Landscaping a Small Yard

Landscaping a small yard can present an extreme challenge, especially if homeowners are looking for ways to make it appear larger. Many homeowners deprive themselves of plantings and other features in the mistaken belief that keeping the environment open makes it appear larger. Also, remember that fences narrow the perception of the space.

The single most important step is pre-planning. Homeowners need to define the predominate use of the space – a private retreat or an area for entertaining. Some may choose to create an edible garden. No matter what the primary usage, it’s important to plan the layout for maximum effect.

A good start is by removing unnecessary objects such as trash cans that take up space and contribute to a cluttered and undesirable appearance. The goal is to create a destination space in which people want to spend time. That can involve adding a small fire pit, compact yet comfortable seating, or a grill. A small patio set can be more effective in small settings than oversized furnishings.

When selecting trees for a small yard, it’s essential to choose trees that grow up rather than out. Some trees have a more compact and columnar growth habit, such as evergreens and dwarf varieties. They provide important shade and ambiance without the spread of oaks and maples, for example. Consider the strategic use of shrubs for a lush appearance that uses less space than a tree.

Perhaps one of the best ways to make small yards appear larger is through vertical plantings. That can include the use of hanging baskets or vines. Flower pots and pouches can be mounted to walls and fences. With a little creativity and a strong infrastructure, 2-3 pots can even be strung together on chains. Individuals can also create a dedicated “wall” of wire netting to increase the available space in their backyard.

RCH Landscaping is a full service landscape company based in Boca Raton, Florida. We design, install, and maintain Commercial and Residential landscapes all around Boca Raton, Delray Beach and The Palm Beach areas. Our team of highly skilled landscape technicians have an undisputed track record of creating and maintaining beautiful commercial and residential landscapes all over South Florida.

Contact RCH Landscaping Today for a Free Estimate

561-779-9760

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4 Uses for Vines

Vines are an often overlooked landscaping tool that brings beauty to environments and can provide a food source to bees, butterflies and hummingbirds. Many people are reluctant to plant vines, particularly in South Florida, due to the tendency of some to grow wildly. The plants encompass a wide variety of species, can be used in multiple ways within any landscape, and many are quite well-behaved.

Fencing

One of the most popular uses of vines is to camouflage and beautify fencing. They’re equally well-suited grown over lattice to hide items such as electrical boxes, generators, and trash receptacles.

Privacy

Vines can work extremely well as a privacy screen. They can be grown to cover and grow over fences, decks, patios and porches.

Accents

An arbor, trellis or pergola can be a focal point in any garden, but think how much more attractive either would be covered in a flowering vine as an accent to the landscape. Seasonal vines such as morning glories are also popular for dressing up a mailbox.

Ground Cover

Most people think of vines as upward growing plants, but some can be used creatively as a ground cover for areas that are prone to erosion, are difficult to reach with a mower, and where grass may not grow easily.

Vertical Gardening

For those that want to combine the use of vines with an edible garden, there are a wide variety of fruits and vegetables that grow on vines and can be easily cultivated in the landscape. Certain varieties of beans, peas, tomatoes, kiwis, and strawberries grow on vines that can be trained where individuals want them to grow and are ideal for vertical gardening.

The vines of seasonal fruits and vegetables will typically need to be removed after harvesting, but others such as grapes will endure for many years. It’s essential that individuals do their research before planting. Some fruits and vegetables, such as melons, squash and cucumbers, can be heavy and the vines won’t be able to carry their weight.

RCH Landscaping is a full service landscape company based in Boca Raton, Florida. We design, install, and maintain Commercial and Residential landscapes all around Boca Raton, Delray Beach and The Palm Beach areas. Our team of highly skilled landscape technicians have an undisputed track record of creating and maintaining beautiful commercial and residential landscapes all over South Florida.

Contact RCH Landscaping Today for a Free Estimate

561-779-9760

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Protect Your Landscape with Proper Irrigation

Your landscape is an investment in your property and it needs protection in the same way as your other valuables. A properly installed and scheduled irrigation system will do that in a variety of ways. The health, success and lushness of your landscape depend on getting water, in the correct amount, and at the right time. It also significantly reduces the time, money, and work required to maintain it.

