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Chapel Valley Wins Post Properties First Annual Tulip Competition

Chapel Valley is the winner of Post Properties first annual tulip competition. Out of 20 pictures submitted from vendors across the country, Chapel Valley had the most votes for their purple tulips at Post Carlyle, a multifamily complex located in Alexandria, VA. 

Post Properties is one of the largest developers and operators of upscale multifamily communities in the United States with ownership of more than 22,000 apartment units in 58 communities. 

Below are the other two photos we submitted:Post Park in Hyattsville, MD (left)  and Post Tysons in McLean, VA (right)

 

Post Tysons Courtyard       Post Tysons

 

Chapel Valley Sponsors the Innsbrook Classic- Richmond, VA

Chapel Valley Landscape Company & guests participated in the Innsbrook Classic, a golf tournament that raises money for St. Josheph’s Villa, a local charity based in Richmond.

St. Joseph’s Villa is the longest continuously operating children’s nonprofit organization in the country and was founded in 1834 by the Daughters of Charity. 

 

Picture: Steve Bonniville, Josh Richman, & Bill Benoit at the hole we sponsored.

Each year the Landscape Contractors Association (LCA) and Professional Landcare Network (PLANET) give professionals in the landscape industry the opportunity to enter their projects for the chance to win an award. Over the years Chapel Valley has received multiple awards through both organizations for their outstanding landscapes- this year we received 2 awards through PLANET and 4 through LCA for the following properties:

1. Center Park, Arlington, VA

01-Center Park


Center Park received 2 awards: PLANET Merit award for Commercial Landscape Contracting and LCA Distinction award for Commercial Landscape Maintenance.

In 2008, Chapel Valley began to work on Center Park as the landscaping contractor. Like any commercial project, this one was big and involved a strong team to complete. After a successful installation, Chapel Valley has continued to maintain the commercial property.

Center Park has had a great impact on the people who use it. Before the project started the land served as no purpose-now there is an open, landscaped, urban space with room for people to walk their dogs, relax, skateboard, etc.

2. Post Carlyle, Alexandria, VA

03-Post Block

Post Carlyle received 2 awards: PLANET Merit award & LCA Distinction award for Commercial Landscape Maintenance.

Post Carlyle is a beautiful commercial property located in the city of Alexandria. The property offers its residents beautiful courtyards for relaxation and rooftop terraces for enjoying sunset views of Old Town. Lovely Gardens, outdoor seating, grill stations, and a pool are all things you can find when you walk through the courtyard. To keep the courtyard in top shape, Chapel Valley has done an extensive job in terms of landscape maintenance.

3.Private Residence, Woodbine, MD

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4. Private Residence, Woodbine, MD received a LCA Decade award for Residential Maintenance

It is clear the owner has a great appreciation for flowers and plants when you first arrive to this property. Throughout the property you will come across many elements that come together to make the space inviting, relaxing, and enjoyable. The comprehensive year-round maintenance plan includes: weekly mowing, edging, and weeding; integrated pest management; a five-step turf program winter pruning and cut backs; seasonal color rotations; design, installation, and color rotations of over 15 pots; and a professional gardener on site once a week.

As you can see, Chapel Valley has done an amazing job of maintaining this property for over 10 years. To have a garden like this, you must have the experience of a trained horticulturist.

Private Residence, Potomac, MD 

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Private Residence, Potomac, MD received a LCA Decade award for Residential Maintenance

This is one of those special properties where the landscaping is maintained precisely to create a stunning first impression. The 6.5 acre estate is used for entertaining, relaxation, and family gatherings. Chapel Valley has managed to keep this property looking flawless for after 10 years of maintenance.

The comprehensive maintenance plan utilizes a team of certified specialists in horticulture, irrigation, and gardening. The scope of work includes: spring and fall cleanup; seasonal color rotations; integrated pest management; weekly mowing, edging, and weeding; hand pruning; monthly evaluations; irrigation maintenance; power washing; and snow removal.

Intern Outing Graphic
James Reeve, CEO (top left); Jackie, LA intern (top right); Jackie, Amanda, Hayley, Caddy (bottom left); Chris (bottom right)
 
Last Friday, the 2014 summer interns had an eventful day with Chapel Valley; they attended our new team training event, played mini golf, and went to the Frederick Keys baseball game. It was a successful day of learning and fun, and we were happy to show the interns our appreciation for choosing us to work with. The outing gave mentors and their interns the opportunity to build a stronger relationship, which is one of the goals of the program. We are a company that hires interns, which is another reason why we spend time with them outside of the office in a more relaxed environment. Chapel Valley’s culture is special, because our people do what we love and it shows; we love plants and landscapes and strive to stay abreast of the latest methods, techniques, and products that are good for clients properties and the environment. 
 
 
As a landscape industry leader for over 45 years, Chapel Valley has made the preservation of natural resources a top priority. As a result, we have focused our efforts on lowering our impact on the environment which has led us to our most recent purchase of mulching mowers and Toyota Prius’. 
 
Running a landscape company, it is our duty to meet with new and existing customers, as well as visit property sites on a regular basis.  Given the vast amount of time spent on the road to fulfil these responsibilities, we have provided our high mileage drivers with a Toyota Prius to reduce gasoline consumption. Another way we have reduced our fuel consumption is by placing our satellite offices geographically close to their corresponding maintenance branch. Our innovation to sustain green has not stopped here and we will always look for ways to reduce our carbon footprint. 
 
