Category Archives: Sidewalks

Privacy landscaping can make you and your neighbors happy!!!

Some time you just want to be by yourself or you just don’t want to hear your next door neighbor on their cell phone.  You just want to relax with some quite time with no interference or you really want to sit out in the warm sun without the neighbor’s basketball bouncing through the patio and over-top of the grill.  The answer just might be a phone call way and just around the corner.

Garden PictureLandscaping Your Yard for Privacy

Designing a landscaping that creates a soft, quite, natural, privacy barrier can change the whole dynamics and enjoyment of your outdoor living space.  There are many ways to address privacy barriers other than building an eight foot tall fence.

Softscapes – One of the best ways to landscape for privacy is the addition of trees, shrubs, plants, and flowers designed in such a way that the line-of-sight is deterred and the normal day to day sounds of our neighbors and local traffic are muffled.  Layering the plants allows for the larger plants to be designed on the outside of your yard creating a taller barrier and providing a place to nestle in the lower bushier plants to the inside for more subtle noises.

cole patio firepitHardscapes – Designing decks and patios for privacy is another way to soften the neighborhood noises and allow for more privacy.  The addition of Pergola and Trellises will not be able to hide the entire yard, but it will allow for private areas for your and your guest.

Decorative Walls – One of the best ways to add privacy is to use Decorative Walls.  They can be used around the slops of the yard to create new living spaces or gardens.  You can also add an attractive addition to your patio or pool area that could include decorative fencing on the top edge for maximum privacy.

Water Features – This is a unique way to design a new outdoor living space that is peaceful and relaxing, but it will also mask the noises of the neighborhood.  The addition of a fountain or waterfall will also muffle the sounds from the air conditioner, street traffic and conversations from your neighbors.  There is just something about the sound of a water feature that is relaxing and soothing to the ear.

Swan Creek Landscaping, Inc. prides itself in providing privacy landscape options for our Cecil and Harford County clients’.  Our Design Group will create a unique outdoor living space that will meet your privacy needs, while providing a unique outdoor living space.  In addition, our Service Group performs yard maintenance, mowing, plantings, landscaping, patios, pruning and gardening on a contract basis.  Pick-up the phone and call us to learn how Swan Creek can change the look of your property with privacy solutions that will enhance the appearance of your home and value.

Phone – 410.378.8668
Website: http://www.SwanCreekLandscaping.com

Tips on Watering your Maryland lawn green during the “dog days” of summer….

Maryland is blessed with a great climate that allows our residents to be outdoors three quarters of the year.  But, keeping your landscape and specifically your lawn green during the hot days of August can be a challenge.  But Swan Creek has some ideas, suggestions and tips.

Dog PictureThe very best solution is to have an irrigation system which can be the greatest way to keep a Maryland lawn nourished and cooled off. Your yard needs water on a regular bases and the best way to get it is with some type of Sprinkling System (in-ground or above ground). It is the best defense against the “dog days” of summer that can bring brown spots and can even kill parts of your yard.  It also allows the yard to soak up needed water and nutrients while allowing the excess water to be evaporate by the sun.

Watering Tips:
• Best time to water you lawn is between 4:00 A.M. and 9:00 A.M. in the morning
• Do not water in the hottest part of the day…the water will evaporate before being absorbed
• Do not saturate your lawn with water…this can cause a breeding ground for mold and disease
• Avoid watering by hand…it is inconsistent and will not spread evenly around the yard
• Most lawns require about 1” to 2” inches of water per week depending on soil and grass type
• Avoid watering by hand with a hose and spray nozzle because of the inconsistency in spraying
• Use of an inexpensive sprinkler supplied by a water hose and placed around the yard can also be most effective. Make sure you take note of time in each area so as not to over water
• Keep your mowing height at 3” or greater. Tall grass can best absorb the water, while helping to eliminate stress on the plants
• Buy a good mulching bade for your mower and stop bagging you clippings. The blade will cut the grass into finer pieces and allow it to drop back into the lawn for added food and nutrients
• Keep your fertilizer in the bag during the hot months unless you have a sprinkler system. You can quickly burn out the yard if applied at the wrong time. Consult your nursery
• Planting shade Tree Picturetrees around your property might also give your lawn some relieve from the heat and can even offer shaded areas for your outdoor living spaces

