Environmental Insights

5 Things to be Aware of to Prevent Landscape Budget Surprises in 2019

Posted by Tim Lake on Aug 2, 2018 5:45:33 PM

While outside temperatures in Georgia may still be sweltering at the end of summer 2018, before long most business owners’ thoughts will turn to planning and budgeting for 2019. As a commercial property owner or manager, you’re concerned with making every budget dollar count.

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Topics: Commercial Landscape Maintenance

Plant Growth Regulators: Nature's Solution for Grass That Grows Like Weeds

Posted by Tim Lake on Jul 5, 2018 12:15:20 PM

It's inevitable. Every summer, the central Georgia heat and humidity promote out-of-control grass (and weed) growth. It really seems like an impossible task to keep your property looking well-maintained during the summer months. Even if you do manage to keep up with the growth, you still have to deal with the mountains of clippings that pile up and drift across your sidewalks and driveways. Plus, you often feel guilty about inflating your carbon footprint with all the constant mowing.

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Topics: Commercial Landscape Maintenance

Best Trees For Paved Areas (And Top 5 Trees Never To Use For Parking Lots in Georgia)

Posted by Tim Lake on Mar 1, 2018 7:04:00 AM

Unless you think your customers and employees would enjoy the sight of a barren expanse of asphalt with nothing to shade or cool it when it heats up hotter than blazes in the summer sun, trees are a must for parking lots in the South.

However, not all trees are equal for this purpose. In fact, there are definite do’s and don’ts when comes to trees for paved areas and parking lot islands here in central and southern Georgia.

Humor me and let’s start with the don’ts. Even though we see it done all the time, I will go so far as to say that it is an egregious crime to plant any of these trees where they will be surrounded by hot asphalt:

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Organic Lawn Care vs. Conventional Lawn Care: Which Works Best In Georgia

Posted by Tim Lake on Jan 23, 2018 7:02:00 AM

Whether it’s to do right by the environment or to protect the health of people and pets, more and more people in Georgia and elsewhere are becoming interested in living a less toxic lifestyle. It’s a choice that can impact just about every aspect of life—including lawn care.  

Here at T.Lake, we get it.  We’re outside people.  We like to go barefoot with the children and roll around in the grass with the dog. Their health, and ours, matters to us—a lot. So we certainly want to avoid unnecessary chemical use. But “Can you do organic lawn care?” is not a simple question for us to answer.

Of course, the easy reply is, “of course we can.” But the truth is, a 100% organic approach may not make you 100% happy. Here’s why.

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Topics: Commercial Landscape Maintenance

Employee Spotlight: John Berryhill - T. Lake's Longest Tenured Employee

Posted by Tim Lake on Jan 18, 2018 1:17:40 PM

Since T. Lake’s inception in 1990, we’ve had a lot of employees come and go. Many of them didn’t last too long; we have a habit of weeding out the ones that don’t have enough grit or have too many vices. But we also attract our share of hardy souls who thrive on hard work, good old fashioned horse sense, and a job well done. These are the people who tend to stick around, and we appreciate them more than we could ever express in words.

That said, a few words of appreciation are always in order. So I thought it would be nice to spotlight a few of these individuals here, to recognize them for their excellence and the value they bring not only to T. Lake and the customers we serve, but to each of us as people and to the greater communities to which we belong.

And the very first person to spring to mind as a deserving recipient of this kind of recognition is our longest tenured employee, John Truman Berryhill II.

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Topics: Culture

Professional Landscape Lighting Design Tips

Posted by Tim Lake on Jan 4, 2018 2:25:09 PM

Want to know how to install professional-looking landscape lighting? Sure, I can give you some landscape lighting tips. I’ll post a few of my best below.

But first, bear with me, because I just have to rant about what NOT to do with landscape lighting. It’s actually easy to demonstrate. All you have to do is get in your car and ride around after dark. I can almost guarantee that within a few blocks you’ll have passed case after case of really bad lighting installations.


Like the giant square box runway lights that just blast light at a building as if it were daylight, doing nothing to highlight the architecture or evoke a mood.

Or the residence where somebody bought bullet lights and aimed them at a shrub, and it looks like what Moses saw on Mount Horeb: a single bush all alight with nothing but harsh shadows all around.

Or the facade of a house that has a bright, bright light in one spot right next to a patch of blackness so dark the devil could be hiding there. It’s jarring. When will people learn that you can’t just go buy lights and point them at things and expect it to come out looking good?

Now that I’ve got that off my chest, let’s talk about how to do landscape lighting right.

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Topics: Landscape Construction, Landscape Architecture, Landscape Design

How to Grow Your Career at T. Lake

Posted by Tim Lake on Dec 8, 2017 12:37:54 PM

Looking for a career in landscaping? Wondering if T.Lake is the company for you? We’re always on the lookout for top talent, so if you think you’re a good fit we’d love to hear from you. But before you do, let us give you a little peek into what it’s like to work at T.Lake, because we’re not for everyone.

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Topics: Culture

How Our Specialty Equipment Brings Value To Customers

Posted by Tim Lake on Nov 30, 2017 4:03:00 AM

Here at T. Lake we are problem solvers to the core. We love a challenge! In addition to the whole range of landscape work from hardscape design and installation to tree service to wetland mitigation, we’ve done everything from caulking and applying epoxy coatings onto warehouse floors to fly-over roof inspections with drones, to removal of slag and millings from manufacturing floor pits.

Our thought process is to look at the particular issue you have and find a better way to deal with it. This will often require solutions beyond the ordinary—and it is not uncommon for those solutions to require the use of specialty equipment.

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Topics: Landscape Construction, Environmental Services

Tree Trimming Cost (vs. The Potential Cost of Doing Nothing)

Posted by Tim Lake on Oct 9, 2017 8:04:00 AM

“What does tree trimming cost?”

Like many pricing questions, this one has no simple answer. Instead, let me give you the lowdown on what goes into tree trimming cost estimation, so you can better understand the bids you receive.

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Topics: Commercial Landscape Maintenance

Hiring the Right People for Landscaping is Harder Than it Looks

Posted by Tim Lake on Oct 2, 2017 9:33:52 AM

Apologies in advance, but get ready for a rant.

On second thought, no apologies. This topic literally comes up in the first two minutes of nearly every conversation I have with any business owner, HR professional or manager. It runs across all types and scale of business. From doctors’ offices to large institutions to mom and pop operations, everyone bemoans that we can’t find enough good people.

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