Easy Landscaping Plants

Easy landscaping plants supply the same benefits as high-maintenance plants without unnecessary time consumption. They are easy to look after and can endure various undesirable growing conditions. When choosing the simple landscaping plant, think about the requirements of the area. For example, evergreen shrubs hide eyesores in the yard, while perennial flowers brighten a shaded corner in the garden.

Evergreen Shrubs

Easy evergreen shrubs are ideal plants to hide unattractive areas such as your home’s foundation. “Rotunda” dwarf Chinese holly (Ilex cornuta “Rotunda”) is just a 3- to 4-foot-tall evergreen tree growth in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 7 through 9. This low-maintenance plant has a round form with spiny leaf and dense divisions. “Rotunda” does not flower or produce fruit and grows in full to partial sun. Peacock blossom (Caesalpinia pulcherrima) is a semievergreen tropical tree growing in USDA zones 8 through 11. This sun-loving plant produces ferny foliage and magnificent red and orange flowers which attract butterflies and hummingbirds. It is a quick grower, reaching heights between 8 and 10 feet tall. Peacock blossom is an easy-care plant which tolerates drought and works well as a hedge plant.

Ground Covers

Ground covers are versatile plants which suppress weeds and hide the awful ground under trees, shrubs and flower beds. Japanese holly fern (Cyrtomium falcatum) is a 1- to 3-foot-tall spreading evergreen with dark fronds. It’s a low-maintenance plant growing in nesting places in USDA zones 6 through 11. Goldmoss sedum (Sedum acre) is a succulent evergreen ground cover creating yellow, butterfly-attracting flowers in the spring. It grows 3 ins tall in bright regions in USDA zones 3 through 9. The deer-resistant goldmoss sedum is drought-tolerant once established and requires little to no upkeep.

Perennials

Low-maintenance, simple perennials brighten up places with vibrant blossoms that attract beneficial insects. Butterfly gaura (Gaura lindheimeri) is also an easy-to-grow flowering perennial creating continuous sprays of white flowers blushed with pink through the summer and fall months. It grows in full sun to partial shade in USDA zones 5 through 9. Butterfly gaura is drought-tolerant and resistant to deer. Cape leadwort (Plumbago auriculata) is a broadleaf evergreen perennial found in USDA zones 8 through 11. It grows between 1 and 3 feet tall in full sun to partial shade. Cape leadwort produces pale blue flowers during the growing season.

Trees

Easy landscape tree “Akebono” yoshino cherry (Prunus x yedoensis “Akebono”) is a flowering ornamental tree growing in USDA zones 4 through 8. It reaches heights of up to 25 feet in full sun. “Akebono” produces an abundance of fragrant blush-pink flowers in March and April. This tree requires weekly watering but is usually easy to grow. The cornelian cherry dogwood (Cornus mas) is just a low-maintenance tree growing in USDA zones 4 through 8. It reaches heights of 15 to 25 feet in full sun to partial shade and tolerates clay dirt and deer. In late winter, yellow starlike flowers look and are followed by bird-attracting red drupes. Cornelian cherry dogwood works well as a hedge or privacy tree when planted in masses.

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The best way to Squirrel Proof that a Bird Feeder Post

Tree squirrels can be interesting to observe as they scamper up trees and over telephone lines, stopping only long enough to daringly hop over obstacles. However, for birds reliant on bird feeders, these agile mammals often spell trouble. Squirrels may seize upon bird feeders, consuming the contents and running birds from their food sources. Squirrel-proofing bird feeders on articles can be tough, but there are several ways to keep squirrels from consuming seed intended for your feathered friends.

Provide squirrels with a different feeder stocked with foods they prefer to birdseed. Fill feeders with peanuts in the shell and cracked corn, or hang dried corn cobs on trees from bird feeders.

Trim back limbs on trees which are overhanging bird feeders to stop squirrels from launching from these branches onto the feeders. Eliminate anything which could function as a launching pad within approximately ten feet of the feeder or relocate your feeder from structures and trees.

Attach an 18-inch-diameter squirrel baffle — accessible garden centres — 2 feet below each of your bird feeders by snapping it around the pole so the opening is facing the bird feeder. Insert a moveable sleeve into the pole 6 to 8 feet above the ground to prevent squirrels from climbing.

