Leaping into Spring Installations

Photo of patio
Almost ready for spring- just add leaves, perennials and cushions. And sun.

Today is February 29th, which means I have an extra day to relish wrapping up a new patio installation before spring even begins. My clients contacted me on January 6th, and we broke ground on February 14th- a very good progression that is only possible in the off-season.

What did we do?

The clients moved into their home last fall and knew right away that the layout wasn’t going to work for them. There was a small patio at the far back corner of the lot, and no patio space immediately behind the back doors.

Once we identified the program, we quickly arrived at the new design. We simply flipped the layout so that the outdoor entertaining space is immediately adjacent to the house, while the remainder of the yard is now play space. The homeowners already had furniture that needed to fit within the new patio outline, so the size and shape easily fell into place.

A few details:

  • The patio is Full Color Pennsylvania Flagstone, a classic choice that works almost everywhere;
  • We buried conduit with extension cords to both sides of the patio for the fountain and future string lights;
  • We placed the existing fountain in the garden bed for an integrated look and a bit of white noise between the seating area and the neighbor’s deck;
  • Small river rock and reused stone steppers connect the patio to the side gate;
  • Three single-leader Amelanchier ‘Autumn Brilliance’ trees line the back fence;
  • Other shrubs include Distylium ‘Vintage Jade’, Hydrangea quercifolia ‘Snow Queen’, Camellia sasanqua;
  • Lastly, we’ll add perennials in April when they’re at least breaking dormancy in their containers.

Next Steps for Spring?

Now we watch the plants leaf out, add perennials and cushions- oh, and the house is getting painted!- and start taking beautiful photos!

Do you have spring projects? Let’s work on them together.

Plan now for spring landscape installations

We’re already starting our 2020 spring installations!

When you think of being outdoors, your mind might go to summer, but for landscapers, there are 2 main seasons- spring and fall, with summer largely a time of maintenance and watering. Why is that?

1. It’s better to plant in milder temperatures.

Spring and fall are the best times to put new plants in the ground- the temperatures are milder, meaning they won’t be immediately frozen or scorched, and it’s easier to keep up with the watering. We generally find the best plant selection in spring (especially perennials), but a fall planting allows plants to settle in and go dormant over the winter.

2. It’s easier to build in milder temperatures.

Mild temperatures mean the ground isn’t frozen solid or hard as a rock from drought. Almost all outdoor construction involves soil disturbance, so this is an important factor. That said, mild winters are a great time for construction, and in fact, I started my first installation on February 14th.

3. It’s easier to work in milder temperatures.

Have you ever driven past a job site and thought, “I’m glad I’m not out there sweating?” Enough said.

We can’t install without a plan!

All this is to say, if you’re thinking about a new landscape installation this spring, it’s time to start your design. Check out my FAQs for some basic information and let’s work on it together!