Creative Hardscapes: Changing the Flow of your Landscape

Parke-company-nashville-changing-flow-landscape

Spending weeks or months cooped up indoors has left many of us restless and ready for something to shake up the mundane. One of the best ways to change up your environment and get out of the quarantine funk is to engage in a landscaping project. 

Aside from planting flowers and trimming trees, a great way to change up your landscape is through the design and installation of creative hardscapes. Here’s what you need to know about changing the flow of your landscape through hardscapes. 

Shape 

Hardscapes like fountains and paved walkways can provide something that is difficult to achieve through plants alone: diverse shapes. 

In most circumstances, flower beds and small gardens must be contained in a fairly square or rectangular shape — not so for hardscapes. 

By installing a pond or fountain, you can incorporate virtually any shape you like into your landscape without being bound by boxes or lines. Paved walkways can be laid in any winding or circular shapes you wish to add variety to your landscape and create a more dynamic backyard experience. 

Function

Changing the flow of your landscape might also involve installations that offer a variety of functions rather than just aesthetic improvements. 

While flower beds are beautiful, they don’t offer much activity during your next small, backyard gathering. Installations like ponds and fire pits can help answer the elusive “What are we going to do?” question and and change up your landscape in the process. 

Shelter

While social distancing practices remain crucial for reducing the spread of COVID-19, many of us are able to reconnect with small numbers of friends and family by hosting gatherings outdoors. 

This reconnection may be threatened, however, when bad weather strikes. When rain comes around, it may feel like your long-awaited reunions must be cancelled. 

This can be avoided, however, by installing hardscapes like gazebos or other covered structures. Not only does a gazebo improve the aesthetic appeal of your landscape, it can also change up the flow of your landscape by offering new gathering spaces that were not possible previously.

Hiring Landscaping Services

While DIY backyard projects may be fun, installing a pond or gazebo isn’t a task you should take on by yourself. Leave it up to the experienced professionals at The Parke Company. 

Our landscaping experts have the experience and skills necessary to help you devise the best ways to add some variety to your landscape. Our technicians know just how to get you the biggest bang for your buck and add value to your home. 

From lawn mowing to tree removal, the landscaping professionals at The Parke Company have the experience and the skills to handle lawn problems and answer your landscaping services questions. Let us meet the unique needs of your property and bring your design dreams to life. 

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

Fertilizer Options

Parke Company soil in gardener's hands

Know Your Options and Pick the Best Fertilizer for You

As the spring months slip by, so do our chances of preparing our landscapes for summer gatherings and backyard hangouts. Creating a beautiful backyard landscape is a lot more involved than just lawn mowing and sprinkling a few seeds. 

For your landscape to reach its full potential, you need a nourished foundation that can foster healthy, lush plant life. The best way to ensure your soil produces green grass and pretty flowers is through properly fertilized soil. 

Here’s what you need to know about making the right fertilizer choice for your property.  

Inorganic vs Organic

When it comes to nourishing your soil, one of the biggest decisions you will have to make is the choice between inorganic and organic materials for your fertilizer. 

Choosing an inorganic fertilizer does not necessarily mean that you end up pumping your land with dangerous chemicals. 

While inorganic fertilizers are processed to some degree, many of them contain the naturally occurring chemicals that are already at work in the soil on your property, with a little added help for your plants. 

When you look into the components of inorganic fertilizers, you will probably hear terms like carbon, nitrogen, and ammonium. While these may sound like the materials of a mad scientist, they are actually the very components at work to help your plants grow. 

Take this explanation from SFGate, “Balanced inorganic fertilizers, high in all three macronutrients, commonly include products like ammonium nitrate, ammonium sulfate, potassium chloride (potash), triple superphosphate, and magnesium sulfate (Epsom salts) . . . inorganic fertilizers provide this nutrition in plant-ready form immediately.” 

Inorganic fertilizers may be a better choice if you want to add nutrients to your soil at a low cost and quickly improve the overall quality of your foundation. 

Organic Fertilizer

As is the case for many products on the market, fertilizer made of organic components is attractive for a number of reasons. 

While inorganic fertilizers provide nutrients to soil rapidly, organic fertilizers transmit a bit more slowly and their actual nutritional contents cannot be appraised without laboratory testing. That being said, slow and steady does result in a greater improvement in the long term. 

Choosing an organic fertilizer does result in a greater upfront cost, but the longstanding improvements to soil over time may result in a foundation that stays healthier for season after season, making it a cost-effective choice in the long run. 

When it comes to choosing the right type of fertilizer, there are a number of factors to consider. Some individuals want to make quick improvements to their landscape in order to expedite the beautification of their property as much as possible. In this case, inorganic fertilizer is your best option. 

Other property owners may want landscape improvement for the long haul and opt for the environmentally-friendly organic options. 

