choosing the right flowers for your olathe landscape

Picking the Right Flowers for Your Home Landscape

choosing the right flowers for your olathe landscape

Choosing the right flowers for your home landscape design entails more than just choosing your favorite flowers.

Aesthetics is only one element of planning the perfect flower garden. You also have to consider growing conditions, space considerations, the characteristics of each plant, your ability to maintain the growth year to year, and much more.

To learn a bit about how to choose the best flowers for your home landscape, keep reading. You might also want to read this post about annuals, biennials, and perennials to help you decide which flowers will work best for you.

Assess Your Space

Once you have an idea of how often you want to plant, take an honest assessment of your space. How much sun does it get? Plants can thrive in all conditions—from full-shade to full-sun—but only if you plant the right plants in the right place.

To properly assess which plants will thrive in your space, you need to know how many hours of direct sunlight the space receives every day. Then, choose flowers that will love that spot and the sun it gets.

Like most landscapes, your space likely has spots with varying amounts of sun exposure. And that’s a good thing! The most interesting landscapes are often those with variety: both shade and sun plants, different heights and colors.

Size Matters

The best landscapers in Olathe will tell you that scale matters. That doesn’t mean you have to plant only small flowers in a small space or large flowers in a sprawling landscape. But it does mean that considering how large a flower plant will grow is an important part of planning the perfect-for-you landscape.

Another thing to speak to your landscape expert about is plant spread. Some flowers will grow more than others and overtake a space. Think about sunflowers and how tall they can grow; if you plant only sunflowers and marigolds, the space might not look as nice as you’d hoped. You need something more proportionate, or additional flowers to fill that middle space.

Get Help

Knowing when and what to plant for a gorgeous landscape can be a fun DIY project, for sure. But working with a knowledgeable expert can help expedite the creation of a garden, flower bed, lawn, or landscape.  If you’re ready to work together to create the landscape you’ve always wanted, contact us to learn more.

How to De-Winterize Your Home Landscape and Prep for Spring

Goodbye winter, hello sun!

Spring spruce-ups aren’t just for kitchen cabinets and family rooms! Daylight Savings Time has given us back a bit more daylight and the temperatures will start to tick upward. This means it’s time to start thinking about how to de-winterize your home landscape and prepare for the upcoming warmer weather. And what you do now is particularly important to creating a home landscape that you’ll love all year. Keep reading for easy steps to take to prep your yard for spring.

Undo What You’ve Done

Did you winterize water lines or outdoor kitchens before freezing temperatures hit? If so, it’s time to reverse those actions. Turn the water back on and flush hoses and lines. Make sure lines are clear, and check for any maintenance issues. Be sure to pay special attention to your irrigation system so you’re ready to properly water plants once the time is right.

Out With the Old

The best landscapers in Olathe will tell you that the difference between a typical lawn and a landscape that wows is part planning, part hard work, part timing. Now’s the time to think about what you want your space to look like and to speak to your lawn and landscaping experts.

The first step is to clean up what winter left behind. Are there dead branches and debris? Plants that need to be pruned and/or relocated, because they’ve outgrown their current space? As you clear what’s no longer healthy and/or attractive, think about replacement options.

Plan Ahead

You might not be thinking about weeds just yet, but now is the time to get a head start on weed control. The best way to control weeds is to prevent them, and landscape experts know when and how to prevent weeds in your lawn and garden.

Now is also the time to think about a schedule: do you know when to plant, when to fertilize, when to aerate? You can search online to find tips, but the best way is to trust the experts. We know Johnson County and can help you create the lawn and landscape you’ve always wanted.

olathe retaining wall installation

Everything You Need to Know About Retaining Walls

What, exactly, is a retaining wall—and what do you need to know about Olathe retaining wall installation? Simply put, a retaining wall is a free-standing barrier. This barrier prevents dirt and sediment from succumbing to the forces of gravity. That means a retaining wall can keep dirt where it is needed instead of letting it wash away—and that’s important for homeowners.

Talk of retaining walls typically includes words like “slope” and “gravity” and “gradation.” And those words are important, to be sure. But retaining walls are about more than just dirt, and they’re one of the elements of landscape design that can be both functional and aesthetically pleasing.

Why Might I Need a Retaining Wall?

The best Olathe landscape architects will tell you that reasons abound for building a retaining wall. It might be a logistical decision if there are issues of slope or runoff. Making sure your home’s foundation is protected is one of the most important considerations you’ll make as a homeowner, and foundations can be threatened by sliding hills, washout, and erosion. It might also be a design decision. For example, if you want a tiered garden to make the best use of a small space, a retaining wall might be a great option. It also might work for you if you’re looking for a way to add extra seating options.

