Author Archives: lifescape

Romantic Garden Designs

Colorado garden designs can be used to create a romantic landscape. Using a combination of location, privacy, hardscaping, landscape features and lighting, you can have an outdoor room that works equally well for candlelit dinners, tea with a friend, or a quiet spot to retreat from the world.

Here are five tips for incorporating a romantic oasis in your backyard garden.

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Source: CM Glover via Houzz

Choose the right location. Select a spot that’s flat enough to accommodate a table, chairs and a chaise lounge or two. When you stake dimensions, make sure you factor in space taken up by expanding branches and foliage, so it won’t feel cramped. Think about how the location will be affected by elements year-round. That way, you’ll have the right amount of sun, shade and wind protection.

Source: Better Homes and Gardens

Privacy. Romance requires a certain amount of privacy. From live borders and covers in the form of plants and trees, to legitimate structures, there are multiple ways to create your desired level of privacy. Select a combination of physical barriers, such as a planted trellis or beautiful wood panels, as well as container gardens, shrubs and trees to separate your romantic getaway from the rest of your garden.

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Source: Paradise Restored Landscaping & Exterior Design via Houzz

Hardscape features. Work with a professional landscape architect and designer to plan the layout for your hardscape features. Depending on the dimensions you have available, you can consider water features, beautifully laid out pavers, a fire pit, or permanent planters and benches. Your landscape designer will know exactly how much is enough, and will find the ideal balance between inanimate and living landscape features.

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Source: Jay Sifford Garden Design via Houzz

Landscape and foliage. Romantic gardens should benefit from year-round visual interest. Usually, gardeners aiming for a romantic ambiance will use plants with light colored or passionate blooms. We can help you select annuals and perennials that thrive in our Colorado climate.

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Source: Pedersen Associates via Houzz

Lighting. The right lighting design will ensure your space is inviting, without being excessively bright after the sun goes down. A combination of downlights, twinkle lights and candles is ideal.

Contact Lifescape Colorado to begin planning a romantic Colorado garden design for your yard this spring.

Panchito Manzanita

Panchito Manzanita (Arctostaphylos coloradoensis) is a Colorado gardener’s dream plant. It’s evergreen, low-growing, and thrives in our dry climate. And an added bonus is that it’s a Colorado native plant, originating in the Uncompahgre Plateau near Grand Junction. Panchito Manzanita is a natural hybrid of two other native plant species, Kinnikinnick (Arctostaphylos uva ursi) and Greenleaf Manzanita (Arctostaphylos patula).

If you’re looking for an evergreen shrub that’s ultra low-maintenance, and is not a juniper, Panchito Manzanita is for you.

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Source: Plant Select

You’re in luck!

Until relatively recently, Manzanitas were difficult to propagate. Landscape designers and enthusiastic gardeners were relegated to Manzanita envy while hiking or visiting the Denver Botanic Gardens. Fortunately, dedicated nursery enthusiasts were able to create the ideal environment for wide-scale Arctostaphylos propagation, and they’re now available via most local nurseries and plant growers.

Growth rates

It will take your Panchito Manzanita about three to seven years to grow to its full height (12- to 24-inches) and width (18- to 48-inches).

Watering requirements

One of the greatest threats to this species of Manzanita is root rot from overwatering. It will require slightly more watering than normal to be established. After that, it requires very little watering and is xeriscape-friendly.

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Source: Lot Lines

Soil and sun

These plants require well-drained soil. If you’re natural backyard consists of the crumbly, granite-based soil our area is known for, you may not need any soil amending at all. However, if you have natural clay or a poor draining yard, you’ll need to make some changes before you plant your Panchito Manzanita. This plant loves full sun, but it can also handle partial shade.

Aesthetics

Everything about these Colorado native plants is attractive. The broad leaves are a deep green and can turn a deep red or purplish in the fall. The stems are also a vibrant reddish-purple. In mid-spring, expect to see an abundant burst of small white and pale pink flowers.

Contact Lifescape Colorado to learn more about incorporating Panchito Manzanitas in your landscape design. We offer full-service landscape design and maintenance services.

A Colorado Gardener’s February Checklist

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Source: Andrew Renn via Houzz

February is a tricky month for gardeners in the Rocky Mountain state. Sunnier days inspire hope that spring is on the way, but we know there will still be freezing temperatures before winter has truly run its course. The following Colorado gardening tips can help you give your garden the TLC it needs to begin the transition from winter to spring, without losing any beloved plants from overeager early planting.

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Source: Pendleton Design Management via Houzz

Prune trees and shrubs

One of the blessings of cold weather is that deciduous trees lose their leaves. You can finally see the true “skeleton” of the plant, which provides much easier access for pruning. Use this dormant season to remove any branches that are noticeably diseased or damaged. Trim branches that are beginning to cross their neighbors. If you have flowering or fruiting trees, thin the branches in the middle, so the tree has ample access to sunlight. Always use appropriate pruning tools.

