Tag Archives: Colorado landscaping

A Colorado Gardener’s May Checklist

Finally, spring has sprung! These glorious, sunshine-filled days can be spent out in your garden if your irrigation is in place and your soil is properly amended. Once the basics are in place, you can begin the exciting task of planting bulbs, flowers, shrubs and trees to create your landscape masterpiece. Here are some gardening tips for the month of May to get you started in your Colorado garden.

drip irrigation

Source: Organic Gardening

Evaluate your irrigation system. Ideally, the bulk of your irrigation should be happening at ground level via soaker hoses and/or drip systems. Overhead watering can lead to leaf burn and excess moisture can also make plants more susceptible to fungus and disease.

watering plants

Source: Organic Gardening

Practice deep watering. Deep watering is recommended to encourage root-growth deep under ground where water is protected from dehydration. This watering technique is beneficial for both ornamental plants, as well as those in your vegetable garden. Let soil dry out in between waterings to allow it to oxygenate.

organic fertilizer

Source: Organic Gardening

Fertilize and amend. Amend the soil in your plant beds and fertilize your lawn. We recommend using organic amendments and fertilizers for a more sustainable and healthy landscape.

greenhouse

Source: Organic Gardening

Start hardening off your greenhouse plants. Are you ready to move those greenhouse plants and vegetable garden-starters outdoors? Make sure to harden them first, and move pots outdoors for longer and longer periods everyday over a couple of weeks. This will protect them from shock.

planting

Source: Organic Gardening

Start planting. Once you’re sure the last frost has passed, it’s time to start planting your summer-blooming plants and flowers. Summer favorites like gladiolus, dahlias, begonias and lilies do well when planted this time of year. Also, concentrate on drought-tolerant native plants to conserve water and feed local bees, butterflies and birds.

lilac

Source: Organic Gardening

Prune abundant spring blooms. By now, some of your spring blooms – like lilac – are ready to be pruned. These ornamental bushes should be pruned back fairly quickly after blooming to encourage healthy new growth.

Contact Lifescape Colorado for more gardening tips, or to get your landscape in shape for summer.

Delectable Super Foods to Grow in Your Colorado Garden

Super foods are not only loaded with vitamins and minerals, but they also contain disease-fighting and immune-boosting properties for all of your nutritional needs. Luckily, many super foods can be grown right here in your own Colorado vegetable garden, including asparagus, sweet potatoes, beets and pumpkins.

You can enjoy the following super foods in the comfort of your own home garden. With the right care, some of them can be grown nearly year-round.

blueberries

Source: Better Homes and Gardens

Blueberries. These tasty blue jewels are loaded with vitamin C, antioxidants and phytoflavinoids. They can improve heart health and are anti-inflammatories. Blueberries grow well in Colorado, and each variety has their own physical characteristics — they’re tall, short, semi-evergreen, deciduous, etc. Blueberries should be planted in spring and will yield fruit in mid-summer. Most plants will thrive for 20 years or more.

kale

Source: Better Homes and Gardens

Kale. Kale is a tough, leafy green. It’s less palatable when raw, and experts have found that blanched and cooked kale are the healthier way to eat this vegetable. Kale can be steamed, roasted, or dehydrated and eaten on its own. This plant contains calcium, vitamins A, C and K, as well as copper, potassium, iron, manganese and phosphorus. This crop can be grown nearly year-round, and may make it through the winter if you have a greenhouse.

chia seeds

Source: Doc’s Fitness Tips

Chia Seeds. Chia offers a two-for-one bonus. Their colorful blooms (Salvia columbariae) are already members of most wildflower gardens. If you up the chia ante and harvest the seeds, your family will benefit from omega-3 fatty acids, known for lowering blood sugar and cholesterol and improving energy. Chia seeds have a higher calcium content than milk and are comprised of 30 percent protein. Best planted in April and May, chia seeds bloom in the summer, and seeds can be harvested in the fall.

Contact Lifescape Colorado to incorporate super foods into your Colorado vegetable garden. This way, you’ll be able to enjoy both a beautiful and an edible landscape!

Prairie Coneflower

The Prairie Coneflower (Ratibida ssp.) is one of our favorite water-wise perennial flowering plants this year. This cheerful, pollinator-friendly bloom is native to prairies and western states, making it a great native plant for your Colorado landscape. The Prairie Coneflower can be planted as a part of your wildflower garden or added in the background of borders and plant beds.

Source: Benjamin Vogt / Monarch Gardens via Houzz

In the spring, the wide greenish-blue leaves at the base of this plant will begin to emerge and unfold from the earth. By late spring and early summer, these basal leaves will send up shoots that will grow very high. In fact, Prairie Coneflowers can grow up to 6 feet high, although most species usually grow closer to 2 to 3 feet high and 3 feet wide. The stalks will eventually flower, contributing to their signature look – a tall columnar stamen surrounded by a single rim of bright, drooping petals.

This look is what earned this flower the nickname Mexican Hat — its shape and color are reminiscent of large, colorful Mexican sombreros. Prairie Coneflowers can add colorful summer interest from late June through August, depending on growing conditions.

Source: Benjamin Vogt / Monarch Gardens via Houzz

The following traits make the Prairie Coneflower – or Mexican Hat – a beneficial addition to your Colorado landscape and wildflower gardens.

