Tag Archives: colorado landscape maintenance

Noxious Weed Prevention Tips

Noxious weeds can be a serious enemy to your garden. Weed control is important all year round, but it’s especially important in the fall. This is because many weeds become more vulnerable to herbicides during this season, and any weeds left to overwinter in the garden may cause problems the following spring.

Here are tips to prevent these unwelcome guests from invading your landscape.

colorado landscape maintenance

Source: Better Homes and Gardens

Know your weeds. Many invasive plants can look like harmless wildflowers to the uninformed gardener. Visit the Colorado Department of Agriculture for a list of invasive weeds. When in doubt, take a sample of any suspicious plants to your local extension office.

colorado landscape maintenance

Source: Better Homes and Gardens

Stay vigilant. Keep an eye out for weeds every time you tend your garden. Hand pulling young weeds as soon as you spot them is the easiest and most organic method of control. Make sure you pull the whole root or they may grow back. Use an appropriate gardening tool, such as a garden fork, to prevent leaving the root ball in the ground.

colorado landscape maintenace

Source: Better Homes and Gardens

Mulch around plants. Mulching not only keeps soil warmer and moister, it can also help prevent weeds. A sufficient layer of mulch prevents soil from receiving sunlight, which prevents weeds from sprouting. If you use organic mulch, make sure the mulch itself contains no weed seeds.

Mediterranean Landscape by Denver Landscape Architects & Landscape Designers Lifescape Colorado.

Design by Lifescape Colorado

Apply herbicides, if necessary. When other measures have failed and noxious weeds are thriving, an herbicide is often the most efficient solution. However, some herbicides don’t differentiate between plants and will kill just about anything. When weeds are threatening to take over your landscape, it may be best to let our professionals at Lifescape Colorado handle the job for you.

At Lifescape Colorado, we understand the challenges gardeners face. Turn to us anytime for expert landscaping and gardening assistance. Check out our garden maintenance services to keep your outdoor space in the best shape possible!

Common Gardening Mistakes to Avoid in Colorado

Here in Colorado, gardeners often face difficult weather patterns and variations in soil types from region to region. But no matter which area you call home, gardening requires patience and knowledge as even skilled gardeners can make mistakes. Here are a few common gardening mistakes to avoid this season.

colorado landscape architects

Source: Colin McGuire via Country Living

Not preparing soil well enough before planting. Soil should be tested for acidity and alkalinity. It’s better to amend soil and meet your plants’ needs instead of having to fix the problem later on. Remember to work the soil, break up clumps and add your amendments to a depth of 12 inches.

colorado landscape designers

Source: Colin McGuire via Country Living

Mistaking your plants for weeds. Before many types of plants start budding, they may resemble weeds. Avoid a case of mistaken identity by placing identifying tags in the soil. If don’t have any tags, make your own with hard plastic pieces and a waterproof marker.

colorado landscape architects

Source: Colin McGuire via Country Living

Planting diseased or pest-ridden plants. A diseased or infested plant can wreak havoc on a garden quickly. Check plants carefully before adding them to your landscape. Look for yellowed foliage, brown spots and any suspicious marks that could indicate a diseased plant. When checking for pests, remember that aphids and spider mites are small and hard to find. Don’t forget to look beneath leaves, where many pests like to hide. If you don’t spot any bugs, remember to look for other common signs of infestation, such as webs or blisters.

colorado landscaping services

Source: Southern Living

Overwatering or underwatering. Moisture requirements vary among different types of plants, as well as whether or not they’re established or newly planted. Familiarize yourself with your plants’ needs and group those with similar requirements next to each other. Consider also investing in a smart controller with a rain sensor.

One of the best ways to avoid these gardening mistakes is to seek expert help. Our professional team at Lifescape Colorado can answer all of your questions and keep your landscape vibrant and healthy. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you design a beautiful garden.

A Colorado Gardener’s August Checklist

Extra heat and sunshine calls for dutiful attention to watering in the month of August. Although your landscape’s lush greenery and bountiful harvests may still be your landscape’s focal point, autumn’s chill is actually just around the corner. Here is a brief checklist of landscaping tasks for Colorado gardeners this August.

Rustic Landscape by Denver Landscape Architects & Landscape Designers Lifescape Colorado.

Design by Lifescape Colorado

Keep an eye on watering. Water trees deeply and make sure to cover root zones – don’t just water around the base. Check your flowers and vegetables at least twice per day to make sure they’re not wilting or showing other signs of thirst. Remember, it’s best to water in the early morning when it’s hot outside.

Traditional Landscape by Denver Landscape Architects & Landscape Designers Lifescape Colorado.

Design by Lifescape Colorado

Support top-heavy plants. These will need to be staked to prevent toppling or breakage. To accomplish this task, choose sturdy stakes and use soft, flexible ties that will not injure stems. Remember, the main purpose is to keep flowers and fruit off the ground to prevent breakage. There should be a gap between the stem and stake for airflow.

Traditional Landscape by Denver Landscape Architects & Landscape Designers Lifescape Colorado.