Today’s irrigation systems are a marvel of technology. They can be programmed to water on a schedule compatible with local weather conditions and watering zones can be created to deliver moisture in measured amounts to specific areas. The systems are even available that can detect when rain has fallen, how much, and adjust the watering schedule accordingly. They also require less maintenance.

Health

A healthy landscape is one that doesn’t receive too much or too little moisture for its needs. An irrigation system accomplishes that and does so by saving on water costs. It supports the health of the soil, which in turn fosters the strength of plantings and enables them to survive the stress of harsh conditions such as wind storms, floods, and hurricanes.

Insects and Disease

A lawn that gets too much moisture is a breeding ground for unwanted pests, mold, mildew, and bacterial infections that can cause costly damage. Overly wet or dry conditions call to a large variety of insects ranging from fungus gnats, mosquitos, and flea beetles to spiders, fleas, and ticks. Many lay eggs underground that will repopulate the landscape later. A proper irrigation system will aid in eliminating the conditions attractive to insects and help save on fertilizer, herbicides and insecticides.

Uniform Coverage

An irrigation system will ensure uniform coverage throughout the entire landscape. Irrigation heads can be adjusted to place water exactly where it’s needed and in the correct amounts. The result is a healthy landscape that supports strong and vigorous plants.

RCH Landscaping is a full service landscape company based in Boca Raton, Florida. We design, install, and maintain Commercial and Residential landscapes all around Boca Raton, Delray Beach and The Palm Beach areas. Our team of highly skilled landscape technicians have an undisputed track record of creating and maintaining beautiful commercial and residential landscapes all over South Florida.

Contact RCH Landscaping Today for a Free Estimate

561-779-9760

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Use a Landscaper to Add Home Value

Landscaping is far more difficult than it appears. The professionals make it look easy due to their extensive experience. They also bring an enormous amount of technical knowledge to landscaping projects. A professional will know the composition of the soil and what plants will grow best in it. They can create and install irrigation systems tailored to a specific location.

A landscaper will know what plants to use, based on an individual’s preferences, such as low-maintenance, water saving, or one that’s attractive to butterflies. Landscapers know how to frame a property to make it stand out, while adhering to local standards. They’ll also be able to pull all the numerous permits required for a landscaping project.

Individuals will see some immediate benefits and value after a landscaping project is completed, but landscaping is also an endeavor that pays dividends over time. There’s only one opportunity to make a good first impression and that’s particularly important if a home owner anticipates selling a property in the future. A properly landscaped home provides enhanced curb appeal.

Most individuals cultivate plants they like or that catch their eye in the moment. It can lead to an overgrown, cluttered, disorganized, and incoherent appearance. A landscaping professional leaves nothing to chance. They preplan every aspect of the environment, down to the smallest detail, with a vision to how it will look in the future as the plants grow and evolve.

Landscapes require a certain amount of tending and maintenance, even those that are easy-care. The needs of homeowners change over the years, along with their ability and available time they can devote to tasks. A landscaper can take an individual’s vision for their ultimate landscape and pair it with specific needs to arrive at a solution that’s beautiful and functional.

A mature landscape is one that adds more value to a home than a newly completed project. It’s just one of the reasons that individuals should plan early in their property ownership for appropriate landscaping. When it’s time to sell, the landscape will provide buyers with an immediate impression of a property that’s been well-maintained and add significantly to the purchase price of any home.

RCH Landscaping is a full service landscape company based in Boca Raton, Florida. We design, install, and maintain Commercial and Residential landscapes all around Boca Raton, Delray Beach and The Palm Beach areas. Our team of highly skilled landscape technicians have an undisputed track record of creating and maintaining beautiful commercial and residential landscapes all over South Florida.

Contact RCH Landscaping Today for a Free Estimate

561-779-9760

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Lawn Care Basics

Everyone wants a lush, green lawn. It provides a friendly place for playing and entertaining. Obtaining that elusive and highly desirable greenery requires forethought and some work on your part, but the results are well worth the effort.

Fertilizer

Fertilizer feeds a lawn, providing it with essential nutrients. Choose one that’s high in nitrogen and features a time release formula. It can be applied from spring through fall, but not during times of drought. It’s a good idea to water immediately following application.

