Freshen Your Yard for Fall

Posted by & filed under Color, Color; Designing with Color, Design, Designing with Color, Fall Blooming Plants, Fall Containers, Fall gardens, Garden Design, Gardens, Uncategorized

This past weekend was the first time in a long time that I was able to sit with a cup of coffee and honestly critique the gardens that I have put in the backyard so far. It was truly depressing! I tried to rationalize that they were still relatively new and that the weather had …

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Nightscaping — Magic for Your Yard

Posted by & filed under Design, design process, Landscaping, Lighting, Night lighting, Nightscaping, Uncategorized

With a slight break in the streak of hot, humid weather we’ve had this summer, I’m finding myself spending more time outdoors, especially in the evenings when the sun crosses over the house and onto the street side. The last few nights I have found myself playing the “What if….”  game. What if I added …

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Rethinking Lawns — Part 4: Groundcovers

Posted by & filed under Design, Groundcovers, Landscaping, Lawns, Native Groundcover, Native groundcovers, Native Plants, No-mow yards, Uncategorized

Life without turfgrass can be both beautiful and surprisingly easy to maintain …. Just ask the designers and crews at Embassy Landscape Group who have created landscapes that are attractive, painless to care for and environmentally friendly. Utilizing a wide range of native and introduced plants, ground covers, shrubs and trees, Embassy’s design staff are …

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Rethinking Lawns — Part 2: Variations on a Theme

Posted by & filed under design process, Garden Design, Gardens, Landscaping, Lawns, Outdoor Living, Sustainable Landscaping, Uncategorized

After almost two years of fighting a lost cause, we are truly ready to take the plunge. Once the heat of the summer dissipates, we are going to kill off the sorry patch of existing “lawn” we have and start over with an entirely new look.     So far, I’ve had an interesting reaction …

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“Frenemies “ — Bugs, Your Garden and You : Part 2: Designing for Bugs

Posted by & filed under Beneficial insects, Garden Design, Gardens, Landscaping, Native Plants, Sustainability, Sustainable Landscaping

If anyone had told me, even ten years ago, that I would be designing my yard to accommodate bugs, I would have called them crazy. Back then any and all bugs were the ENEMY and needed to be immediately eradicated — with powerful insecticides so that death would be almost instantaneous. Today the shelf that …

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Water Features: An Oasis of Your Own

Posted by & filed under Benefits of Nature, Health & Wellness, Landscaping, Outdoor Living, Urban Landscaping, Water features

“Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass under trees on a summer’s day, listening to the murmur of the water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is by no means a waste of time.”     The words of John Lubbock, an early British statesman and naturalist, hold enormous truths …

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The Quest for Color

Posted by & filed under Color, Color; Designing with Color, Commercial flower beds, Commercial Landscaping, Garden Design, Uncategorized

I have to admit that when I was a beginning gardener I ( more than once) designed my annual flower beds based on ideas I “borrowed” from one of the flower beds in front of a restaurant I frequently visited. Even though it was in the blazing hot sun by a concrete sidewalk, it was …

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Plant A Patch: Goldenrod (Solidago speciosa)

Posted by & filed under Clay Soil, Gardens, Native Plants, Nectar Plants, Sustainable Landscaping, Uncategorized

Often maligned and saddled with a nefarious reputation, goldenrod, commonly called showy goldenrod, is an underused native perennial. Contrary to common belief, the pollen from goldenrod does not cause allergies. (That’s ragweed!) Easily grown in dry, clay soil, this full sun perennial has club-shaped clusters of bright yellow blooms beginning in July and continuing throughout …

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