At the same time, some people just don’t want the mess and odor of organic fertilizers made from manure or compost, so an inorganic fertilizer eliminates some hassle. 

The most important thing when it comes to choosing a fertilizer is that you choose the product that perfectly coordinates with your unique property, your budget, and the aspirations for your landscape. 

A great landscape starts with a nourished foundation. Don’t leave the health of your landscape up to chance, leave it up to the experienced professionals at The Parke Company to help you choose the perfect fertilizer. 

From lawn problems to tree removal, the landscaping professionals at The Parke Company have the experience and the skills to handle lawn problems and answer your landscaping services questions.

Let us meet the unique needs of your property and bring your design dreams to life. 
Give us a call (615-350-6033) or contact us online today to see how The Parke Company difference can work for you.

Common Weeds found in Tennessee

Dandelion weeds in a Tennessee lawn

Watch Out for These Weeds in Your Tennessee Lawn

Blowing on dandelions and watching their fluffy seedlings float through the air is a cherished summertime memory nearly everyone can relate to. But if you remember the joy of playing with dandelions, you can probably also recall the frustration of your mom or dad as they scolded you for spreading seeds across the lawn that would eventually turn into weeds. 

As an adult, you know better. At this point in time, your first thought when you see a weed is how you can keep it from infiltrating your lawn or garden. 

But just like all desirable plants are a little bit different in how they grow, different weeds are kept at bay by different methods. 

Here’s what you need to know to protect your Nashville landscape from weeds. 

Three Categories of Weeds

According to the landscaping experts at Preen, there are three different categories of weeds: broadleaf weeds, grassy weeds, and woody weeds. 

Each type of weed is named for their appearance. Broadleaf weeds are identified by the large leaves they tend to grow. Grassy weeds are similar in appearance to grass, which can make them difficult to identify. Woody weeds get their name from the strong, twig-like stems they grow, making them exceptionally tricky to remove. 

In Tennessee, the most common weeds you’ll find will likely fall into the broadleaf or grassy weed categories. 

Common Broadleaf Weeds

Bull Thistle

If you’ve ever walked through your lawn barefoot, only to feel the shock of a sharp pain underfoot, chances are that you’ve come in contact with some bull thistle.

These weeds have spines that are sharp and stiff and can grow between two and five feet tall. They develop a thick taproot within a year, so be sure to address these quickly. 

Honeyvine Milkweed

This member of the milkweed family has heart-shaped leaves and white veins. Honeyvine can grow to be up to fifteen feet long and will wrap around any nearby vegetation or fences. 

Removing these weeds is crucial for maintaining the health of the rest of your landscape.   

Common Grassy Weeds

Crabgrass

Crabgrass is every property owner’s nightmare because it can present a whole host of lawn problems. 

Crabgrass is often difficult to approach simply because it looks so similar to grass around it. This weed typically spreads outward, but it can grow up to two feet upright. 

Green Foxtail

Chances are that you have seen this weed crawling up the sides of your buildings or creeping out of cracks in the pavement. 

Green foxtail is a weed that forms clumps of grass, growing up to three feet tall with bristly “fox tails” at the top.  

While these four are some of the most common types of weeds you may encounter in Tennessee, the list goes on and on. It is crucial that you have an advanced understanding of exactly what you’re dealing with on your property. 

In any case, don’t leave the health of your landscape up to chance, leave it up to the experienced professionals at The Parke Company. 

From lawn mowing to tree removal, the landscaping professionals at The Parke Company have the experience and the skills to handle lawn problems and answer your landscaping services questions.

Let us meet the unique needs of your property and bring your design dreams to life. Let’s start with those weeds.  

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

Home Landscaping: 3 Plants and Flowers Perfect for Nashville Weather

A field of flowers in a Nashville lawn

The Best Flowers for Your Nashville Home

When it comes to landscaping, one size certainly does not fit all. As you might expect, the success of trees and plants has a lot to do with the climate and weather of the land surrounding it. 

If you own residential or commercial property in Nashville, you may find it tricky to figure out how to match your design dreams with what Nashville’s environment will facilitate. 

If you want to avoid the trial and error of figuring out which plants will thrive in Nashville weather, here are three types of  plants and flowers perfect for the Nashville landscape. 

Nashville Weather: What to Expect

While Tennessee is most often considered a southern state, every Nashville resident knows not to expect a high of 75 year-round. 

Nashville weather features the full four-season spectrum throughout the year, with lows of 20 degrees in January and highs nearing 89 degrees in summer months around July and August. 

According to US Climate Data, precipitation in Nashville varies throughout the year, reaching its highest levels of rain in May, November, and December, and seeing the least amount of precipitation in October. 

While this climate may sound temperamental, the fairly consistent rainfall and relatively mild temperatures make Nashville an incredibly hospitable environment for a variety of plants and perennials. Here are three plants and flowers to incorporate into your Nashville home landscaping: 

1. Autumn Blaze Maple Tree

For the property owner who wants to add aesthetic beauty to their landscape, but avoid the delicate attention required for flowers, tree planting may be a better option.  

