Six Care Tips for your Newly Installed Landscaping Feature

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Landscape installations are a surefire way to add visual interest to your property without completely overhauling the look of your home. 

Installations come in a variety of forms. They can be softscapes: adding trees, shrubs, flowers and other foliage to your landscape. You may also elect to install hardscapes: things like walkways, pavement, rocks and ponds. Or, perhaps  your new landscape installation could consist of decor like outdoor lighting, water features, or tree hangings.  

Whatever type of landscape installation you decide on, it’s important that these featured pieces stay as beautiful a year from now as they are when they’re first put in. 

Here are six care tips for your new landscaping feature. 

1. Lawn Maintenance

Aside from the obvious ones, there are plenty of reasons to keep your lawn maintained. Other than keeping a pristine lawn for aesthetic purposes, the health of your landscape can be compromised if you do not take good care of your grass. 

By choosing the appropriate mower height and keeping your lawn at the optimal level, you reduce your risk for weeds to grow in grass that is stressed or unhealthy.

Weeds left to their own devices can infiltrate your new landscaping feature over time. Your once beautiful walkway may now be overrun by weeds and other uninvited pests. 

Be sure to maintain your lawn to combat any plant life with malintent. 

2. Brush Clearing

Similar to maintaining a tidy lawn, it is also important to clear brush regularly. 

When dead leaves and foliage stay on the ground unattended, there is a significant risk of mildew and fungus growth. If you have a water feature nearby, moist environments can be severely compromised by the presence of these invaders. 

Piles of leaves and brush can be a convenient home for small rodents and pests. Naturally, these unwanted guests might also make a home in your new fountain or rock feature. Keeping brush and foliage maintained can help circumvent this risk and keep critters at bay. 

3. Check Irrigation 

Faulty irrigation systems can present a real problem for property owners. Not only can irrigation systems that dispense too much or too little water damage the plant life of your property, they can also cause significant structural damage to landscaping features. 

If your irrigation system isn’t working correctly, this can have an adverse effect on your water features, resulting in sky-high water bills. You may also find that your landscaping features suffer water damage from a leaky sprinkler system. 

Having your irrigation system evaluated by a professional could help you avoid unsightly damage. 

4. Tree Trimming 

Tree trimming on your property is a great way to ensure that your landscaping features shine. 

Ponds filled with dead leaves are unsightly, and it would be a tragedy for your beautiful outdoor lighting fixtures to meet their end at the hands of a fallen branch. 

Be sure to get your trees trimmed regularly to avoid damage. 

5. Energy Conservation

Conserving energy is a great decision for any reason, but it can also do a lot to maintain the health of your new landscaping feature. 

Particularly with features like lighting or fountains that are supported by electricity, conserving energy can help to ensure that your features don’t run themselves ragged and that all pieces and parts stay operational for as long as possible. 

6. Expert Advice

Ultimately, it’s hard to notice every flaw or red flag in a property where you spend every day. Hiring an extra set of eyes for your landscaping services could be just the ticket to ensure that no issue goes unnoticed and every problem is attended. 

The experienced arborists at The Parke Company are well-versed in what it takes to properly maintain landscaping features through high-quality landscaping services. From installation to repair, our experts are here to ensure that your property stays beautiful. 
Give us a call (615-350-6033) or contact us online today to see how The Parke Company difference can work for you.

Preparing Your Home for Sale? Don’t Forget Your Lawn and Garden

Lawn

When selling your home, there are a million different things going through your mind. You need to finish up that retiling project you started a year ago. You need to finally clean out the attic and shed. You need to repaint the walls your kids scribbled over as toddlers. 

While the laundry list of tasks to complete before your house is ready to go on the market may seem endless, there’s one important step you may have overlooked: preparing your lawn and garden. 

The importance of curb appeal truly cannot be emphasized enough. Having a well-maintained landscape could mean the difference between a flood of offers and a complete dry spell. Prospective buyers won’t get a chance to see the beautiful job you’ve done renovating your home if they never make it past the brown patches in your lawn. 

When you’re preparing your home for sale, don’t forget your lawn and garden. Here are a few things worth knowing.

Lawn

Not only is your lawn one of the first things that a prospective buyer will notice, it is also the largest feature of your landscape. If your lawn is unhealthy, tending to it is a much larger task than simply pulling a few dead plants. 