A retaining wall can, in fact, be a multi-tasking element of your landscape design. It can provide practical, necessary protection to your home and landscape. I can also add a beautiful, unique design element to your yard. Even better, it can help create a unique focal point that expresses your personality and design tastes. The best way to ensure that you achieve each goal is to consult with a professional. Take that time to ask questions and to learn all you can about why a retaining wall might work for you.

There’s More than One Olathe Retaining Wall Option

A retaining wall should first be practical, for certain. There are too many issues to worry about if done shoddily, so be sure to consult with a professional. But that doesn’t mean it can’t look great, too. As you think of options, remember that you have choices.  You can opt for concrete, brick, stone, even wood. Remember to weigh the pros and cons of each option; for example, wood might better suit your design and personal taste, but likely won’t last as long as stone or concrete.

Knowledge is Power

Truth is, every yard is different and there’s no way to adequately tell you everything you need to know about retaining walls unless we actually have a conversation. But there is one important thing we can say to everyone: don’t go it alone. While we could give you a checklist of things to be aware of, there are technical issues that matter. This is especially true of the behind-the-scenes technicalities of properly constructed retaining walls. Remember that a proper retaining wall needs proper drainage, sturdy construction, and careful planning. Working together with a dedicated Olathe landscaping company can help you find just the right solution.  So reach out to ask questions, or to see examples of projects we’ve completed.

 

Retaining wall considerations

Do I Need a Retaining Wall?

First things first: what is a retaining wall? Simply put, a retaining wall is a barrier that holds in place earth that would otherwise erode or collapse. Retaining walls can be small DIY projects or larger-scale and professionally constructed. Retaining walls can be constructed from a range of materials and can vary in size, shape, and design.

Why Would I Want a Retaining Wall?

There are two main reasons to consider a retaining wall. First, because it’s physically necessary to correct a slope, prevent erosion, or otherwise level the earth in your yard. These retaining walls serve a functional purpose. In residential settings, retaining walls are necessary when there might be an abrupt separation of ground elevation. Reasons a retaining wall can be necessary include sunken patios, walkout basements, and other hardscapes. Aesthetics are the second consideration. Retaining walls can create tiered gardens or flowerbeds, which add visual interest to otherwise ordinary spaces.

Best of Both Worlds

Of course, landscape and hardscape elements can be both practical and beautiful. This is certainly the case with retaining walls, and is an important reason to work with a landscape architect when considering the installation of a retaining wall.

An expert landscape artist with retaining wall experience can help determine construction specifics as well as design aesthetics—meaning experienced landscapers will discuss the advantages and disadvantages of various materials, placement, and size.

Details Matter

Remember that there are specific considerations in determining if you need a retaining wall, some of which you might not know until you consult with an expert. Among those considerations: the slope of the earth at the location and the current drainage situation at the location in question, type of soil, and weather conditions (such as freezing).

As is the case with so many projects, building a retaining wall can be a DIY project for some, but working with an expert familiar with retaining walls and  your geographical area ensures that the retaining wall built will be not only attractive, but will also function as intended.

Ask the Right Questions

Knowing whether or not you need a retaining wall is more involved than just knowing you’re ready to build, and working with a professional landscape and construction company can help ensure all considerations: practical and financial, logistical and aesthetic, are fully researched and planned before construction begins.

Curious about retaining walls and your options? Contact us to learn more.

How to Make the Most Out of Your Landscaping Projects

It’s summer. The heat has rolled into town. You may or may not be thinking about Olathe landscaping projects right now. But, if you are, we wanted to give you some quick tips and tricks to ensure you make the most out of them.

See, landscaping isn’t easy. In fact, it can be downright tough. For that reason and many more, it’s worthwhile to make the most out of your Olathe landscaping projects. No reason to sweat outside for hours on end and not see stunning results. Or spend a ton of money and not be thrilled.

Make the Most Out of Your Landscaping Projects

Let’s dive in and look at a few ways to get the most out of your efforts in Olathe:

  • Think Long Haul

When getting the most out of a project is on your mind, you shouldn’t be thinking seasonal. It should be long-term. I’m talking yearly.

Think outdoor kitchens, retaining walls, flower beds, and evergreen plants. You can get a great bang for your buck by building your landscape around long-term structures built to last years – not months.

  • Plant Perennials

We all love flowers. They bring beauty to an Olathe landscape in a way no other plants can. But you don’t want to replant them each and every year. You want them to continue blooming year after year.