Grass

All grass is not created equal. Some are heat tolerate, while others are not. St. Augustine grass has become the gold standard for South Florida lawns, but others such as Bahia, Bermuda, Buffalo, and Zoysia are also good choices. St. Augustine grass has the advantage of being able to flourish in the heat and humidity of Florida summers without requiring an exceptional amount of maintenance throughout the year.

Insects

Too little moisture or not enough can result in a pest infestation of epic proportions that can be time consuming and expensive to eradicate. Chinch bugs are a particular concern in South Florida. They can be controlled with a pesticide application.

Mowing

You may be keeping your lawn to short without knowing it. You’ll typically want to mow about three times per month during summer and twice a month during the winter months. A good rule of thumb is to only cut 1/3 of the total grass length on each mowing to keep lawns looking good and promote root growth.

Water

A properly designed and installed irrigation system is the best way to ensure lawns receive the correct amount of moisture – and at the right time. Water restrictions are in force during some times of the year and a programmable irrigation system enables lawns to flourish while enabling you to adhere to water restrictions.

Weeds

It’s easy for weeds to get a foothold and they steal the nutrients meant for your lawn. Herbicides can be applied to inhibit their growth. Select an herbicide that contains both a pre- and post-emergent formula. It will control weeds throughout the growth cycle and will mean less time spent on the task for you.

RCH Landscaping is a full service landscape company based in Boca Raton, Florida. We design, install, and maintain Commercial and Residential landscapes all around Boca Raton, Delray Beach and The Palm Beach areas. Our team of highly skilled landscape technicians have an undisputed track record of creating and maintaining beautiful commercial and residential landscapes all over South Florida.

Contact RCH Landscaping Today for a Free Estimate

561-779-9760

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Controlling Weeds in Plant Beds

Weeds need no encouragement to take root and burst forth into seed bearing blooms determined to perpetuate their lifecycle. There are multiple steps that homeowners can take to minimize weed growth and they’re best used in combination for the greatest level of prevention.

Landscape Fabric

For new plant beds, installing a layer of landscape fabric is essential and will form the basis of any weed control program. It smothers weeds before they have a chance to grow and multiply. Landscape fabric can be installed in existing beds, but it’s much more difficult, isn’t as effective as applying it before planting, and can be frustrating if homeowners are doing it themselves.

Mulch

Mulching plant beds is another effective way to control weeds in existing beds and preserve moisture that plants need. Mulch will also keep the ground cooler. A sufficiently thick layer of mulch aids in preventing weeds from sprouting and mulch can be utilized effectively in existing beds.

Organic Remedies

An increasing number of people are opting to employ organic solutions to control weeds rather than using chemicals. That includes formulas of vinegar, salt or minerals. While those methods can work, homeowners also run the risk of damaging concrete and brick surfaces and killing the plants in the beds.

It can also create areas where plants won’t grow for extended periods of time. Individuals can use a hand tool to till the soil to disrupt weed growth, while deadheading buds to prevent them from flowering and spreading more seeds in the bed.

Hand Pulling

Weeds are easier to remove after a rain or following irrigation because the soil is wet. It can be a time consuming process if weeds have gained a substantial foothold.

Weed Killers

Chemical solutions are available that are effective, but they can also be harmful to the very plants that individuals are trying to protect. Chemical options are also dangerous to children and pets. If chemicals seem to be the best solution, they should only be applied by a professional.

RCH Landscaping is a full service landscape company based in Boca Raton, Florida. We design, install, and maintain Commercial and Residential landscapes all around Boca Raton, Delray Beach and The Palm Beach areas. Our team of highly skilled landscape technicians have an undisputed track record of creating and maintaining beautiful commercial and residential landscapes all over South Florida.

Contact RCH Landscaping Today for a Free Estimate

561-779-9760

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Professional Irrigation Installation can Save you Money

Irrigation systems have evolved significantly over the years and they’re no longer inconvenient arrangements that leave puddles or end up watering sidewalks and streets. Today’s irrigation systems are programmable, can be operated from a smartphone, and even have the ability to sense if it’s rained.

Irrigation is most effective when it’s performed in the late hours of the evening or early hours of the morning to prevent evaporation and ensure that lawns and plantings receive the full benefit of the moisture. Watering at other times is a waste of money. An irrigation system can be programmed to turn on and off at the appropriate times, ensuring the most efficient use of water and thereby saving money.