Prospective buyers may be deterred by an unhealthy lawn because it foretells a massive undertaking to revitalize the entire square footage of your property. 

If your lawn is in a sorry state and you’re preparing for a home sale, you have a few different options for mitigating this issue. 

Installing an irrigation system is a simple way to ensure that your lawn will be nurtured back to health. Irrigation systems like in-ground sprinkling can be programmed so that you don’t have to worry about keeping the lawn watered while you’re juggling everything else you need to do before putting your house on the market. You can rest assured that your lawn will be a lush, attractive landscape in time for showings. 

If all else fails and you’re quickly nearing house-showings, you may also want to consider sodding to replace the parts of your lawn that are beyond repair. 

Trees

While the lawn of your property takes up the most square footage, your trees are the features that often stand out the most to a prospective buyer. 

When someone looks at a home, they’ll be sure to consider whether or not they’ll have an expensive tree removal project on their hands in the near future. 

Take inventory of the trees on your property. By hiring a certified arborist, you can ensure that your trees are properly evaluated so that any tree removal (or tree planting, possibly!) can be handled before a potential buyer lays eyes on your property.

Tending to the trees on your property helps reduce the risk that your landscape deters a potential buyer.

Garden

First and foremost, it is vital that you conduct a thorough sweep through any garden beds to remove unsightly brush and dead plants. Aside from the obvious aesthetic issues, a flower bed gone grey might lead a potential buyer to believe that there are issues with the soil or that you, the current homeowner, aren’t responsible enough to tend to the details of your property. If it doesn’t completely turn away a buyer, it may give them cause to low-ball an offer. 

By wowing your prospective buyers with vibrant colors and tidy shrubbery, the first impression they have of your home is one of beauty and organization. Start off on the right foot with your potential buyers. It may even lead them to view the rest of your home in a positive light. 

Preparing to sell a home is a highly emotional experience. You deal with the stress of paperwork, numbers, and the myriad of little to-dos that creep up along the way. All of this is compounded by the fact that leaving a beloved home can be incredibly painful, even if you’re moving on to bigger and better things. 

As difficult as the moving process is, ensuring that your physical home is sufficiently prepared isn’t a task you should have to accomplish alone. The experienced professionals at The Parke Company are skilled and available to aid in the process of preparing your home for sale.

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

Landscaping and Gardening: Is Your Lawn Right for a Home Garden?

Plant

A beautiful garden can be one of the most notable and enjoyable features of your property. Aside from gardening being a fun and rewarding discipline, it can also add invaluable curb appeal to your home. But even if you feel ready to begin the process of starting a garden on your property, there are a few things you need to consider in order to save yourself from a frustrating (and pricey) failure. 

Here are some things you should consider to determine whether or not your lawn is right for a home garden.

Tree Placement 

If you haven’t conducted a tree inventory yet, you’ll want to do so before you think of putting in a garden. Conducting a survey like a tree inventory will give you an informed perspective on the status and location of other plant life on your property. 

In most cases, if you haven’t lived on your property for very long, chances are good that you didn’t plant your trees and that their level of health may be beyond your knowledge. If you have a large, sprawling property, it’s even possible that you don’t know about all the trees on your land. 

It is vital to have a keen awareness of all of the plant life that is already part of your landscape so that you know how that could interact with or interfere with a garden. 

In most cases, a tree or two won’t hinder the growth of a new garden, but it’s important to consider whether or not plants already on your property may attract pests that could harm a dainty crop like what is often planted in a home garden. 

Shade Coverage

In accordance with an awareness of trees on your property, be aware of the amount of shade they provide to certain areas of your landscape. If a set of trees offers too much shade in the area you wish to plant a garden, you may want to consider tree trimming or tree removal. Too much sun could blister vegetation that isn’t hardy, but too much shade could also stunt their growth. 

If there is a particular area you’ve dreamed of placing your garden, be sure that it isn’t overshadowed by other trees or structures. 

Drainage

As anyone with even the smallest amount of garden knowledge can tell you, watering plants is important. 

When you care for your lawn, you ensure to water it properly and to make sure that it doesn’t get flooded. The same is true for a home garden. Check with your landscape professional to see if the plants you’re seeking for your home garden require a similar level of water to that of your lawn. 

