Can You Plan Landscaping to Avoid Tree Damage to Your Home?

Parke-company-nashville-landscaping-avoid-tree-damage-home

Sprawling green lawns and trees that reach up toward the sky can be magnificent features of your home’s landscape design. However, with Nashville’s unpredictable weather, there is a chance you might experience a powerful storm from time to time. 

It’s important that your landscape design protects against major damage that can be done in the event that a tree falls during inclement weather. 

Here is what you need to know about protecting your house against tree damage through a carefully planned landscape. 

Strategic Planning

It goes without saying that where you plant your trees is important. If you have the option, never place trees so close to your home that a storm could send them through your house. 

In some situations, you may not have the capability of controlling where trees are planted. In this case, you would benefit tremendously from calling a certified professional to evaluate your trees. They will be particularly qualified to determine whether or not the locations of your trees are a potential issue.

Aside from location of trees, it is also important to consider what breed of tree is on your property. 

There are many types of trees like willows and sycamores that do not fare well in the wind. If you live in an area where high winds are an issue, avoid trees such as these in favor of a hardier breed like oaks or maples. 

Conduct a Tree Inventory

A tree inventory might not seem necessary on a private property, but it could mean the difference between a fallen tree on your house and a safe, healthy landscape. 

Tree inventories are careful evaluations of your landscape that pay close attention to the locations of your tree. Perhaps two trees have begun growing too close to one another and risk causing damage to your home if you don’t conduct proper tree trimming or tree removal.

Tree inventories are also a great way to check up on the health of your trees. Far too often, we don’t consider whether or not our trees are healthy until branches are decaying or fruit stops growing. 

At that point, it may be too late and you could be running a high risk of your house suffering damage in the event of an unexpected storm. 

By conducting a tree inventory, you can strategize about how to handle trees that may be sickly either through improving their health or hiring a certified arborist to remove them from your property. 

Care for Roots

What many people might not consider is that the roots can be the determining factor for whether a tree stays in the ground or not during a storm. While branches may be ripped off a tree singularly during a storm, the real damage occurs when trees are uprooted and strike a home. 

Be sure to plan your tree planting to ensure that your trees’ roots will have the proper room to grow and that root-health is a top priority of your landscape maintenance practices. 

Ultimately, trees are a massive feature of your home and they deserve massive care. This isn’t a job for guess work and mediocrity. The best way to keep your home and family safe is through contacting the experienced professionals at The Parke Company to see how they can care for your landscape’s specific needs. 
Give us a call (615-350-6033) or contact us online today to see how The Parke Company difference can work for you.

5 Ways You Can Improve the Health and Life of Your Trees (Without Tree Removal)

Parke-company-nashville-five-way-improve-tree-health-life

A well-maintained tree (or a number of trees) is an integral feature of every great landscape design. Trees can create natural barriers on your property, provide shade, and tremendously benefit the overall aesthetics of your property.

For a number or reasons, proper tree care is a must. Not only are sickly trees unsightly, but they can also pose a genuine threat to the safety of your property.

In the worst-case scenario, an unhealthy tree could fall in a storm. A good way to prevent that would be to cut down a tree in poor health. An even savvier way to deal with this issue is to ensure that your trees never get to that level of unhealth.

To circumvent the costs of dying trees, here are five ways you can improve their health and life without removing them.

1. Plant Strategically

If you haven’t yet, the best time to conduct a tree inventory is now.

By conducting a tree inventory, not only will you have an assessment of the health of your existing trees and be more informed as to what steps need to be taken, you will also have a detailed report as to the location of your current trees.

Preventing issues with tree health starts with planting trees strategically. When you plant trees with intention, you can ensure that competing species are not planted too close to one another, that they won’t grow into power lines, and that their placement won’t conflict with anything else in your current landscape design.

2. Start with Great Soil

Vital to planting trees strategically is starting with great soil. Just like any plant, trees need quality soul to grow well.

