Spring Landscape Tips

May 5, 2011

It has been a beautiful spring and we are heading into summertime.  Your garden should be green and your plants popping with color.  Here are a few quick tips to keep your yard ready for summer. 

Mulching – Mulching plant beds will not only make your yard look clean and crisp, but will also help shrubs retain moisture and prevent weeds from sprouting this summer. 

Mowing – When you are mowing your lawn this spring you want to keep your mower blade high, it helps keep the weeds from germinating and will keep the new grass from burning in the sun.  You may need to mow every week, but it will keep your lawn healthy and green. 

Pruning – At this point in the late spring you don’t want to do any major pruning only cutting back stray growth to maintain the plants shape.  Do remove spent flowers to promote re-blooming on roses and annuals for beautiful flowers all summer long.

Mosquito Control– Mosquitoes are coming.  Unfortunately there is no way that I know of to get rid of mosquitoes completely, but there are a few ways to help reduce their breeding around your home.  Look for areas of standing and pooling water around your home and remove it, especially after yesterday’s heavy rain.  Common areas to check for standing water are in – buckets and rain barrels, bottles and cans, empty plastic pots, uneven areas in lawns or gardens where irrigation water can collect, clogged rain gutters, birdbaths and water bowls for pets.

Patio with Pergola

Add your new Patio, Pergola or Outdoor Kitchen– Now is the time to install the new patio, pergola or outdoor kitchen you have been thinking about all winter.  If you are looking for a little shade this summer, install a pergola.  Pergolas are a great way to keep the sun off a patio area.  With spring already here, it is time to get new hardscaping installed so that it will be ready for the summer.  Check out our website and blog for a few ideas on how to improve your outdoor living space.    

As always we look forward to working with you on any of your landscape and hardscape needs – (804) 622-7477 or visit our website at www.CarvilleLandscape.com.


Tips for Preparing your Yard for Spring!

March 1, 2011

As our first warm, summer like days are here in Virginia, it is time to start thinking about preparing your yard for spring.  After a cold, snowy winter your plants may be looking a bit drab and dreary.   Here are a few useful tips to help get your yard ready to enjoy on those beautiful spring days. 

Winter Snow Damage – Take a survey of your trees and shrubs to see if they have snow damage, broken limbs or branches.  If you have shrubs with broken limbs, remove them by making a clean cut just above the stem node or branch collar.  Then fertilize the plants with a slow release fertilizer for a new flush of growth this spring.  

Aeration and Fertilization – March is the time to aerate and fertilize the lawn to keep it green all summer long.  You want to use a slow release fertilizer with the lowest possible phosphorus level.  In this region we have very phosphorus rich soil, adding more will just create dangerous run-off for our waterways.  Remember to fertilize the plants and shrubs as well – and you can use the same fertilizer for the entire yard.   

When you are mowing your yard this spring you want to keep your mower blade high, it helps keep the weeds from germinating and will keep the new grass from burning in the sun.

Knock-Out Roses – If you haven’t cut your roses back, it is time.  Make sure there is no new growth, and then take them back to 12” to 18” tall.  Don’t be afraid to cut them back that much, they will grow bigger each year. 

Add your new Hardscaping for Summer – Fireplaces are the new outdoor trend.  We have already installed three since the beginning of 2011.  Install an outdoor fireplace now and use it on those cool spring nights.  This is also the time to start thinking about installing a pool for summer.  Believe it or not we are working on our fifth pool project of this year.  With spring on its way, it is time to get new hardscaping installed so that it will be ready for the summer.  Check out more of our blog posts for tips on swimming pools and outdoor fireplaces

As always please feel free to call us for any of your design, landscaping and hardscaping needs 804-622-7477 or visit us on the web at www.carvillelandscape.com.

