Target Specialty Products, a leading provider of turf and ornamental landscaping solutions in the U.S. and Canada, introduces TURF FUEL® THE KRAKEN™. THE KRAKEN™ is an advanced wetting agent designed for turf surfaces that require the highest level of consistency and firmness.
TURF FUEL® THE KRAKEN ™
“Through exhaustive university trials and close consultation with our network of industry experts, we have learned that professionals at the highest-level demand control over their soil hydration. Kraken combines multiple components to provide ultimate control of hydration and firmness” says Mark Jull, Head of Turf Fuel Products’ Division, at Target Specialty Products. The research has been conducted by Dr. Doug Karcher at the University of Arkansas.
TURF FUEL’S® THE KRAKEN™ can be used at any time during the season, however, many turf professionals strategically use Kraken in conjunction with TURF FUEL® Cleanse®, Abyss™ and Vanquish® depending on season and soil conditions to achieve the best results.
TURF FUEL® product development process starts with input from a vast network of technical sales representatives and customers. TURF FUEL® team works with experts in biotechnology, chemistry and agronomy to develop uniquely effective solutions. This approach leads to highly differentiated product innovations.
TURF FUEL® products are designed to help turf professionals get the most out of their turf even in extremely stressful conditions. Target Specialty Products continues to experience exceptional growth and will continue its expansion throughout North America, expanding its footprint and customer service efforts across the West, Midwest, and East Coast regions.
With over 80 years of industry experience, Target Specialty Products is a leading value-added solutions and service provider of turf and ornamental solutions, pest management, application equipment, supplies and education and training programs. Target Specialty Products serves the Turf and Ornamental and Pest Management markets from 43 locations across the United States and Canada.
Yara North America introduces YaraVita OptimumTurf, a foliar nutrition line specifically designed for the turf and ornamental industry. YaraVita OptimumTurf includes eight products that each deliver a specific nutrient or nutrient mix for efficiently sustaining turfgrass and plant health; boosting performance, durability, and aesthetics.
Backed by more than 100 years of agronomic insights, the newest offerings from Yara are fully formulated liquids enhanced with co-formulants for providing turf with the most efficient forms of nutrients for immediate uptake and utilization.
“Turf managers strive for perfection, and the YaraVita OptimumTurf products allow you to provide exactly what the plant needs with the confidence of knowing the nutrients are quickly absorbed and utilized to ensure high quality results.” said Neil Mayberry, Crop Manager Turf and Ornamental, Yara North America. “A balanced nutritional program is necessary for increasing a plant’s chances of survival, especially when overcoming common stress factors; this is why turf managers must have a product they can trust and is mixable with a wide range of products, ultimately, making their jobs easier.”
Globally, Yara has spent decades researching and developing foliar applications through the YaraVita product portfolio. Foliar fertilizers have proven to be the most efficient way to precisely apply nutrients at the right time, place and rates. With turfgrass under daily stress and needing to be in pristine condition; precise, efficient and effective applications are key. The YaraVita OptimumTurf line addresses a variety of critical plant performance needs and deficiency prevention. The highly-mixable products are easy to handle, safe and include only the highest-quality ingredients.
Yara grows knowledge to responsibly feed the world and protect the planet, to fulfill our vision of a collaborative society, a world without hunger and a planet respected. To meet these commitments, Yara has taken the lead in developing digital farming tools for precision farming and work closely with partners throughout the whole food value chain to develop more climate-friendly crop nutrition solutions.
What began as one residential landscape project expanded to two distinct areas when the homeowner purchased an adjacent lot. Lindgren Landscape in Fort Collins, CO took this impressive project from start to finish.
Imagine designing and building one project, and then having the clients offer you a second, totally different one.
The big question: how do you meld a small, intimate space to an entire city lot?
Not only did Tim Lindgren, owner of Fort Collins, CO-based Lindgren Landscape, come up with an answer, but his solution was good enough to be recognized by Hardscape North America (HNA) for its use of concrete pavers in a residential space of less than 3,000 square feet.
Photo: Lindgren Landscape
Lindgren explains that his company was initially contacted by the buyers of a residential lot in what’s known as Old Town Fort Collins, an area of older homes in this university town in north central Colorado.