Watering by hand with a nozzle or using a sprinkler head is time-consuming, creates puddling and run-off, and doesn’t ensure every area receives the correct amount of moisture. Irrigation systems use sprinkler heads that are adjustable and directional. They’re capable of delivering varying amounts of water to different areas within the landscape to meet the needs of different plants. It eliminates run-off and puddling that wastes water and cash.

Old-fashioned irrigation systems delivered water on a pre-determined schedule, even if it was already raining. A state-of-the-art irrigation system is capable of sensing and monitoring the level of moisture in the ground. It only waters when the ground is dry enough to save on watering costs. The systems can also be programmed to deliver varying water amounts based on the time of year.

Perhaps one of the best water and money saving features available with the installation of an irrigation system is the ability to combine it with drip irrigation. It effectively and efficiently delivers moisture to the root systems of plants in flowerbeds or vegetable gardens. It utilizes far less water and results in minimal evaporation.

One of the biggest expenses associated with a well-maintained lawn is the cost of watering it. Installing an irrigation system eliminates puddling and run-off from overwatering. The systems ensure that each element of the landscape has the exact amount of water required, at just the right time. The result is a beautiful landscape with a significant reduction in water costs.

RCH Landscaping is a full service landscape company based in Boca Raton, Florida. We design, install, and maintain Commercial and Residential landscapes all around Boca Raton, Delray Beach and The Palm Beach areas. Our team of highly skilled landscape technicians have an undisputed track record of creating and maintaining beautiful commercial and residential landscapes all over South Florida.

Contact RCH Landscaping Today for a Free Estimate

561-779-9760

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Why Add Edging and Borders?

Edging is one of the most useful tools in a gardener’s arsenal. Edging comes in many forms, from plastic, steel and aluminum to wood, brick, concrete and stone. They all have one thing in common – they form a border to separate one area from another. Edging delineates the lines between flower beds, lawns, driveways, shrubs, and trees from surrounding areas. Landscape edging provides a wealth of benefits.

Adds Value

The crisp lines created by edging provide a manicured appearance that adds value to properties. It also increases curb appeal for those that are trying to sell their homes.

Inexpensive Update

Adding edging is one of the less expensive ways to update the appearance of any landscape. It’s also a project that individuals can perform themselves.

Keeps Materials in Place

Gravel, rock and even seashells have become popular for creating walkways and stylized areas within the landscape. Many landscapes also contain mulch. All of those materials have the potential to shift and move into lawn spaces without a barrier to keep them in place. Edging provides an effective impediment that prevents materials from migrating away from where they’re placed.

Less Work

Edging creates a border between areas where grass is wanted and where it’s not. Installing edging means less work to keep grass from growing over and into driveways and areas such as patios. Time spent trimming and edging is significantly reduced, while making mowing easier.

Weeds and Roots

Creating a border has two advantages. The first is that it prevents grass roots from growing into flowerbeds and gardens. The second is that, while it won’t eliminate every weed from growing, it will aid in substantially reducing the number of potential weeds that will take root and will also prevent flower roots from crossing over into the lawn.

RCH Landscaping is a full service landscape company based in Boca Raton, Florida. We design, install, and maintain Commercial and Residential landscapes all around Boca Raton, Delray Beach and The Palm Beach areas. Our team of highly skilled landscape technicians have an undisputed track record of creating and maintaining beautiful commercial and residential landscapes all over South Florida.

Contact RCH Landscaping Today for a Free Estimate

561-779-9760

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5 Palm Trees for a South Florida Landscape

There are dozens of palm tree species and one to suit every need. They have a diverse array of shapes and heights, enabling them to fit in any landscape. Palms also have a range of leaf colors to add interest.

Palms run the gamut from sun-loving to shade, with varieties that can be grown in containers around the pool to those that can soar to heights of 98 ft. Some are even able to tolerate temperatures slightly below freezing and are drought-hardy, while others prefer significant amounts of water.

Coconut Palms

Tall and stately, after the age of 6-10 years they begin to produce edible coconuts. The fruits should be removed to prevent them from falling and injuring people, pets, and causing damage to fences, buildings, and vehicles. Coconut palms can live up to 80 years, can grow 98 ft. tall, prefer full sun, and need well-drained soil.

