Pondless Waterfall

At the Iverson’s we were faced with a challenge of the grade sloping back toward the home.  When it rained the run off would track down the drive way across a dry stream bed.  Also, people had a hard time approaching the front door when they visited because the driveway was so steep.  We decided to turn the dry stream bed into a pondless water feature transforming a weedy patch of rocks into a beautiful landscape feature.  A bridge transports visitors across the babbling brook to the front entrance.

To tackle the steep hill in front we created a nice pathway of pavers that meanders down the hill to the bridge.  There are some nice planting beds that compliment the steps and water feature.  Overall these improvements have undoubtedly improved the properties access as well as the value.

Click on Photo’s for a larger version.


September Newsletter

Hot off the press is Going Green for September of 2008.  Click here for tremendous deals!  Going Green

August Newsletter

I should post to the blog more than once a month.  I get busy and I don’t even know if anyone is looking at it so I has fallen off of my priority list.  If anybody is subscribed to this page let me know and I would be happy to post more consistent content.

Let me know what you would like to learn about and I will provide relative blog entries.

Here is a link to our

August Newsletter

Thanks and keep on digging!


June Newsletter

Then Going Green Newsletter for June of 2008 has been posted. While our attempt to make this a monthly newsletter has not yet succeed I hope you enjoy the latest installment of Going Green. If you would like to view any of our past newsletters check out the Archives.

Let me know what kind of Landscaping questions you have and I will post answers to my blog!


March is flying by!

I posted several new articles on our website with the publication of our March newsletter. You can look at the March issue of Going Green by clicking this link.

Going Green

Our other newsletters are in the archives.


Going Green – Feb 2008

Here is a link to our February newsletter.

Going Green

If you would like to see some of our past issues you can go to our archive.

Until next time stay warm!

Western Nursery and Landscape Association

Blue Creek Wetland

I attended the Western Sunday through Tuesday of this week. “The Western” is an annual convention/tradeshow that has taken place for 118 years. Landscape contractors, nurseries, and retailers from all over the midwest attend this event to stay up to date on the latest trends in the industry and to improve their trade skills. There we several excellent speakers again at “The Western” this year. Here is a list of the speakers and the materials they presented on.

Quality landscape companies set aside time to attend this convention to make sure they are offering the most up to date and best practices to their clients. Ask your landscape designer if they attended “The Western”?

One very interesting presentation was focused upon building landscapes that are eco-friendly. It is important in this day and Read the rest of this entry »

Six ponds for the price of One!

I recently met a guy from Canada who tells wonderful pond stories. His name is Bill Vernon and he was talking about what he
called the six ponds in one.
Now I’ve been in and around the water gardening business for a while now, and I had absolutely no idea what he was talking about. So I asked him to explain.

Bill Explains the first Four

A Nice WaterfallHe basically said that every pond he’d ever seen has had six distinct personalities, including a spring personality, a summer personality, a fall personality, and a winter personality.

“You see the pond is a living and breathing entity,” Bill said, “and it changes right along with the weather and the seasons. Just go ahead and tell me that the spring pond is the same as the summer pond, and the fall pond is the same as the winter pond” Bill challenged. “They’re all different and unique in and of themselves.” Ok, I thought to myself, now I understand four of the six ponds he was talking about, and I couldn’t help but agree with him that all four were unique and different from all the others. But that left two more ponds unexplained, and so
I asked Bill to fill in these other two blanks so I could fully understand where he was coming from.

Bill Explains Two More

Without hesitation Bill continued, “Well, there is also the day time pond and the night time pond, right?”A Cold Winters Night I shook my head in agreement as he continued to explain the magic of the daytime pond, with the sun glistening off the water’s surface, the colorful Koi darting around below, all surrounded by lush green and colorful plants. The daytime pond certainly has magical qualities to it. Then Bill contrasted the daytime pond with the romance of the nighttime pond, underwater lights turning the entire aquatic ecosystem into a transparent liquid world that’s for all practical purposes, invisible during the day. “Do you know anyone who can resist the seduction of the night time pond?” Bill asked. I had to shake my head in agreement once again. I knew nobody who was less than spellbound by a pond at night.

Then I Discovered Bill’s Fuzzy Math

But then I started to question Bill’s math. To use an overused political phrase, I thought it was a little fuzzy. I mean if there were four different pond personalities that corresponded with each new season, that’s four, right? And if each one of these have a night time and a day time edition, that’s two times four or eight different ponds, am I right on this Bill. He looked like a deer who’d just been caught in the headlights as he scratched his head in thought and finally said “hmmmmm. I never thought of it like that before. I’d say that you’re right. I’m changing my story to eight ponds in one from now on. That way you’re getting
more for your money…right?” Right I said. Is it any wonder why Bill Vernon sells lots of ponds?

To Prune or not to Prune

This is a great time of year to prune your trees and shrubs. The top three pruning tips for winter are:

  1. When the leaves are off the trees you have better access to the problem areas.
  2. Less stress for trees and shrubs when the plant is not actively growing.
  3. It is too early to start uncovering and clean up your perennials.

When the leaves are off the trees you have better access to the problem areas. Trees that drop their leaves are deciduous trees. Deciduous trees are easiest to prune in the fall or winter because you can really see what you need to get to. Things to look for on your deciduous trees are crossing branches, inverted crotches and dead wood. Crossing branches can be characterized as branches that are rubbing on other branches. Choose the branch that is the smallest and prune it all the way back to the next junction. Don’t just arbitrarily cut back a limb. If you must remove more than half of the branches material take it all the way back to the axial branch or main stem. Inverted crotches are the limbs that are angling toward the ground coming off the main branch. These limbs will be most likely to break off in high winds or ice storms. branch collar Removal of these limbs is best to be done all the way back to the main branch just below the branch collar. Dead wood can be removed at any time of the year and may actually be better spotted during the growing season. When the plant is dormant and you suspect that the limb is dead you can test it by trying to bend the limb toward the end. If the limb snaps easily it is dead if it flexes it is still alive.

Pruning during dormancy will be less stressful to the trees and shrubs. Conifers or ‘evergreens” can be pruned anytime of the year but will ‘weep” less in the winter as the sap is not flowing readily at this time. Trees and shrubs that flower in the early spring such as Redbuds, Dogwoods, and Magnolias should be pruned after they flower they flower but before they fully leaf out. Summer flowering trees and shrubs will set on their flower buds on new growth so dormant pruning will not alter flower production.

When we get those nice winter days that are unseasonably warm we all get the itch to work in the landscape. Warning even though it is nice today it could be freezing tomorrow! So you have to be careful, we recommend that you wait until after March 1st or closer to the middle of the month to start pruning back dead material of perennials. The old plant material of your perennials tends to help protect the plants along with the mulch. Instead of working on the perennials, get out the pruning equipment and shape up you trees and shrubs.

One last thing, if you are behind on your pruning only remove less than one-quarter of the plants crown. Certain shrubs will benefit from cutting way back, as a rule of thumb prune your trees a small amount each season and reap long-term benefits of healthier plants. Now, satisfy that cabin fever and get out and trim your trees and shrubs.

Hello world!

Pondless Water Feature

I will be posting articles regarding landscape design and installation as well as information regarding the hobby of gardening. This hobby can include anything from water gardens to vegetable gardens, retaining walls to walls of water, paver patios to wooden gazebos. The possibilities are endless when it comes to your outdoor creation.

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