Category archive - Landscaping

Trees and Shrubs Are No Trouble in Winter

Trees and Shrubs Are No Trouble in Winter

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The best time to plant shrubs, along with trees and long-growing flowers, is right when it turns colder; this goes double when you consider that gardening centers and supplies stores hold sales regularly in these times. Roots are given time to grow and establish, and by the time Spring saunters in, you’re looking at the beginning of a healthy, long-lasting set of trees and shrubs. As the man said, all you need is water.

To be clear, cold months are a good time to plant your shrubs, trees and perennial flowers, not fertilize them; wait for the spring and summer to do your pruning and fertilizing. Before you go to the store, do some heavy research on fall/winter gardening. Plot out where you’ll want to plant, how tall and what the spread of the mature plant would be, and what plants are habitable and easy to grow in your region. It’s important to be both careful and reasonable when selecting the plant as well: look for healthy plants but forgive them if they are a bit frayed, imperfect or discolored, as it is the end of the season after all.

Measure the root ball at the bottom of your plant. The hole you plant it in should be approximately three times that size to allow for healthy growth and sturdy roots. Carefully remove the tree and loosen the roots if the ball comes in a container, and cut twine from any branches; if its just burlap, plant it with the burlap still attached. Regardless, it is essential that the roots are loose when planting when you place the tree or shrub into the hole and backfill. For ground with more clay, mix soil evenly with peat moss and be sure to tamp the soil down after planting.

To ensure and promote great growing, you can create a saucer around the edge of the planting by building up a 2” barrier to prevent water from escaping before it soaks into the ground. A layer of compost spread around the top of the tree or shrub, not at the roots, to enrich the native soil. Make sure that the soil around the plant stays moist until the ground freezes. Adequate water supply is crucial to the plant lasting through the winter as the soil freezes over; water bags are a good item to ensure that they get enough water through the fall. So, when the warm weather comes back, your trees and shrubs will be ready to burst into visible life.


Paving Your Patio with Precision

Paving Your Patio with Precision

Having a patio on which to place furniture, enjoy summer barbecues and relax on warm days is a great advantage. It allows you to expand your house from the inside out, giving you additional living space and a place to enjoy the outdoors from the convenience and comfort of your home. However, if your patio space is unpaved, it won’t be nearly as nice! Bare dirt and gravel from an unpaved patio can easily be tracked into the house, creating a mess that you’ll have to deal with day in and day out. An unpaved area is also much more susceptible to erosion from the elements, and can get muddy after rain or snow. In order to truly enjoy the patio of your home on Long Island, patio paving is absolutely necessary.

Once you decide that you want to pave your patio, selecting a paving material is the first step. There are many paving materials to choose from: flagstone, brick and concrete are all great choices that allow you to customize your patio to suit your tastes and preferences. Whether you’re going for a classic, understated ambiance, or you want to make a bold statement with your patio, brick, stone and concrete are all versatile materials that allow you to create your own unique look. For residents of Long Island, patio paving is a great opportunity to beautify your home and showcase your personal style.

When you decide to pave your patio, you have a couple of options. If you have experience with home improvement projects and you have some time on your hands, patio paving is a project you can do yourself. It does, however, require time, patience, dedication and attention to detail. Hiring a professional means that all the work is done for you – and that you can count on professional results. Whichever route you take, patio paving is well worth it. If you want to give new life to the backyard of your home on Long Island, patio paving is a great way to do so!


Get Gardening, Even in the Gloom

Get Gardening, Even in the Gloom

As spring and summer come to a close, many backyard and front yard gardens are being taken down for the cold months, but those in the know understand that fall gardening is just as fun and plentiful as spring and summer gardening. And as we enter October, it’s the perfect time to get outside for one last push for fresh veggies and beautiful flowers to adorn the exterior of your house.

The best thing a newly dedicated gardener can do is plant vegetables that can thrive easily in the crisp, cool fall air. Carrots, lettuce, onions, spinach and most forms of peas are the best place to start. These vegetables, coincidentally, are great ingredients for a hearty cold-weather stew. This is also a perfect time to plant vegetables from the Brassica genus, which includes mustard greens, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, turnips, brussel sprouts and kale. When you pick your vegetables, make sure to treat your soil with rich organic materials (a good composting pile will come into great use here) and try to stick to plants that are known to thrive in your region.

