What You Need to Know About the Texas Climate and Landscaping in Amarillo

0

Posted by Ethan | Posted in Landscaping | Posted on 29-09-2013

Building a garden is like building a house.

Designing, creating and nurturing a garden, particularly in the unforgiving climate of the Texas Panhandle, requires thorough assessment, realistic planning and careful judgment. All environmental aspects must be incorporated into the design of your new gardening project.

If you think about it for a moment…

  • soil
  • sunlight
  • temperature
  • wind

… are vital factors.

There is planning, research and looking around aplenty to be done prior to executing any physical plans and tossing the first spadeful of soil. One of the most important aspects of all is knowing the characteristics of the environment, especially in Amarillo, because not all plants will flourish in the area.

Landscape Planning

There are multiple considerations prior to planting anything in your garden or coming up with a landscape design. You may use either graphing paper or an online program to scale the garden and plot all the features you want on the property. Sooner or later, however, you must scope out the actual dimensions of your garden.

Most landscapers use some form of measurement, a simple measuring tape will work. Take the time to determine the perimeter and measurements to interesting sections where you can place some highlight or point of interest.

While surveying with a fresh eye, it is also important to take note of the areas that have the greatest sun exposure and the most shade throughout the day.

Then you know how much space you have to work with for perennials and plants that love to bask in the sun while setting aside an area for ornamentals like orchids that cannot stand over-exposure to sunlight.

It is important to visualize what you want on the garden. One could, of course, gather images of gardens, flowers and trees (like those near the end of this article) for inspiration. Decide what features of your garden you’d like to highlight or be subtle about.

Naturally, you must have a goal in mind and work within any budget limitations you might have.

After finishing the initial sketch, continue with proper planning by roughing out a schedule. Recognize in your plan which activities should be done first. Gardening is supposed to be edifying and relaxing. So it won’t do to rush this way and that trying to do everything at once.

One could set off the major beds and paths with stakes and surveyor’s string then proceed with planting those that will take more time to mature or flower. If purchases and the planting process itself are not organized, it may take more time and prove to be an arduous task.

But if you have time aplenty and are willing to make changes as you go along, by all means indulge your creativity and you’ll be happier for it.

Like designing your own house, consider the different elements of your garden before proceeding. It is advisable to start with a good foundation or ground-level components before you start moving up. This is like putting in a good, sturdy basement because it should last and support everything else. First to be considered is the floor or lawn area, and the current grass present.

Pavement and soil component should be noted. Next, the walls, fences, and hedges should be planned for. The furniture, shading, umbrellas and lights which will beautify and set off the garden should be noted and planned for as well.

Texas Climate and Landscaping in Amarillo

Amarillo is known as the Yellow Rose of Texas and Rotor City of the USA. More relevant to the plans of a budding landscaper is the reality that, according to the Koppen Climate Classification, the city has a steep or semi-arid climate, which can make landscaping in Amarillo a challenge at times. This means that the region receives precipitation which is below what is called potential evapotranspiration thresholds. Simply put, the climate straddles humid and dessert climates.

Amarillo has marked temperature variation as evidenced by the National Weather Service stating that the average temperature ranges from 78.3°F during summer down to 37 °F in winter months.

In winter, cold air flows in from the north and west of the city towards the warmer areas further south. Average annual precipitation or rainfall is 20.4 inches. Rainfall mostly occurs during late spring and summer.

Since Amarillo is a dry environment, it is more prudent to choose a dry climate garden and conform to a more natural layout. Using dry streambed or stone pathways is therefore advisable. The weather puts a premium on plants which can survive or thrive under the heat of the sun.

However, this does not limit your planting options to dessert varieties. You have to choose plants that can survive humidity and heat and, at the same time, are hardy enough to survive the cold season.

Soil

Amarillo is nearly dead center in the Panhandle. The surface is mainly flat and has minimal soil drainage. The area also lacks developed drainage. Rainfall is as likely to evaporate as to be absorbed by the soil or drain toward the small “Playa” lakes.

Dracaena

The Perfect Plants

The climate that fluctuates between warm summers and generally mild winters is more conducive for growing grass, lilacs, azaleas, perennials and edible items such as vegetables and fruits.

For novice gardeners, one of the best options is Dracaena (pronounced dra-si-na), which ranges from fleshy shrubs to full-blown small trees with fairly broad leaves.

They come in a range of colors, from yellow, yellow green to deepest green. Occasionally, this group of plants even boasts leaves of three different colors in each leaf. The “corn plant” (Dracaena fragrans) is pictured above. This group of plants is able to withstand a wide variety of ambient climates. Dracaena does very well in the shade or indoors since it thrives in even low sunlight.

