawn thoroughly once a week than to water the entire lawn lightly every day.

During mild weather conditions, your lawn requires 1 inch of water weekly for best growth.  Inexpensive rain gauges may be purchased, or a tuna can may be used to measure the amount of water applied.

When watering your lawn, do not apply water any faster than the soil will absorb it.  The soil should be saturated with water to a depth of 3 to 4 inches.

  1. Watering Trees, Shrubs and Flower Gardens Newly Installed Plants: All newly installed plants are in transplant shock when installed. Proper watering is the most essential After Care function to insure that your plants will survive and flourish.  All newly installed plants need to be watered 2-3 times per week during hot, dry conditions and 1 time per week during mild, wet conditions.

Large plants will be installed with a soil well at the base.  This well must be filled with water twice per watering and allowed to percolate into the root zone each time you water.  Smaller plants may be watered with a spray nozzle or a sprinkler for 15-20 minutes at a time.

Established Plants:  During dry seasons, watering may be necessary to maintain healthy plants.  Established trees and shrubs DO NOT require as much water as new plantings, but during July and August, some watering may be necessary.

Water as follows: An open hose placed at the base of a tree with the water flowing slowly will provide needed water to the root zone. If the water is allowed to trickle into the soil gradually, it will seep down and saturate the area around the roots. By saturating the soil around the plants, less frequent watering will be necessary.  Each plant or bed should be saturated approximately 1 time every 10days to 2 weeks or less, depending on weather.  Mulching will help to reduce water loss.  The use of mulch on new or established plantings is an excellent method of conserving water.  Maintain 2”-3” of mulch in planting beds at all times, but no more than 1 inch at crown or base of plant.  (Merely sprinkling the plants and soil is of little value to the root system through which water is absorbed.)

  1. Water Saving Tips In trying to conserve water and to realize greatest benefit from water used, it is wise to set up a regularly scheduled program or irrigation system.
  • Do not try to water all planted areas at each watering. Section off your areas and concentrate on these areas individually for maximum benefit.
  • Do not allow plants to wilt before beginning a watering program.
  • Over watering can be more harmful to plants than under watering. Roots need air as well as water.  Do not keep soil saturated with water continuously.
  1. Be Careful with Water Avoid watering on windy days or at midday when evaporation is high. Cut back on watering when skies are cloudy or if it is cooler than usual for the time of year. Water deeply and thoroughly 1 time per week to encourage better root systems and tolerance to dry spells.  Weekly deep watering is more effective, easier and uses less water than frequent light sprinklings that may not penetrate the soil.
  2. FERTILIZING Fertilization of trees, shrubs may be necessary to improve soil conditions and replace depleted nutrients. That said, we do not believe fertilizer is a replacement for the proper soil mixture required by the plant for vigorous growth. When trees, shrubs are planted correctly and used as they were intended, they will thrive with only minor intervention. Turf will require routine fertilization to maintain reasonable health and vigor.

Newly Installed Seed or Sod Lawns:  Lime and fertilizer have been applied during installation of your new lawn.  This fertilizer is formulated to assist the grass in developing a healthy root system during the first 4 weeks of development.  After this period, a routine lawn care program should begin.

Newly Installed Plants:  Newly installed plants do not require fertilization at the time of installation.  While the plant is becoming acclimated to its new environment, the nutrients available in the planting mixture are adequate.  Fertilization may be recommended after the first year to assist the plant in its development and then again every two to three years to keep the plant healthy.

III. PRUNING Timely pruning is also an important phase of After Care to insure a healthy appearance and function within your landscape.  Proper pruning when plants are young can be very important to limit size, improve shape, promote flowering and fruiting, encourage a balanced branching structure and minimize the need for major corrective work or replacement. Consult with us yearly on the need for pruning within your landscape.

  1. PEST CONTROL

Severe infestations of insects and disease can often be avoided through proper  plant and turf care practices; however, pest problems can develop in spite of       best efforts.

Insect Management and Prevention:  Insects are part of any garden.  Many Insects are beneficial.  They may pollinate, destroy pests or improve the soil by scavenging and burrowing.  It is important to recognize commonly encountered insects.  Chemical control can cause additional problems by killing natural enemies of many pests.  Try to use the least disruptive methods of pest control.  Most garden plants can tolerate some insect feeding.

