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    Spruce up your pots and landscape with winter greens!

    Just because the leaves have fallen and the gardens have been put to bed, doesn’t mean you can’t still enjoy the outdoors.  It’s time to get festive.  Winter greens are a great way to add life to planters.  There are many different choices of greens to add to your planters.  The can be as traditional or as wild as you like.  Along with fresh cut greens there are options of branches, pine cones, berries and lovely faux materials.  Have a certain color theme?  Let it shine through with preserved tinted accent greens.  Let your imagination run wild!

    Just like a regular annuals planting; plan for thrillers, spillers and fillers.  Use branches for height, greens as the fillers and draping evergreens, like cedar incense, or ribbon and accents for spillers.
    Here are few tried and true winter greens that should fill out your planters:

    Don’t have the time with the holidays fast approaching, our professional crews can create fabulous displays for you!  We also can light up your trees!  Contact us now!

    holiday lighting

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    Tips to Improve Your Existing Landscape

    One of our clients came to us after recently purchasing their home and wanted to add to their existing landscape. It was clear that the minimum landscape requirement was installed here in order to get the permit approved. Let’s look at each photo below and find ways to improve these spaces. All the plant material was grouped together by type and transplanted to more appropriate locations. Transplanting existing plant material is a great way to stay under budget instead of starting from scratch.

    These pyramidal evergreens, (Arborvitae) are planted too close to the house. If left alone, they will need to be pruned back every year in order not to become a maintenance issue. Try to keep in mind the plants mature size before planting anything. You want each plant to grow gracefully in their new location vs. pruning back year after year and changing its natural habit. Between the arborvitae, hick yews were planted. As you can see the tops of them are very wild and have not been trimmed back. Hick yews are a perfect plant choice when trying to hide or screen something unattractive. In this case, we transplanted them all around the AC units to make a ‘living fence’.

    The pink flowering shrubs (rhododendron) are remarkable plants for their eye-catching flowers in the spring but the most appropriate setting for them is in a wooded, natural area. They thrive in well drained, hummus rich, and acidic soil. Here we grouped them together and moved them to the perimeter of the property under a few tree canopies. Grouping plants together saves you in the long run with not weeding as much and it also allows the plants to grow into each other to create stunning color masses that will look great from near and afar.

    Here’s a perfect example of a natural setting of Azalea’s around a Serviceberry.

    Another shot of this landscape. Makes you want to sit down and grab a book or magazine next to this Cherub!

    In this area let’s discuss the low growing evergreens (Juniper). There are two different kinds here next to a variety of other plants that are just scattered randomly thought out this bed. Junipers are very useful in a landscape when they are retaining soil on a sloped area. They are not the most attractive plant so I would not plant them near the front door or walkway. We transplanted all of them to the back around the existing patio where there was an existing slope. A few other plants that are good for sloped areas are: Gro-low Sumac, Cutleaf Stephanandra, Summersweet, Daylilies, Coneflowers, and Russian Sage.

    Now it’s time to look around your landscape. Are there areas where you can fill in empty spaces with more quantity of the same plant to reduce weeding? Is there a tree or large shrub that is planted too close to your house or fence? If there are some problem areas that you need guidance with, give us a call. We would be happy to discuss them with you.

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    My evergreen is dying!

    Well no not really. Much like leaves falling off of deciduous trees in autumn, evergreens will shed their inner needles as well. This is quite obvious in certain evergreens such as white pine and arborvitae. It creates an unsightly appearance for a few weeks.

    Just as deciduous trees grow new leaves every year, most evergreens grow a new tuft of needles on each branch. Each year in the fall, it loses the oldest needles (those closest to the trunk) which is quite normal and called seasonal needle loss or fall needle drop.

    This shedding of older needles is often unnoticeable but can become a dramatic display in some years. Stresses such as drought seem to make the needle loss more severe in certain years.  Remember to continue to water your evergreens late into the year and you can re-purpose those fallen needles and use them as a mulch.

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