Glossary of Landscape Service Terms

Aerate or Aeration


Loosing or puncturing the soil by mechanical means to increase water penetration and air permeability to the soil.

Anaerobic


An environment devoid of free oxygen.

Bracts


Modified leaves which sometimes grow below a flower or flower cluster. They are usually green but they are sometimes colorful and are considered the flower itself; example the bracts on the Bougainvillea.

Dead Head


Stripping out the dead leaves from a plant

Dethatch


The process of removing the dead undergrowth of turf and ground cover.

Evapotranspiration


Often known as “ET”, evapotranspiration is the amount of water that transpires through a plant’s leaves combined with the amount that evaporates from the soil in which the plant is growing. Measured in inches, ET can be used as a guideline for setting irrigation controller programs.

Fungicide


A class of chemicals used to control funguses.

Hard Pan


A tight impervious layer of soil sometimes referred to as “caliche” and usually containing clay. Many times this brick like layer is formed from excavated subsoil spread over the surface and then run over by heavy equipment used during the construction process

Herbicide


A class of chemicals used to destroy weeds or other undesirable plants.

Loam


The term used for an ideal soil based on a mixture of the smallest mineral particles, clay, silt and the largest particles, sand. Generally considered as the soil to use for gardening which balances the extremes of clay and soil for good drainage and has plenty of organic matter and oxygen for healthy root growth.

“Mow and Blow” or “Mow, Blow, and Go”


Alludes to a bare bones service that focuses only on the mowing, trimming, and blowing down of a landscape.

Mulch


Any loose, usually organic and many times recycled material placed over the soil. Its is used for many purposes such as a top dressing, weed inhibitor, evaporation barrier, soil insulator and builder of soil structure.

Pinch


Removing the dead blooms on annual or perennial color

Sucker or Watersprout


Any strong vertical shoot rapidly growing from the main framework of the trunk and branches.

Transpiration


The release of moisture through a plants leaves.

Whorl


Three or more leaves, branches, or flowers growing in a circle from joint (node) on a stem or trunk.

Xeriscape


Patented name that refers to water conserving landscapes.