Disease Management and Prevention Destructive fungus is activated during periods of heat and humidity and will often abate when conditions become unfavorable. Most diseases have a temporary aesthetic impact on the plant that will grow out within a short period of time.

  1. MULCHING A minimum of 2-3 inches of mulch should be maintained in planting beds at all times to retain moisture and retard weeds. It is necessary to replenish mulch at least every 2 years. However, a yearly top dressing is usually required in windy and high traffic sites.
  2. GUY AND BRACING TREES Trees and large shrubs may have guy stakes and wire attached during installation.

Under normal conditions these should be removed after the first year.  Leaving the guy wires attached for more than 2 years will cause permanent damage.

 

DESCRIPTION OF MAINTENANCE SERVICES

The following information is provided as a general statement defining most of the routine services offered by Hoxie Landscape Services, Inc. Because all landscapes are unique and each owner’s need may also differ, the specific description of the work we will perform for you may be slightly different from what is described here.  Use these definitions as a guide; if you have questions about the work that is planned for you, please call us.

LAWN CARE SERVICES

Lime Application Balancing soil pH is very important to the success of your lawn care program.  Based on periodic soil tests, we will determine the correct schedule of calcitic granular lime applications for your lawn.  A low soil pH is the most common condition causing lawns to perform poorly in spite of an routine fertilization program.  Your program will include 1 to 2 lime applications per year.

Lawn Care Service Visit Our basic yearly program will include six fertilizer applications scheduled approximately 42 days apart: A standard lawn care program does not include treatments for control of insect and disease outbreaks that are observed during a routine fertilization visit. In the event of a serious pest problem requiring a follow-up treatment of your lawn, an additional fee will be required.  You will be advised of the problem and the cost of the prescribed treatment for approval before any work is performed.

We also offer an Eight Step Program that adds extra visits during May and June to better manage weeds and provide a higher level of service during the heavy growth season.

Lawn Renovation is recommended for several reasons: Rejuvenate an entire lawn that has become thin over time or to repair poorly performing sections as needed. The renovated areas will be over seeded with seed selected specifically for the site. The introduction of drought tolerant or more shade tolerant seed types will insure a better looking lawn in the future. The renovation process goes as follows: 1. Double aerate the lawn to be renovated. 2. Top dressing with 3/8” to ½” of finely screened compost. 3. Over seed with a machine called a “slicer-seeder” which is used to blend the compost with the existing soil and deliver the seed at the soil level. 4. Apply a heavy application of granular organic fertilizer.

Lawn Aeration When soil becomes compacted or an unacceptable amount of thatch develops, (more than ½”) then lawn aeration is recommended to help correct the condition.  The lawn aerator pulls ½” x 2” – 3” plugs from the turf.  These plugs are left on the lawn and eventually break up and incorporate back into the soil.

Lawn Dethatching We prefer lawn aeration in place of dethatching.  The mechanical cutting of thatch provides little benefit to the lawn.  A severe thatch problem is best controlled with proper fertilization and watering practices.

TREE AND SHRUB SERVICES Based on a survey of the ornamental trees and shrubs on your property, the key plants and key pests have been identified, and a program has been formulated to monitor and treat the pests that are most likely to harm your plants.  Strategies are also considered that will reduce stress and improve the growing conditions of your plants.  The timing and number of visits recommended for the season is tailored to meet the needs of your plants.  Your program is evaluated each year and revised as needed to provide optimum care for your valued trees and shrubs.  A typical program will include from 4 – 8 visits.

Winter Protection (Anti-desiccant Sprays) Includes a series of 3 to 4 anti-desiccant treatments from December through March.  The applied protective coating will help retard moisture loss and lessen winter damage often seen in the spring.  In some locations, it is necessary to wrap evergreen plants with burlap.

Products

Pesticides:  All products used for insect and weed control on your landscape are the safest, most effective available.  Pesticides carrying a “caution” label are used.