Add a few tablespoons of cayenne pepper or red pepper seeds into the feeder to further discourage any squirrels which might have been able to outwit your obstacle course. Maintain your squirrel feeders transported to further distract these continual mammals from bird feeders.

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Fast-Growing Evergreen Bushes for Landscaping

Confront an embarrassment of riches when they visit the nursery. Soft winters imply that conifers are not the shrubs to maintain their leaves all year. Broadleaf evergreens have several advantages: they form year-round screens can blossom during an assortment of seasons, maintain moisture, withstand heat and enhance landscape fire resistance. There are appropriate for poolside the seaside and urban heat island.

Conifers

Conifers are, but some grow to fill an area in a few seasons. The salt-tolerant”Bar Harbor” creeping juniper (Juniperus horizontalis”Bar Harbor”) turns a plum color in winter. Hollywood juniper (J. chinensis”Torulosa”) grows 15 feet tall and 10 feet wide in a twisting shape reminiscent of expressionist paintings and Spartan juniper (J. chinensis”Spartan”), a thinner, straighter bush, makes a display when massed and sheered.

Hedges

Shrubs trained as hedges need pruning or sheering to maintain a streamlined form. Wax myrtle (Morella cerifera), also called Southern bayberry, makes a handsome 6- to 10-foot hedge with sheering, but can grow to 20 feet if failed. Waxleaf privet (Ligustrum japonicum”Texanum”) blossoms in late spring; it grows to ten feet and is frequently chosen as a topiary shrub because of its dense branching growth. Pinch and prune African boxwood (Myrsine africana) to form a 4-foot hedge. Untended, it can grow quickly to 8 feet with a spread up to 6 feet. Texas sage (Leucophyllum candidum”Thunder Cloud”) grows 3 to 4 feet tall to make a little hedge; it is heat and drought tolerant but necessitates full-sun exposure.

Flowering Shrubs

Broadleaf evergreens may have long seasons of bloom. The Mexican orange blossom (Choisya ternata) develops rapidly to 9 feet tall with an equal spread; it bears white flowers from spring through early fall. California privet (Ligustrum ovalifolium) is an aggressive, rapid grower that bears heavily scented white flowers and creates a thick hedge up to 15 feet tall. Bush morning glory (Convolvulus cneorum) grows just 2 to 4 feet tall and blooms from May to December.

Seaside Evergreens

Seaside plants must tolerate salt spray and salt in the soil. Coast rosemary (Westringia fruticosa) grows 3 to 6 feet tall with foliage resembling its own herb garden namesake. Sun promotes growth and the flowers that are intermittently throughout the year in white or purple. Hollyleaf cherry (Prunus ilicifolia ssp. Ilicifolia) grows from 10 to 20 feet tall and creates an attractive windscreen.

Fire Resistant Bushes

Plants with thick foliage such as Texas privet withstand fires and the heat of wildfires compared to other plants. Italian buckthorn (Rhamnus alaternus) grows 12 to 20 feet tall with shiny oval leaves. Maritime ceanothus (Ceanothus maritimus) is a small shrub, 1 to 3 feet tall, that rapidly spreads to 6 feet wide. Lily of the Nile (Agapanthus”Peter Pan”) is a dwarf shrub which also stands 1 to 3 feet tall but spreads just two feet wide.

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Show Us Your Great Patio, Deck or Rooftop!

I’m putting my Basement of the Week series on hold for the summer to get us away in the underground spaces and outside during the wonderful weather. We’ll be featuring a great terrace, deck, rooftop or other imaginative backyard space each week. We are looking for jobs from homeowners as well as pros, so get out your cameras, get a great shot and provide your new outdoor space its big break.

Shoot us a picture of your space and post it in the Comments section below. If we choose it for a featured ideabook, we will want at least four high quality, high-resolution shots; they could be a mix of the entire space, smaller areas within it and close-ups. They don’t have to be accepted by a professional, but they do need to be in focus, nicely lit and large (at least 1,000 pixels wide).

McClellan Architects

If you’ve got beautiful environment, we’d really like to see that the views from the terrace as well.

PLLC, Lynn Gaffney Architect

Let us know where you are located and how you enjoy your outdoor space. Can you sunbathe, entertain or see the little ones as you enjoy a cocktail, have foods or toast marshmallows?

Spore Design

Be prepared to have a tiny phone or email conversation with yours truly in the event you are interested in getting your deck or patio comprised as a Patio of the Week. I guarantee it will be quick and painless.