Visit us at the Richmond Home Show, March 4-6

March 1, 2011

Stop by the Richmond Home Show, March 4-6 at the Richmond Raceway Complex.  Our booth will be in the first building by the door to enter the rest of the show.  You can’t miss us!  Check this link for more information on the Richmond Home and Garden Show

 Here are a few pictures from the show we did this Winter.  A travertine patio with seat walls, a stone outdoor kitchen, landscaping, a fountain and a bench and table made by one of our designers!  Our designers and installers are truly talented.  Can’t wait for this show!

A stone bench and table that Chris McClaning made from some extra material at the shop.  


 A stone outdoor kitchen with pizza oven/grill combo, a soap stone counter top and natural stone bar top.   

Join us at the Virginia Home and Garden Show this Weekend!

January 11, 2011

We have a landscape/hardscape display booth at the Virginia Home and Garden Show this weekend.  The show is January 14-16 at the Meadow Event Park (near Kings Dominion).  You can’t miss us, we are the first booth to the left when you walk in the door.  Come out to see us and start planning for SUMMER! 

For all the details check the Virginia Home and Garden Show website.

Landscaping Trends from 2010

October 29, 2010

I was on the internet today checking out what is happening in the world of landscaping, when I came across a great article about the landscaping trends from 2010.  OK so I am a few months late, but I know these trends hold true for us and we will continue to plant this way into 2011.  Eco-friendly landscaping and sustainable living are here to stay, so I thought this article gave some good advice on how to plant your yard.  Since fall is the time for planting (we may be at our last few weeks) I thought I would post this article from Landscape Management magazine with their 10 landscaping trends for 2010. 


It is Time for your Fall Lawn Renovation

September 9, 2010

After a very hot and dry summer here in Virginia, your lawn is probably going to need a little renovation this fall.  As the weather grows cooler (and VT football is back), it is the perfect time to overseed your lawn.  Below is a play-by-play of how to overseed your lawn yourself or if you need a little help, just give us a call at Carville Landscape Co.

Start by raking the entire yard and removing any debris and leaves.  Then use a dethatcher to scarify and cultivate the existing lawn.  If you want to kill any weeds or grass first, start by spraying a herbicide a week before overseeding.

If needed, add some additional topsoil and rake it flat.

Once you have prepared the soil it is time to add the seed.  Do one pass with the seed then another pass with the fertilizer.   Use a slow release fertilizer, which will release nitrogen into the soil for up to a month providing valuable nutrients for the seed to grow.

Then place a layer of straw over the entire area to help retain moisture in the soil.

Then it is time to water, water and water.  Keep the seed moist so that it will germinate.  You should look at your own soil conditions, but watering once in the morning and once in the evening should keep it moist.

How to Build a Pergola in Two Days!

August 12, 2010

We just added a pergola to our outdoor showroom at the Carville Landscape Co. offices and I thought I would take a few pictures to document the building process.   Here is a photo blog of how we built our pergola; a little play-by-play for all you weekend warriors.  

First, start by digging the post holes at least two feet deep, install posts and concrete.  Cut all the posts to the same height.  Let the posts set up for a day.   We used pressure treated wood, you could use cedar, but make sure the wood is rot resistant.     

Post installed with concrete.

All four posts set and cut to size.

Once your posts are set in concrete, attach your bottom support boards to your posts.  Make sure the boards are level and bolted to the posts.  Bolts should be long enough to go through the entire support board and post.  

Level support boards and attach with screws to hold in place.

Bolt the supports into place.

Then you are ready for your cross beams.  Place the two end cross beams first, then measure the distance between the beams to determine how many center beams to add.  Attach all the cross beams with at least two screws.  We notched out the boards to fit over the support beams and added a decorative cut on the end.  Be as creative as you like with the cross beams.         

Attach two end beams first.

Add center beams. We attached a string line to make certain all beams line up.

Finally, you have a finished pergola!  Now add the television, sound system and fan or outdoor lighting to make it the perfect shady retreat.  Sit back and enjoy!  

The finished pergola!

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