Succulents

Succulents (above) are delightful choices for both indoor and outdoor planting. Since succulents are used to desert environments, they thrive with minimal watering and attention. In fact, succulents survive mishandling and heavy-handed gardening.

Much like the cacti, these plants absorb groundwater from their roots, transport it to their leaves, and store it within their leaves. This makes for an efficient water conservation adaptation.

Bridal-wreath-spirea

Bridal wreath spirea blooms with white spring flowers. It can withstand ordinary winter temperatures down to minus 5 degrees Fahrenheit and can tolerate mildly hot temperatures.

It is rich in nectar, hence it attracts butterflies. It is an elegant plant that gives a garden a more feminine and graceful form. Spirea is a deciduous shrub which can grow very fast, as fast as 4-6 inches a month.

In Summary

Every aspect of a new garden project bears careful examination. The goal is not just to create a visually stimulating environment, but also to ensure that the chosen plants will do well in the climate, soil characteristics, humidity, and water conditions prevalent in Amarillo.

There are many eye-pleasing choices for a personalized garden, certainly not limited to cacti. Local gardeners have a great variety that can be used to make your garden more elegant and pleasing to the eye.

Houston Landscaping Considerations

0

Posted by Ethan | Posted in Landscaping | Posted on 15-02-2013

Houston-GardenBeing a Houston gardener, I’ve dealt many years with the particularities of landscaping in the Houston, Texas area – and I’ve seen the best and the worst of it.

What people fail to understand sometimes is that successful landscaping is much more than the sum of its parts. Knowing the plant species that thrive in Houston, for example, does not guarantee that they will grow to their full potential in just any Houston garden, and there are numerous factors that may play into this shortfall.

Although the following does not claim to be a comprehensive list, it certainly outlines some of the major particularities of the wider Houston area that affect our choices in creating and maintaining a handsome landscape.

Houston Climate

Those of you, who have been residing in Houston long enough, know it well by now. Newcomers soon find out, inevitably: humidity is our permanent companion here. And this is a major factor that all landscaping plans should take into account.

Landscaping in the Rain

Climate in Houston can be divided into two main seasons: cold and humid, or hot and humid. Wet. Rainy. Sticky.

The warm southerly winds blowing in from the Gulf of Mexico, heavily saturated with moisture, are responsible for this sub-tropical tinge of our climate. On the other hand, cold, dry air masses descending from the North will bring in the low temperatures that characterize our winters – with, perhaps, some occasional days of frost.

When the two wind masses collide, rain pours down, often for days on end. Combined with the flat Houston landscape, water tends to pool, either on the surface or below the ground. This is why proper drainage is a crucial element in Houston gardens; otherwise, a whole lot of problems may occur, such as:

  • root rot
  • fungi
  • mold
  • deterioration of hardscaping elements
  • soil erosion

Landscaping in the Dry

Then again, we can’t always be sure that it will actually rain. Extended periods of drought are also a trait of our unique climate. In order to amend for this whim of Mother Nature, a combined drainage and irrigation system, with aptly installed basins and pipelines, will channel excess water from where it may be harmful, store it, and direct it to where (and when) it is most needed.

Bay Area Gardening in Texas

While coastal areas benefit from a milder climate, with mostly warm winters and cool summers, at the same time they’re at the mercy of salty sea winds that can be very damaging to non-native plants. Lawns and tender-leafed plants are the ones running the highest risk.

During wet seasons, rain will adequately rinse out the salt layer overlaying plant surfaces. When drought settles in, though, and rain cannot naturally perform this essential task, it is absolutely necessary that you carefully wash this salt layer off from time to time. Or, better yet, you could plan your landscape in such a way that those sensitive species are protected from exposure to sea winds.

In addition, soil in Houston coastal areas is usually sandy – which means that adequate care should be given to provide the proper mixture of ingredients (e.g. humus, well-aged manure, pine bark, etc) that will improve the nutritious content of your garden soil.

Houston City Codes for Landscaping

Besides having a good grasp of the basics of landscaping (and much more, if you really want your garden to turn its full potential), you must also be aware that Houston City has set a detailed legal framework for what is allowed for gardening and landscaping projects. Did you know, for example, that removal of trees and shrubbery is governed by strict development regulations?

Plus, you will have to deal with all the usual permits from utility companies when digging, building, and performing other works that may interfere with the permanent structure of the ground and its subsurface are involved.

These are essential steps to take, if you want to avoid ulterior problems and additional expenses that may rise way beyond your initial budget.

Landscaping Materials

Whether for hardscaping (building permanent structures such as pavements, swimming pools, pergolas, patios, drainage, retaining walls, etc) or for softscaping (creation of flower beds, planting), you will need the appropriate materials with which to execute your project.