  • Drought-tolerant. The Coneflower can handle light to moderate watering. Prairie Coneflowers prefer full sun exposure and sandy or well-draining soil, but can thrive in just about any soil type, including clay.
  • Colorful. You can find them in multiple colors, including yellow, red, reddish-brown and purple.
  • Hardy. As mentioned, Prairie Coneflowers are drought-tolerant, but they’re also resistant to most diseases and pests that plague other garden plants.
  • Easy to collect seeds. You’ll have an easy time collecting seeds to plant elsewhere or pass on to family and friends. If you leave the seeds on the flowers, you can enjoy watching birds, especially Goldfinches, forage the seeds in the winter.

Source: Missouri Botanical Garden via Houzz

Contact Lifescape Colorado to begin designing a meadow landscape with Prairie Coneflowers or to maintain your current landscape design. We provide both landscape design, installation and maintenance services.

Enhance Curb Appeal with a Colorful Garden Plan

Curb appeal can be achieved with front yard spaces that have a strong and balanced visual aesthetic. However, the most important thing to keep in mind is that your colorful garden plan enhances your home’s curb appeal for your own enjoyment.

Here are some ideas for creating a colorful landscape design for your Colorado lawn.

Source: Ivy Street Design via Houzz

Plant the curb. If you’re an urban dweller, take advantage of the parking strip – the area between the curb and the sidewalk. Planting this area with colorful flowers can transform a traditionally boring stretch of land. Once you’ve made an effort in this oft-neglected space, your neighbors may follow suit. We recommend planting drought-tolerant plants spaced with rock or mulch, so water requirements will be minimal to none.

Source: Twisted Vine Design via Houzz

Upgrade your mailbox. Make your mailbox a lush and cheerful focal point. Remove a circle of lawn surrounding the mailbox post and replace it with interesting groundcover, climbing flowers and flowering plants of different heights. Just make sure you prune your climbers regularly, so they don’t interfere with mail delivery.

Source: Gardens by Gabriel via Houzz

Integrate pavers. Pavers can be used for walkways, borders, steps and porches. Select attractive pavers in a color that complements your architecture. Consider planting grass seed or groundcover in between pavers spaced at wider intervals to add interest and minimize water consumption.

BHG131852.jpg.rendition.p

Source: Better Homes and Gardens

Think foliage, as well as flowers. Flowers get the bulk of the credit when it comes to colorful landscapes. But leaves can be equally effective at lending texture and color to your front yard landscape. Take a stroll around a nursery or botanical garden and analyze the shapes, patterns and colors (ranging from greens and yellows to reds and purples) found in plant leaves alone. Then, choose some favorites to add to your landscape.

SIP866430.jpg.rendition.largest

Source: Better Homes and Gardens

Be bold. If you want a pop of color, grow some bright and contrasting plants in the same plant beds. Or, introduce an explosion of color around your main walk way and porch, and let the colors fade from there.

Contact Lifescape Colorado to design your front yard garden or to maintain your landscape, so it remains interesting and colorful all year long.

Gorgeous Drought Tolerant Landscapes

Does the term “drought tolerant landscape” conjure images of barren, rocky yards with a lone flowering cactus? You’re not alone. This is why clients are amazed when we’re able to execute a lush, colorful and interesting Colorado garden design, while adhering to green and sustainable water-wise landscaping principles.

We know the proof is in the proverbial pudding, so here are four examples of gorgeous gardens that incorporate drought-tolerant landscaping techniques.

Source: Coates Design Architects Seattle via Houzz

Patio oasis. By implementing natural rock and stone accents paired with plants that don’t require a lot of water to remain green, you can design a patio oasis. To accomplish this with your own patio:

  • Use pavers. You can choose pavers in a variety of colors, sizes and materials, such as natural stone, to become an artistic, as well as a functional foundation for your patio.
  • Plant a variety. Use a combination of drought-tolerant plants and trees of varying heights and widths to feel surrounded by foliage.

Source: Boxhill Design via Houzz

A sprawling work of art. There’s nothing drab or boring about this sprawling desert landscape full of beautiful colors. The Desert Museum Palo Verde adds vibrant green at and above eye-level. Below, you can see the rich purple hues of Babylon Verbena and bright bursts of red from Blue Elf Blooms. This landscape is proof that sustainable garden designs should never sacrifice visual interest.

61_Blue Star Creeper with shrub sm1

Source: Stepables

The illusion of a lawn. Giving up the lawn is one of the most difficult sacrifices for homeowners making the switch to a water-wise landscape. Using plenty of water-wise plants combined with drought-tolerant groundcover can ease your pain. Use low-maintenance ornamental grasses at varying heights and plants like Blue Star Creeper (Isotoma fluviatilis), which is a gorgeous lawn substitute.

101133870.jpg.rendition.largest

Source: Better Homes and Gardens

Enhance corner sections. You can reduce your lawn square footage and save dramatically on water bills by cutting out the corner sections of your grassy areas and replacing them with water-wise plants. This way, you get the best of both worlds and it will make for a more visually interesting landscape to boot.

Contact Lifescape Colorado to augment your Colorado garden design with gorgeous water-wise plants, grasses and groundcover.