Tree Trimming…Monsoons are coming!

Are your trees starting to encroach on your roof or your neighbors yard?  Need to get the trees trimmed before the official start of the monsoon season?  Get on the schedule NOW!  We’re already filling up the schedule and want to give everyotopping_alt_beforene an opportunity to get their trees trimmed before breakage and damage occurs.

The monsoon season begins on June 15 and ends on September 30, but the storms peak between mid-July and mid-August. On average, about half of Arizona receives about half of its annual rainfall during the monsoon.

Use the link below, our website, or email us directly at FestivalLandscaping@live.com to receive a free quote.  You can even email me photos of your trees and I’ll get you a quote that same day!

Remember – we only serve homeowners in the Festival Ranch community in Buckeye, Arizona.  Thanks!

Email me at

Where’s Waldo? … AKA Josh

Waldo is there, you know it because you can eventually find him.  So, the question has now become, “Where’s Josh?”  So, this story could have easily gone under “Rumor Has It…” but we figured we post the story straight from the source.

Last year our immediate family was met with many medical challenges including several surgeries.  When November came around it was time to renew our health insurance. 8e4a8bf122504779a7998ecc5a41e686 Well, thanks to Obamacare the least expensive premium for our family was $1700 per month (that was for a high deductible plan with very little coverage).  Needless to say, there was no way we could afford this.  Time for Plan B.

Josh was offered a position with the City of Prescott as their Landscape Coordinator.  This job came with full benefits.  Plan B was now in place.  Our family had to make the move to Chino Valley to allow Josh to take this position.  We now had much needed health insurance, but this meant a big move for our family while still owing Festival Landscaping.

What about Festival Landscaping? Well, that’s when Chris Johnson stepped in and UP!  This amazing young man has been running the field operations of Festival Landscaping since last December.  Chris has been with our company for 4 years.  He knows this business inside and out.  We still run the bookkeeping and scheduling portions of the business, and we help Chris troubleshoot whenever necessary.  But he is our #1, go-to guy!

What else has been going on?  Well, for starters January 1st the minimum wage went up to $10/hr.  Did this effect us?  YES, greatly.  First, this change now means that employees can go scoop ice cream for $10 an hour instead of doing landscape maintenance.  When minimum wage was $8.05 and we offered $10 – $11 an hour to do entry level landscaping, it was much easier to find employees.  Now, these workers are few and far between.  I mean really, who would want to work in 120 degree weather when they can pack groceries or take money at a drive thru window for the same wage!

Second, this means that our pricing will increase slightly as we must provide a more competitive wage to our employees so they’ll have incentive to work in a difficult field.

We have Chris Johnson, who’s been with us for 4 years, and Bryan Peralta, who’s been with us for 3 years.  We recently hired Gilbert Guerra who has many years of experience and is doing a fantastic job!  We’re working to rebuild another crew but that is proving challenging.  We truly appreciate everyone’s patience as we move forward.  The nice part of this process is that everyone now has Chris Johnson visiting their property.  If you haven’t yet met him, prepare to be amazed!  He’s incredibly kind and beyond skilled as a landscaper.

You’re Getting The Best!

Festival Landscaping is proud to announce some changes to our line up beginning this month!  We have our #1 guy, Chris Johnson, running the show there in Festival.  He is amazing and if you’re our customer, you will meet him – and YES, he will be in charge of doing your yard.  If you’ve already met him, then you already know how amazing he is!!

Chris Johnson has been with us for 3 1/2 years. He’s an expert at irrigation and knows how to care for a yard.  We’re only running one crew right now to ensure that our customers are receiving the best possible service.  He’s on each and every job ensuring that your yard is done RIGHT.  Since we’ve been doing this we’ve had no call backs and Chris has been able to train his crew the right way.

Keep an eye out for him and be sure to say hello; he’s one of the nicest guys you’ll ever meet!

Rumor has it…

We all knorumors-are-no-funw that there’s plenty of rumors and opinions about businesses, neighbors, “friends”, t
he community, HOA rules and more.  There’s even a place for everyone to write their opinions for all to see in Sun City Festival (that’s been a blessing and a curse for some!)
Here’s some questions we’ve heard multiple times and want to supply some accurte answers:

Question:  Can I replace a tree with a Saguaro in my yard?

YES!  According to the SCF Community Standards, “Saguaro Cactus may replace one tree in front yard landscaping when there are more than two trees required. Palms may not be substituted for trees at any time.”

Question:  I’d like to replace some frost sensitive plants with cactus and succulents that will remain green and growing year round.  Can I do this?

YES!  Again, according to the SCF Community Standards, “Cactus, flowers and succulents may replace shrubs on a like size basis.”

Question:  Can I top my tree?

Simple answer, NO.  This is not allowed in Sun City Festival nor is it healthy for your tree. Festival Landscaping will not offer this service to homeowners, but we can help you with a crown reduction if you’re interested.  We trim trees according to the International Society of Arboriculture (ISA).  This is where Certified Arborists get their training from.   If you have questions about this community standard, you can contact Karey Belanger, the Community Standards Director, at 928-252-2105, or email kbelanger@aamaz.com

Have a question?  Submit it to festivallandscaping@live.com and we’ll post it with an answer!

High Water Bill?

High Water Bill?  << Check out this link – You’re not alone with strange water bills from the City of Buckeye!