There are a number of different factors that make soil quality important. Not only does soil serve as a reservoir for vital nutrients and water, but it also contains the microorganisms that encourage beneficial decomposition, acting as an anchor for plant roots.

Maintaining healthy trees (as well as planting new ones) begins with assessing for quality soil to ensure that your trees have a hospitable environment in which they can grow.

If you’re not comfortable testing the soil yourself, seek out a landscape maintenance professional to do the complex work for you. These professionals will evaluate the soil for qualities like texture, drainage, chemical properties, and more.   

3. Tree Trimming

As previously mentioned, trees are plants and, as such, require similar care.

Just as you would prune dead leaves from a basil plant, or cut back dead parts of a grape vine, it’s important to incorporate regular tree trimming into your tree care.

By trimming trees regularly, you can identify diseased branches and trim them before any more sickness spreads. You can also ensure that trees don’t get overgrown if they are near any other feature of your landscape that may compromise the tree’s health.

Tree trimming has a vast array of benefits from maintaining the health of trees and increasing sun exposure, to protecting against branch weakness and improving the life of fruits and flowers.

4. Pest Maintenance

The neighborhood squirrels and raccoons may be cute, but they might not be the best for maintaining the health of your trees. In some cases, an animal that choose to make a home in or near your trees could be what compromises the health and safety of the trees on your property.

Especially with young trees that are growing, and sickly trees you’re treating, a physical barrier or other repellant can keep pests from munching at your tree’s bark or building a home where they may not belong.

5. Ask the Experts

When it comes down to it, it isn’t enough to simply ensure that you maintain the health of your trees; it must be done well for them to flourish to their potential.

If you’re not confident that you can perform all of the necessary tasks to support the growth of your trees, you’ve got a few options: you could spend hours researching how to best serve the trees on your property, or you could call a certified arborist to do the tough work for you.

By trusting the landscape professionals at The Parke Company, you call rest easily knowing that your trees will be evaluated and cared for by experts who will tailor their work to the unique needs of your property.
Give us a call (615-350-6033) or contact us online today to see how The Parke Company difference can work for you

Municipal Landscaping: What’s a Tree Inventory, and How Can It Help Your City?

Parke-company-nashville-tree-inventory-what-is-it

If you work in municipal landscaping, your heart’s passion is to beautify and preserve the natural landscape of your city. While every aspect of your town’s landscape design is important, tree care may be one that warrants reevaluation.

Some people think that tree maintenance is simple: tree removal, tree trimming, stump grinding. What they may not have considered, however, is that proper care for trees is vital to maintaining a thriving, green world, even in urban areas.

In addition to the procedures your city already has in place to tend to local trees, consider incorporating a tree inventory. Here is what you need to know about this important practice.

What is a Tree Inventory?

As its name suggests, a tree inventory has a lot to do with accounting for all of the trees in a specific region. But it doesn’t stop at a simple roll call.

Tree inventories will take into account the number of trees in an area as well as the variety of trees recorded.

Some more sophisticated tree inventory processes will employ GPS and GIS technologies to ensure precision and accuracy of tree records. This allows those who oversee the landscape to have easy access to the locations and population sizes of trees in their city without having to rely on a potentially inaccurate map or by visiting the reasons in real life every time.

A tree inventory is the process of bringing true and precise awareness to the arboreal life of your city and efficiently recording that data in an accessible format.

How Does it Help?

Tree inventories do more than just inform your landscape maintenance professionals how many and what type of trees are present in your city. Tree inventories can also be effective for proper tree care.

On a basic level, tree inventories can be a practical way to save your city money. A keener awareness of the trees in your city can be helpful for anticipating new construction in particular regions in order to avoid unexpected costs related to sudden needs for tree removal. It can also instruct you as to which areas should be avoided for new construction.

Tree inventories are also a practical and detailed way to care for the health of your city’s trees.

Tree inventories do more than just record the type and location of trees in an area. They can also record specific reports on the health of individual trees. This can inform the certified arborists who care for your trees as to how to move forward with the treatment of the landscape.

