Spring Your Hotel's Landscape into Bloom with These Easy Maintenance Tips

By Ken Hutcheson President, U.S. Lawns | January 05, 2014

With spring right around the corner, now is a great time to determine what needs to be done around a hotel's property to make it ready to blossom. It is essential that the irrigation and drainage systems are working properly, that pruning and mulching are done correctly and the best suited perennials for the property are in place to provide a burst of seasonal color. Below are some key tips to remember when it comes to ensuring the property is ready for spring.

Check the Irrigation System Thoroughly

It is necessary for the irrigation system to undergo proper maintenance so as to ensure that water is being used most efficiently. A poorly maintained irrigation system can lead to a significant amount of water never reaching its intended target by being lost to runoff, evaporation, and deep watering below the root zone. A properly maintained irrigation system will decrease pollution from over-irrigation and run-off as well as reduce water waste. It will also improve the landscapeís health by ensuring the correct amount of water is applied.

Proper hydration is essential to the health and appearance of the hotelís landscape. Both under-watering and over-watering can destroy plants, resulting in unnecessary expense. With the current trends in water and energy conservation, the protection of local ecosystems, and carbon emissions reduction, proper irrigation is crucial to effective grounds maintenance. A landscape contractor will be able to suggest a watering plan that is appropriate for a hotelís property, and may also recommend adjustments to any irrigation and watering systems already in place.

In addition, irrigation systems should be monitored on a weekly basis in addition to undergoing a monthly full system check, as this can lead to the discovery of potential issues before significant damage can occur. Since watering is often done during off-peak hours, irrigation systems can develop numerous problems that may go undetected if monitoring is not done regularly, resulting in significant water waste and potentially increasing damage to parts. Having a monthly system check performed on the irrigation system will ensure all moisture sensors are programmed correctly, that rain sensors are functioning properly, that all filters have been inspected and cleaned and are free of sediment, and that timers are checked and fully functioning in order to ensure the landscape is watered on schedule and without waste. Failure to properly maintain these individual pieces of the irrigation system can result in increased operational costs due to excess amounts of water being used.

It is also important to ensure all nozzle heads pop up completely and fully retract when the water is turned off as this will help with uniform water coverage. Also, verify that sprinklers are vertical and flush with the soil grade, and check for steady water pressure. Non-professionals can also regularly inspect sprinklers to make sure they are not blocked by grass, plants or other obstacles, and when necessary, clean or replace clogged heads and ensure sure all heads direct water to landscaped areas and not to impervious surfaces such as pavement. Constant vigilance is the best way to determine whether there are ongoing issues with water pressure. If any of these issues are discovered, they should be inspected immediately by an irrigation specialist.

Hotel Newswire Headlines Feed  

Kelly  McGuire
Jennifer Nagy
Gary Henkin
Paul van Meerendonk
Frank Meek
Brenda Fields
Ken Edwards
Marco  Albarran
Marky Moore
Peter Goldmann
Coming up in February 2018...

Social Media: Engagement is Key

There are currently 2.3 billion active users of social media networks and savvy hotel operators have incorporated social media into their marketing mix. There are a few Goliath channels on which one must have a presence (Facebook & Twitter) but there are also several newer upstart channels (Instagram, Snapchat &WeChat, for example) that merit consideration. With its 1.86 billion users, Facebook is a dominant platform where operators can drive brand awareness, facilitate bookings, offer incentives and collect sought-after reviews. Twitter's 284 million users generate 500 million tweets per day, and operators can use its platform for lead generation, building loyalty, and guest interaction. Instagram was originally a small photo-sharing site but it has blown up into a massive photo and video channel. The site can be used to post photos of the hotel property, as well as creating Instagram Stories - personal videos that disappear from the channel after 24 hours. In this regard, Instagram and Snapchat are now in direct competition. WeChat is a Chinese company whose aim is to be the App for Everything - instant messaging, social media, shopping and payment services - all in a single platform. In addition to these channels, blogging continues to be a popular method to establish leadership, enhance reputations, and engage with customers in a direct and personal way. The key to effective use of all social media is to find out where your customers are and then, to the fullest extent possible, engage with them on a personal level. This engagement is what creates a personal connection and sustains brand loyalty. The February Hotel Business Review will explore these issues and examine how some hotels are successfully integrating social media into their operations.