LOCZIdesign

Paul Davis Architects

Pros and amateurs are both welcome and will receive equal attention. I look forward to seeing everybody’s spaces. Bring them!

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What You Need to Know Before Buying Chicks

You may not think of baby chicks at the dead of winter, although the ground is frozen over and icicles are hanging out of the eaves. Cold as it may be, winter is time for ordering chicks, particularly if you’re likely to order rare-breed chicks online. If you’re likely to purchase basic White Leghorns or Rhode Island Reds from the local farm supply store, feel free to wait until spring, but for the rest of us, the time is now!

After your chicks arrive, you’ll need to have an interim place for them to stay; you can’t throw them straight into the coop. Here’s the way to take care of your infant chicks in their infancy,”teenage” months and maturity.

Designs to the hens: Chicken Coops Rule the Roost

Amy Renea

When you buy chicks online, you’re most likely buying a rare breed that cannot be found locally. You need to place your order today since the inventory begins to run out on the many gorgeous breeds the nearer we get to spring up. Obtaining your order in early ensures that you will find the strains you desire. The chicks will arrive in spring, and they will be literally a day old.

Before ordering chicks, first make sure that your neighborhood statutes and town zoning laws allow you to raise cows. Asking your neighbors about their own tastes is also a nice gesture when considering raising a flock.

Amy Renea

Chicks are sent in cardboard boxes throughout the country whenever they’re hatched. As crazy as that sounds, the chicks arrive happy and healthy.

When intending a temporary home for chicks, note the industrial shipping boxes used. Made from cardboard, the boxes give little chick feet something to hold onto. You do not want to place chicks in a slick plastic or metal container, since their feet and feet will not develop correctly. You’ll also require a simple heat lamp or quite warm room for those chicks in the beginning.

Amy Renea

Take a peek in the shipping box and then notice the thin and soft bedding material. When designing your chicks’ first home, choose the smallest pine shavings or perhaps hamster bedding in the beginning. Avoid cedar chips, as these can damage the chicks’ lungs.

While chicks will gradually go outdoors to open grazing, it is a bad place for them initially. Although chicks survive just fine outdoors with their mom in nature,”orphan” chicks will not survive out in the open by themselves, without heat and security.

Lindsay von Hagel

The second worst place for the chicks is your coop, with its mature chickens, thick bedding and spacious water pans. They can drown in the water and become trapped under bed. Mature cows will even peck in the babies.

Amy Renea

Baby chicks may also start pecking at one another. If it comes to pass, it is vital to separate the injured chick. So be prepared to have a lot of spaces inside and then outdoors to house the chicks.

Williams-Sonoma

Alexandria Chicken Coop and Run – $1,499.95

A moveable chicken tractor is the best set up for integrating chicks to the outdoors. After they sleep inside at night, you can let them to the guarded part of the tractor each day. The mature cows can roam around in the grass surrounding the tractor, permitting both flocks to get used to one another.

A triangular design functions well with this adjustment period as well. If you’ll be raising new chicks each year, you may want to consider this design.

If you’ve got a small coop, consider letting the adult chickens out in the early hours, putting the chicks indoors, and then shifting through the nighttime. Chicks can get accustomed to the coop without being at risk in the adults.

Amy Renea

Once chicks can jump to nesting boxes and up a small scale or ladder, they can start seeing the”grown-up” coop through the day.

Amy Renea

Placing nesting boxes levels allows the smaller cows to become accustomed to flying into the boxes, while leaving space for the adults to lay their eggs at the higher boxes.

eric marcus studio

Straightforward ramps can allow”teenager” cows to go just about everywhere. A simple plank design with small cross pieces can allow small cows to get to and from the coop, feeding areas and nesting areas.

Avant Garden

A fenced-in area with a enclosed coop also functions well to integrate younger and mature chickens. Since the chickens become used to one another, they have different space to move in, and fighting is kept to a minimal.

eric marcus studio

In your roosting setup, make sure there is more than enough space for both mature and younger chickens. When there’s limited space, the adults will strike the smaller cows when they try to roost. Multiples bars or multiple roosting spaces solve this problem.

While natural predators and mature chickens are often the best threat to your chicks, a housecat can cause difficulties as well. Housecats are usually uninterested in chicks and are intimidated by full-grown chickens, but teenage cows would be the ideal age for them to pursue. Make sure housecats are introduced to the chickens early, so that they can get used to them, but do not expect them about chicks between 6 and 3 months old.