A tree inventory records the current status of trees in the given area and can report back on needs for each tree to encourage flourishing and aid trees that may be in poor health. This can also be an effective measure for avoiding potential costs associated with sickly trees that may fall or infect other parts of the landscape, leading to the loss of plant life and presenting a hefty financial burden to your city.

What Are My First Steps?

Caring for a city’s landscape is a difficult job, and it is one that should only be performed by the best in their field.

If your city has yet to conduct a tree inventory, this is a vital practice to institute if the landscape is to be as healthy and beautiful as possible.

Your first steps should be to contact someone experienced in tree care. A certified arborist is best equipped to conquer this lengthy and arduous task.

The experts at The Park Company are committed to honoring the beauty of the landscape in their communities. Their certified arborists and landscape artists are uniquely qualified to care for the landscaping needs of Nashville and the surrounding communities.

A tree inventory may be what is keeping your city’s landscape from its best and healthiest state. Don’t hesitate to give us a call at (615)-350-6033 or contact us online today to see how The Parke Company difference can work for you.

Don’t Install New Landscaping Features Without First Doing This

landscaping and irrigation

Variety is the spice of life, as they say. If you’re someone who invests a lot of time and energy into your landscape maintenance, you probably get a great deal of joy from creating a beautiful useful space. You may also find yourself wanting to incorporate new and exciting features to add to the beauty of your property.

If you’re often bored by maintaining the status quo of your landscape design, installing new features can be a great way to shake up the aesthetic of your property, but before you do so, make sure that you keep the following things in mind.

Work With What You Know

The only person who interacts with your yard on a daily basis is you. You know what has grown well in the past and which areas get enough shade or full sunlight. Mapping out these locations can be helpful for planning purposes. Use your knowledge and experience of your yard to plan any new additions accordingly.

It’s important to consider the unique terrain, soil quality, and light exposure of your property if you intend to install any new features in your landscape. While a cobblestone walkway may seem like a good idea, you know the particular incline of your property and should consider such factors when deciding what to install.

You also know best what your property will be used for. It is important to consider how the presence of children or pets in your yard will affect what you decide to install. A fountain may be a beautiful focal point to your property, but it could be dangerous if you have toddlers, or it could be one more thing for your dogs to splash around in.

When you’re deciding how to improve your landscape design, make sure that you use your previous knowledge of the property to inform your decision.  

Work With What is There

When thinking about your new landscape feature, remember that the rest of your yard is still there. That flashy gazebo or gorgeous footbridge may be just what you’ve always wanted in your yard, but if you’ve already got a pool, a back patio, and dense trees, it may only result in the congestion of your property.

Some landscape features can be moved or modified if you want to add something new to the existing design, but it’s important to consider what is already there and what is permanent.

On a less pragmatic level, it is also necessary to consider the aesthetic of your property. Will this new feature fit the theme that has already been established by your landscape design?

An eclectic property can either be a whimsical amalgamation of features or it can look like a reckless assembly. When you consider installing anything new to your existing landscape design, make sure that it will incorporate seamlessly with what you’ve already put together.

Work With a Professional

When you’re making a big change to your landscape design (or even a small one), having a second opinion is key to making sure that you don’t make any costly mistakes.

Working with a professional could give you the foresight to know whether or not the feature you want to install is feasible. While they can help you hammer out the details of installation and cost, they can also help you determine whether or not it is a wise aesthetic choice.

Consulting a lawn care and landscape professional is important because their experience can also help you envision the future of your landscape design. They will be able to foresee future issues and help you figure out how to prevent or prepare for them.

If you’re looking to develop your property and create a more exciting landscape, the experienced landscape and tree experts at The Parke Company know just how to meet your unique landscape service needs.

Give us a call (615-350-6033) or contact us online today to see how The Parke Company difference can work for you.

