The landscaping industry has many different aspects; from lawn care, to shrubs and trees, not to mention pests and designs. When it comes to landscapes, there is certainly a lot involved. Like with any industry, there are many terms and phrases that professionals often use in their trade. Where some of the meaning is obvious in the landscaping application, some may leave you guessing. In an effort to help clarify, we at Matt Myette Landscaping have compiled a list of common terms used in landscaping for your convenience.
Lawn Care & Landscaping Terminology
Aeration: By creating tiny slices or holes throughout the area aeration is a method of increasing water and oxygen into compact soil.
Annual: A plant that grows to maturity and dies within the same season.
Biennial: A plant which produces vegetable one season, then stems flowers the following season, then dies.
Bulb: Bulbs are planted similarly to seeds, where an underground storage component of the plant, containing the stem covered by scales lies.
Clay: Extremely small and may retain nutrients well, clay is a soil particle which is plate-like.
Clod: Difficult to break apart, clod is a lump of clay.
Compost: Used in flower beds to add nutrients and encourage good growth, compost is a soil product created from decomposed garden material.
Deciduous: A plant that goes dormant in the winter and loses its leaves.
Defoliation: The process when a plant looses all its leaves.
Dethatching: The removal of the dead grass; commonly with a dethatching machine or a large rake.
Drainage: The rate that water will pass through soil.
Drought Tolerance: A plant’s ability to thrive without much water.
Evergreen: A plant that features leaves or needles that are green year-round.
Fertilizer: Usually consisting of nitrogen, which is often lost with frequent mowing, phosphates and potash, fertilizer is a material added to feed plants rich in nutrients.
Fescue: A luxury turf that is comprised of soft compact fine-leafed grasses.
Fungicide: Chemical agents used to control a fungus-related disease.
Germination: The sprouting of a seed, spore or pollen grain.
Grading: A procedure designed to change the slope level of an area of soil.
Ground Cover: Low-growing plants that create a blanket appearance over an area.
Hedge: Often used to separate areas a hedge is variety of shrubs that when planted close together will give a wall-like resemblance.
Herbicide: A chemical concoction used to control weeds.
Iron: A mineral that helps keep vegetation, such as grass, green.
Irrigation: A watering system.
Lime: Used to raise the pH in soil, lime is a calcium material.
Macronutrients: Nitrogen, magnesium, phosphorus, calcium, and sulfur that are essential elements needed in large amounts for healthy plant growth.
Micronutrients: Zinc, boron, molybdenum, chlorine, iron, copper, and cobalt that are essential elements needed in very small amounts for healthy plant growth.
Mulch: A variety of materials utilized to cover soil for moisture conservation and weed suppression.
Osmosis: The process when water travels across a membrane.
Perennial: A plant living for a number of years.
Pesticide: A chemical agent applied to control an organism.
pH: The acidity and alkalinity of soil.
Photosynthesis: The production of carbohydrates when exposed to light from a chemical on a green plant.
Planter: The designated area, used to grow plants that is commonly raised and composed of wood or concrete.
Pruning: A technique of cutting parts of a plant off to control size, health, and appearance.
Refoliate: A term used to reference when a plant grows new leaves after a leafless period.
Shocking: After a plant is transplanted to a new area, shocking describes the wilting and sometimes loss of leaves after a plant is transplanted to a new area.
Sod: Frequently used to start a new lawn, sod is small sections of turf ready for transplant to new locations.
Temperature Tolerance: The degree, hot or cold, at which a plant can handle temperatures and survive.
Thatch: The live or dead layer of roots and stems between the turf of a lawn and the soil. Topiary: Controlled by shaping with pruning or shearing, topiary is a decorative style of plant growth.
Transplant: Moving a plant from one location to another.
Turf: A ground cover of grass which can withstand reasonable traffic.
Variegation: A pattern of leaves that consists of either white or yellow markings.