Remember, with all lawn care Mother Nature is always in charge. But, seed companies are constantly coming out with new grasses and some recent introductions to the market are slow growing grasses, grasses that need a minimum amount of water, and grasses you do not even need to be mowed.

Swan Creek Landscaping, Inc. provides lawn, grass and watering tips to our Cecil and Harford County clients’.  Our Maintenance Group will inspect your yard to determine your watering needs and then make recommendations for proper care of your entire yard and landscape.  In addition, our Maintenance Service Group performs yard maintenance of all types including: mowing, plantings, pruning, landscaping, and spring/fall clean-ups on a contract basis.  Please call us to learn how Swan Creek can change the look of your property with yard maintenance that will enhance the appearance of your home along with the value.

Phone – 410.378.8668
Website: http://www.SwanCreekLandscaping.com

Unique Patios come in all sizes and shapes to meet your needs….

The item that Landscaping Contractors are most called to design, build, and maintain are Patios. Why patios? Well for several reasons:
1. They are usually the first upgrade made to a new home
2. They can be created in all sizes and shapes to change your existing home appearance
3. They can be the first and most important start to an expandable outdoor living space
4. They can change the appearance of your yard design quickly
5. They are extremely customizable utilizing the homeowners needs, wants and desires

How do you customize the design of your patio into a unique space that enhances the appearance of your home, yard and outdoor living space?IMG_0186

The first step would be to contact your Landscaping Contractor to guide you through the process. Swan Creek Landscaping is the leading expert for designing patios that are unique and have the long-lasting appearance you want.

What is the right way to plan a custom designed patio?
There is no real right or wrong way to design a patio. Everything goes and yes, there is a chance you can make a mistake. The good news is that the right landscape contractor will notice a problem, point it out and offer solutions and related alternatives. Your current landscape may present some restrictions that will need to be considered before you develop a creative design. Ask these questions:Cole patio firepit pavers techobloc
1. What is the topography of the yard? Do you have hills and slopes? This being the case, the size of your patio may be somewhat restricted. The cost associated with leveling the yard and smoothing things out can be expensive and time consuming, requiring equipment and labor hours.
2. Check to see if there are any restriction, ordinances, or homeowners’ association regulations that must be considered before you start. Sometimes the size of the patio, its features (fire pits, pizza ovens, etc.), electrical regulations, and plumbing codes may need city, county or homeowners’ association approvals before proceeding. Or, you can call on Swan Creek Landscaping who will take care of the bureaucracy for you.
3. What features do you want to incorporate into your patio? Make sure you have your wish list of needs and wants. Talk with the family members, neighbors, and friends about the features they have and what they would suggest.

IMG_0219Designing your Stunning Outdoor Patio
The centerpiece of your backyard will be your Patio. The design options are endless. But if you want something really outside of the box, you need to call Swan Creek Landscaping. Some of the most popular features include:
• Tiers Spaces that can be used for multi-use levels
• Attractive outdoor lighting and fencing accents
• Updating of the landscape with mulch, new plantings and flower pots
• Fire Pits and Wall Seating that are naturally unified into the patio
• Outdoor Kitchens that include Pizza Ovens, Beverage Coolers, and Barbeque Centers

Swan Creek Landscaping, Inc. prides itself in providing unique Patios for our Cecil and Harford County clients. From design, to construction, until the dark of night turns on the lighting system, we provide uniquely designed outdoor spaces that we can also maintain year round, including your yard, plantings, and landscape. Pick-up the phone and call us to learn more.
Phone: 410.378.8668
Website: http://www.SwanCreekLandscaping.com

Garden Tools – What do I need?