Finding the most cost/effective solution or the best quality for your exact circumstances is a time- and effort-consuming process, and nothing guarantees that what you pay for is what you’ll ultimately get – unless you are a dedicated amateur and a deep connoisseur at the same time.

Additionally, certain items (from plants to construction materials) cannot be found even in the best retail stores and are only available to professional landscaping firms and contractors – simply because they are not distributed through regular commercial channels.

Bottomline for Houston Landscaping

As I mentioned before, successful landscaping is a complex affair, with its constituent parts working together as a well-regulated whole. If one part goes wrong, it is more than probable that it will start a chain reaction affecting the entirety of your garden.

Finding an experienced, licensed, responsible Houston landscaping company or contractor is the safest way to go. You may be utterly surprised to find out that your initial plans had not taken into account several critical elements… or that you don’t have to pay as much as you imagined in the first place!

.
Photo Credit: Galaga Gal via Flickr

The Broke Gardener’s Cash Savvy Tips on Landscaping

0

Posted by Ethan | Posted in Landscaping | Posted on 18-02-2014

There is an adage that goes, “A man’s home is his castle.” Like many proud homeowners, you might be constantly looking for ways to improve your home’s appearance. One great way to highlight your home’s beauty is by maintaining a beautiful and creative garden.

For many homeowners, the garden is usually the focal point of their homes. True enough, having a little piece of Mother Nature in one’s own yard certainly adds up to a home’s aesthetic value. What does it take to have a garden worthy of being featured in one of those daytime television shows?

Unfortunately, in order to have that garden that would make a lot of people go green with envy, you need a lot of the “greens” as well, right? If you stick to the traditional mindset, you can hold that as true. Thankfully, this doesn’t have to be so.

Be Realistic

Pay no attention to what the naysayers might say, “budget gardening” is truly possible. However, it is essential that you come up with a fixed amount when it comes to budgeting things. For example, you need to determine just how much you are willing to shell out on plants, shrubs and other gardening supplies.

Work with Improving Your Soil Quality

One effective way to improve your landscape while on a budget is by upgrading your soil’s quality. Buying imported and expensive plants will just be a waste of money if your soil is of poor quality. Invest in good quality soil first, and you will indeed see the glowing results.

You are the Hired Hand

Hiring a professional gardener can cost one an arm and a leg. With this in mind, you should understand that you have to be willing to roll up your sleeves and do a lot of the grunt work yourself. You might exert a lot of time and energy into this, but the fruits of your labor will surely be sweeter.

Know Where to Shop

In this economy, you have to be willing to sniff out a good deal. If shopping bores you to tears, think of it as an opportunity to scour out the buys. Remember that the best purchases are not limited to just your local plant store.

There are many plant and flower shows out there and many gardening enthusiasts out there who would be more than happy to share a few tips on landscaping. Not only will you be scoring a great deal, you will have made a new friend as well.

Go DIY with Mulch

Every good gardener knows that mulch is an essential ingredient to every garden. Buying a bag or two at your local gardening store can be costly, so it is best that you make your own garden mulch by recycling garden waste such as dead leaves, coffee grounds and grass clippings.  Not only is it cost effective, you will find that it does wonders for the environment as well.

Take a Crash Course on Garden Maintenance

One sure-fire way to go budget gardening is to make do with what you already have in your garden. Take some time to survey your garden, and take note of what plants need pruning. Read up on how to properly maintain each flower and plant you already have.

Be Creative and Think Outside of the Box

Just because you are on a budget does not mean that you have to stick to what is ordinary and boring. Why not leave out the odd lawn gnome and opt for some beautiful colored stones or seashells instead?

Decorate your own pots and jars, or shop for some in old thrift stores. Remember that you want your garden to be a reflection of your personality, so you surely would want to be anything but boring.

Keep in Mind that All Good Things Take Time

One of the best things about gardening is its therapeutic benefit. When you plant a seedling, you know that it needs time and a lot of your efforts for it to grow. When landscaping on a budget, you know that you cannot expect results overnight.

Owning a garden is a great way to distress. You can indeed reap the benefits when people come over and admire your garden’s beauty. And you did all that without breaking the bank! Imagine that!

But just in case you need a helping hand to better improve your garden, you can always ask assistance from experts who are great at what they do and won’t rip you off. Take for example Amarillo Landscaping which can surely help you have the best landscape there is in your town.

Borders Up: Designing your Landscape with Garden Fence

0

Posted by Ethan | Posted in Landscaping | Posted on 18-01-2014

Garden fence is both aesthetic and functional for your landscape. It does not only border your property but also make your garden natural and attractive.