“They were going to scrape the house and start new,” he says. “And, they had some pretty lofty goals for the site. They interviewed us and we won the design-build portion of the landscape.”
He says work on the new home was about halfway completed before Lindgren Landscape got involved with the project on what had become a bare lot.
“They entertain a lot, so having a place to host large parties was a big piece of what they wanted,” Lindgren explains. “They also wanted a sense of unity between the indoor and the outdoor. They wanted to be able to open their doors and feel like the outdoors was an extension of the interior of the house, so we used a lot of the same materials, masonry-wise, and finishes that tied in with the interior of the house.”
It sounds simple enough, but the reality was something different. Because of the lot size, the clients only had a small courtyard on the west side of the house for the outdoor living space, and it needed to incorporate a grill/outdoor kitchen, a fire feature, and a water feature.
Additionally, because the clients asked that the entire lot be surrounded by a courtyard wall and masonry fence, drainage became a major issue.
With footers poured to a depth of 30″, the wall is mainly concrete masonry block.
“We used decorative iron for detail in between the posts above the wall, along with some rustic wood,” says Lindgren. “The house has some brick and some natural stone and some old wood from a barn that was used for decorative features, and we used the same elements in the wall that surrounds the property.”
Lindgren describes the home’s courtyard as having a contemporary feel. For instance, the water feature is three concrete slabs mounted in front of the neighbor’s garage wall and lit from below with lighting hidden in a seat wall.
“It took a ton of design and planning,” says Lindgren about his favorite feature of the project. “We had to have custom-fabricated concrete slabs, and custom steel fasteners to hold it together. The interior basin was waterproofed by a pool and spa company.
“It’s as custom a water feature as we’ve done, and it was really fun to dream it up, design it, and then see it fabricated.”
Also, custom is the rectangular concrete fire pit, which measures 7′ x 3′ and required a custom-made burner. The grilling area is all stainless steel and stone, with built-in cabinets.
Although the surface of the courtyard is Belgard pavers, “Because of the courtyard wall and masonry fence the whole property trapped water,” says Lindgren. “To get the water out of there, we had to have an engineer come in and do a gradient drainage plan, we had to do a trench drain through the middle of the courtyard with a decorative grate, and then we had to pipe everything into the street.”
Photo: Lindgren Landscape
Further complicating the matter, Fort Collins city regulations required that because the outflow would be into the street, it was necessary to do a traffic plan to reroute foot traffic and close the sidewalk while demolition and installation took place.
Softscaping for the patio featured container plants and planters built within the masonry walls and benches.
Act Two Of Landscape Design
Lindgren Landscape was just about through with the patio portion of the project — one which required the company to work around both the subcontractors it had contracted with for features such as the masonry and the general contractor’s subs who were finishing up work on the house itself — when the owners sprung a little surprise on the landscape firm: they had bought the adjacent lot and needed it landscaped, as well.
“The lot next to it was basically the same size they had, but without the house on it,” says Lindgren. “That added five or six times the amount of square footage. It got substantially larger.”
Given the work the company had already done, including the courtyard walls, Lindgren chose to create a whole different atmosphere in the much larger space.
“We took the courtyard wall and put in a big rustic wooden door,” he explains. “You open that and walk out and it’s a whole different experience. It’s a more rustic feel with boulder water features, boulders set into the patios and two pergolas. It’s a whole different experience.”
Photos: Lindgren Landscape
An excellent example of that difference is in the water feature. The large lot includes a 50′ x 50′ pond with boulders, three waterfalls, and a host of lily pads.
“It’s a very natural-looking water feature,” Lindgren observes.
The larger area also makes use of the same Belgard pavers, but not in any formal way.
“We continued the pavers for the walking surface, but the interior courtyard is all straight lines and rectilinear design, while the backyard patio is very curvilinear,” he says. “And, the seating areas include boulders. It’s a much more organic feel.”
Photo: Lindgren Landscape
The larger area includes an elevated paver patio which makes use of one of the two pergolas incorporated into the project.
“It’s probably 15′ x 20′ and the pergola is about eight feet tall,” Lindgren says. “It provides some structure above and the vertical part of the structure will allow vines to grow so it has a lattice feel on the walls for privacy.”
The second structure is set in the area just outside the door from the courtyard and provides some direction for people using the larger space.
