Creating a Sustainable Landscape

What is Sustainable Landscaping? Sustainable landscaping can mean different things to different people.  Some people think that sustainable landscaping means only using cactus and not using any irrigation.  Others think that it means using water cisterns to capture rain water. And, others have no idea what it means and may not even realize that a landscaping is sustainable when they see one. The checklist below gives a basic idea of what sustainable landscaping in a desert environment includes.Use it as a guide for your home and your properties to help you have a landscape that is beautiful while conserving our natural resources. Call us at (520) 370-5697 if we can help you with creating a sustainable landscape or with any of your landscaping or irrigation needs.  ...

New Year – New Landscaping

View this email in your browser New Year – New Landscaping The New year is a time to start fresh.  Whether it’s improving your health, your finances, or your landscaping, there are always ways to make things better. Some improvements that make a difference can be small. And, some can be really big. When it comes to your landscaping, there are lots of ways to make it better.  For a new landscape start with a plan. Rather than randomly adding plants consider what you’d like your outdoor space to look like and how you will use it.  Starting with a design can help you envision the finished project and changes made on paper won’t cost you the time and money installing and removing bad choices will cost you in your yard. Want to freshen up your garden or landscape? If you have an existing landscape or garden, you can make it more exciting and colorful by strategically adding and/or removing plants and trees.  This is less costly than starting over. And, you have the advantage of having mature plants that will give your landscape a finished look from the start. Is your landscaping looking a little drab? You can make it look cleaner and brighter by freshening up your existing crushed rock or decomposed granite.  Both types of rock become thin with regular blowing and raking over time.  Adding more fills in the bare spots and improves the color.  Another easy fix is to remove and reset any river rock or Catalina rock that is starting to get covered by dirt and displaced from people, pets and rain. Do...

Winter Color

  Best flowers to add winter color to your outdoor spaces View this email in your browser Add Winter Flowers for a Pop of Color Winter can be a bland time in the garden. Most plants are dormant or green and your outdoor spaces can be drab. In Arizona, many days are still nice enough to spend outside. And, you can make your yard more cheery by adding some color. It doesn’t take much room to make a statement. A small planter or a few outdoor pots can create an impact. Here are some flowers that are readily available and will add color to your winter landscape. Marigolds – They can be orange or yellow and grow 15″ to 18″. They don’t require much water and they attract butterflies. They will bloom from December through May. They can take the full sun. Geraniums – These can be orange, red, purple, yellow, pink or white.  They grow 12″ to 18″ tall. They require a lot of water but are easy to grow. They like partial shade.They can bloom into June. Pansies – The colors for pansies are blue, yellow, orange, purple, white, red and pink. They become 6″ to 12″ tall. They like some sun. And,they are edible. They bloom through April and are easy to grow. Petunias – Petunias are blue, yellow, pink, purple and white.They grow from 6″ to 18″ tall. Petunias have a nice fragrance and are easy to grow. They do require a lot of water. They also attract butterflies. You can plant them now and they bloom in March, April and part of May.They do have...

What’s a plant’s real name?

  View this email in your browser Botanical Names and Why They’re Important Have you ever gone to Starbucks and requested a “coffee”? It can be difficult to order something so simple when there are so many options: black, with milk, with cream or sugar.  You can even order the really fancy stuff: Iced Half Caff Venti Ristretto Cinnamon Dolce Soy Skinny Latte, Four Pumps. This can be similar to buying plants at your local nursery. If you don’t know the correct scientific or Latin name, you might be disappointed a few years down the road when your maturing shrub is actually a very large tree. Many people ask why they can’t I use the common name? It’s because many plants have multiple common names, especially if grown in different regions. Let’s look at the sissoo tree, Dalbergia sissoo, which is also called Indian rosewood in our area. Since this tree grows in many places around the world, there are multiple common names: Indian rosewood, East Indian rosewood, dalbergia, Himalaya raintree, penny leaf tree, shisham and sissoo.  Plants can also share common names, such as ‘bird of paradise’, which can refer to a tropical bird of paradise (Strelitzia reginae), a Mexican bird of paradise (Caesalpinia gilliesii) or the red bird of paradise (Caesalpinia pulcherrima). This makes it extremely difficult when shopping for plants by their common name. To make matters even more confusing, we can discuss cultivars and varieties of plant names, which are listed after the Latin name. You’d like to plant a Texas sage, but which one? There are a number of Leucophyllum frutescens, including L. frutescens var. white...

Winter Landscaping Tasks

  Winter landscaping work that makes a difference. View this email in your browser Five Winter Landscaping Maintenance Tasks To Keep Your Yard Looking Great Spring, summer, and fall are all busy seasons for landscaping.  But landscapers can often forget that there are things that can be done in the winter to help keep your landscaping looking good through the rest of the year.  Since the winter is a time when trees and plants growth slows down considerably, there is not much trimming that needs to be done.  But, don’t let this slow down your landscape crew!  There is still plenty to do and the winter is a great time to work on special projects.    Got erosion problems?  Rock jobs such as swale work can be done in the winter.  And, your landscaper will thank you for not waiting for summertime to accomplish this labor-intensive job. Perform a thorough inspection of your existing irrigation system.  Extra time not spent on trimming can be used to work on evaluating and repairing your irrigation system.  And, you’ll likely save money on your water bill once all those pesky little leaks are fixed! Have your major tree trimming done.  The branching of trees can be better seen in the winter when trees have dropped their leaves.  Mistletoe and witches broom are also easier to locate without all the leaves present.  Tree trimmers whose work has slowed down are more likely to give you a better deal, especially when you have multiple trees trimmed. Make plans now for your spring planting.  Don’t wait until February or March to start thinking about planting.  The best time...