They say you can tell the age of the gardener by the size and number of their tools.  How many tools do you really need to be able to work safely around your house tending to your landscape?  Well, that depends on how deeply involved you want to be in maintaining your landscape and gardens. Is pulling a few weeds and planting a few bulbs in the spring as much as you want to do outdoors or do you enjoy the outdoors and satisfaction you receive by getting fully involved in the maintenance of your landscape?

Having long been a person who thoroughly enjoys yard and garden maintenance, I can recommend some of the tools for the passive gardener or the investment in tools required for the weekend warrior.

Tools & MoreThe passive gardener will need:
• Garden Gloves, Knee Pads, Wide Brim Hat, and Safety Glasses
• Small Hand Cultivator & Rake, Yard Rake, Leaf Rake, and Spade
• Hand Pruner, Small Bucket, Collapsible Water Hose, and Spray Nozzle

The weekend warrior who really enjoys the challenge of maintaining a landscape or garden will need:
More Tools• Garden Gloves, Knee Pads, Wide Brim Hat, Work Boots, and Safety Glasses
• Spade, Flat Nosed Shovel, Leaf Rake, Garden Rake, Hoe, Pitch Fork, and Wheel Barrel
• 5 Gallon Bucket, Garden Hose, Hose Reel, Spray Nozzle, and Large Mulching Bucket
• Walk Behind Lawn Mower and/or Lawn Tractor (depending on size of the yard)
• Trash Container, Weed Eater, Hand Trim Saw, and Large & Small Pruner

When using all types of tools, the key word is SAFETY!  Use the right tool for the job.  Don’t force the tool or us them as pry bars.  Clean your tools up after use. Have a safe place to store the tools. And we always recommend the use of SAFETY GLASSES.

Swan Creek Landscaping, Inc. helps home owners and businesses in Cecil and Harford Counties with all of their landscaping needs, helpful hints and questions.  From design, to construction, to maintaining your property year round, we will provide you with a landscaping experience that will exceed your expectations. When considering your landscape, hardscape or lawn maintenance needs please give us a call for a free consultation on how we can turn your visions and our experience into an outdoor living experience you and your family will appreciate.

Phone – 410.378.8668
Website: http://www.SwanCreekLandscaping.com

 

Are your flowers wilting? Why?

Flowers and plants are going to wilt now and then. Knowing why they are wilting and how to address the wilting is key to a quick recovery. So, what can go wrong?

1. Verticillium wilting is a common infection which comes from the soil and enters the roots causing wilting and yellowing foliage. When this happens, you will have to renovate the soil and replant.
2. Once you cut flowers they will start to wilt; there is no way to escape this fact. Cutting flowers from its vascular system allows air bubbles to form on the cut area. The air bubbles will not allow water Flowers 2to enter the stems. To extend the life of cut flowers, cut the stems off under water and then place them in the vase.
3. Transplanting plants can cause a shock to their systems. This often occurs when you transplant flowers in hot weather and/or in full sunlight. It can also happen when the plant is placed in a new growing environment. To help avoid this problem your can:
• Plant early in the morning
• Avoid full sunlight plantings
• Avoid excessive high temperatures
• Be careful handling the roots
• Always provide a little fertilizer
• Make sure they have water regularly
4. Water, in the correct amounts, is key to a healthy plant. Too much water or too little will both cause wilting. The soil should feel moist, not muddy or dripping with water.
5. The lighting conditions could be wrong. Do you have plants that require no sunlight in an area where the sunlight is excessive or do you have plants that need sunlight in a shaded area? The solution is to check your plants lighting needs (do a little research online) and move the plants to a correct lighting environment.