Also another function of the fence is protecting your vegetables, flowers, shrubs or trees. They can also be used as support for vines, legumes and other plants that need a vertical support.

These fences come in different materials. The prices range depending on what they are made of and design.

So before you place your garden fence in your landscape, make sure to consider your location and your garden so you can determine if everything fits the whole picture. Here are some of the garden fence ideas and the some valuable tips when installing your garden fence.

Bamboo Fence

This is the new addition to the materials used for garden fence. Bamboo is an economical choice for many gardeners and it is even an eco-friendly option rather the next ones that will be mentioned. With little attention from other people, it can grow easy and strong and provides you with enough shade against the intense heat.

This plant is very sturdy which makes it a very good choice for your garden fence. It will definitely look good on your garden especially if you are aiming for tropical landscape.

Vinyl

Vinyl is less decorative in appearance but you can make different designs out of this material. It also reduces maintenance. This material is very sturdy than any garden fence materials. Although it is quite expensive, it is rather a good investment since it can last for years.

Wood

This is the most common choice because of the aesthetic effect it brings to the garden. For any centuries, it was used in many homes for different functions. Wood can be incorporated in different ways making it a very versatile option for your garden fence.

The material can easily be available, can easily install and you can paint it with colors that complement your overall property. Also the maintenance cost is reduced and like vinyl, it can last for a long period of time.

Stacked Stones

This one is a unique material for your garden fence. This is a durable and supportive material for your border. Also they have aesthetic value to your landscape. However, this material might be time consuming and expensive to build for some homeowners.

Aluminum or iron

Aluminum fence is coated with chemicals which makes it resistant to harsh weather. This material has been one of the demanding ones for garden fence but sometimes it does not fit the budget of some gardeners.

So before you incorporate your garden fence to your landscape, make sure the material complement the overall design of the house. This is very essential factor to consider.

Everything from your garden to your landscape and to the exterior of the house, your garden fence should fit your overall design. Make sure it blends in and make your house and landscape stand out.

Make sure to choose the material that suits your landscape very well. The materials above are good and popular choice by homeowners so make sure to be smart in choosing your materials. Also make sure the material can resist harsh weather which your fence is constantly exposed to.

Another factor to consider is budget. Wood and bamboo are the inexpensive choices but make sure to set your budget so you can save money while giving your garden a beauty boost.

Garden fence brings style to your landscape and security to your property. This could prevent any animals such as deer and rabbit that will eat your vegetable and fruits or damage your garden. Also a garden fence reflects your personality.

Garden fence keeps you away from the eyes of your neighbors and gives you a private or quiet time with your lawn. So you won’t be bothered by anyone when your fences are up. It also keeps the burglar away making you feel safe and comfortable inside your property.

Garden fence are definitely important element to your landscaping project so make sure to properly plan the placement of your fence around your property. Incorporating it in your garden can be a success if you consider the factors above.

Landscaping Ideas: Important Points to Consider

0

Posted by Ethan | Posted in Landscaping | Posted on 21-12-2013

Landscaping ideas for your home will always be good if they are realized according to your preferences. Most of the time, you may be imagining a paradise around your home. When you want to get such ideas done, the result may sometimes be undesirable.

Getting the right landscaping service will surely solve your problem. It is not because landscapers will always have better ideas. But with professional help, you can get the best out of what you have for your home.

To achieve this, there a few important points to consider. Your professional landscaper will help you match your needs and with this, you will enjoy a beautiful reality.

Architectural Design

Do you live in a Mediterranean style home? Lush garden and ornamental plants provide better ambiance. Try to match them with palm trees in the middle of your lawn – you will see the beauty that matches this classic home.

If your home is a Modern style home, you can enhance your surroundings by having your garden trimmed and shaped. Add to it some exotic plants for better accent. Artworks can also get along can also complement this kind of setting.

Climate and Weather Condition

Not all species of plants and trees survive under different weather conditions. It is better to be aware of the usual occurrence of rain and hurricane. In countries with four seasons, it is better to note which part of the year you should choose to place some species of ornaments.

In the tropics, things are lighter since your surroundings can always be green for the whole year round. But you need to consider if some imported ornaments suit the climate.

In hot places, an Oasis style garden will be more appropriate. Put a series of Cactus plants with palm trees around your home and this will surely be satisfying. If you live along coastal areas, some small coconut trees will complete your beach style ambiance.

Lot Size

Your garden should also be appropriate with the size of the yard. If your lot is too wide, a single mistake can make your garden look like a farm or a forest. You can maximize the beauty of your lot if you incorporate some amenities like children’s playground or picnic ground to make your big yard look like a park.

If your own yard is a little small, you can put some good flowers and vases. Asian style garden will be more appropriate. When it’s all set up, put some tables and chairs and have your coffee sessions there.