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Source: Jocelyn H. Chilvers via Houzz

Stop pests before they start

You can use an eco-friendly dormant oil to prevent the eggs and larvae of common plant pests from maturing. Common pests in our area include leaf rollers, aphids and scale. Dormant oil is an effective means of controlling these pests without harming children or pets. Read the manufacturer’s instructions since it isn’t appropriate for all trees and shrubs.

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Source: Paintbox Garden via Houzz

Plan your garden

If you haven’t had time to plan next year’s garden amidst the holiday hubbub, now’s the time. Before you’re tempted by all the seed catalogs making their way into your mailbox, comb through your stored seeds to see what you have on hand. Then you can make a list of the flowers and vegetables you need, so you don’t overbuy.

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Source: Le jardinet via Houzz

Build a Mason Bee habitat

If you’re interested in boosting local pollination, but not so much in labor-intensive bee keeping, build a Mason Bee habitat. Mason bees are non-stinging, non-honey producing pollinators that live a solitary life.

If you don’t feel like braving your cold garden just yet, contact Lifescape Colorado. We offer year-round landscape maintenance services to ensure your gardens looks great during all four seasons.

Bold Container Garden Designs

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Source: Little Miracles Designs via Houzz

Bold container gardening is a simple way to impact your landscape design. Containers can fill a small garden space with a variety of blooms. And if you rent your home, you’ll have a fully landscaped yard that can move with you to your next home. Containers can be as permanent or as transient as you like. When Colorado container gardens are thoughtfully planned out, they add visual interest year-round.

Here are ideas for incorporating bold container garden designs into your landscape.

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Source: AMS Landscape Design Studios, Inc. via Houzz

Consider your architecture

One way to approach container gardens is to consider them an enhancement of your architecture.You can purchase containers that mimic the shape or color of your existing buildings and hardscape, using the plants to enhance decor. In this front yard design, the large terra cotta pots match similarly tinted pavers and form a wall-like hardscape from which the colorful geraniums greet visitors and passersby.

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Source: BLUE Renovation & Landscape via Houzz

Repetition

A series of matching containers can be used to stand out on their own, or they can be designed to tie into the surrounding architecture. The use of three vertical concrete pots with boxwood plantings mirrors the tree line and is mirrored again by the miniature versions on the table. You can also group similar pots together for a more powerful impact. The look will change depending on whether you use the same plants or opt to plant them all differently.

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Source: Better Homes and Gardens

Bold containers

Your containers themselves can become the visual focus. The clever containers featured on bhg.com are interesting before you even plant them. Look around for used goods that can be re-purposed into container gardens, like tool boxes, slightly chipped ceramics, wheelbarrows or vintage pitchers and tubs.

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Source: Better Homes and Gardens

Miniature landscape plans

Consider your containers to be little landscapes when selecting and placing your plants. Create different heights, color patterns and think seasonally to keep them looking great all year. New to landscaping? Use these guides from bhg.com for inspiration, or hire a professional landscape designer to get started.

Contact Lifescape Colorado and design bold container gardens to accent your landscape.

Natural Hardscaping Designs

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Source: Margie Grace – Grace Design Associates via Houzz

Natural hardscape designs may seem like an oxymoron. However, Lifescape is dedicated to providing Colorado hardscaping services that blend with our clients’ natural surroundings. The term “hardscaping” refers to the non-living aspects of your backyard and garden designs and, surprisingly, these additions can add a soft natural look to your garden.

The following ideas can inspire you as you make your landscaping plans for the new year.

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Source: Jeffrey Gordon Smith Landscape Architecture via Houzz

Pathways

Consider using bulk materials for your garden paths. Options include gravel, mulch or decomposed granite. These materials will create a clear path, but the edges will be softer and provide a more fluid boundary between the path and your landscape.

Gravel paths can have a variety of looks, based on the size and color of the gravel. This brown gravel path complements the color of the home’s exterior and looks natural in the environment. It leads to an expanded area of gravel, rather than a cement patio, which enhances the soft look. Larger pebbles and stones create an entirely different look. They’re ideal in settings with a water feature, since they mimic the environment of a lake shore or ocean. A mulch path lends the most natural look of all. When it’s unfettered by a border, it appears as if it’s been there all along.

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Source: Arterra LLP Landscape Architects via Houzz

Planted pavers

Pavers are a multi-purpose landscaping tool. While they can be used to create a traditional hardscape path or patio, leaving a little space around these features can change their appearance. You can intentionally plant these spaces, fill them with pebbles or colored gravel, or leave them empty and let Mother Nature take over. Even a modern landscape design is softened with spaced pavers, such as this one. Hard concrete pavers are spaced with various gravel patterns.

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Source: Dean Herald-Rolling Stone Landscapes via Houzz

Consider the foliage

The plants you select also have an effect on hardscaping aesthetics. Use a higher ratio of plants to hardscape to immediately soften the effects. Choose round and soft plants to hide firm edges of hardscape planters and boundaries.

Contact Lifescape to learn more about our Colorado hardscaping and landscaping services.