Summer is officially here and with it sunshine and pop up thunder storms! Pools are opened and graduation parties are under way along with the long lazy days of summer ahead of us for the next 8 weeks. I just setup our new outdoor pool this weekend since our son keeps getting bigger-upgraded to a 10′ diameter easy set pool on a level service of sand in our back yard. Just the right size to cool off and it has a filtration system to make things a little easier. Having a pool cover helps keep things clean and the water at a nice temperature too 🙂
Our backyard waterfall and stream is crystal clear with the help of slow release chlorine tabs and is nice to enjoy next to the fire pit since the evenings are still cool. Smores are still the favorite snack along with a nice cocktail at the end of the day too.
As I was taking a break and reading a book by our pond,who should stop and visit but not just one but 2 dragon flies! Think one was checking out my pedicure lol and the other just happened to look really neat when it landed on a nearby rock so thank goodness for my IPhone or my husband wouldn’t believe me!
On another note, after such a wet spring, shrubs and trees have continued to push a lot of new growth this year so even though you may have had a spring cleanup and a pruning with fresh mulch earlier this spring, it may be time for another trimming now that the heat of the summer is here. Many plants tend to slow down there growth this time of year to conserve energy into their roots and keeping cool. Also any spring flowering specimens are kept in check when pruning after they have flowered: azaleas, rhododendrons, lilacs, dogwood and cherry trees just to name a few. We do our midseason prunings and weeding this time of year as well as continuing to install new plantings and updated landscape renovations.
Here are a couple of my favorite plants for this year: colorful coral bells, weigela that has a few different varieties and chardonnay pearls or creme fraiche deutzia, all offering some contrasting color in the landscape. Flowers are an extra bonus too. The nurseries are well stocked and we apply a water gel to all our shrubs and trees to allow for more consistent watering and to help clients not over or under water their plants. This time of year you want to water either early in the morning or later in the afternoon so that you do not damage the delicate leaves. This includes lawns-the water when hit by the hot sun in the middle of the day will act as a magnifying glass and burns right through the foliage so be careful!
Our plantings are designed to keep your landscape interesting throughout the year-plants that are chosen for not only color in the flowers or foliage, but texture and ease of maintenance each year. Pruning and weeding 2 times a year allows your landscape to mature but stay in check and not get overgrown or leggy which leads to winter damage or having to replace plants that have been neglected.
A fresh layer of mulch helps not only create a barrier for weeds but assists in retaining water and keeping roots cool during the summertime. For those of you that we have mulched or have rocks, here’s a weed control reminder to apply Preen to both your mulch areas as well as any rock areas since it continues to work for about 2-3 months to help prevent new weeds from establishing. I know I did mine 3 months ago back in April so July is the next time to apply Preen to keep working into September. If any weeds or grass are sprouting in the mulch or stone areas then also spray some Roundup or other weed killer on a nice dry sunny day and it will assist in keeping your beds weed free and looking good all summer long. Maintenance-Care-guide-after-mulching.
Cobblestone borders add a nice accent to landscape beds and help define lawn and mulch areas. Tip: Spray some Roundup or weed killer directly on the cobblestones and spaces in between to eliminate have to weed whack after mowing.
Cobblestone and peastone or gravel also make great pathways for pools and gardens, and is a great idea if you are looking to create a clean fire pit area to enjoy. Perfect for placing a few adirondack chairs around. Have a happy and Safe Holiday!