The Delicate Balance Between Gardening and Landscaping

While many believe that a landscaper is nothing more than someone who comes in and mows, trims and weed eats the grass, then neatly blows everything away so no one will ever know it was there, is misinformed. People who do nothing but this are people who mow, trim and weed eat your lawn and blow the remains away.

A landscaper is someone who works with the lay of the land and the flowers of your choice to bring about a desired affect. While there is a good deal of “yard work” that is done within the realm of landscaping, there is also a great deal of gardening and hardscaping that is done as well.

The gardening part can be anything from planting flowers, trees and shrubs to pruning and replacing dead or no longer wanted plants. It can also encompass sprinkler and other types of watering systems, designing gardens out in the yard or container gardens on your patios and decks. All of these things will need to flow into an overall landscape design and can be addressed and needed and/or wanted.

People forget that your landscape might also include arbors and pergolas to driveways, irrigation issues, laying of new patios, building onto your home in the form of a deck or sunroom and numerous other ideas that can be incorporated into your overall outdoor design. These hardscape items encompass a wonderful part of you home and outdoor decor.

So the next time you think about doing something different with your yard from putting in water features such as a pond or fountain to filling in a swimming pool and turning it into an organic garden; building retaining walls to keep your yard in or another yard out to weeding and making sure your plants are healthy and happy, thank of your local landscaping company. You may be surprised at what they can do and do well!

Decorating Your Landscape With Lights

Night lighting doesn’t always have to be about safety and security. Even when the sun sets, you can still bring life to your garden with the help of night lights. The flowerbed that you had to re-plant a few months ago because your dog made a playpen out of it, your favourite waterfall, the centrepiece of your whole landscape, with its’ waters musically flowing into the connected pond, and other features your garden has, can continue to show off their beauty at night with good outdoor landscape lighting.

Outdoor lighting back in the day were only used to light up pathways and entrances for safety purposes. Today, not only are lights being used for the same purpose – it has now also become an art and a popular trend in the landscaping industry.

Planning and deciding how you want your lighting to be arranged and organized is the first step in designing your lighting system. There are three main categories:

1. Path Lighting – this uses equipment that focuses light onto paths and walkways. Even if primarily used for security, this kind can still create attractive lighting effects.

2. Spread Lighting – this distributes light among your landscape. More areas will be emphasized, as this kind doesn’t just focus on a single object.

3. Accent Lighting – this focuses light onto a single object or feature but allows for peripheral lighting in surrounding areas.

Here are a few basic techniques one needs to know about landscape lighting:

1. Focal Points – lights establish focal points on various plants and other features in your landscape.

2. Symmetry and Balance – this highlights the structures and forms that have essential beauty.

3. Perspective – you should treat your scenery as if it were a 3D canvas to generate visual interest from all potential viewpoints.

4. Depth – directing the viewer’s visual experience, meaning, visual interest should be added to your whole landscape.

5. Quality and Direction – this is when you “paint” your scenery with various lights to set a desired mood.

Many landscapers offer free lighting design training for those who wish to learn and apply their techniques so homeowners can do it themselves. However, it is also possible to hire landscapers to do the job for you and to also help in designing the best locations to place lights.

Low Voltage Outdoor Lighting

If you want to have a beautiful lighted lawn at night, you must install one or two transformers because the electricity running into your home could hold an amount as high as a dangerous 120 volts, depending on how many lights you have. The more, the scarier. Having a transformer can reduce the voltage, for example, from 120 volts to 12 volts only. The problem with this is, in most cases, the further the light is from the transformer, the dimmer. However, the solutions are quite easy. One option is you could upgrade to a better transformer. Another is you could build multiple transformers. It would be advisable to hire an electrician to do and solve your electrical problems for you because they are experts, after all.

Winter Services for Property and Landscape Maintenance

Landscape maintenance presents several unique challenges during the winter months. When the temperature drops and the precipitation starts falling, someone needs to clear the snow and ice accumulation from sidewalks and parking lots and handle other cold-weather aspects of maintaining your property. Although you may think of a landscape contractor as a summer service, hiring experienced professionals makes sense in the wintertime as well.

Whether you need to maintain your home, office, retail store or corporate establishment, professional landscapers can provide complete winter care for your property.

Snow and Ice Management

Snow removal is serious business, as heavy snowfall can make walking and driving on your property difficult and dangerous. When the driveways, roadways, sidewalks and parking lots are blocked by snow, it must be cleared so that people can get where they need to go.

Many commercial landscape companies who have little else to do during the winter months often have the equipment necessary to get the job done quickly and efficiently. In fact, many are available around the clock, ensuring that your property is kept clear whenever snow starts to pile up.

Keeping your pathways and driveways free of snow is important, but it is just as necessary to take care of the ice that can accumulate during winter storms. Anyone can slip and fall on hazardous patches of ice on your property. By contracting with a professional company, you can ensure that visitors and employees alike enjoy clean, safe surfaces for walking.

Professionals may use salting, sanding and other ice-management techniques to ensure that your walkways, steps, and driving and parking areas are safe and well-protected.

Decorating for the Holidays

Are you planning on giving your home or business a festive look for the holidays, with outdoor lights, greenery and other ornaments? Hanging strings of lights and decorations is a great way to put people in the holiday spirit, but climbing on ladders and icy roofs also puts thousands of people in the hospital every year.

Stay safe and warm indoors by having professional landscapers handle your holiday decorating. Everything from designing a creative display to putting up the decorations and even taking them all down at the end of the season can be done for you, giving you a beautiful, merry look without any of the effort.

Protecting Your Landscaping in the Winter

As the frigid temperatures set it, some of your landscape elements probably need some extra protection to survive the weather. Winter services from a professional landscaping company include measures to keep your trees and plants healthy through the cold months.

Burlap protective wrapping is used at many homes and businesses to shelter shrubs, bushes, trees and other plants from the hazards of snow, ice, wind and below-freezing temperatures.

Dormant pruning is another technique used to benefit your trees and shrubs. When the leaves have fallen, professionals are easily able to inspect branches for signs of fungus, disease, and pest infestation, pruning as necessary to keep the landscaping healthy and growing attractively.

Watching the snow fall can be peaceful and calming, but taking care of your property during the harsh winter weather is anything but relaxing. Save yourself the hard work and keep your home or business safe by contracting with a professional company for your winter landscape maintenance services.