Lifestyle

Your lifestyle is what affects your surroundings the most. Are you the type of person who likes to go for a walk along green garden while meditating? Are you the type of person who likes pets or farm animals?

When you answer all these, you will probably know what type of landscaping service you will need for your home. Imagine your children running and playing all day. Of course, a forest-like garden will become dangerous for them. What about your dogs? You may not imagine your dogs digging your favorite lawn. What is worse is if you have some goats there chewing your favorite ornaments.

In this case, identifying your lifestyle will help you find out the most appropriate environment for you. Your professional landscapers should also know what you do at home to fit what is best for you. You should also help your landscapers to help you.

In a nutshell, landscaping ideas are not only the fruit of our own imaginations. Good landscaping ideas are always based on these important points to consider.

Gardening Mistakes You Should Avoid

0

Posted by Ethan | Posted in In the Garden | Posted on 21-11-2013

Tags:

In gardening, there are some habits that you need to be break. This article will discuss the different gardening activities that starters should avoid. Gardening is fun and exciting if you do what’s right for your plants. It is fulfilling to see them growing healthy every single day.

If you’re a beginner, it’s highly advised that as much as possible you follow by the book. Don’t make an experiment if you are not sure because that will just mess up your efforts. Asking assistance from an expert is always an effective trick before beginning your first garden venture.

Keep Away From Usual Mistakes

Gardening experts have their fair share of wrong habits. They tend to give less attention to simple details which results to complicated gardening scenarios in the future.

  • Keep control and don’t be overexcited – before starting a project, planning is needed. This can be crucial because your plan will either make or break the entire gardening venture. So don’t be overwhelmed by the tasks, choose the right plants and decide what design is perfect in your home.

  • Little knowledge of your location – before starting to plant on raised beds, do you know what plants are perfect in your area? Planting the wrong plants will void your time and effort. Also, determine if it is the right season to plant them, plants growing healthy in Texas might possible not to live in Arizona. Proper zoning is essential.

  • Stick to the list – everyone has this feeling of excitement to grow lovely flowers they have seen on movies, magazines or televisions without thinking if it will thrive best in their area. Plants that require specific environment to live will most likely disappoint you in the end. So when purchasing plants in the nursery, stick on the list and never go overboard.

  • No soil preparations – thinking that plants will just grow in any soil is wrong. Without a good soil a plant may either live poorly or die. Good soil means proper combination of clay, sand and organic materials. If you disregard this step, you might end up upset with the growth of your plants.

  • Avoid overcrowding – yes, just like people, overcrowded areas tend to intimidate one from the other. With plants, they will be competing against each other over their needs and soon you will realize their irregular growth. Overcrowding can stress plants out, making them susceptible to get diseases.

  • Overwatering – plants need water but not too much or else they will die. Starters might think that giving them more than what they need is good, it is actually not true. As long as you make sure that the soil is moist, your plants are safe.

  • Beware of invasive plants – if you are planning to grow horseradish or English Ivy, be careful because they are invasive – they tend to pop up all over the place. These types of plants are grown well in containers – easy management and limited space.

If you want your garden to thrive think of simple details that might possibly harm them. These kinds of lapses are avoidable and can easily get fixed.

  • Seek proper drainage – this will avoid your issue with overwatering.
  • Dig and weed – this can solve your issue with invasive plants. Weed consistently to keep away those seeds or adapt solarizing – dampen the soil and cover it with black tarp, keep it that way for a few months and the heat from the sun will heat up the soil and kill those weeds.

  • Keep the soil tested – each region may have various soil components, so before starting up the project have it checked. Also, keep equal amounts of compost in your beds to keep the plants growing healthy.

Simple mistakes in gardening are controllable and easy to deal with. Gardeners with beautiful growing plants do not disregard little things that might create harm to their plants. So to avoid future disappointments, start your garden right and give attention to all details.

Tips for Starters in Growing Perennials

0

Posted by Ethan | Posted in Garden Type | Posted on 02-09-2013

If you are planning to create your own garden, it is advisable to start with a perennial garden. This type of garden is easy to maintain and not as complicated as the others. Usually, you just need to give it a few hours a week to check on the plants progress. Perennial plants do not need too much attention compared to annuals that need to be replanted every spring season.

Perennials are available in wide selections so you can find the right plant that will grow well in your area and meet your standards. Going to your local nursery and talking to perennial growers can help you in your garden venture. Perennials like any other plants have substantial needs that have to be provided in order to grow healthy.