Janiczek Homes

To recap, while purchasing buying chicks in the farm store or online may be a simple endeavor, their care once they arrive at your doorstep is more involved. Make sure you have an easy, warm setup when they arrive. If you’ve got adult chickens and other animals, make different spaces for the new chicks. Be cautious of dangers like open water utensils, heavy bedding and housecats. Nip any poultry bullying in the bud immediately. While raising chicks is much more work than purchasing pullets, it is definitely enjoyable and well worth the effort.

More:
Chicken Coops Rule the Roost
The Twist on Chicken Coops

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Formal Parterre Gardens Rule the Landscape

A kept-to-perfection backyard is beautiful and can’t help but add to the charm and desirability of a home. And the formal parterre garden, made by 16th-century French garden designer Claude Mollett, is a classic, gorgeous look for anyone with a green thumb (or a full-time gardener). Its paths, green boundaries and vegetation are a timeless look for any century also, luckily, are easily applicable to today’s lifestyle. Here are a few fabulous translations of the classic design for the 21st century.

Harold Leidner Landscape Architects

English gardens were originally made to be pleasant to those passing on foot, however the French designer Claude Mollett reimagined them to be mostly appreciated from a greater story or a balcony. This lawn looks gorgeous in the stories that are higher or about the exact same level while lounging in a chaise.

Deborah Cerbone Associates, Inc..

While little herbs and flowering plants were the norm in English gardens prior to the parterre, Mollett chose boxwoods to edge the designs so that the design was more prominent from above. Adding both boxwoods and small flowers and herbs to the interior landscape is a superb idea since they smell sweet, look beautiful from feet away and also make seasoning dinner a cinch.

Garrett Churchill Inc..

Nowadays, parterre gardens frequently involve a combination of boxwoods and holly bushes, since the boxwoods are exceptional boundaries and hollies add height. A parterre with this mixture is frequently used as a dividing line between two properties once the owner doesn’t want a fence.

Lenkin Design Inc: Garden and Landscape Design

Tightly clipped shrubbery and gravel pathways were both chief requirements of the first parterres, but their use expanded to include flowers, which add to the elegance and beauty of the design.

Troy Rhone Garden Design

Louis XIII was a huge proponent of parterre gardens, plus they peaked in fame under his reign at the Palace of Versailles. His mind gardener, Jacques Boyceau, was instrumental in further defining the “rules” for developing a parterre. Now, incorporating seating areas makes the formal garden more attractive.

Frank & Grossman Landscape Contractors, Inc..

Formal parterre gardens traditionally comprised some sort of focal point or fundamental feature around which the remainder of the backyard was designed. This statue is amazing and seems like the focus of the yard. Fountains or other water characteristics are also fantastic anchors to the backyard, and, for extra credit, incorporating a creature form makes them even more authentic.

Cross River Design, Inc..

Compartments, pathways and repeating geometric patterns (also referred to as arabesques) are three of the components of a parterre garden which make them so beautiful from above and below.

AMS Landscape Design Studios, Inc..

Nowadays, the formal parterre garden could be modified to match any design scheme. We love how this case contains many traditional components but is comfortable for lounging and contains modern touches which match with the design scheme of the remainder of the house.

More:
Lay of the Landscape: Traditional Garden Design

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Renovation Detail: The Ribbon Driveway

This week my husband and I will be presenting our ribbon driveway plans to our township zoning board. This timeless driveway layout includes green grass running between two parallel strips of pavement. Dating back to the 1920s, the layout was created before the days of paving. After extended periods of parking the vehicle ruts shaped, leaving only a patch of grass down the center. Eventually the ruts were filled in with concrete, and the ribbon driveway was created.

Nowadays the layout is making a comeback because of its environmental advantages and nostalgic appeal. Environmentalists are drawn to the layout for many reasons: It demands less impervious substance, features added greenery and means much less water runoff.

In Fullerton, California, the town’s preservation principles say that citizens are invited to have a ribbon drive to break up the expanse of paving and to provide increased landscaping. I enjoy the way you think, Fullerton!

HartmanBaldwin Design/Build

Ribbon drives have the capacity to shape to property limitations, natural obstacles or homes, as shown here.

