Posts Tagged ‘landscaping ideas’

Large Backyard Ideas NJ – How To Design A Luxury Resort

Thursday, March 7th, 2013

Large Backyard Ideas NJ–How To Create A Luxury Resort

Does your existing landscaping fail to make the most of your large backyard? We have some ideas that can transform your backyard into a luxury resort.–Plant NJ

Do you have a very big yard? Maybe you have decided that your existing landscape doesn’t make the most of your large property. Maybe you are having trouble engaging guests and balancing function and style across the massive backyard property. These are all very common concerns that homeowners have with respect to large backyard landscaping projects.

You may be thinking, “How could anyone complain about having too much space? I would love a bigger yard!” Having a huge back yard usually sounds like a blessing, but, believe it or not, there are some significant challenges with big backyard landscapes as well. One major concern for big yards is that they may look desolate and unwelcoming if they lack engaging destinations. Problems with slopes or flat, uninteresting properties can be compounded by the large property area. Any problems, or even the vast possibilities, with big back yards make for a challenging design and build process.

In order to make the most of large backyard landscaping, here are a few ideas I would suggest. Depending upon your outdoor living needs, try to diversify the landscape design and create various destinations. You can divide the large landscape into multiple destinations with different functions. For example, a large backyard might feature a flat, open grass play area for the kids, a swimming pool and patio area for swimming, an outdoor kitchen space for cooking and dining, and maybe even a separate outdoor living room for quiet relaxation. These varied spaces will engage everyone from children to adults in various ways.

In big yards, you might face the large challenge of a steep slope or, in the other extreme, a boring, flat yard. Creative solutions, usually in the form of terracing, can provide functional interest in both scenarios. Multiple terrace levels can ease a slope transition and create functional areas in the steep yard. Terraces might also create depth and interest across a flat, open landscape.

Whatever sort of large backyard ideas NJ you choose for your big backyard resort, remember to balance function and style. Everything may look good on paper, but it doesn’t always work for the end user experience, especially for large properties. It is important to consider space, foot traffic, and furniture layouts. For example, you might not want to put a dining area right in front of a staircase because the foot traffic could be disruptive and disjointed.  You might have the luxury of a lot of space, but knowing what to do with it is a different ballgame. Experienced landscape architects will best be able to tell you how to make these extensive designs as functional and user-friendly as possible.

Lastly, making the most of the big backyard resort involves using the yard at night. Effective lighting will play a crucial role in the value of your big backyard investment. When choosing features and functions for your large outdoor living space, always remember to put safety first. Inground pools, waterfalls, and fire pits are beautiful, but safety should always be the deciding factor when it comes to including and designing these luxury features.

To summarize, speak with your landscape design company and figure out what options make the most sense for your property, your family, and your lifestyle. From there, try to get a feel for how the landscaping ideas will come together; various destinations must be comfortable and distinct, while remaining functional for the overall outdoor living experience.

If you have any questions about how to achieve your big backyard resort goals, please contact us. We have experience with landscape design for properties up to 10-acres in size!

How to Improve Your NJ Landscaping with Climbing Vines

Tuesday, March 5th, 2013

How to Improve Your NJ Landscaping with Climbing Vines

Would you like to soften an architectural element or enjoy a shaded area under a canopy of foliage? How do you make the most of a confining space? Landscaping with climbing vines may be the perfect solution.

Do you have a stone structure that is overwhelming? Would you like the comfort of natural shading added to an overhead structure? Looking to do more with a tight courtyard space? These are several situations where climbing vines may be the solution.

For me, one of the more attractive aspects of a beautiful landscape has to be the use of climbing vines. Have you ever seen a picturesque landscape that looks like something out of a fairytale? Maybe it’s the aged, natural look, but the vines carry a great amount of mystique and adorn scenic architecture with unmistakable style. In this blog, we will take a brief look at how climbing vines can complement and complete your outdoor living space with striking beauty reminiscent of age-old castles. At the same time, I will suggest a few ways in which climbing vines can provide a useful solution for your landscape architecture and outdoor living needs.

How do we use climbing vines in the outdoor living space? We use the climbing vines to add vertical dimension and soften masculine architecture or structures around the landscape. Oftentimes we try to soften and tie architecture, masonry walls, fences, pergolas, and other structures into the surrounding landscape. With a vine climbing up and around the structure, you can accomplish this integration quite literally. Where a stone wall, pergola, or lamppost lacks in style, color, and texture, you can make up for it with a few climbing vines that bloom seasonally with the rest of your perennials. Complementing these vertical structures with beautiful climbing vines becomes especially valuable when you’re short on space.