Mulching 101: Choosing and Applying the Right Mulch for Maximum Growth

Parke-company-nashville-mulching-101-choosing-and-applying

As much as many of us would simply like to let nature takes its course when it comes to tending our property, the fact of the matter is that lush landscapes do not grow themselves and often need to be helped along.

Incorporating mulch is a time-tested method for maintaining a beautiful landscape design, but with the myriad options available for mulching, choosing the best one for your particular property can be challenging.

First and foremost, the type of mulch you select depends heavily on the project you have in mind. When people hear “mulch”, brightly colored wood chips often come to mind. While this may be an appropriate aesthetic choice, the harsh dyes and chemicals in this material do not foster growth; they would be much more appropriate to cover parts of your landscape that only need visual improvement.

Furthermore, once you have carefully selected the type of mulch you’ll use, ensuring optimal growth means more than just heaving bags of compost over the top of your garden or along the edges of your property.

If you want your landscape to be the crowning glory of your neighborhood, properly incorporating mulch is key. Here is everything you need to know about choosing and applying the right mulch for maximum growth.

Mulching How-Tos

Choosing the right kind of mulch may require a visit back to high school environmental science class.

What you want out of mulch is decomposition. Decomposition pulls nitrogen from the soil, which plants love.  

Nitrogen is vital to plant growth because it is a primary component of chlorophyll, the necessary chemical for photosynthesis. Even if you slept through science class, you probably still caught that photosynthesis is how plants use sunlight to grow.

Many mulch varieties boast of their nitrogen content, but the best mulch for your next project may depend on the specific plants you are trying to grow.

Gardens

For a garden growing fruits and vegetables, organic and inorganic mulches can be effective. In some circumstances, mulches like wood chips can still promote growth, but in a garden they are more likely to be a nuisance since you will be digging up that area frequently.

When selecting an inorganic mulch for gardens, choose ones that will help defend against weeds while still protecting the soil.

Using plastic mulch can be good for gardens with temperature-sensitive plants. A dark plastic sheet will retain heat overnight and keep your more delicate vegetation warm. These sheets can ward off weeds and also prevent too much rainwater from soaking through the ground and overwatering your plants. When applying this kind of mulch, be sure to bury or weigh down the edges of your sheet and make holes in the sheet to allow for growth.

Organic mulches both cover and nurture soil in gardens. As mentioned previously, an organic, decomposed mulch enriches the soil because of its nitrogen content.

Additionally, hay and straw can be effective mulches to help retain moisture in soil and well as offering nutrients during decomposition. It is vital, however, that the hay is seed-free so that you are not inviting any unwanted plants into your garden. You should also be careful not to lay the hay or straw too close to the stems of your plants. This can attract slugs and other pests.

Trees

Mulch can also be a helpful tool if you’ve planted a tree and want to boost its growth. Mulch can be helpful for maintaining moisture in the soil around a tree’s roots, adding nutrients, and reducing damage to roots caused by lawn mowing (and damage to lawn mowers caused by tree roots!).

When it comes to these hardier plants though, the type of mulch used is less important than how the mulch is applied.

Much like garden plants, it is vital to avoid laying your mulch too close to the tree’s roots. This “volcano effect” occurs when mulch is piled high around a tree trunk and it can often result in too much moisture buildup which leads to root rot.

To avoid this pitfall, follow these few steps from The Arbor Day Foundation for the best tree care when laying mulch:

  • Remove all grass from around the base of the tree within a three to ten-foot radius (depending on the size of the tree).
  • Pour your mulch (they do recommend organic) within the circle about two to four inches deep
  • After pouring, double-check that the mulch is not touching the tree’s trunk.

From hardy oak trees to dainty tomato plants, incorporating mulch into your regular landscape maintenance could be what helps you achieve the lush property you’ve dreamed of. If you’re reticent about adding a new practice to your landscaping techniques, fear not! The certified arborists and landscaping professionals at The Parke Company are knowledgeable and experienced in how to cater to your property’s specific needs.

Give us a call (615-350-6033) or contact us online today to see how The Parke Company difference can work for you.