Fertilizers:  The fertilizers blends we use on your plants and turf are selected for their ability to build the soil as well as feed the plant.  The products we use are selected because they are most suitable in Cape Cod soils and will provide beneficial nutrients to your turf and landscape trees and shrubs.

Compost: We make our own compost using leaves and grass clipping that are collected and composted over a two to three year period. When ready the compost is screened to 1/2″ size. This product is used to amend the soil for planting and lawn renovations.

 

ROUTINE LANDSCAPE SERVICES

Lawn Mowing and Maintenance Service Turf areas will be mowed at a height of 3” throughout the growing season. Mowing will be done every 7 days unless other arrangements are specified. When possible, grass clippings will be returned to the turf.  When necessary, excess clippings will be caught and removed from site.  All turf borders will be trimmed with a line trimmer at the time of each mowing. The driveway, walk and patio or deck will be blown off.

Landscape Service Visit This periodic maintenance service is intended to provide a general landscape maintenance visit for a property that does not require weekly lawn mowing, but still needs Flower bed maintenance, manual weeding and routine cleanups of the landscaped areas.  This service may be performed biweekly or monthly as specified.

Weed Management Routine applications of a nonselective herbicide are often recommended for control of weeds, poison ivy and other unwanted vegetation.  The product Glyphosate is most often used for vegetation control. Routine manual weeding may also be incorporated into a monthly management strategy.

Spring Cleanup Rake and clean up all landscape areas, pull existing weeds, edge all walkways and turf borders, prune winter damage from shrubs if specified.  Remove all resulting debris from site including any small limbs.

Fall Cleanup Rake and clean up all landscape areas, blow off all paved surfaces, cut back perennials and pull dead annuals. Remove all resulting debris from site. Shrub pruning may also be included with prior arrangements.

Early Summer Pruning:  Late June Privet hedges will be sheared and selected plants will be pruned and shaped for maximum aesthetic and functional value, maintaining natural or intended texture and form within the scheme of the landscape.  Flowering broad leafed evergreens will be pruned following yearly bloom.

Summer Pruning:  Mid-August Needled evergreens will be pruned and shaped for maximum aesthetic and functional value, maintaining natural or intended texture and form within the scheme of the landscape. Flowering broad leafed evergreens will be pruned following yearly bloom.

Fall Pruning:  Mid October Many woody flowering shrubs and ornamental trees are often best pruned at this time.  These plants may be scheduled for pruning during your fall cleanup.

Install Annual Flowers Based on a design and a prearranged budget, spring and/or fall annual flowers shall be planted in designated areas.  The soil shall be fertilized and amended as needed to provide adequate growing conditions.

Install Bark Mulch in Planting Beds A minimum of 2 inches of mulch should be maintained in planting beds at all times to retain moisture and retard weeds.  It is necessary to replenish depleted mulch at least every 2 years.  However, a yearly top dressing is usually required in a windy or heavy trafficked site.

Irrigation System Maintenance We provide maintenance of automatic irrigation systems.  This includes:  Start- up, Winterizing, Monitoring, Diagnosis and Repair.  Irrigation system start-up and winterizing services require efficient routing and scheduling to keep the cost reasonable.  We need access to your home for these services, and your cooperation in scheduling is appreciated.

Start-Up Irrigation System The system shall be started and all components of the irrigation system shall be checked to insure optimum performance of the system.  The controller will be set up and the watering schedule adjusted for midseason performance. The seasonal adjustment may be set to 50% of the summer setting or left in the off position. If repairs are needed, you will be informed of any additional charges.

Winterize Irrigation System The water source shall be shut off or disconnected from the system, and the irrigation lines will be blown out to prevent damage from freezing.

Irrigation System Monitoring Routine monitoring includes evaluation of the system performance and seasonal adjustment as needed. An annual monitoring schedule will include three to six monitoring visits.

 

LANDSCAPE DESIGN AND INSTALLATION The most significant contribution you can make to your property is a professionally designed and installed landscape.  The short and long term return on your investment is dramatic. Hoxie Landscape Services, Inc. offers consulting services and over 30 years of construction experience. We specialize in renovations and modifications of existing landscapes.