In terms of varieties to use in your landscape design, I generally suggest climbers such as climbing hydrangea, wisteria, climbing English ivy, morning glory and climbing rose. Another common option is clematis. As I mentioned before, you can use all of these to complement your landscape architecture or home architecture. Some landscaping ideas might include climbing roses on a lamppost, climbing hydrangea on masonry walls, or clematis on the yard’s perimeter piers and fencing.

The advantages of climbing vines incorporated in the outdoor living space lie mainly in style, but there are practical benefits as well. In fact, climbers can bring some sustainability and comfort to the outdoor living area and your home. On a pergola, climbers can provide some added shade from the hot summer sun. On the home, the climbing vines can act as a last line of defense from the sun, cutting back just a little on your air conditioning bill during summer. It is also said that evergreen climbers offer one last windbreak during winter in order to keep cooling to a minimum and cut down on your heating bill.

If you would like to know more about how to use climbing vines to complement and complete your outdoor living space, feel free to contact us.

NJ Landscaping Trees – Fall Tree Planting Can Be Risky

Wednesday, November 9th, 2011

Landscaping Trees Mahwah NJ

NJ landscaping trees provide everything from pure natural beauty to screening, shading, and windbreaks. They stand tall among the landscape and platform themselves as beautiful borders and distinguished centerpieces. That sounds nice, but when should these trees be dug and planted? For people who live in growing zones 5 thru 8, October, November and early December is a good time to plant your trees. The mild fall weather puts less stress on the trees. Also, roots are active during winter months and store nutrients for the next season. But don’t get too carried away with the idea of a Fall planting project just yet. In this blog, I will give you a brief explanation as to why certain trees can be risky to plant in the Fall. By taking these facts into account, you can weigh the risk of a Fall planting for yourself. In addition, these guidelines will help explain why knowledgeable landscape design companies and/or nurseries may refuse to plant a certain tree in your landscape during the Fall months.

 

Fall dig hazard trees tend to fail for a couple of different reasons. There are roughly about four troublesome types of trees:

Trees with thin bark and lots of small branches: Betula (all) – Birch

Trees with thick roots that regenerate slowly: Nyssa sylvatica -Tupelo, Black Gum, Sour Gum

Trees that harden late in Fall: Crataegus (all) – Hawthorn and Pyrus (all) – Pear

Broadleaf evergreens: Leyland Cypress and Ilex opaca Greenleaf – American Holly.

 

Trees that are more likely to survive a Fall planting in your landscape are those with shallow, fibrous root systems.

Examples of trees that are not a fall dig hazard:

Aesculus Hippocastanum – Horse chestnut

Amelanchier Leavis – Serviceberry

Fraxinus Americana- White Ash

Hamamelis Virciniana- American Witch hazel

Picea Abies- Norway Spruce

Pinus Stobus- White Pine

Tsuga Canadensis- Hemlock

Here’s a general list of trees that should not be dug during the Fall, known as Fall Dig Hazards. If  you plan on planting trees on your property this Fall or plan on having a landscaper do it for you, do a bit of research. If the tree is on the fall dig hazard list, I would suggest you verify  that the trees were dug this past spring and not this fall.

Abies concolor – Concolor Fir

Acer rubrum – Red Maple
Acer japonica – Full Moon Maple
Acer saccharinum – Silver Maple
Acer freemanii – Freeman Maple
Betula (all) – Birch
Carpinus (all) – American Hornbeam, Ironwood
Cedrus Deodara – Blue Atlas Cedar
Celtis (all) – Hackberry
Cercis – Redbud
Cornus – Dogwood
Crataegus (all) – Hawthorn
Cupressocyparis leylandii – Leyland Cypress ***
Fagus (all) – Beech
Ilex x Fosterii – Foster Holly***
Ilex Nellie Stevens – Nellie Stevens Holly***
Ilex opaca Greenleaf – American Holly ***
Juniper virginiana – Easter Red Cedar
Liquidambar – Sweetgum
Liriodendron – Tulip Tree
Malus (move as late as possible) – Crabapple
Nyssa sylvatica -Tupelo, Black Gum, Sour Gum
Oystrya virginiana – Ironwood, Hophornbeam
Pinus nigra – Austrian Pine
Platanus (all) – Planetree
Pyrus (all) – Pear
Quercus (all) – Oak
Taxodium – Baldcypress
Taxus b. Repandens – English Yew

Tilia tomentosa (other Tilia ok) – Silver Linden
Zelkova (all)

*** Not recommended for fall planting