“It’s above an L-shaped walkway,” he explains. “You go through the door, turn left and the structure guides you along and presents the backyard.”
As with the initial courtyard, the clients had a real desire for privacy. However, in this case, Lindgren was able to provide it through plantings.
“We did an extensive amount of planting around the perimeter, even knowing that eventually they’re going to have to maintain them pretty extensively to keep them in order,” he says. “They wanted an instant barrier between their neighbors, so we used a lot of trees. They’re mostly ornamental, so we put in upright junipers in the 10-12-foot range and some columnar spruce — a lot of evergreens.”
Additionally, softscape was used to set off the water feature, including conifer and deciduous trees that he describes as “pretty natural-looking.”
Lighting for the project features several dozen different lamps of different styles from FX Luminaire which are all dimmable and done by zone. Water features are lit both in and out of the water.
Photo: Lindgren Landscape
While Lindgren is most proud of the water feature in the courtyard, it’s water that also proved to be the most challenging — and educational — aspect of the job, which took almost 18 months from when he first met with the clients to completion of the large lot, and utilized as many as 10-12 employees and subs on the site during construction.
“We were basically creating a giant bathtub and making sure we had good drainage was at the top of our list,” he says. “It all drained beautifully, but we really learned a lot about drainage including 100-year storms and how quickly water needs to leave the site to make room for the next amount. It was working at a whole other level, and fortunately we had some engineers who helped lead the way on that.”
Schipper is a writer and editor specializing in B2B publishing. She is a partner in Word Mechanics, based in Palm Springs, CA.
A less than stellar backyard layout was transformed to an entertainment oasis with the help of Bahler Brothers, Inc. of South Windsor, CT.
How important is good word-of-mouth? For South Windsor, CT-based Bahler Brothers, Inc., it can cross generations. When a local couple opted to redo their entire home — inside and out — for the landscape upgrade they turned to the firm the homeowner’s father has utilized shortly after Bahler Brothers’ opened its doors in 1985.
“It simply got transferred on down the line,” says Ryan King, the designer who conceived and supervised the rework of the family’s pool and patio area, and coincidentally won the 2018 award for use of a combination of hardscape products in a residential project of more than 4,000 square feet from Hardscape North America (HNA).
King says discussions with the client began two years before actual construction. At the heart of the project was a poorly designed space the owners wanted eliminated.
“It was an interesting situation,” he says. “When you walked into the backyard, you had to step down, but then about five feet later, you were stepping back up to get to the original pool and patio. The client wanted to demolish the pool, tear everything out, and then recreate the space so it had a better transition from the backdoor to the pool and patio.”
Fortunately, the clients had a large backyard in which to work the transition and still leave a grassy play space for their children.
“The family really wanted a nice area to entertain friends and family, so they wanted a larger patio,” says King. “And, they wanted a garage/pool house connected with an outdoor kitchen, bar, and fireplace so they could entertain guests even when the weather wasn’t the best.”
Bahler Brothers started the project by demolishing the existing pool and patio, and doing what King calls, “a lot of excavation.” However, the pool area is now reached from a handful of steps off the back door.
Photo: Bahler Brothers, Inc.
Asked about the most significant challenge, King points to getting rid of the divided levels and coming up with something that flows.
“We wanted to make it feel like one continuous level so that it felt like part of the house,” he says. “Rather than being separated — like the original pool — we wanted a full continuation of the backyard from the back of the house. Just dealing with the elevations and getting the heights correct so it felt like one outdoor living space was a challenge.
To further disguise that the area isn’t totally flat, King says Bahler Brothers did install a couple minimal retaining walls and raised the firepit behind the pool by a couple steps.
Once demolition and excavation were complete, Bahler Brothers teamed up with Aqua Pool of East Windsor, CT, to handle the pool installation.
“The pool is rather large-scale,” says King. “It’s a 40-foot long free-form pool with an attached spa. It also has a full waterfall and grotto. The grotto is maybe seven feet tall and you can swim under the waterfall where there’s a bench for people to sit behind the crashing water.”
To tie things together, the project utilizes natural stone copings around the outside edge to tie in with the natural stone of the grotto.
While the pool was being built, a team of carpenters who were also subcontracted for the job constructed the combination garage/pool house.