1-Garden PictureWhen purchasing plants, check with the nursery or garden center so that they can direct you to the right planting conditions and related plant needs. Most plants you purchase will have a little plastic tab stuck in the pot with general planting information.

Swan Creek Landscaping, Inc. helps homeowners and businesses in Cecil and Harford Counties with all of their flowering, mulching and spring clean-up needs, with helpful hints and tips. From design, to construction, to maintaining your property year round, we will provide you with a landscaping experience that will exceed your expectations. When considering your landscape, hardscape or lawn maintenance needs, please give us a call for a free consultation on how we can turn your visions and our experience into an outdoor living experience you and your family will appreciate.
Phone: 410.378.8668
Website: http://www.SwanCreekLandscaping.com

Your plants need protection from the wind & rain….

Maryland is known for its long summers with high heat, high humidity, and often time’s severe thunderstorms. Because your plants also recognize the weather conditions and need protection from the most severe conditions, it is important to plan for some natural protection barriers. With only a few minor changes to your garden and beds, you can make sure that your plants are protected from any unnecessary stress the weather might bring.

Tips for Protection

High Winds can cause extreme stress on the root system and may even uproot some of your plants. The best way to protect your plants is to anticipate the wind damage and build a barrier or wind Flowers 3break that reduces the wind velocity to a reasonable level. When building your barrier keep in mind that you do not want to make a solid barrier by using solid materials like bricks, wall blocks, or wood. This type of barrier can cause the winds to act in strange ways, causing downdrafts, updrafts and vortex wind conditions. The best way to protect you plants is with hedges or picket fences.

Excessive Rain can harm your plants in several ways, including rotting. It is important to know the water needs for the different plants in your garden because some are just fine with large amounts of water, while others are going to die. Protection of the neck of the plant is particularly important. Protect it by covering it up will help ensure you are reducing the risk of water damage. Another way to help with excessive water is to have a built-in grade pitch to your house, garden, or plantings so the water is encouraged to move away to drain into the yard area.

Swan Creek Landscaping, Inc. can help in accessing the need for wind and water protection barriers. Home owners and businesses in Cecil and Harford Counties can rely on our “outdoor maintenance” swancreeklandscaping trucksprograms to access your total landscape needs. From design, to construction, to maintaining your property year round, we will provide you with a landscaping expertise that will exceed your expectations. When considering your landscaping needs, please give us a call for a free consultation on how we can turn your ideas and visions into an outdoor living experience you will use for years and never forget!
Phone – 410.378.8668
Website: http://www.SwanCreekLandscaping.com

Hints to preventing lawn fungus…..

All lawns have their ups and downs, just like their owners. For part of the year your lawn can look just great but all at once have a fungus. Why? Who knows! But there are some steps you can take to help prevent fungus.

1.  Recognize that your lawn has a fungus
Fungus comes in many different colors: Red, Gray, and Pink. If you notice these colors coming into your lawn, sure enough you have a fungus. How the fungus acts and develops can depend on your soil, the type of grass you have, the weather conditions and your own lawn care habits.
2.  What can you do to prevent fungus?
You can take some preventive steps by using a fertilizer that contains a systemic fungicide that is absorbed into the grass. For best results, spread the fertilizer in the spring and also in the fall.
3.  Nitrogen can feed your fungus
Too much nitrogen applied to your grass and plants can be an aid to a good dose of fungus. Know how much fertilizer you are putting down. Read the bag for the content information: 12 – 12 – 12 means you are putting down 12% Nitrogen, 12% Phosphorous and 12% Potassium. Talk to your garden center for more information. You might also want to take a soil sample to and have it tested to help you and the nursery to understand your fertilizer needs.
4.  Water at the right time of day
Water your lawn in the morning to ensure some evaporation. When you water at night, there is very little evaporation, thus aiding the start of both fungus and mold
5.  Yard maintenance counts
Periodic year maintenance is key to a good-looking landscape and yard. Some tips include:
• Pick-up of the leaves, sticks and other debris from the yard
• Prune your shrubs, plants, and trees allowing for new growth                 and to let the sunlight in
• Keep the blades of your mower and pruning equipment sharp
• Yard aeration on an annual basis to loosen up the soil and allow            it to breath
• Develop a lawn feed-and-watering schedule to ensure a healthy          root system

