Once April comes and the temperatures warm up and the days grow longer, most gardeners are itching to get into the garden and start working. One of the best things to tackle before the perennials have started to leaf out is dividing them. It doesn’t take long for some perennials to out grow their space or over shadow their neighbors. Dividing a hefty perennial may seem daunting, but like any task having the right tool is key! One of the easiest tools to use to divide perennials is a 4 tine spading fork. Actually, having two of these forks is what works. Once you have dug the perennial out of the ground, stick one of the forks directly into the center of the perennial mass, referred to as the crown. Then slide the second fork in, back to back with the other folk, slightly intertwining the tines. Once the fork are both in, pull the handles in opposite directions prying the perennial apart. This action easily pulls the perennial apart without slicing or damaging the roots. You can repeat this process a few times turning one large plant into three or four. It’s a great way to get more plants for your garden or give away to fellow gardeners.
Landscaper Berwick ME.
Permeable Pavers is a term that is used that I found a bit misleading. The concrete pavers themselves are NOT permeable. It is the system that the pavers are installed in that create a permeable surface. Permeable surfaces are becoming more important as water issues such as storm water run-off and water recharge areas are being identified as environmental issues. Poor management of storm water and water recharge areas have many implications that effect our ecosystems and drinking water.
Impervious surfaces like roadways, sidewalks, and driveways don’t allow water to seep back in the ground and the water is often contaminated with toxins. This water is usually directed to a storm drain that dumps directly into natural water ways like rivers or coastal sites. This contaminated water kills off vegetation and changes the pH creating a detrimental situation. We rely so much on our water for not only drinking and crop irrigation, but for recreation.
Permeable paver systems allow water to seep down in between the pavers keeping the water on site. As it seeps through the ground most of the toxins are remediated by the soils and microbes. This allows the water to get to recharge areas that are so vital for drinking water.
Concrete pavers have come a long way in recent years and can make very attractive permeable driveways and they are being used in large commercial and municipal parking areas. It is easy to research from small residential to large city projects.
As we all become more aware of the environmental impacts farming, gardening, and landscaping have on our waters, habitats, and people lots of folks want to move toward organic methods.
‘Organic’ is a term that has taken on lots of meaning and can be interpreted in different ways. The assumption that going organic is the silver bullet to solving agricultural issues has lots of grey areas.
One of these areas is related to pesticide use. The assumption that ‘if it is organic then it must be safe’, is not necessarily the case. Many natural products can be toxic as well, and potentially more harmful than some synthetics pesticides.
The key to any successful pest management is knowledge. First, understanding what it is that you are trying to control. Second, what are the environmental factors that may be contributing to this unwanted pest. The third step is researching the best time and method of control. This process is called Integrated Pest Management(IPM).
Here is a link to find out more information.
As a gardener, the first signs of plants returning after a long winter is very anticipated! Perennials that come back year after year are the staples of a diverse garden. But often, they are not filled out or blooming until late May or even late fall. The day length, warm soils, and the heat of summer are usually the driving factors pulling perennials out of their dormant state and them returning to their glorious growing habits.
Spring ephemeral plants, on the other hand, act quite the opposite of most perennials. ‘Ephemeral’ means transitory or quickly fading and in the plant world, it refers to a particular growth habit. These plants appear as soon as the weather hints at warmth and then they disappear when the temperatures segue into heat. Ephemeral plants take advantage of the cooler spring temperatures, moist soils, and the lack of competition for sunlight from other plants. They are entirely different from spring tulips, daffodils, crocus, and hyacinth which are bulbs, these are perennials with a root mass.
In that brief, often fleeting period their pretty flowers emerge and are a welcome sight. Then they quickly go dormant. Unlike most perennials that die back in the fall, these plants go back into dormancy within a couple of weeks from their appearance. Their top growth may disappear completely, but the roots are still fine and they appreciate the cooling cover of later plants that fill in the spaces they leave empty.
Two easy growing spring ephemerals includeVirginia Bluebells(Mertensia virginica) and Bleeding Heart(Dicentra spectabilis).
People often ask “what do you do for work during the winter?” While we still have projects coming in to design and estimate, it is much quieter! It gives us time to review the previous year, make plans for improvements, and stay current with the landscape industry. This week our staff will be attending New England Grows, a three day conference and trade show for the professional landscape industry. This is the premier winter conference held in Boston each year, bringing folks in from all over New England. It’s great in the middle of the winter to get a burst of landscape energy by talking with fellow landscapers, seeing great slideshows, and visiting the trade show with booth after booth of plants and tools that make us long for the season to start. With 27 seminars and a huge exhibition there is plenty of opportunity for education and insight into the latest trends, technological advances, and business strategies. It’s a great conference that keeps us informed, educated, and competitive in the industry that we love.
Just in time for spring and the 2014 landscape season we are thrilled to launch our new website! We have added many photos and made it easier to navigate through our services. We have added new pages like “Going Green” and this blog that we hope will inspire and educate you. “Our Philosophy” page is dedicated to our commitment to customer service where we ask for your feedback. So check it out, send in your blog topics, and follow us on Facebook through another fabulous growing season.