If you have an irrigation system that automatically waters your lawn, you could capitalize on this and use that same system to tend to a garden. However, if the lawn’s need for water and the garden’s need for water are not compatible, you will need to adjust accordingly. 

Garden Vision

Finally, it’s important to know what exactly you want in your garden. Growing a bed of flowers is drastically different from growing tomato plants or corn. There is a strong chance that a vegetable garden, especially one with a wide variety of produce, is going to require much more attention to detail than a lawn. In this case, you will want to seriously reconsider your irrigation options. It may not be practical to cluster together a number of different plants with vastly different needs. In this case, consider whether or not using planters or pots outdoors could help you achieve a similarly beautiful (or maybe even more beautiful!) look for your garden. 

Regardless of the route you take, it is vital that you speak with a professional to properly assess the unique needs of your property. Go to the knowledgeable arborists and landscape designers at The Parke Company to ensure that your property is in the best hands. 

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

Nashville Tree Guide: Selecting and Installing the Right Trees for Your Property and Needs

nashville-trees

Trees are important. More than important, trees are an essential part of the Tennessee countryside. From food to firewood, shade to oxygen, soil erosion prevention to creation of habitats for endemic birds and other species, trees in the greater Nashville area are much more than simply a beautiful adornment to the landscape. It’s hard to imagine the rolling hills of Davidson County without their picturesque blanket of naturally occurring trees. While Mother Nature has done an incredible job of creating this beautiful scene, there are many important factors to take into consideration when selecting and installing the right species of trees for your property and needs.

Why It’s Important to Start By Thinking Endemic

When developing a tree installation plan, start by considering endemic species. Endemic species are those that are native to a given area. Endemic tree species in Tennessee have been here for thousands, even hundreds of thousands of years. Over this extended period of time, these trees have developed mutually beneficial relationships with other plants and animals that are also endemic to the area. They have also adapted to the environment, weather, seasons, soil conditions, etc. Both of these attributes make them more adept at restricting and limiting the establishment of invasive species (such as the emerald ash borer) and at surviving and flourishing within this geographical region. Endemic trees require less maintenance, are more likely to survive, and will be more likely to attract local bird species.

Maple and Ash and Oak, Oh My! – Trees Native to Tennessee

Due to the incredibly diverse forested landscapes in the temperate forests of Tennessee, Nashville area residents have a lot of endemic tree species to choose from.

If you are interested in something traditional, consider maple, ash, or oak. For maple, there are several larger options (red maple, silver maple, and sugar maple) and smaller options (striped maple and mountain maple) to choose from. However, the native ash (white ash and green ash) and oak (white oak, scarlet oak, southern red oak, overcup oak, bur oak, swamp chestnut oak, chinkapin oak, water oak, nuttall oak, cherrybark oak, willow oak, chestnut oak, northern red oak, shumard oak, post oak, and black oak) varietals are typically on the larger side.

Perhaps you prefer conifers to deciduous trees? If this is the case, you have the eastern red cedar, shortleaf pine, eastern white pine, loblolly pine, and eastern hemlock to choose from.

Maybe you’re looking for something a little more unique. Some options could include the pecan, hickories, black walnut, sycamore, black cherry, American linden, hornbeam, dogwood, hawthorn, or witch hazel.

Maybe you’re looking for a fast growing tree that will quickly fill in a desired space in your landscape or a hole created by a recently dead or removed tree.

If your head is starting to spin, don’t be ashamed. Nature has provided Tennesseans with perhaps too many options. Don’t panic! We’re here to help you select the right tree for your individual situation, desire, or needs.

What to Consider if Selecting Non-Native Trees

Don’t feel bad if you are thinking about incorporating a non-native tree species into your landscape. Certain decorative trees are highly appealing based on their aesthetic value. We understand.

However, when incorporating a non-native plant or tree into your landscape it is important that you work with an arborist who knows the species, what it requires, and how it interacts with other plants and animals. All too often, well-intentioned plans are ruined by incorporating a tree that simply cannot survive in a specific climate, soil, moisture gradient, or in close proximity to other specific species. This can be frustrating and costly. Give yourself peace of mind and let us help you establish a tree selection and installation plan that is right for you. We guarantee that we will help you realize your goals while also honoring and understanding the geographic and environmental limitations and constraints of the Tennessee landscape.