These trees grow perfectly in Nashville weather and can offer a gorgeous canopy over your property. While they certainly won’t grow as quickly as a flower bed might, it is still a rapidly growing tree that thrives in Nashville. 

2. Camellias

Camellias are a perfect option for Nashville weather because they are a shrub and therefore a bit hardier, but they are also flowering, which means that they add a great deal of beauty and color to your landscape. 

Unlike some other plants and perennials, shrubs require a lot less upkeep as the seasons shift.

3. Lavender

Lavender is another hardy plant that offers both aesthetic beauty and easy maintenance. Lavender is an herb that can be used for a variety of purposes outside of just adding to the visual appearance of your landscape. Lavender is also highly drought-resistant and can withstand months of low precipitation without having to overcompensate with irrigation systems.  

These plants and flowers are perfect go-tos for any Nashville resident looking for a surefire way to improve the look of their landscape. Even so, there are hundreds of different plants and flowers that will flourish in Nashville’s environment. 

Especially when things like proximity to wetlands, exposure to sun, and irrigation methods are taken into account, each individual property is truly unique, and it takes a skilled professional to know precisely what plant life will fare the best in your landscape. 

Hiring the experienced professionals at The Parke Company for landscape services is the first step to ensuring you receive the kind of lawn services and landscaping maintenance necessary to keep your property and beautiful as possible. 

From lawn mowing to tree removal, the landscaping professionals at The Parke Company have the experience and the skills to meet the unique needs of your property and bring your design dreams to life. 

Give us a call (615-350-6033) or contact us online today to see how the design experts and arborists at The Parke Company can work for you.

Backyard Ponds: 4 Benefits of These Water Features

Coy pond with coy swimming

Consider These Water Features

When it comes to landscaping, property owners might believe that a pragmatist keeps their landscaping services limited to lawn mowing and more elaborate installations like water features are for more extravagant types of people. 

What you may not know, however, is that there is a whole host of benefits to adding a pond on your property that has nothing to do with impressing party guests or keeping up with the Joneses. 

From increased property value to environmental benefits, installing a water feature on your property could be the one landscaping decision that makes a world of difference for your residential or commercial property. 

Here is what you need to know about the four most significant benefits of incorporating a pond into your property’s landscape. 

Property Value

With relatively high costs for excavation, some property owners may fear that ponds are a fiscally irresponsible choice. 

While pond installation is a landscaping project that may cost more than simple leaf raking or regular lawn maintenance, the added value balances out the sticker shock of the initial investment. 

According to American Forest Management, the increase in property value after adding a pond is almost certain. In most cases, the bare land values of a property with a pond increased anywhere up to 42% (with an average of a 6% increase, overall). In addition, properties with ponds were also on the market roughly 50 days fewer than homes without!

Saving Money

As previously mentioned, ponds can offer a great return on investment when the time comes to sell your property. Even so, ponds can actually be a great way to save money while you’re still enjoying your current landscape. 

Ponds virtually eliminate the cost to water a large area of your property, which cuts out a significant portion of your monthly utility bills. While there is an initial cost to fill the pond, these types of water features can refill with simple rain water, or drain pipes can be set up to capture and reroute rainfall into your ponds. 

Switching out the water occasionally may be necessary, but ponds are essentially self-filling and can even be used to water nearby plants and foliage if need be!  

Environmental Benefits

The greatest benefit that having a backyard pond offers may be its tremendously positive environmental impact

The aforementioned reduction in watering is certainly beneficial for the environment as well as your budget. Concurrently, reducing the overall amount of grass on your property reduces mowing, which cuts down on pollutants released into the atmosphere during lawn maintenance, plus it also reduces the amount of pesticides and fertilizers used on your property, further shrinking your carbon footprint and reducing your environmental impact. 

Aesthetic Quality

All in all, the first reason most people want a pond is because of the aesthetic appeal. Even those who don’t live close to a  lakeshore or ocean can find the tranquility of a body of water on their own private land. Whether it is a large man-made pond, or just something small enough for a few koi fish, ponds offer the auditory pleasure of trickling waters, gorgeous views, and even a relaxing dip if you’re feeling adventurous. 

If you’re looking for a new way to holistically improve your property, installing a pond is certainly the route to take, but this is one project you should never do on your own.  

Hiring the experienced professionals at The Parke Company for landscape services is the first step to ensuring you receive the kind of lawn services necessary to preserve the assets on your property. 

From lawn mowing to tree removal, the landscaping professionals at The Parke Company have the experience and the skills to meet the unique needs of your property and bring your design dreams to life. 

Give us a call (615-350-6033) or contact us online today to see how the design experts and arborists at The Parke Company can work for you.