And just because the sunlight now comes with a bit of frost doesn’t mean you can’t still spruce up your exterior with some vibrant colors. Fall is a perfect season for container gardens and plotted plants that will give the exterior of your home an essential kick of personality and color. Sedum has bright pink/magenta coloring in its flowers; Verbena has a light peach tint to its pedals and some white and red can come out too. For darker colors, try heuchera (also known as coral bells), which come out with dark blue and purple flowers.

For those who are devoted gardeners but like to take the winter off from planting and tending, the cold months are a good time to lay the foundation for a stellar growing season next spring/summer. Enriching your soil with rich organic materials over the fall/winter seasons will ensure that next season, your garden will be even more plentiful than before. It’s also a good time to fertilize: Fertilizing your lawn will help your grass develop a root system that is more sturdy and healthy. I know what you’re thinking: Grass is dead during the winter! Sure, but the roots are still thriving under the ground and can benefit from some attention and nutrients. Keeping this up during the cold months will help protect your grass during bad weather and droughts.

Planting trees, shrubs and perennial plants is also a beneficial activity. Fall and winter months prepare larger, slower growing plants for the heavy duty growing season and (bonus!) most trees sell for next to nothing at garden stores right before winter, to diminish stock. Then there’re crocuses, tulips and daffodils, which are usually the very sign that winter is coming to its end. The variety of flower bulbs that can be planted in the fall and bloom in spring is nearly endless in terms of type and color. One trick: make sure you wait until the first frost to come before planting bulbs to ensure they have the optimal conditions for growth. Then, by the time you’re ready to get back to optimal gardening conditions, you’ll be ahead of the game.


A Backyard Pergola

A Backyard Pergola

Backyards are often the nicest and most prized possessions of a home. With the proper upkeep, your garden can be the most frequented part of your home and possibly even the most beautiful. What can be bad about gorgeous plants and flowers in the outdoors?

Well, there is one tiny detail that can ruin all that beauty of the outdoors: the blazing sun. Sitting outside with the sun burning down upon you makes you want to run back in to the boring, but air conditioned, indoors. If only you could provide a sufficient amount of shade in your backyard…

A Westchester Pergola installation is a godsend to your dilemma. Having a pergola installed in your Westchester home will add shade to your garden and to its nearby deck, allowing you to enjoy it better and for longer periods of time. When you decide to add a pergola to your garden, it is important to remember to only hire a professional who will insure that your pergola is properly installed and has a sturdy structure.

Buying a puny umbrella to block the sun is mere child’s play as compared to a pergola. A Westchester Pergola installation is a more efficient method at providing a wide amount of space with shade. Pergolas are generally placed over your backyard seating area, making it easier to host meals or birthday parties outdoors and giving your guests more room to move around. Even if you aren’t the hosting kind of family, having a Westchester Pergola installation done by a professional will benefit you on a day-to-day basis. Dinner in the backyard, reading books outside on a Sunday, or just watching your kids play in the garden. Whatever it is that you choose to utilize your backyard for, having a pergola installed insures that you can enjoy being outside without the heat getting to you.


Westchester Curb Appeal

Westchester Curb Appeal

Curb appeal – how good your house looks from the sidewalk – has a huge influence on its value. Curb appeal can mean many things to many people. It can denote a beautifully painted front porch, a grand and elegant carved wood front door, a playfully updated portico, even gutters and leaders in an unexpected color. One thing that never varies, however, is the importance of a well-kept yard. No matter how beautiful your home’s exterior is, without proper attention to landscaping, it will all be for naught. If you want to insure maximum value for your home in Westchester, landscaping is essential.

If you’ve ever walked by a house with an absolutely stunning front yard, you know how eye catching great landscaping can be. An invitingly velvety, perfectly manicured green lawn, lovingly trimmed hedges, stately tall trees, and cascades of seasonal blooms flowing from the borders is enough to make anyone stop and stare. On the contrary, a gorgeously well-appointed house with an unkempt or boring yard rarely merits a second glance. The human eye is drawn to plants, which not only provide beauty and style, but also feelings of serenity and calm. If you want to increase the beauty and appeal of the exterior of your home in Westchester, landscaping is the perfect place to begin.