Yes, it’s true that a leak or diaphragm issue can cause a high water bill.  BUT, there is a limit to the amount of water usage you’re going to see on your bill.

We had a customer call us today with a water usage of 24,000 gallons – do you realize that’s about 2 SWIMMING POOLS worth of water?  If you had a leak that big, you would notice!

Don’t let the City of Buckeye tell you a water bill that high is a leak – it’s just not true (unless you’re swimming in your yard!)

On the flip side, if you notice a moderate increase of water usage, you may have a leaking valve picture 2diaphragm inside your valve.  This can be caused by a damaged diaphragm (they do wear out over time) or a piece of debris stuck in the valve not allowing the diaphragm to close all the way.

We can certainly help with an issue like this!  Just send us a Service Request on our website www.FestivalLandscaping.com.

We take irrigation issues very seriously and can usually get you in the same day, or the very next day.

It’s Just Me…

I thought it should be said that we like to portray ourselves in a professional manner, but it has been brought to my attention that we may look “bigger” than we really are!

Our landscape crews consist of 5 men right now – 5 fantastic, talented, considerate crewmen!Office  Our office staff consists of…well, just me!  I do the best I can to get Josh the emails and relay messages but it does stack up sometimes.  For this I truly do apologize.  It can be overwhelming, so any patience you can extend my way is always appreciated.

That being said, I want to thank everyone who has shown me kindness and patience while waiting for an email response or call back (sometimes I’m stuck waiting to get the information back to Josh or Chris – but your still patient!).

Have a wonderful day!

Stacy Olson

Weeds Are Back!

It’s that time of year again, the weeds are overtaking yards!  In Festival Ranch we seem to get hit a little worse than those in town.  We’re surrounded by the desert and the wind really picks up some days.  It brings in the seedlings right into your granite and with the first sign of moisture *POOF* – now you’re battling weeds.

That being said, pre-emergent can prevent these.  Pre-emergent will keep these seedlings from ever growing.  The trick is that you must apply the pre-emergent every 6 months. If you wait longer, it can be like starting all over.  You’ll need to treat with a post-emergent until you get the weeds under control again.

Here’s a little Q & A from our website to help you decide if you should have pre-emergent applied:
What is pre-emergent?
  • It is a water based herbicide that when broadcast on your lawn or granite stops seeds from germinating
 Will pre-emergent leave a stain?
  • Temporarily. The color is called an indicator and allows the applicator and client to know what has been sprayed and what hasn’t. Unfortunately the color is built into the material at the factory and we don’t get a choice in the matter. It fades away with sunlight in a few days.
 When should I apply pre-emergent?
  • If you haven’t had pre-emergent applied within the last six months, then now is the time to do it!  We are working in our landscapes year round and can attest that weeds grow every month of the year.  The important part of the service is not to wait until you have a weed infestation.  Apply pre-emergent BEFORE the weeds germinate and then continue to apply it every 6 months to keep the weeds under control.  If weeds have germinated and started to grow, then a post-emergent will be necessary to help eliminate the existing weeds in addition to preventing new ones from growing.
 It rained after the pre-emergent was applied, is it still good?
  • YES. In fact it’s not only good, it’s great!  The pre-emergent must be watered in for it to be effective, this is included in the application process.
  • We will water in the application of pre-emergent during or immediately after it has been applied.  
 After the pre-emergent application was applied to my landscape I still had weeds come up. Did it not work?
  • Pre-emergent herbicides applications are for WEED CONTROL, not total weed eradication.  Often weed seeds have already germinated at the time a pre-emergent is completed. A post-emergent would be necessary to kill existing weeds.
   So if I do a pre-emergent application I’ll never see another weed – right?
  • We wish we could say that you’d never see another weed, however this is an imperfect science and that is exactly why we offer a guarantee. We can treat two identical properties side by side and one will have a weed problem and the other will be pristine. With regular maintenance services, any small amount of weeds that may erupt can be taken care of immediately.  Or if you notice an area that needs further attention simply let us know and we’ll be right out to take care of it immediately!
  • Most homeowners never want to see a weed, so that’s why we do an application every 6 months. Since the material does not last 12 months we do not recommend an application only once a year.
 How long is pre-emergent guaranteed to last?
  • According to the manufacturers label, the pre-emergent can last from 6 – 8 months with an 80-90% success rate.
  • With a single application we guarantee the weed control for 13 weeks.
  • We do offer bi-annual contracts which cover 2 applications – Spring and Fall – and are guaranteed for 26 weeks per application.  This means you’re covered for the entire year!
What does the guarantee mean?
  • Our guarantee means that we will treat any weeds during the warranty period that appear with post-emergent herbicide and reapplication of pre-emergent in problem areas as needed.  
 What is post emergent?
  • Post-emergents (herbicides) are used to kill existing weeds. It is a solution that is absorbed into the leaves, stems, and eventually the roots of the plant to kill it.
 Will post-emergent leave a stain?
  • No. The color fades away with sunlight.
 Why don’t you spray in the wind?
  • We must ensure that we are not spraying plants or other foliage unintentionally.  Since we are very conscience of where we spray and only want to get the pre and post-emergent on the area we intend, we would never spray on a windy day.
 Will pre or post-emergent applications harm my pets?
  • The manufacturers clearly state the application is safe to humans and pets once it is dry. We recommend that pets and children be kept off the treated area until the chemicals are dry. This will vary depending on the season.