Swan Creek Landscaping, Inc. prides itself in providing unique design/build Outdoor Living Spaces to the Cecil and Harford counties that enhance the value of our clients’ homes and businesses. From design, thru construction, till the dark of night turns on the lighting system, we provide living spaces that will meet and exceed your expectations. And we are not done when the project is complete. We can continue by maintaining that outdoor space and the remainder of your entire property with lawn maintenance that will keep it beautiful year round. Contact us to learn more about how you we can help you to make the right landscape investment while enhancing the value of your home.
Phone – 410.378.8668
Website: http://www.SwanCreekLandscaping.com

How potted plants can change your landscape….

Adding flowers, shrubs, and small trees to your landscape can change the entire look of your home and greatly add to your curb appeal. But don’t forget about potted plants as a quick and easy way to change the look of your landscape for the different seasons, holidays, or just to please you.Porch Potted Plants

Most small trees and shrubs, and most all flowers can be potted giving you the ability to move the plants around to several locations, as much as you like, which can be a lot of fun. Potting the plants is much like planting and include:
Tropical Large Plants• Selecting Pots – You should choose pots that are big enough for the plants you have selected and their root balls but small enough to easily be moved around.
• Make sure the pots have drain holes in the bottom.
• Put some small pebbles or stones in the bottom for water and   drainage.
• Soil Selection – Use a good potting soil and your results will be much better. Do not pack the soil down into the pot. Let the natural weight of the soil work for you and the plant.
• Placing the Pots – You can use the pots in many different ways, Large Potted Plantsincluding:
o Around the pool, around and on the deck,  o Around and on the patio, around the sidewalks
o Flanking the font or side steps, flanking he front door
o At the driveway entrance, around the mailbox
o At the entrance to your backyard
o In different locations in the garden

Swan Creek Landscaping, Inc. helps homeowners and businesses in Cecil and Harford Counties with all of their flowering, mulching, and spring clean-up needs with helpful hints and tips. From design, to construction, to maintaining your property year round, we will provide you with a landscaping experience that will exceed your expectations. When considering your Landscape, Hardscape or Lawn Maintenance needs, please give us a call for a free consultation on how we can turn your visions and our experience into an outdoor living experience you and your family will appreciate.
Phone – 410.378.8668
Website: http://www.SwanCreekLandscaping.com

What should my mowing schedule be???

Maintaining your lawn and the related times you mow your grass depends on many factors.  How much time do you have to spend? What lawn-care appearance is pleasing to your eye?  Do you want it mowed professionally?  What time of the year is it?

A well-maintained lawn can greatly change the appearance of your property, but if you’re not a so-called “green-thumb” person, caring for your lawn can be intimidating and a not-so-pleasant experience that borders on being a hassle.

1-Grass1. What type of grass do you have in your yard?
Often times your mowing schedule will be dictated by the type of grass in your yard.  All grasses do not grow at the same speed. Some grasses grow differently depending on the type of soil you have and the amount of rain fall.  So, your sister who lives across town could have the same type of grass, but her soil type is different, and she mows her grass once a week and you are mowing yours every 4 days. Know what type of grass you have in your yard.

Tractor Mowing2. Know what type of soil you have and related fertilizer you need.
In order to keep your lawn green, vibrant, and healthy your lawn will need fertilizer.  The best way to know what type of plant food you need for your lawn is to have your soil tested.  Your lawn-care store will have an inexpensive kit you can buy.  Once you know your lawn’s chemistry, ask your nursery to give you a balanced fertilizer that has the correct amount of nitrogen, phosphorous, and potassium to feed your yard and make it healthy all year long.