For those of you who don’t know, due to Maryland’s lawn fertilizer law that took effect on October 1st, 2013, lawn fertilizer products have been reformed. The law claims that lawn care professionals must follow regulations for the amount of fertilizer used on turf because the nutrients in them were harming the Chesapeake Bay.  Nitrogen and Phosphorus are the key ingredients found in fertilizer and are also the nutrients that keep your lawn looking nice and green.
 
When this law took place we knew we had to make a change to keep our lawns maintained appropriately. After doing some research, we made two business decisions to help Chapel Valley Landscape make a positive impact on our turfgrass program.  First, we partnered with a high-quality, local contractor to apply fertilization and weed control to client’s turf.  This partner is not only well respected in the Mid-Atlantic area, they pride themselves on developing appropriate application programs that minimize the approved ingredients to surpass the law’s requirement and to surpass our customer’s expectations of a healthy turf.
 
Next, we invested in upgrading our entire fleet of mowers and added mulching kits to each mower. Mulching mowers are different because they leave grass clippings on the lawn. Because grass clippings are high in nitrogen, this is one of the best ways to return nutrients to the soil. With new nitrogen laws in effect, we use this method to keep your lawn looking fresh, green, and healthy. The mow height of your lawn is also a factor that we keep into consideration. We leave the mow height around 4 inches, because if it were cut any shorter, then the roots would not be as deep. 
 
In addition to the benefit to the turf quality, mulching kits also reduce the large amounts of yard waste and energy required to handle landscape debris at dump locations.  Mulching kits provide an additional benefit of keeping grass out of landscape beds and tree rings, plus the reduction in possible flying debris that comes out the side of a typical discharge style mower. Here at Chapel Valley we are happy to make these improvements and we value that we can satisfy our customers and save the environment at the same time! 
 
Summer Garden
 
 
During the summer, our gardens are at risk for two different types of climates: severe drought or excessive rain. It is important to maintain your plants health correctly if your gardens are exposed to either of these conditions. Staying informed about possible weather situations and best practices for preventative maintenance could be what makes or breaks your garden or turf this summer. 
 
Severe Drought: When there is no precipitation for days or weeks and it’s extremely hot out 
 
•Due to lack of water, plants will become stressed and go dormant. 
•If not properly irrigated, grass will turn brown.
 
Maintenance for Severe Drought: 
 
•Water plants either early in the morning or late in the evening.
•If watered during the middle of the day, droplets can function as collecting lenses and focus the sunlight directly on the leaves, thus burning the foliage.
•Soak your turf for multiple hours, 3x a week – this is better than watering it every day for short periods, because the water will reach the roots.
 
Rainy Season: When there are rainy days and hot humid nights 
 
•This climate doesn’t allow the turf to dry out.
•The moist environment can cause harmful diseases to develop.
•Diseases include: Dollar Spot and Brown Patch.
 
Maintenance for Rainy Season 
 
•Using a “fungicide program” prior to the rainy season will help this problem. 
•The program starts in May and includes 4-5 treatments, depending on the climate. 
 
 
Jenn Giunta Newsletter graphic
Our Alexandria office has the pleasure of frequently performing commercial maintenance in our nation’s capital. With that honor comes the challenge of finding parking, navigating traffic and finding the right plants for each environment. Learn more in this interview with Jenn Giunta, our Alexandria Branch Manager.
 
Q: What are some unique challenges that you experience?
Jenn: Some unique challenges include excessive use on properties caused by everything from regular use by residents to dogs to pedestrians. This wear and tear on the landscape requires extra upkeep.  
 
Q: How is maintaining commercial properties different than residential?
Jenn: When treating commercial properties the structure is much different than residential maintenance. It is challenging because it requires a comprehensive mentality. Additionally, horticulture in the city differs from residential because you really need to know the plants and their characteristics. Also, you need to be a great investigator and problem solver.
 
Q: Being in DC, how do you approach sites that deal with a lot of traffic?
Jenn: When trying to find parking we may work with the properties themselves to find possibly, an alley or a load dock. If that isn’t possible we may partner with a nearby building. When there isn’t a clear space for parking we just figure it out! Our men are crafty, smart and creative when it comes to parking. We’ve learned what roads you can and cannot park on. It’s important to know the layout of the city for jobs like these.
 
Q: How do you maintain plants in a harsh environment?
Jenn: For harsh environments, such as high winds, microclimates and heat islands there are a multiple elements to consider. One important element is picking the right plants for the right location. Different plants thrive in different locations so something for a shopping center or a corporate business may not be right for apartments or condos. 
 
Q: What are some ways you determine the right plants for the location?
Jenn: To choose the right plants we often take clues from existing plants in the area. We also do background research and speak with the property manager or engineer of the building. Sometimes trial and error is necessary to find the right plants for your location.
 
Additionally, we take into consideration take into consideration foreseeable events such as wind, as well as unforeseeable such as dog traffic, environment, microclimates and heat islands.
 
Q: What are some difficulties you face in the court garden?
Jenn: Some difficulties in the court garden include the amount of light exposure and lack of sunlight due to shadows from surrounding buildings, as well as very distinct microclimates.
Another difficulty we have is the location of the courtyard. If it’s on a roof or the only entrance is through a lobby we make sure that all our staff are wearing booties on top of their shoes to prevent dirty floors.
 
Q: What drives your success
Jenn: The major element of our success is our people. Our team thrives because of the people. Our highly trained staff works together effortlessly, communicating to each other and property managers every step of the way.