Choose Native Plants

For starters, it is advisable to start taking care native perennials. This type of plant usually grows in abundance in your location. It means that the soil composition and weather suits the plant needs. Also in choosing the right native plant for your garden, you must answer these questions: Is your garden steep or flat? Does your garden receive direct sunlight or is it partly shaded? and how’s the weather in your area?

Give Them a Drink

Perennial plants do not need to be watered regularly. If the plants go well with the kind of soil you have in your garden, then adding extra mulch is enough and you may not need to water them at all as long as you keep the soil moist. Also, when giving them a drink, always make sure that the water goes directly to the soil to keep away the foliage.

Enough Space and Division

It is important that plants have enough space for their roots to absorb all their needed nutrients. Also, think about what might be the possible outcome of your garden after a few years – it will become a jungle of crowded blooming perennials. That is not the goal; the purpose is to fill gaps in the garden with beautiful healthy flowers.

Perennials tend to grow fast and sturdy, making it possible for them to compete against each other. To maintain the balance in your garden, divide them every few years.

Check Their Grooming

These perennial plants also need proper attention once in a while. To ensure that they don’t get sick and are always at full bloom, deadheading is necessary. Eliminate spent flowers to induce re-blooming. Remove dead stems and marked foliage to keep them looking their best and to avoid possible plant diseases.

Mulching is a Must

Mulching is an effective way to cover bare soil and to avoid patches in your garden. But aside from that, there are more reasons why mulching is a must.

  • Keeps moisture – this helps perennials stay healthy even without being watered for days.
  • No weeds allowed – this is the reason why weeds keep away. And if they do germinate above the mulch, you can easily pull them out.
  • Keeps the soil temperature balance – with mulch, during summer soil are cooler while on winter – it is preventing the roots from total damage.
  • It is organic – nothing beats a healthy organic soil.

Weed Control and Edging

Nobody loves weeds in the garden. As much as possible, these weeds must be removed completely. Weeds tend to grow fast easily, the remedy is to keep your eyes on them, do not allow them to take over.

Edging on the other hand can stop these weeds from migrating inside your beds. This is a stylish way to add texture and sharpness in your garden. Also, this separates your lawn from your beds.

No time for gardening? Perennial garden is the answer – quite easy to maintain and not as laborious as other kinds of garden.

How To Build a Brick Path to the Yard

0

Posted by Ethan | Posted in Landscaping | Posted on 20-08-2013

landscape brick pathwayWhile crossing your yard to get the daily newspaper, you’ll face several obstacles such as slipping and getting your way through without making your feet dirty. Instead of wetting your socks in an aim of reading the daily headlines in Louisville, you can build a brick path to the yard.

Apart from making a style that never goes out of fashion and increasing the resale value of your home, they also provide a great sight for anyone that comes into your house. Your kids, spouse and anyone else who comes inside frequently will also appreciate it because the pathway doesn’t get dirty in case of rain.

You can imagine what would have happened to your feet and bottom wear in rain if there wasn’t a pathway in Berrytown Park, Louisville. The same principle applies to your house.

storage for landscaping equipmentFor this landscaping project, you’ll need to clear any objects that are in the way that leads up to the yard.

In addition, you can move the small sized furniture yourself or with the help of friends. Self-storage also keeps the furniture in an ideal condition compared to if you placed it out of sight and didn’t have it cared for during landscaping.

The materials required for the project include 210 4 by 8 inch pavers, 7 paver leveling sand bags, 23 sand paver base bags, string, shovel, stakes, measuring tape, paver wet saw, plate vibratory compactor, hand transplanting tool, broom, gloves and tamper.

Here are the DIY steps to follow:

Step 1: Find out the area of the project, the type of paver, its size and the quantity needed. You can find the number of square feet by multiplying the length with width. This gives an idea of the number of pavers needed.

types of pavers

Step 2: Plot out the path and eliminate grass deep by 3 to 6 inch. Now take the measuring tape and string and take a measure of the course. Clear the area with the shovel and prepare the edges of the path with the transplant tool.

Step 3: Cover the path with the base of paver using a shovel about 5 inches deep and this is done with the 23 sand paver base bags. Now settle the base with the use of tamper. Afterwards, place leveling sand for about 1 and half inch with the 7 paver leveling sand bags. For giving a visual appeal to the path, you can make the pavers smaller.

Step 4: Now start with the pavers and place them in the path. Combine the pavers you’ve made smaller as well as normal sized pavers. You don’t have to follow a certain pattern when placing pavers and you can just go ahead with random placement. However, you should focus on distribution of paver sizes. Use the pavers to cover most of the path, around 85 percent at least. A good way to follow this step is to lay one paver at one time rather than going at it all at once.

Step 5: After you’re satisfied with the layout of the pavers, use the small sized pavers to fill rest of the remaining gaps. If you require further cutting of the paver, just make an approximate shape according to the gaps left.

