Welcome to "The Dirt" where we share what you can expect from us in the coming weeks,  what's new at NatureWorks, and some garden buzz.
Simplify Your Summer Life
While our home base is metro Boston, more and more of our clients are asking us to care for their summer homes further afield. We're now operating in southern shore spots like Marion, Osterville, and Falmouth. If you've got a second home and prefer to simplify your landscape services to one provider, we're happy to accommodate. 

One of the summer properties we maintain in Marion.
Wacky One-offs
We love being the folks our customers turn to for anything they need outside. Sometimes this requires extra creativity.  1) We salvaged an antique iron gate that was headed for demolition, had it sand-blasted, painted, and found the perfect reclaimed granite post to anchor it.  2) A decades-old urn fell off its pier and cracked right in half. Rather than toss this ornate beauty, we were able to screw it together and touch up the chips. Still a lovely functional vessel.  3) We affixed a family crest to a boulder that now resides in the family's entry garden.

A restored iron gate, a repaired stone urn, and a family crest.
What's Trending - Firewood Storage
With the explosion in demand for built-in firepits in the landscape, comes the latest trend - snazzy storage for the wood. Tired of messy wood piles and metal storage units that rust and bend, clients are now adding custom-built storage from reclaimed stone that serves double-duty as functional wood storage and countertop space for S'mores fixins'. Plus they add a gorgeous visual element to the landscape.

Just add wood - this feature is built of reclaimed granite slabs and a rock-faced bluestone countertop. The piece nestles in beautifully amongst the boulders and reclaimed stonework on this property on the Cape.
Staff We Love: Steve McCormack
Stellar Steve, one of our fabulous construction foremen, is diligent, creative, and thoughtful. From working wonders with stone, to McGuyvering a steel grate, to giving one of our kid clients the ride of his life, Steve pours his heart and soul into every project. We are so lucky he's part of the team!

Steve displaying talent, heart, and creativity: rock-facing bluestone slabs by hand, overseeing little Alex Mikkelson's first excavator driving lesson (that's our partner Lucas from Watercourse showing Alex the ropes), and re-engineering the floor mat from his own personal vehicle to steady a steel grate.
Pets We Love: Louie
Little Louie tagged along with our client's daughter, Amy Friel, to a photo shoot she ran for her company, Rue La La. Smitten with Louie from the second he trotted onto the set, the modeling staff decided he had to join the shoot.

Louie hitching a ride with Amy; cutest prop on any set; the final product. Bet those handbags sold out!
Seeing Red?
You may have noticed patches of pink or red appearing in your lawn - it's likely to be the fungal turf disease Red Thread. It emerges in late spring/early summer under high humidity and temps that hold around 70 degrees. Exactly the conditions we've been experiencing with all the rain. Good news is it's just a visual nuisance - it temporarily discolors your lawn but won't kill it. Red Thread thrives under low nitrogen conditions, so your next fert application will knock it right out. 

Typical Red Thread patches and the pink fibrous fungal bodies emerging from blades of grass.
Pollen Pains
Does it seem like the pollen has gotten worse? Thicker blankets covering your patio furniture and over a longer period of time? Are your allergies and asthma worse? It's not an illusion - global warming is increasing pollen production by providing a longer growing season and increasing carbon dioxide. The availability of carbon dioxide directly affects a plant's ability to produce pollen - when CO2 levels rise, so does pollen.

Hazelnut flowers releasing pollen; the length of the pollen-production season has increased 4-fold in 4 decades.
"Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. 
Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad." 
~ Anonymous