European Fan Palm

A palm that grows 8-15 ft. tall, it has a spread of 6-10 ft. and its hardy nature has made it a favorite in South Florida. It’s equally at home at poolside, as an accent piece in the landscape, and can even be grown in containers. Fronds range from light green to sliver and the palm produces small clusters of yellow flowers with insignificant fruits. The palm grows in clumps rather than single trunks and it’s able to withstand temperatures of up to minus 10 degrees Fahrenheit.

Montgomery Palm

An ideal tree for planting near pools, it has stiff fronds of feathery emerald green that form a fan shape. It’s a jaunty looking palm with a somewhat furry/fuzzy appearance that’s able to fit in small spaces with an average height of 25-35 ft. It’s equally at home in residential and commercial settings. They require full sun, plenty of moisture, and require little maintenance.

Red Sealing Wax Palms

The stems of these palms are the color of red sealing wax. They produce feathery green leaves and prefer locations that are shady and receive significant amounts of water. Highly ornamental, they’re slow growing, have the potential to reach 50 ft. in height, and have fronds that can grow five ft. long. They produce fruits that ripen to a bluish-black color, can grow in shady areas, and are resistant to major diseases and pests.

Pygmy Date Palm

This is an excellent palm for multiple environments where a smaller tree is desired. It grows 6-10 ft. in height with fronds of up to 6 ft. in length. It produces small, yellow flowers followed by tiny dates that are purple. It can be planted in containers, within landscapes, and around pools. It does require significant moisture and can need occasional pruning to remove foliage that’s old or has sustained damage from pests or disease.

RCH Landscaping is a full service landscape company based in Boca Raton, Florida. We design, install, and maintain Commercial and Residential landscapes all around Boca Raton, Delray Beach and The Palm Beach areas. Our team of highly skilled landscape technicians have an undisputed track record of creating and maintaining beautiful commercial and residential landscapes all over South Florida.

Contact RCH Landscaping Today for a Free Estimate

561-779-9760

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Warm Weather Perennials

One of the best things about perennials is that they’re planted once and they come back year after year. They deserve a special place in every landscape and depending on the selection, they’re equally appropriate as specimen plants, in beds, and as groundcovers. They can even be planted by bloom times to create a continuous cascade of flowers.

South Florida’s climate provides gardeners with a wide variety of perennial selections from which to choose. There are literally dozens of perennials that offer bountiful blossoms and a rainbow of colors. Many also act as magnets to honeybees, butterflies and hummingbirds.

Begonias

The darlings of gardeners everywhere, in South Florida they provide interest year-round. They’re bountiful bloomers in shades of red, white, yellow, orange, and pink. Begonias can be used as hanging plants or in containers, trailing types can be trained to climb, and they can be planted directly into beds. They’re offered in single and double flowering types.

Crossandra

The plant can grow up to 3 ft. tall with flowers that can range from peach and apricot to vivid orange. It’s a prolific bloomer with some species that prefers partial shade, while others do best with full sun. They’re highly attractive to butterflies.

Egyptian Star Flower

The flowers appear in clusters of red, blue, pink and lavender. They’re heat tolerant, prolific bloomers, and will need 4-6 hours of full sun each day. Growing 18-22 inches in height, they’re also disease resistant and are particularly attractive to bees, butterflies and hummingbirds.

Shrimp Plant

Shrimp plant is available in pink to salmon colored varieties, along with golden shrimp plant that has bright, yellow flower bracts and white blossoms. It prefers full sun, but can withstand partial shade. Depending on the variety, it can range in height from 18-48 inches. Butterflies find the golden variety especially attractive.

Flowers for Every Need

There are dozens of perennial flower varieties that will thrive in South Florida’s climate and offer months of beautiful blossoms. Many also have the benefit of providing a valuable food source for hummingbirds and pollinators that include bees and butterflies. Gardeners are really only limited to what their imaginations can envision.

RCH Landscaping is a full service landscape company based in Boca Raton, Florida. We design, install, and maintain Commercial and Residential landscapes all around Boca Raton, Delray Beach and The Palm Beach areas. Our team of highly skilled landscape technicians have an undisputed track record of creating and maintaining beautiful commercial and residential landscapes all over South Florida.

Contact RCH Landscaping Today for a Free Estimate

561-779-9760

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