If that’s you, then you’ll want to plant perennials all around your landscape. They take the same time to plant and prosper year one, but after that you’ll have flowers for years on end.

  • Pay Attention to HVAC

Your HVAC units can hinder your landscaping and hurt your plants. Luckily, this is an easy fix that’ll ensure you get great results from any landscaping in Olathe.

If you’re doing it yourself, make sure to keep any and all landscaping at least 2-3 feet away from your HVAC units. This will ensure the plants don’t bother the unit – and vice versa. A professional Olathe landscaper will do this automatically.

  • Build a Berm

One underutilized landscaping trick is building a berm. If you have a boring area around your landscaping that needs a little sprucing up, then add a berm. The berm will give your home that “golf course” look you’ve always dreamed of.

  • Plan and Prepare

When working with professional landscapers, we love it when you’re as specific as possible. Then we can get you an estimate and scope down to the dollar. This helps eliminate any issue moving forward.

We want to work with you for years on end. This means getting the job done right and on budget – our main goals. So, the more details you give us – the easier it is to stay on budget for you.

Olathe Landscaping Projects Made Easy

If you’re looking to get any Olathe landscaping projects done this year, please reach out. Our team at Huston Contracting is here to make your projects last a lifetime!

Olathe Landscaping Sure to Add Curb Appeal: 4 Fun Ideas Before the Fall

Summer isn’t even here yet and you’re already talking about the fall? Yes, that’s just how life goes here at Huston Contracting. But here’s the deal…

We don’t want you wasting the summer months and early fall with a subpar landscape. We want your lawn looking lovely and your landscape lavish as the weather cools off.

So, we wanted to throw together a few quick tips on how to add curb appeal to your landscape. Although, there’s more to it than that. For example, an Olathe outdoor kitchen installed in the fall wouldn’t get a bunch of use.

However, if you installed that same kitchen in the spring, you’d have 5-6 months of use before the cold weather kicked in and you had to go back to cooking inside. What a drag!

Olathe Landscaping Sure to Add Curb Appeal: 4 Fun Ideas Before the Fall

So enough with the fluff, let’s dive in and look at a few fun ways to add curb appeal:

Outdoor Kitchens

We may be biased, but an Olathe outdoor kitchen is a pretty great way to add curb appeal and get a ton of use out of your landscaping projects.

Seriously, we’ve found homeowners use their outdoor kitchens more than just about any other landscaping project. There’s just something about cooking a wonderful meal in the great outdoors that brings families together.

Fire Pit Fun

There’s not much better than roasting marshmallows on an open fire. So, why not add a luxurious fire pit to your Olathe landscape?

Fire pits look great, add insane curb appeal, and generally, get a lot of love during those warm summer nights and cool fall ones. Seriously, most people get a lot of use when they install a professional fire pit and it looks great.

Fertilizing Fun

Ok, so this might not be a huge project like the others on this list, but a little fertilizer can go a long way. With proper fertilizing techniques, you’re sure to find your curb appeal up as you landscape gets greener and greener.

Seriously, this is the best cheap way to take your curb appeal from lame to fame within the neighborhood.

Don’t Doubt the Drought

Last but not least, you should always expect a drought in the hot summer months. Your Olathe landscape just isn’t meant to cope with extreme heat.

So, you need to plan for it. This means planting drought-tolerant plants, prepping for the heat through fertilizing in the spring, and keeping those sprinklers on standby.

Curb Appeal and a Great Deal?

If you’re looking to add a little curb appeal before the fall, we’re here to help. At Huston Contracting, our job is to make your landscape look as lavish as possible. This means helping you add curb appeal in fun and creative ways. Get in touch if that sounds interesting.

The Do’s and Don’ts of Summer Landscaping in Olathe

It’s here. The warm weather is almost upon us. Gone are the days of freezing cold weather and ugly brown Olathe landscapes. Coming are the hot months, pool days, and lavish landscaping weather.

If you take Olathe landscaping seriously, like I imagine you do, then you’ve prepared for this weather all year around. You planted seeds in the fall. You kept things tidy during the winter months.

When spring rolled around, you were more than ready to pay your dues and get those thumbs green. Your lawn has already started to look good, but you understand that the coming months are key to a solid landscape from June through October.

The Do’s and Don’ts of Summer Landscaping in Olathe

Let’s dive in and see exactly what to do and what not to do this summer:

Don’t Water When It’s Not Needed

There’s many times in the spring and early summer where your lawn won’t need any watering. So, don’t give it any.

