TruGreen Educates America on Landscape Care With Formal Launch of Specialized Tree and Shrub Service

TruGreen’s TruStories Sweepstakes Touts $25,000 Grand Prize, Perfect for Creating Backyard Oasis

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — March 31, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — TruGreen, the nation’s largest professional lawn and landscape care service, is passionate about educating Americans that trees need regular care to maintain their health and beauty. Just in time for nature’s spring growth spurt, TruGreen is formally launching its specialized tree and shrub care service along with its TruStories Sweepstakes with a $25,000 MasterCard reward card grand prize.

TruGreen’s customized approach to horticulture care nationwide is delivered by licensed specialists trained in agronomic conditions specific to a homeowner’s area. Licensed TruGreen specialists deploy the latest innovative technologies, such as tree injection technology, to effectively treat nutrient deficiencies and to help control many diseases and invasive pests plaguing trees.

According to Ben Hamza, Ph.D., director of technical operations at TruGreen, there tends to be a public misperception that trees and shrubs take care of themselves. “Trees and shrubs add tremendous appeal to our urban home environments, but to thrive, particularly out of their natural world, they require regular care with added nutrients and protection against invasive pests,” Hamza said.

Hamza offers the following spring lawn and landscape tips to prepare your yard for a healthy summer:

  1. Clean Area: Thoroughly clear dead leaves and debris from flower beds and lawn that may impede new spring growth.
  2. Prune: Conduct corrective pruning of trees and shrubs to enhance plant appearance and vigor, and thin rather than top-shear overgrown shrubs and trees to preserve their overall shape. Make sure not to prune trees and shrubs that bloom in early spring, with the exception of removing dead branches.
  3. Mulch: When your lawn is actively growing, return grass clippings back to the soil for added lawn nutrients and consider using composted materials to nourish plants. Apply three inches of organic mulch to base of shrubs and trees to help conserve soil moisture and to reduce weed pressure, but be mindful not to cover the flare of the tree base.
  4. Right Plant, Right Place: Plant the right type of grass for your lawn to ensure a green, healthy turf. Where grass has difficulty growing, plant shade-adapted ground covers for landscape appeal.
  5. Feed: Spring lawn, tree and shrub roots seek nourishment after the dormancy of winter. Keep fertilizer on target to prevent run-off and sweep fertilizer granules that may reach pavement back onto your lawn. Use a trained professional company, such as TruGreen, that offers customized solutions to lawn and landscape problems based on your region’s needs.
  6. Check Irrigation: Follow the owner’s operating manual to take an automated sprinkler system out of hibernation. Ensure sprinkler heads and related water lines are working properly. Give your lawn a slow, steady watering about once a week, but adjust depending upon rainfall, grass and soil type in your area. Also ensure the irrigation system covers your landscape efficiently. For example, you can place a one-inch deep food can in the middle of the lawn area to measure the depth of water collected after each watering cycle to ensure uniformity.
  7. Protect Against Elements: The beautiful blooms of spring are vulnerable to frost. With an expected cold snap, cover flowering plants before the sun goes down to maximize heat trapped by the plants. Create a tent of warmth with plastic tarps, cardboard, bed sheets or special plant frost protection blankets available at your local nursery or home improvement retailer.

Chance to Create the Ultimate Outdoor Oasis
Part of TruGreen’s innovative approach is providing a customized care plan that reflects the unique growing conditions, qualities and character of each lawn and landscape. TruGreen is celebrating homeowners’ real stories for creating their ideal outdoor living rooms by offering the TruGreen TruStories Sweepstakes. One Grand Prize winner will receive a $25,000 MasterCard reward card, perfect for creating a backyard oasis to share with family and friends.

In addition, 50 first prize $500 MasterCard reward cards and 38 weekly prize $250 MasterCard reward cards will be awarded. The sweepstakes is open to legal U.S. residents 18 years or older. Go to www.TruGreenSweepstakes.com/win now through October 16, 2011, to enter and to obtain official sweepstakes rules. Entrants can also participate by printing their name, complete address, daytime and evening phone numbers, age, email address and “The TruStories Sweepstakes” on a 3”x5” card and mail it to: “The TruStories Sweepstakes,” P.O. Box 511215, New Berlin, WI 53151 or “The TruStories Sweepstakes,” P.O. Box 511425, New Berlin, WI 53151. No purchase is necessary to enter or to win.

Bobby Is Back, This Time Talking Trees
To talk trees with America, TruGreen brought back entrepreneurial adolescent Bobby Sinclair, Neighborhood Lawn Kid, in TruGreen’s new national marketing campaign. Bobby, played by youth actor Noah Munck known for his role as Gibby on Nickelodeon’s hit show “iCarly,” is helping to formally launch TruGreen’s specialized tree and shrub care service and to reinforce the company’s customized approach. Go to www.TruGreen.com/about/videos to catch the humorous TV commercials and to learn about TruGreen’s special introductory offer.

About TruGreen
TruGreen is the nation’s largest lawn care company, serving more than 2.5 million residential and commercial customers across the United States with lawn, tree and shrub care. As the industry leader, TruGreen continues to pioneer the development of new technology for lawn care and devotes substantial resources to evaluate new products and equipment. The company is committed to responsible lawn care, including offering and promoting the use of natural, organic services and sustainable practices. Today, there are more than 250 TruGreen LawnCare branches in the United States and Canada, including more than 50 franchise locations. TruGreen is part of the ServiceMaster family of brands, one of the world’s largest and most versatile service networks. Go to www.TruGreen.com for more information about TruGreen.

About ServiceMaster
With a network of more than 5,100 company-owned and franchise locations, Memphis-based ServiceMaster is one of the world’s largest residential and commercial service networks. The company’s high profile brands are TruGreen, TruGreen LandCare, Terminix, American Home Shield, ServiceMaster Clean, Merry Maids, Furniture Medic and AmeriSpec. Through approximately 27,000 corporate employees and a franchise network that independently employs over 31,000 additional people, the ServiceMaster family of brands serves more than 8.5 million customers every year and holds market-leading positions in residential and commercial lawn care and landscape maintenance, termite and pest control, home service contracts, furniture repair, home inspections, residential and commercial cleaning and disaster restoration. Go to www.servicemaster.com and twitter.com/ServiceMaster for more information about ServiceMaster.

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