2017 Landscape Design Trends

Landscape Design trends for 2017 that will improve your landscape.

With Oklahoma having just experienced several years of drought conditions, drought-tolerant plants and low-maintenance gardens are frequent topics property owners ask about to upgrade their landscape design and enhance their outdoor experience. Sustainability in all environmental conditions is frequently requested from landscape designers by their clients for economic and environmental reasons.

Upgrading outdoor spaces and overhauling the yard.

The backyard is the main focus of most residential landscaping projects.  Large-scale renovations of outdoor spaces are the predominant theme as opposed to small upgrades.  Year round usability for outdoor living areas is becoming more desirable and common.  Hardscape installation of outdoor kitchens, patios, and pergolas that are accessible year-round are a growing trend.  This could possibly be a result of a positive economic outlook.

Updating outdoor irrigation systems and landscape lighting in outdoor projects.

A growing trend for homeowners is to upgrade their outdoor lighting and irrigation design in the foreseeable future.  Motion-sensitive lighting and precipitation-sensitive irrigation are both considerations for the residential landscape. Both of these are reflective of the advancement toward high tech upgrade options.  With consideration of the rising cost of irrigation in drought conditions, irrigation systems have become much more efficient and effective.   And with security and usability concerns, outdoor lighting has become easier to implement.  Plus, the overall interest in outdoor media and kitchens is still growing strong in outdoor living areas.

New materials in pathways, driveways, patios and terraces.

Pavers, Gravel, crushed rock, and stamped concrete are some of the more common materials and methods used for permeable surface in the landscape.  The reuse and salvage of existing materials onsite are in high demand as that reduces the financial cost and for those concerned with the environment, and offers a smaller carbon footprint.

Reducing the Lawn Footprint

Outdoor renovations with an existing lawn are more commonly moving toward the limiting the amount of lawn in the landscape.  Ground covers and other products are increasingly popular among homeowners reducing their lawn footprint. Options include replacing the grass areas of a lawn with water features, patios and kitchens, and increasing garden beds.  Helping the environment and reducing maintenance are some reasons for reducing the lawn, and many homeowners choose to accomplish this by increasing their hardscape area.

Use of native plants, native adapted, and drought-tolerant plants.

As a result of reducing the lawn, plants that require less caretaking – watering, fertilization, deadheading and overall maintenance are in greater demand.  This presents an exceptional opportunity for growers and landscape designers to communicate about natives and the importance of “right plant, right place.”

For more information about creating a sustainable landscape in all conditions, and upgrading your outdoor living areas, contact Land Creations by sending us a message or request, or call us at (405) 755-7866.

Three tips for transforming your landscape

Transforming your landscape with 3 valuable tips

Garden Planning is not “Set it and Forget it”

Remember that proper garden and landscape planning does not happen just once and then you forget it. For best results, landscape planning happens over the entire growing season, beginning before your garden awakens after the dormant winter, comes to life during the spring, thrives during the summer (hopefully), and transitions to fall foliage. When landscape planning proceeds the annual life cycle of your garden, you can create the optimum garden and landscape health for each season and properly schedule the appropriate actions and preparations. This approach will keep your landscape vibrant in all seasons and allow for time to enjoy the benefits of your efforts.  Bottom line, while enjoying your garden, you are simultaneously creating the ideas that evolve with the next season of your landscape.

1.     Your landscape is always in a state of transition

Your landscape design, like our world in general, is always in a constant state of flux and transition. The soil and the plants that grow in it are not static. Go outside today and look at your lawn and gardens and take a snapshot of that moment in time, because it will never look exactly the same. That’s the nature of our outdoor world. If you’re underwhelmed by what you observe or you see glaring issues, what would you change? What’s missing? What’s struggling? How and when will you make that change?

Once you truly understand the specifics of what you don’t like, you will be able to create a plan to change it. Just remember – landscapes are never truly complete. They are always a work in progress. Some years are more active than others. For example, drought may cause unexpected failures that don’t show up for a year. Or, a plant you thought was giving up enjoys an amazing rebound because of a rainy spring.

People can get complacent with what they consider a finished landscape design. This unfortunate circumstance creates a situation where the landscape falls into decline and eventually requires more expense just to return to the “status quo”.   If you accept that changes will be inevitable and adapt your plan, your landscape will evolve in line with nature’s design.