“The client was looking for an overall outdoor living experience,” says King. “We installed landscape lighting to help extend the hours of use for this outdoor space.”
Photo: Bahler Brothers, Inc.
The project utilized lighting from FXLuminaire. King says he opted to use its Luxor lighting because of the products’ ability to zone different lights, as well as adjust brightness and change color.
Other features include a full bar, a grill, and an outdoor TV and audio. The horizonal features, including the pool deck, utilize Unilock pavers, while the vertical surfaces use a natural thin veneer.
“The front of the house features a large veneered area, and the owner wanted to tie that into the backyard,” King explains. “When you pull into the driveway and into the backyard the natural stone continues right through.”
The entire project is a beautiful custom job, he adds.
Photo: Bahler Brothers, Inc.
Because the entire property was being remade, Bahler Brothers also worked on the front landscaping. For instance, with the new garage and expanded driveway, the company installed a decorative paver border around the driveway addition to tie things together. The firm also installed a new front walkway.
New softscape was also installed throughout, although King says privacy for the large lot was protected with a lot of existing trees.
“The owner wanted to continue the natural feel,” he says. “He had a lot of plants he wanted to reuse that were in good shape, so we used as much as we could. A lot of our plantings focused on the grotto to draw attention to it with different colors and heights and variations with a focus on summer-blooming plants.”
Photo: Bahler Brothers, Inc.
As with many clients today, there was also an emphasis on low-maintenance.
Drainage mainly focused on keeping runoff from pitching into the pool, and King notes that softscape played a role there, too. Rather than putting a patio drain in the decking, plant beds were designed within the patio to handle some of the runoff.
He estimates that Bahler Brothers had has many as five men on the project for approximately three months. And, getting things coordinated between them and the subs provided a learning experience for him, King says.
“I learned a lot about coordination of the different contractors, and certain techniques to help ensure the project continued smoothly, without having to do anything twice,” he says. “It was an overall great learning experience.”
Still, he describes the high-end and complex project as a fun one on which to work.
“It pretty much incorporated every outdoor feature, from the grotto on the pool to a full outdoor kitchen with a bar, the fireplace, firepit, lighting,” King says. “It was fun to incorporate everything into one backyard; it was just a fun renovation.”
And, he concludes, the relationship is continuing, although whether that will extend to another generation is yet to be seen.
“We did landscape maintenance for them last season, and also applied a patio sealer,” King says. “We’ve also talked a bit about doing more landscape plantings in the far backyard.”
Alliance Tire Americas, Inc. (ATA) has announced that it is continuing to expand its Galaxy Garden Pro line of tires. Specifically built for compact tractors operating on turf, soft soil, and grasses, and for roading on hard surfaces and even snow, the Garden Pro has a multipurpose tread pattern and radial construction to maximize performance, longevity, and rider comfort.
Alliance Tire America’s Galaxy Garden Pro Tire 15
According to Nick Phillippi, product manager of the Turf segment at Alliance Tire Americas, the radial construction and unique tread design of the Galaxy Garden Pro allow it to excel in a variety of applications. “With more than four years and thousands of operating hours behind us now, our experience is that the Garden Pro provides years of service and performance and a comfortable ride, all while protecting soil from damage,” he says.
Because of the specific needs of compact tractors operating in vineyards, on produce small acreage farms, and a wide variety of other applications, the Galaxy Garden Pro is designed to distinguish itself in purpose and performance from the typical R-1, R-3, or R-4 tire. With its specially engineered block-type directional traction tread and rounded corners, it offers traction when needed in soft soil; long, even wear on hard surfaces; and gives protection to turf and more delicate surfaces.
Currently available in 20 sizes with an additional 12 sizes to come, the Galaxy Garden Pro is original equipment on John Deere’s 2-series compact tractors. It is the most complete line of multipurpose tires designed exclusively for compact tractors and is covered by ATA’s seven-year agricultural tire warranty.
Alliance Tire Americas, Inc. (ATA) is the American sales and marketing arm of the Alliance Tire Group (ATG), a global leader in agricultural, logging, construction, material handling and other off-the-road (OTR) tires. ATA is also the exclusive U.S. distributor for Aeolus truck, bus and OTR tires, and also markets its own Constellation brand of truck and OTR tires.