Step 6: After placement of the pavers is complete, place the paver sand on top of them. On top of the pavers, use a vibratory plate compactor. This will place them inside the ground and they’ll be leveled. Take a sweeper and place the rest of the sand into cracks.

Raise it Up: What is Raised Beds Gardening?

0

Posted by Ethan | Posted in Garden Type | Posted on 13-08-2013

Gardening has become one of the most loved hobbies and passions of homeowners today. It’s a good way to relax, a productive way to spend spare time and also, a great way to add beauty to your home. Through the years, various gardening types have been created and raised beds gardening is one of them.

What is raise beds gardening? This type of gardening is where you plant your crops in the elevated part of the soil. You can make use of planter boxes or you can construct the area by yourself.

There are numerous benefits that a gardener can get in using this gardening type. Here are a few:

Let’s Talk About Benefits

  • It allows you to have your own mix of the fertile soil elevated from the ground. This is appropriate if your soil in the ground is not in good condition. With raised beds, you can grow your own healthy group of plants.
  • It keeps you organized. You can easily plant one type of plant on one side and another plant on the other. You can plant tomatoes on the other side and plant pepper on the other.
  • Dead leaves or stems retain in the area, making it less difficult for you to clean the garden.
  • If you plan to grow plants that need a high pH level in the soil, then you can make use of one bed that specifically has the soil needed by the plants.  Through this, you can have various types of plants in various conditions in one garden.
  • There is a less possibility of soil erosion during heavy rains.
  • Pests do not have access to your plants.
  • If you live in an apartment, then you can easily incorporate this gardening type to your small space. You can have it on your patio or deck and you can have various plants such as herbs, flowers and vegetables.

This can solve gardening problems such as low quality of soil, low quality of drainage system and occurrence of various pests in a garden. If you are planning to have raised beds, you must consider if this is the type of garden that meet your needs. Here are some aspects you might want to consider before making your final decision:

Materials

Raised beds can be constructed from different sturdy materials such as bamboo, wood and rocks. From ingenious methods, one can make use of various materials to build their own beds. If you opt to choose wood, make sure it is not chemically-treated because it might damage your plants once you use it.

Soil Type

The type of soil can greatly influence the construction of your bed. If you have low quality of soil in your area then raised beds are the great solution. As mentioned, you can have various types of plant in just one garden.

When your bed is constructed, you can fill it up with the type of soil that is suitable for the growth of your plant. If you plants need acidic soil, then you can make one bed specially made for that certain condition.

Climate

The beds quickly dry out so you need to water your plants at least two times a day. However, you can solve this by placing your irrigation system in the perfect spot to minimize the water consumption.

Raised beds are very appropriate during rainy days. This could improve the drainage system and the productivity of your crops.

Space

Space is really an essential aspect to consider. Make sure to determine how wide or how small the area you plan to put your bed is.

You might as well measure the area in order to build beds that will perfectly fit the spot. This can enhance the look of your beds and the area.

Many gardeners choose raised bed gardening because it is convenient and they have the freedom to choose their own plants. Make sure to consider the aspects mentioned above to make sure that your raised garden a blooming success.

Replacing Lawn With Turf

0

Posted by Ethan | Posted in Landscaping | Posted on 24-07-2013

Are you having trouble with your lawn?

One answer is to replace your current lawn with new turf. Although it seems wasteful to tear up old grass in favor of new turf and sod, replacing your lawn with turf is in fact an environmental practice, as the new turf is both calibrated to fit your lawn’s agricultural needs and climate requirements as well as aerated to ensure growth.

A full lawn of living turfgrass is much better for the environment than a lawn of patchy, dead grass.

Here are the steps you need to take to replace your current lawn with new turf:

1. Get to know your lawn

Surprisingly, few homeowners take the time to truly get to know their lawn. We’ve written about the steps you need to take to inventory your property and note your lawn’s key features like irrigation, sunlight, soil type, soil water level and other factors. Without fully understanding your lawn’s needs, you won’t know what type of turfgrass to install.

If you purchased a home in a housing development, chances are the landscapers who built your home didn’t take the time to get to know your lawn either. Poor landscaping is one of the common causes of bad lawns, especially when developers ignore drainage, fail to anchor the lawn with topsoil or mismanage any of the other important lawn practices.

However, your choice to replace your lawn with new turf is going to solve these problems.

2. Talk to a professional

Although it’s possible to replace your lawn yourself, you still need to talk to a professional in advance. Different areas of the country have different landscaping quirks and issues: for example, the soil in Denver, Colorado is mostly heavy clay, and you aren’t likely to know how to address that unless you talk to a professional from one of the CO aeration companies.