Tree Selection and Installation: What’s Right For You?

With so many options, it’s incredibly difficult to decide what’s right for you and for your specific landscape. This is why it can be incredibly beneficial to contact the tree experts at The Parke Company when planning your next tree installation project. Our certified arborists have decades of experience working with endemic and non-native tree species in every type of ecosystem and landscape that the greater Nashville area has to offer. We can help you decide where to plant specific species of trees in order to achieve your goals, whatever they may be. Just as important, we can also help you avoid planting trees in areas, soils, or habitats where they will struggle to survive, potentially saving you lots of frustration, time, and money in the long run.

Do You Have Issues with Trees on Your Property? The Parke Company is Here to Help

In addition to selection and installation, we are also here to help you with all of your tree needs. From crown thinning to cold weather care, weight reduction to cabling and bolting, tree removal to stump grinding, we offer a wide variety of tree services. However, we don’t stop there. Trees come with leaves – and we’ve got leaf cleanup and removal covered as well! We can also work with you to develop a landscape management plan to ensure that all aspects of your land, lawn, and gardens are well-maintained and cared for, not just your trees.

Whatever Your Tree Needs Are, Let The Parke Company Go to Work for You

Locally owned and operated, The Parke Company provides community-centered, high quality, and affordable tree and landscaping services to municipalities, businesses, and private residences in the greater Nashville area. Our certified team of Nashville locals has a reputation for being clean, consistent, professional, and for being leaders in their industries. We at The Parke Company stand behind our work and pride ourselves on our ability to respond quickly, provide efficient and cost-effective services, and meet your needs every step of the way. Please feel free to give us a call (615-350-6033) or contact us online today to see how The Parke Company difference can work for you.

Springtime Seasonal Landscaping Maintenance in Nashville

Garden

Spring has arrived in Middle Tennessee, and people are once again spending more time outside their homes enjoying the great outdoors – even if that “outdoors” is just out back on a patio or deck. Spring is a time for new beginnings, and homeowners in Nashville, Brentwood, Cool Springs, and other communities who have invested in beautiful landscapes need to take a breath and remember they have some springtime lawn issues to deal with to protect those investments.

The Parke Company, a leading landscaping service in Nashville, firmly believes that proper lawn maintenance not only keeps the lawn and shrubs healthy, but can add to the value of the property as well. Investing in landscaping yields many benefits, but it does take some work and care.

So, let’s get started. Here are two simple spring lawn maintenance tasks to get a Nashville landscape off to a great start.

Mulching

Nashville can get hot quickly. Protecting plant beds with a couple of inches of mulch will help retain moisture, keep the soil cool, inhibit the growth of weeds, and give your plants a healthy head start. At the Parke Company, we offer a variety of traditional mulches along with two alternatives that may prove more beneficial.
Pine straw is an excellent renewable, organic, lightweight mulch that holds better than traditional mulch on slopes. If you have a planting bed that is built on an incline, pine straw may be your best solution. Shredded pine tree mulch is also an effective mulch, with the added benefit of a pleasant pine aroma.

If your lawn has debris and litter left over from the winter weather, we have an option you may be interested in. We offer a chopping and grinding service (using a Vermeer shredder) that will take your “waste” wood, branches, stumps, brush, and other organic debris and shred it into mulch.

Inspecting the Health of Plants and Shrubs

How well have your plants, shrubs, and trees survived the winter? A quick inspection can reveal common problems, hopefully early enough to get plant-saving intervention. Look for new growth on all the plants. New growth is typically an indicator of a healthy plant or tree. If you spot dead patches in shrubs or tree limbs that are bare, you should have a professional look at them.

If black spots appear on leaves, it could be an indicator of azalea lace bugs. If these spots appear on new growth, then you need to explore treatment options to prevent spread. Boxwoods are a favorite in the Nashville area, and they are also a favorite for boxwood leaf miners. Flip the leaves over and use a handheld magnifier to look for their eggs.

Finding these signs early is essential. Too many times, the conditions are allowed to progress to the point where there are no viable treatments and replacement is the only option.

Of course, if you would like a professional to make these evaluations, feel free to call us. We can have a qualified technician or arborist do a thorough inspection and create a treatment plan specific to your plants’ condition. You can count on the Parke Company for the best in tree service, lawn maintenance, and landscaping. Call today.