Design by Lifescape Colorado

Prepare for fall. Start deadheading and removing dead or diseased foliage. It’s best to keep up with this now to save yourself extra work when cooler weather hits. If you plan to grow a cool season vegetable crop, now is the time to prepare the beds and start seeding.

Traditional Landscape by Far Hills Landscape Contractors Statile & Todd

Source: Statile & Todd via Houzz

Keep up with the harvest. Leaving produce on vines attracts insects. Avoid inadvertently feeding pests by checking for any vegetables or fruits that are ready to be picked.

Traditional Patio by Denver Landscape Architects & Landscape Designers Lifescape Colorado.

Design by Lifescape Colorado

Assess your landscape for changes that should be made. So much is in bloom in August, making this an ideal time to see how your landscape will function and look aesthetically. Make notes about plants or landscape features you might want to replace or add. Decide if your hardscaping design still matches your outdoor needs, so you can use the colder months to plan any changes.

Attending to your landscape can be a lot of work, especially in August, but we can help. Contact us at Lifescape Colorado to learn more about the garden maintenance services we provide.

Indian Paintbrush

If you’ve spent any amount of time gazing at our beautiful Colorado landscape, no doubt you’ve noticed a couple fiery spots of color dotting the hillsides and valleys from March through September. If so, there’s a good chance you’ve spotted stands of Indian paintbrush (Castilleja ssp).

Upon closer examination, the Indian paintbrush is a small to medium-sized plant with stalks of linear leaves topped by bright red bracts. Fortunately for you, these Colorado plants are easy to add to your own landscape and will thrive happily year after year.

colorado landscape architect

Source: Weather Pics

Looking For a Colorful, Drought-Tolerant Perennial? Meet the Indian Paintbrush

There are over 100 species of Indian paintbrush, but one of the most common and best adapted to our climate is colorful Indian paintbrush (Castilleja angustifolia). This perennial plant prefers dry, loamy soil and plays host to a wide range of pollinators, making it a great plant for backyard designs. Colorful Indian paintbrush grows between 4- to 22-inches high on average.

Here are some other interesting characteristics to note:

colorado native plant

Source: Grow Native

It’s considered hemi-parasitic. Indian paintbrush intertwines its roots with other plants to leach nutrients and water. However, this relationship doesn’t do any damage to unsuspecting neighbor. Consider planting stands of blue gamma grass or sage brush nearby to help the Indian paintbrush thrive.

They don’t have red flowers. That gorgeous red color we so often admire is actually bracts, or specially modified leaves, as opposed to flowers. The plant’s true flowers are actually smaller, slender green growths hidden amongst the bracts.

colorado landscape designer

Source: Better Homes and Gardens

You’ll attract pollinators galore. Because the Indian paintbrush doesn’t have any branches or strong stalks for birds to perch on, they are a favorite food source for hovering pollinators like butterflies, bees and hummingbirds. In fact, they are a preferred nectar source for broad-tailed hummingbirds and a favorite host for Fulvia Checkerspot butterflies, both of which are common in Colorado.

Are you interested in introducing the Indian paintbrush into your garden? Lifescape Colorado’s landscape maintenance team can do it for you. Give us a call at 303.831.8310, or contact us online.

Summer Gardening Tips & Tricks

If you speak with any long-time gardener, you’ll hear stories of trial-and-error, great ideas gone wrong and accidental happenings gone right. Take advantage of this wisdom, and apply these Colorado gardening tips to your own landscape design.

Learn New Colorado Gardening Tips & Tricks for Your Summer Garden

colorado landscape designers

Design by Lifescape Colorado

Raise the mower blade. Sure, a perfectly manicured lawn is attractive, but it also means your grass is more prone to heat and water stress. Shade from taller grass blades protects the soil from dehydration and mowing grass more than one-third its natural height can cause root stress. Raise those blades a little and leave the lawn clippings in place if you can stand it for added nutrient value. If not, place them into your compost pile for next year’s garden.

colorado landscape designers

Design by Lifescape Colorado

Weekly weeding prevents new seeding. As most gardeners already know, the prolific summer sun can transform weed seedlings into beasts practically overnight. Try to dedicate one morning each week to removing bothersome plants. Or, you can hire the maintenance team at Lifescape Colorado to do it for you!

colorado landscape designers

Design by Lifescape Colorado

Sand your saucers. We love container gardens, but midsummer heat can be brutal for them. Plants in terra cotta pots are especially vulnerable to heat/water stress because they accelerate evaporation. Since standing saucer water encourages root rot and mosquito growth, try adding a bed of sand in saucers and keep them wet. This will help keep pots cool.

denver landscape architects

Design by Lifescape Colorado

Mulch it up. If you spread a cursory layer of mulch each spring, take a day to lay an extra inch or two on your plant beds. This will minimize heat stress, optimize soil water retention and cut down on those pesky aforementioned weeds.

denver landscape architects

Design by Lifescape Colorado

Maintain your irrigation system. This is the season to walk your irrigation lines and make sure leaks, blockages, breaks, etc., aren’t preventing precious water from getting to your plants.

Do you have some midsummer gardening tricks of your own? Lifescape Colorado would love to read them in the comment box below!