2.     Know when to stop designing and get to work.

One thing we see frequently is constant tweaking in an attempt to get the design just right. At Land Creations, we’re all about the design, the plan, and the goals.  But at some point, you’ve got to jump in and get the project started. Failure to make that transition causes “perfection paralysis”. You could go on designing forever, constantly questioning your design and the desired outcome.  Once you’ve invested your time and have developed a workable plan for your garden, just get it done.

And here’s a tip to help once you have implemented your plan; give it time to take root and grow. Be patient and give the plants time to recover from the installation process. You can constantly evaluate your work, but take a deep breath and wait before making any drastic changes.

Patience and care are critical for your beautiful landscape.  And if some plants are struggling, just show them a little love. Give them time and your attention and chances are they will please you with their drive to thrive.

3.     Patience will pay you back.

We invest time, money, hopes and dreams in our landscapes and often have unreasonable expectations about how quickly they’ll provide a return on that investment. In our instant gratification society, we want instant outcomes.   But when it comes to gardening and our landscapes, patience will provide a great deal of pleasure and satisfaction.

Allow your landscape to be a functional part of your evolving life experience, and whether you are doing the work yourself or partnering with a landscape design professional, the task will feel less like a burden and more like a gift of creations and surprises.

For more information about creating a sustainable landscape in all conditions, and upgrading your outdoor living areas, contact Land Creations by sending us a message or request, or call us at (405) 755-7866.

Save with 5 Landscape Design Tips

5 Best Money-Saving Landscape Design Tips

Even those of us who are passionate about landscape design and gardening can be equally passionate about saving time and money while doing it. Minimizing effort and expense on your landscaping chores is all about knowing the best times to perform certain tasks around your gardens and lawn. Whether it’s maintenance, planning, or installing – understanding the seasons is key for making sure you time your work so that it’s cost and time effective.
If you’re ready to lessen your burden when it comes to maintaining your landscape and all the elements in it, here are 5 tips to make your life easier:

1.   Plan next Spring Landscape Design in the Fall

For many people, “spring clean-up” often waits until after Memorial Day when the days are longer and weekends nicer for outside work.  The problem is, once your timing is off, you can’t play catch-up – Mother Nature will simply continue to outpace you.

Unfortunately, the commercial home and garden industry has conditioned consumers into believing landscape design should be done in the spring, including getting rid of the dead growth from the previous season. Nothing could be further from the truth. Fall is a great time to take full advantage of autumn rains, cooling temperatures, and plants slowly going to sleep for the winter. As your gardens quietly fade with the seasons, carefully prune dead growth so your gardens will be ready for spring.

When it comes to planning your landscape lighting, fall is a good time to get ready for next year’s growing season.  Our temptation is to lay out and install outdoor lighting in the spring as plants and trees turn green and warmer temperatures entice us outdoors.  But springtime is often busy with other projects for planting and gardening, and planning your outdoor lighting won’t be done correctly until your planting is completed.   And if you do install lighting in the spring, you won’t have the advantage of full foliage to know how effective your lighting will be.  Planning your landscape lighting in early fall, before your plants enter their dormant phase and lose their leaves, will let you plan for optimum lighting for the following summer months.  Just be sure to allow for some flexibility for next spring landscape design changes.

2.   Assess your landscape for “edits” in the late spring

Nothing promotes overspending like assessing your landscape too early in the year. The early spring months are far too transitional to make any major judgment calls on what should be updated or replaced. Some plants may have struggled through winter and need a little more time to perk back up. Just be patient, give it a little time, and wait until you have a better picture of what your landscape will look like come warmer weather. You may not have to do as much as you think once winter recovery is complete.

The key is not to rush. Slow down a little. Let the spring unfold completely so you can fully articulate what transformations you’d like to see before you dive into any expensive landscaping projects – on your own or with a professional.

3.   Plan for fall projects in the summertime

Once you and your landscape have gone through spring and life has fully returned, you can accurately assess your plant performance and garden composition. Now you have the data you need to design your garden edits and landscape design updates over the early summer months, so you’re able to set your budgets and line up work for the fall season. By taking the time to plan, you’ll guard against wasting money on unnecessary or inadequate solutions.