3. Do you stop mowing your lawn once summer is over?           Depending on where you live in this great country dictates how often and for how long you mow your grass.  Here in Maryland, we are blessed with four distinct seasons – winter, spring, summer and fall.  All four seasons call for different mowing schedules.
Mowing Grass• Springtime – The sun and warmer temperatures brings on the growing season.  More often than not, we have more than enough rainy weather to make everything pop out of the ground.  This might call for you to be more aggressive with your mowing schedule, possibly every 4 or 5 days.
• Summertime – The heat is upon us and sometimes the rains are lacking, which could call for a slow down on the mowing schedule, possibly every 6 to 7 days
• Fall Schedule – The days are getting shorter and the nights are cooler and the grass growth may be slowing, but the mowing season is not over yet.  Stay on top of your mowing schedule with an “as needed” schedule, possibly every 8 to 10 days
• Wintertime – The days are short and the nights are long, but some grasses are still growing.  Keep an eye on your lawn as there could be spots that continue to grow and need to be mowed.  Often times this might mean your lawn needs mowed every 15 to 20 days to keep it trimmed, neat, and clean.

Swan Creek Landscaping, Inc. helps homeowners and businesses in Cecil and Harford Counties with all of their lawn care, mulching, spring clean-up and grass mowing needs with helpful hints and tips. From design, to construction, to maintaining your property year round, we will provide you with a landscaping experience that will exceed your expectations.  When considering your Landscape, Hardscape or Lawn Maintenance needs, please give us a call for a free consultation on how we can turn your visions and our experience into an outdoor living experience you and your family will appreciate.

Phone – 410.378.8668
Website: http://www.SwanCreekLandscaping.com

So, you have a dog and they create waste….

Dogs are a lot of fun and great companions for all ages.  They like to play outside, run around for exercise, and protect you in time of need.  Addressing your dog’s natural needs and keeping your landscape and yard looking good can both be accomplished with just a bit of training.

Bull Dog Picture1. Walking is good!  Walking your dog several times a day is something that does both of you a lot of good. This can train and adjust the dogs timing for relieving himself.  Make sure you have doggie bags or some other means to pick up the mess they will leave behind.

2. Location, Location, Location – Nothing could be better than to have your dog relieve himself in the same out-of-the-way location most every time.  This can be a place you make behind the garage, in the back yard, or in an area designated by your neighborhood association.  The issue is to find the right place and to keep repeating where you take your dog.  He will soon remember where he is to go and what he is to do.

3. Pick it up and dispose of it – If you want your yard and landscapes to look good and be an outdoor area to enjoy, you and your neighbors do not want to be walking through the messes of your animals.  You can pick it up with a plastic bag, a pooper scooper, or with a small shovel, but pick it up.  There are those who throw it on the garden (your choice) and some who dispose of it in the trash.  But to have a good looking yard, you do not want the mess to lay in the yard.

4. Urine yellow patches – Your dog is going to urinate and that pee  Dog Picturehas a lot of nitrogen in it that will cause brown spots around the yard.  One solution is to water down the spot area when he goes. This will neutralize the spot and spread the nitrogen.  This even works after the fact when you first notice the brown spot; just spray a little H2O and the spot will quickly repair itself.

Swan Creek Landscaping, Inc. helps homeowners and businesses in Cecil and Harford Counties with all of their landscaping needs, helpful hints and questions.  Taking care of your dog’s needs is your responsibility and taking care of your lawn’s brown spots can be ours.  From design, to construction, to maintaining your property year round, we will provide you with a landscaping experience that will exceed your expectations.  When considering your Landscape, Hardscape or Lawn Maintenance needs, please give us a call for a free consultation on how we can turn your visions and our experience into an outdoor living experience you and your family will appreciate.

Phone – 410.378.8668

Website: http://www.SwanCreekLandscaping.com