Water Features and Fountains

The Benefits of Water Features and Fountains

Are you looking for something to really bring some pizzazz to your outdoor space? One way to make a bold statement and enhance your outdoor space is to install a water feature. There are a few different types of water features you can go with, depending on your space and budget. Water features have plenty of benefits, such as providing a restful area to relax. Who doesn’t enjoy listening to water running over a waterfall? Whether you decide on a relaxing koi pond, waterfall, fountain, or a reflecting pool, they all bring a sense of “wow” to your landscape.

One of the most popular options is a natural pool. These are made by lining a hole in the ground with a rigid or flexible liner. These can be made to look very natural, and you can decide how big or small they will be. Installation is simple, but you must ensure you have a power source to run a submersible pump and filtration system. Adding a fountain will help hide the noise of the pump and keep the water moving. Additionally, Koi are great additions to small ponds. Koi are brightly colored fish that are fun to watch and will sometimes come up to the surface to see if you have food for them.

If you would like to do a small water feature, you can go with a container pond. These have been made from wine barrels, casted concrete, and large glazed planter pots. One benefit is there is no need to dig and this will not take up a lot of space. For a little added flair, you can add some fish or waterlilies. You will still need to install a filter and a pump so the water keeps moving and clean. These containers may be deep so use caution if there will be small children or pets close by.

Another option is a wall fountain, which is good for small areas and usually come in kits. The plumbing and wiring can be hidden behind the fountain. This type of water feature is usually a basin that catches the water and a pump that circulates the water back to the top to gently make its way back down to the basin. An adjustable valve will give you the choice of a rapid-running fountain or a light trickle. The kits can be expensive, but if you have an idea and some time, you can build your own and possibly save money. Building it from scratch gives you more liberties to work with your area and fill the space you want to be the focal point.

Probably the most extensive and biggest water feature would be a stream. These can require a lot of digging and designing. Streams need to be fairly long and usually end by flowing into another water feature or a natural pool. This is a great option to add to an existing water feature on your property.

There are a few items to remember when planning your water feature. Keeping your pond clean and pleasing to the eye will take some work but the enjoyment will be worth it. The biggest factors will be filtering the water to keep out algae from taking over and the water needs to be kept moving to help keep it oxygenated and fresh.

 

Critical Factors for Choosing a Landscape Contractor

Choosing a Landscape Contractor

Choosing a professional landscape contractor is sometimes a daunting task. There are several things to consider before you make that decision. Be sure you share your reasons for making a change and what you would like to see changed. This will ensure these issues do not continue. It’s important to do some research as most landscape contractors have websites that will tell you about the company and what sets them apart. Landscaping is one of the first things you see when you visit a property and it takes a lot of dedicated work to make sure it looks its best.

A landscape company that has been around a while has done so by making sure they keep their clients happy. Changing names and rebranding could be a sign that they needed to change due to service issues or new management. Look for association affiliations, awards, and horticultural certifications, and make sure they have the proper licenses to provide all landscape services.  

When you receive proposals, it is best to go over them with the landscaper. If you do not provide a scope of work, there are a lot of items to discuss. A good scope of work will help align your goals and clarify what services you require. A good landscape company will be able to assess your property and, based on what you want, they will be able to provide a scope of work to fit your goals.  

It’s necessary to look for companies that put emphasis on safety. Having a company that promotes safety not only keeps them working but it also ensures they are doing the job correctly.  Safety should be about the crews doing the work and it should also be about the crews looking out for the safety of others and your assets.

Be sure to ask for references and visit some of their current jobs. Nothing is better than seeing what kind of work they do than seeing it in person. It is a good idea to ask for similar types of properties. Most landscapers have a variety of work ranging from industrial sites that only need the basic services up to high-end work that requires a full scope of services. Make sure they have a location close to your property. If they are too far away, you may pay more due to traveling and you want a company with ties to the community. Landscaping is all about making your property look its best, and you want someone that takes pride in where they live and how their community looks.  

Asking the right questions, visiting current work, and knowing a little history about the contractors will help you make a good decision when looking for a new landscape contractor. Feel free to call and set up a time to walk around your property, discuss your ideas, and ask for suggestions. A great landscape company wants to build a long-lasting partnership and provide you with amazing curb appeal. 

Aeration and Overseeding

Aeration and Overseeding

It’s that time of year again when we need to get out to aerate your lawn. There are many benefits to performing this service. Your soil can become compacted over time, and the harder your soil becomes, the tougher it is for water to get through the soil, stunting grass growth.  Aerating your lawn breaks up the compacted soil, allowing water, air, nutrients, and fertilizer to easily reach the roots and promote deeper, stronger root growth. We utilize a roller-type core aeration machine with coring tines of ¾” diameter, and try to reach a depth of 1-2”. The holes made by aerating give the new grass seeds an easier place to germinate. Whether you have a fescue or bermudagrass lawn, aerating is beneficial.  

Now we get into overseeding and why you should or should not do this. Overseeding your lawn helps promote a thicker, healthier turf by adding new growth. Bermudagrass lawns are normally overseeded with fescue seed to promote a green lawn over the winter months when it becomes dormant. If you do not mind a tan lawn during the dormant season, this can be skipped. Fescue lawns need to be overseeded to help keep the turf weed-free and increase resistance to insect damage and lawn disease.  Fall is the perfect time to seed your new lawn or overseed your existing lawn. The fall months allow the seeds to germinate and establish their root system, even into the colder months. Warm days, cool nights, and moisture are what the seeds like best. If you try to get seeds to grow in the heat of summer, they will most likely not survive the stress of the heat and lack of water. As far as how much seed to use, we suggest 4 pounds of seed per 1,000sf. If you use too much seed, they will struggle as they compete for sunlight, water, and nutrients. handling landscape irrigation for your property

Here are some steps to follow as you aerate and overseed your lawn.  

  1. Mow your lawn before aeration (a notch lower can enable better soil/seed contact).
  2. Make sure no excessive grass clippings are present.
  3. Aerate and dethatch your lawn.  
  4. Broadcast a good starter fertilizer along with your seed. Check your local area fertilizer laws. 
  5. If you have an irrigation system, set it to water in the new seeds.  If you do not have irrigation, plan to do this a day or two before you are expecting rain.  

Call us today for aerating and overseeding services!