If you have the cash on hand, you might want to just go ahead and pay the professionals to replace the lawn for you. They’ll take care of all the steps and manage all the details like aeration, pH balance and irrigation, and they also pay follow-up visits to ensure your new turf is healthily growing.

3. Replace your lawn

Once you’ve surveyed your property and talked to professionals, it’s time to actually start replacing your lawn with new turf. This is often a multi-step process, as first you have to let the old grass die and remove the roots.

If you’re determined to replace your lawn yourself, make sure you search for a lawn replacement guide that’s specific to your city and state.

Here’s a video to help you learn how to remove your old lawn.

Following the Colorado theme: Colorado State University has created a step-by-step guide to replacing a Colorado lawn, taking into account the landscape’s particular issues and difficulties. Find a similar guide for your state and follow the instructions to the letter.

4. Follow up

Replacing your lawn isn’t enough. Turfgrass requires specific care and management, and a good lawn and garden store will tell you exactly how you need to water and fertilize your new lawn.

Even if you hire a professional to re-turf your lawn, it’s important to learn everything you can about your new grass, as you’ll be taking care of it yourself after the professionals leave.

Follow these steps to replace your poorly-installed, dying lawn with a new, eco-friendly bed of fresh green turf. Don’t forget to leave space for a flower or vegetable garden, and enjoy your new, lush lawn.

Late Autumn Garden Tips are Not Too Late

0

Posted by Ethan | Posted in In the Garden | Posted on 13-06-2013

If you feel the first bite of cold in the wind and dried leaves are piling up in your garden, then it is time to prepare your garden for the late fall. It is essential that while the weather seems to be in favor of your garden, you must do some preparations in order for your garden to survive the first day of winter.

This is the perfect time to plant your spring bulbs, buy trees and shrubs, build a compost pit and more. These are all important for the survival of your plants in the coming of the cold season.

gardeningSpring Bulbs

For late autumn, plant your spring bulbs before the ground freezes so that the roots have time to grow. They can be transplanted and divided. Bulbs which are planted late can still grow roots when springs come but will bloom late.

Make sure to put your bulbs at the right depth. The soil’s depth should be two and a half times the diameter of the bulb. For sandy soil, the depth should be 1 to 2 times to increase the survival and prevent rodents.

Trees and Shrubs

Late autumn is the perfect time to look for your shrubs and trees at a green house or nursery. They come in bright colors that you will love to have in your garden. Plant them before winter so the roots will develop during the cold season and by early spring, you will have beautiful shrubs in your garden.

You must also select your trees very carefully because they bring beauty to your landscape. Make sure to place them in your garden that will greatly enhance your property. Trees do not only increase your property value but also make you save on energy costs.

Two Basic Types of Trees

  • Deciduous trees – These are large shade trees that can be your best protection during summer and offers you bright colors during autumn. In cold season, it allows the sunlight to pass through in order to warm up the house.
  • Evergreen trees – They have dense leaves that are suitable for privacy. They can also be used as backdrops for flowering shrubs and trees. The leaves don’t fall off so you can enjoy an all-year color and shelter.

Be sure to purchase trees that are resistant to diseases and pests. Also put varying trees in strategic spots to improve your landscape.

When purchasing a tree, you should look at the leaves and roots. Roots should be well-developed and are strong enough. Also keep in mind that trees that have symptoms of wilting, scarring at the back or discoloration means that they have acquired diseases. Consider the young plants for they have a higher success rate of surviving in your garden.

gardeningAutumn Garden Care

In late autumn, it is essential that you aerate your lawn and if needed,sprinkle it with fertilizer. The fertilizer will help the roots grow before spring.

Make sure to rake the dried leaves and grass clippings and make compost. When you ignore them, they get slippery and wet during the winter which could invite pests.

Water your Plants

Watering you plants is essential before winter comes. Moisture is needed by your plants to survive the colder months. It is your judgment how much water your plants need, the important thing is provide moisture and not a wet soil for your plants.

Your plants will show signs like wilting or brown leaves which means they need water. Make sure to water your plants slowly, to avoid damaging the soil.

Make Compost

Your compost pile should be placed in your bin and you must press it down in order for it to heat up and eventually rot. A gardener should have three sets of compost pile.

One should already be finished, one should still be in the rotting process and one should start rotting soon. You also have to choose the most appropriate materials in order to have proper and odorless rotting compost.

Following these steps will allow you to prepare your garden prepare for the cold winter months and to ensure that you have a beautiful set of plants when spring comes. As a gardener, it is your responsibility to take care of your garden when season changes so make sure to follow these tips for you to have a colorful, healthy and blooming garden all-year round.