For homeowners in Westchester, landscaping is an indisputably great way to increase your home’s curb appeal and market value – and to showcase your personal style. Just as in a house, it’s your own personalized touches that make a garden uniquely yours. Working closely with landscapers, you have the opportunity to design a garden that makes the most of the local flora and shows off your house to the best possible advantage. Whether you imagine fruit trees swaying gently in the wind, a wide, gracious expanse of emerald lawn, a riotous blend of colored foliage and flowers, or a tidy English garden, complete with roses, trellises and water features, professional landscapers can help make your dreams a reality!


Extend your living space

Extend your living space

There’s nothing like kicking off your shoes after a long, trying day and relaxing outside with a cold drink. When the weather is nice, reading a book, sipping lemonade, or simply taking a relaxing nap are all better done outdoors. When you don’t have a patio, however, matters are more complicated. If you want to enjoy the tranquility of nature, but don’t have a patio, you may be reduced to lying on a blanket, which can quickly become uncomfortable. Chairs and other furniture placed directly on grass may sink in, causing imbalance and potentially damaging your lawn. And forget about barbecuing or inviting friends over for an al fresco dinner! For homeowners in Westchester, patio work is a great way to insure that your outdoor space is as comfortable and convenient as possible.

If you want to expand your living space beyond the four walls of your house in Westchester, patio work is the perfect way to do so. Rather than being confined indoors, having a fabulous patio can free you to make your wildest entertaining dreams into reality. Whether you’re an accomplished cook who loves to showcase seasonal ingredients, or a weekend barbecue enthusiast, patio renovation or construction can help you to make your parties and get-togethers even more fabulous. Eating outside encourages a relaxed atmosphere, decreases your workload as a host, and allows you to make the most of beautiful weather. With so many options for patio construction – outdoor sinks and pizza ovens, as well as increasingly varied and opulent paving options – you can truly extend your living space by creating a luxurious outdoor kitchen and dining area!

For homeowners in Westchester, patio work is also a great way to improve your own quality time in the back yard. A patio allows you to strategically place furniture, increase your comfort, and design a perfectly tranquil escape from the outside world. If you want to maximize the benefits of your back yard, patio renovation or construction is a great way to go!


Manicured Lawn

Manicured Lawn

There are many details that make the exterior of your home look great and contribute to a polished, classy appearance. Clean siding, freshly painted fences, well-maintained walkways and stylish front doors are all an important part of making the outside of your home visually appealing and inviting to visitors and guests. The single biggest thing you can do to make sure the exterior of your house looks great, however, is to keep the lawn in pristine shape. A manicured lawn gives an attractive and welcoming impression, and makes a home look prosperous and well cared for. An unkempt lawn, in contrast, can make the entire house look shabby and dilapidated. For homeowners in Westchester, lawn mowing is a smart investment that can keep your yard – and your house – looking great year-round.

If you have ever seen a front yard choked with weeds and overrun with scraggly, unkempt grass, you know how unattractive it can be. No matter how beautiful the interior of a home is, first impressions really matter, and a shabby lawn can unfavorably color the perspective of visitors and guests to your home. On the other hand, a lush, green, velvety-looking lawn presents a singularly appealing picture, inviting you to sink your bare toes into the soft grass. If you want the best possible appearance for the exterior of your home in Westchester, lawn mowing is a must.

For homeowners in Westchester, lawn mowing may seem like just another expense, but is really an investment in your home that can save you money down the road. Rather than allowing your yard to become overrun with weeds and crab-grass, regular maintenance can prevent the need for costly renovations down the road. When an experienced landscaper mows your lawn, you can rest assured that it will be done to the highest standards of quality, insuring the health and luxuriance of your lawn for years to come!


Add Some Color To Your Deck

Add Some Color To Your Deck

No one has to be told that summer is a great season. Barbecues, beaches, leisurely golf games, time spent outdoors with friends and family, al fresco breakfasts of fresh-squeezed orange juice and French toast and whatever else delights and excites you are all part of this wonderful time. However, summer isn’t all about fun and sun; it also happens to be the best time to complete outdoor home improvement projects! For residents of Westchester, deck painting should be done when the weather is warm and sunny.