4.   Target planting projects for the fall

If you want to add or adjust the plantings in your landscape, autumn is your season because it helps prevent plant losses that occur so frequently in the hotter, more stressful summer months. New plants as well as transplants suffer and often die through drought, so save money by working with plants when you’re more likely to succeed. Mother Nature will be on your side with shortening days and cooler temps.

Also, fall is the time when roots are in active growth mode. Think of it this way — if you’re digging up plants, damaging roots, what better time to do that than when the roots can rebound with quick attention?

Remember to hydrate plants well before you dig them up. This will help with the shock and the new acclimation efforts. Oh, and water after, too – they’re going to be thirsty after all that activity.

5.   Approach a hardscape design project like remodeling a house

Hardscape design projects are expensive, so the best tip we have to get the most out of your money is to design, plan, and budget adequately for the job. Just because you’d like it to be less costly doesn’t mean it can be. Cutting corners to save a buck now just means you’ll probably be spending a lot more later-on to fix the shortcomings.

Remember, a hardscape addition such as a wall or patio should be considered a permanent, one-time effort. Think of your house — you don’t want to go back and fix stuff after you’ve built it. Ideally, it was built right to begin with. Solid foundations for walls and patios and other hardscapes make all the difference in the world. They may cost more, but they’re also an insurance policy. Believe it or not, the earth moves — especially when winter brings deep, upheaving frosts — so slapping a bunch of stone on top of soil isn’t going to hold.

Choose where you’ll build your hardscape features wisely. Don’t rush through it. Again, this is a permanent build, so placement is critical to success, both visually and functionally. If you’re putting your hard won dollars into hardscape be sure to learn all the ins and outs of how to succeed and build a sustainable project that will last a long, long, long time.

We love the idea of landscapes being “cheap”, but here’s the truth: they aren’t. The way we save money is to be smart and plan work to maximize wins while minimizing losses.

For more information about creating a sustainable landscape in all conditions, and upgrading your outdoor living areas, contact Land Creations by sending us a message or request, or call us at (405) 755-7866.

Great landscape designs for beautiful curb appeal

Landscape Design ideas to improve your curb appeal

Everyone likes to think that visitors and passerby’s will have a good impression of our homes.  But making a few low to medium cost additions to your landscape design will have make a dramatic effect on curb appeal.  You can easily go from not being noticed to turning heads.  At Land Creations Landscape and Design, we are experts in designing and installing beautiful additions that make your home stand out from the rest.  The following are a few suggestions to consider if you’re interested in creating your homes head turning appeal.

Installing Landscape Lighting in trees and around walkways

Placing your landscape lighting in the right places and in the right amounts can have a dramatic impact on how others view your property.   Many of us have areas that we must light for safety and security reasons.  But placing high wattage lighting in these areas can be distracting and overwhelming to the rest of your landscape.   You can achieve the same result with moderate lighting that is attractive and blends well with the rest of your outdoor lighting.

Lighting the canopy of your trees from below can create a subtle yet very attractive means to the appeal for your nighttime landscape.   Having just the right amount of lighting will provide some emphasis to some important features to your lawn.

Subtly illuminating the walkways and entrance to your home can provide safe and secure passage for yourself and your guests while entering and leaving your home.  Creating beautiful land creations is what we do.  Just contact us for a free consultation on the possibilities for your landscape

Hardscapes that provide the right accent

Creating Hardscape Design enhancements to your landscape is one of our specialties.  And creating beautiful Hardscapes is our expertise.  Some of the enhancements that love most are:

  • Arbors, wood Patios, and trellises
  • Retaining walls, stone work, and fences
  • Water features including fountains, ponds, and streams
  • Outdoor seating areas
  • Sidewalks and driveways
  • And anything else you can think of

Ask us for some ideas, or browse through some of the work we have done for other clients.  At Land Creations, we will find and create the perfect Hardscape design for your landscape.

Fixing those dead spots

Those dead spots that seem to be impossible to fix aren’t only a nuisance, they can ruin an otherwise beautiful landscape.  While the rest of your yard may look great, people will only see the bare spots.  At Land Creations, we know how to fix those areas, from planting shade resistant ground cover to turning those spots into a prize winning garden.  We have the experience to turn those dead spots into highlights.  Just ask us how.  We’d be happy to share our expertise.

To learn more, call us at (405) 755-7866, or send us a message from our website.  While you’re there, take a look around.