Madson Design

With individual concrete pads, this modern spin on the ribbon drive has an increased amount of green space and eases water drainage.

Gast Architects

Rather than the standard concrete and grass ribbon, this California drive includes pavers, slate and greenery in a grid layout.

Brooks Ballard

This house’s driveway pays homage to the ribbon’s Craftsman roots. Additional historical characteristics include the house’s gable dormer, brick porch pedestals and prairie-style window muntins.

Without the landscaped portion of this ribbon drive, water runoff would be a major concern for all these property owners. However, the grass aids in relieving water toward the home.

Engineered green grass is great for climates that do not need Commercial Snow Removal New Haven removal, such as this La Jolla, California, home.

Avondale Custom Homes

Encouraged by The Beatles, I can’t help but inhale “the long and winding ribbon” while admiring this drive.

FGY Architects

Opening up onto a carport and parking pad, the landscaped center portion of this ribbon driveway breaks up what would otherwise be a large, impervious area.

Brooks Ballard

Leading to a two-car garage, this ribbon drive includes extensive landscaping, an environmental plus.

More:
Great Garages: Parking, Reconsidered
Patio Pavers Rock Out

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12 Inspiring Garden Gates

Though their first intent was to keep out unwelcome guests, gates have become beautiful architectural structures, including feelings of enchantment and fascination to the landscape and representing the homeowners’ character and style. Highlighted in this ideabook are 12 unique gates, each of them adding function and good looks, and fitting seamlessly into their surroundings.

ROOMS & BLOOMS

Framed by an arbor and fence, I almost missed the fact that this gate is actually an old doorway! The bricks beneath are a delightful touch, and it is quite possible they came from the same source as the doorway.

Tip: Check your regional ReStore for intriguing salvageable materials that may be utilized in your yard.

Jeffrey Gordon Smith Landscape Architecture

Upon viewing this exceptional entrance, I could not help but to imagine the shadows that could be cast as people come and go. There is little doubt in my mind that a little detail in this way could create a heightened sense of admiration, sure to draw a smile.

Amy Jesaitis

Hidden behind foliage, this gate still creates a bold statementthanks to the ornamental medallion that’s displayed at eye level. Of course, the deeply saturated color helps a lot, too.

Eron Johnson Antiques

This charmingly weathered gate offers a glimpse in the sweet purple blossoms that reside in the garden behind. The height of this structure adds an additional element of miracle, although the slotted design allows one to feel welcome and at ease.

Grizzly Iron, Inc

The patterned flower design generously enriches this iron gate, keeping the row of bars from feeling institutional.

environmental notion

Somewhat different than your average fence and gate mix, this set reverses the normal arrangement. Generally the fence is strong while the gate is windowed, but that is an enjoyable change!

Blasen Landscape Architecture

My favorite part about this garden entrance is how easy it is to repeat. A number of the gates that you encounter are grand and somewhat pricey, whereas something like this might be obtainable over the span of a weekend, even with the help of a few tools and a little stack of materials.

Check this out one-of-a-kind of a gate that’s similar in style.

A beautiful gate such as this can not help but pull any and all focus on the lush garden behind. The curved layout makes a powerful focal point that’s fast to draw the eye. Crowned with an arbor, the gate is finished off with a good sense of equilibrium.

InterDesign Studio

This funky door boasts character in addition to a decent sense of flow. Not only are the colours consistent with the home, but the cover of the gate dips down to meet with the height of this fence, making this space feel not as inflexible than if a traditional gate had been utilized.

Aneka Interiors Inc..

A curlicue entrance pairs well with the stunning rounded archways from the distance.

Tip:When deciding upon a gate layout, it might be of help to narrow your options by mirroring an overall shape that exists in the backdrop.

Diane Licht Landscape Architect

The unfinished wood used with this gate was a wonderful selection for its surroundings. Over time, a structure that’s left with no paint or stain will slowly weather. In cases like this, the subdued end goes well with the neutral tones of the home.

Motionspace Architecture + Design

It didn’t take long to observe the stability shared with this home and its entrance. By employing a same colors represented on the exterior of the home, the designer was able to create a cohesive and relaxed feeling.

More exterior information:
Charm Your House with Windowboxes
Design with Weather: Introduce a Rain Chain
8 Great Ways to Use Landscape Pavers

Next: Read additional photos of garden gate designs

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