For homeowners in Westchester, deck painting is a multi-step process. Whether you choose to have a professional help you from start to finish or complete part of the process yourself, deck painting should be preceded by careful preparations to insure that your paint job lasts as long, and looks as good, as possible. Start by removing all potted plants statuary, furniture, or any other items from the deck. Thoroughly washing the deck is the next step to insuring a smooth application of paint; make sure that all old, chipped paint is stripped away and the deck is completely free of dirt, debris, moss, mildew or any other residue. Power washing is the best way to make sure your deck is totally clean and ready for paint.

After making sure that your deck is completely clean and dry, it’s important to sand it before painting in order to prepare its surface. Since a porous surface is more receptive to paint than a smooth one, roughing it using a sander is the best way to insure that the paint adheres properly to your deck and gives you long-lasting color. Finally, a coat of primer applied and allowed to dry completely before the deck is painted will provide the best possible results. For homeowners in Westchester, deck painting is a great summer project that can improve the look and longevity of this important outdoor space.


Tame Those Trees

Tame Those Trees

Trees can be a magnificent addition to any yard or outdoor space. Their majestic presence adds beauty and grandeur while inspiring feelings of calm and tranquility. No matter how small or large your yard is, one or more trees can change it for the better, giving you a place to sit in the shade, a habitat for animals and birds and a lovelier view. Trees also help to prevent soil erosion and promote clean air by recycling carbon dioxide into oxygen. Mature trees can make your home more desirable, improving the character of your neighborhood and boosting your property values. If you want to take good care of the trees in your yard in Westchester, tree pruning should be performed on a regular schedule to keep them healthy and prevent problems.

For homeowners in Westchester, tree pruning may seem like a fuss, but will actually save you hassle down the road. When trees are well pruned, they can be shaped in a way that is pleasing to the eye and will maximize the amount of sunlight received by the leaves. Trees that become wildly overgrown not only look scruffy; they are less healthy than trees that are well maintained. In fruit trees, pruning insures that fruit will develop evenly, and be larger and tastier than it would be otherwise. In addition to promoting fruit production and making trees look better, selectively removing branches can help to make trees stronger. By removing dead, damaged or weak branches, you can help give your trees superior disease resistance, as well as allowing them to devote all their energy to the healthy branches.

For residents of Westchester, tree pruning can also improve your family’s safety and help to prevent property damage. Removing branches that are likely to fall on buildings, cars, or even people can give you more peace of mind while helping your trees to look their best. If you lack confidence in the garden, not to worry – there are plenty of professional arborists available to help keep your trees in top shape!


This Lawn Is A Mess

This Lawn Is A Mess

First impressions are lasting, and nothing informs the first impression of neighbors, passersby and visitors to your home like the exterior of your house. A neatly maintained lawn and garden give a sense of order, tidiness and serenity, whereas one that is in poor condition looks unattractive and shoddy. No matter how nice your home’s interior, the impression made by a poorly maintained lawn can be hard to overcome. If you want to truly demonstrate your pride in your home in Westchester, lawn maintenance is a must.

A well groomed garden is inviting and pleasing to the eye, and reflects well on the people who care for it. Lush, green grass, neatly trimmed trees and hedges, and prettily planted borders draw the eye and stand out as oases of loveliness. On the other hand, an unkempt, poorly cared for lawn can give the opposite impression. Overgrown grass, dying shrubs, leaves and debris, and unruly trees can make a house look run-down, shabby, and downright depressing. If you want a lawn that sits firmly in the former category at your home in Westchester, lawn maintenance should be performed regularly to keep it in tip-top shape.

There are several things that should be done to keep your lawn looking great year-round. In the garden, the seasons will determine many of the tasks at hand: in summer, having a regular watering and lawn-mowing program will help keep your grass lush and beautiful. Spring is the time for planting and pruning, and presents many opportunities to add color to your garden in the form of flowers and shrubs, and to trim your trees to keep them looking neat. In fall, regular leaf removal is essential, not only to help keep your lawn looking its best, but also to protect grass from damage. In winter, it’s important to protect tender bulbs and perennials by insulating them with mulch or ground cloth or bringing them inside. If you want to put your best foot forward at your home in Westchester, lawn maintenance can be a simple and rewarding part of the equation!