There are too many times we see lawns and Olathe landscaping looking awful because of overwatering. Just don’t do it. Only water your lawn when it needs it. This means when they’re newly planted or if they start to look slightly unhealthy, starting to wilt, or brown.

If your lawn looks nice and green while there’s been consistent rain, leave the sprinklers off for a change. Your lawn will thank you.

Do Water Deeper

When you believe your plants and lawn need a little watering, then do it right. A typical sprinkler often doesn’t do much in the warmer months – because the water simply evaporates before the roots of any plant can get to it.

Instead, try using a soaker hose with a full stream of water. This type of watering will penetrate deeply into the ground and ensure the roots of plants actually receive the water they need to succeed.

Don’t Ignore Those Weeds

If you ignore the weeds in your lawn and let them seed, then they’ll soon spread. What was once a few weeds will become a massive problem.

Never ignore your weed issue. Always pull all the weeds you can find with a legitimate weeding tool – not just your hands. You need to get the roots out of the lawn.

Do Fertilize Your Lawn

Always. Be. Fertilizing. This is especially important during the rapid growth times of spring and early summer. During these months, your Olathe landscape can turn from good to great. You just need to add a little fuel to the fire.

By fuel, we mean some great fertilizers. Use fertilizer when the weather is a little cooler, either in the spring or in the morning during the summer months. This allows your plants and landscaping to absorb the nutrients and fight the summer heat.

Get Your Olathe Landscaping Down Pat!

With the do’s and don’ts above, you’re sure to have the best looking lawn on the block. If that doesn’t happen for some reason, just get in touch. Our professional team here at Huston Contracting will have your lawn looking lovely in no time!

 

 

Going Green! 5 Ways to Conserve Energy Through Landscaping

Going green has become popular in nearly every industry. We’re all trying to be environmentally-friendly these days, and that’s a great thing. However, most industries have to make huge changes to help the environment while improving their operations.

With Olathe landscaping, things are a little different. See, by changing your landscape just a little bit, you can also help the environment. There’s tons of ways to do this. Why? Because your landscape is the environment.

A tweak here and a change there can mean hundreds in savings for homeowners. Plus, the environment wins, too. A true win-win situation!

5 Ways to Conserve Energy Through Landscaping

So without further ado, let’s dive into the five ways you can conserve energy with your Olathe landscaping:

  • Shade Over Everything

The easiest way to save money on your landscaping is to shade your home. When the sun beats down on your home, things heat up inside. In the summer months, this means your home continually gets hotter and hotter. A hotter home always equates to higher A/C bills.

By using leafy trees to shade your home, you can drastically lower your utility bills in the warmer summer months. At Huston Contracting, we believe this is the best way to go green. Add some large trees to your property.

  • Wild Wind

In the winter months, the cold wind actually does more damage to the inside temperature of your house than just the cold. As such, you’ll want to insulate your home from the wind as much as possible.

How do you do that? Simple, add some evergreen trees and shrubs around the sides of your home. These plants will take the brute force of the cold winds and keep your home as warm as can be. This will lower heating bills.

  • Landscape Design

One costly concern for landscapers around the world is water. In Olathe, there are many months that our lawns need water. As such, many Olathe residents spend hundreds of dollars a year watering their lawns.

There’s nothing wrong with this, but it’s certainly not a “green” principle. Luckily, there’s a simple solution. By working with a landscape design professional, you can incorporate drainage solutions and irrigation systems into your landscape.

By adding these two things to your landscape, you’ll be able to significantly lower your water bills in the hot months. We believe this is one of the more efficient ways for Olathe landscapers to truly go green.

Go Green Today!

If you’re looking to increase efficiency within your home through landscaping, get in touch today. At Huston Contracting, we have dozens of ways for specific homeowners to lower energy bills through their landscape.

We look forward to hearing from you!

4 Low Water Usage Olathe Landscaping Ideas

Some think your lawn can’t look great unless it’s April through July and the grass is as green as it’s ever been before.

At Huston Contracting, we know that’s just not true. So we wanted to show you a few low water usage Olathe landscaping ideas. Using these unique ideas, you’ll be able to improve your lawn and keep your landscape looking good.

It won’t matter if the rain isn’t falling or you’re looking to cut back on the watering, you can still implement these ideas.

Low Water Usage Olathe Landscaping Ideas

Let’s take a look at these ideas and how you can improve your Olathe landscaping without using much water:

  • Create an Outdoor Environment

This is the easiest way to improve your Olathe landscape without using a ton of water. You can add features like an outdoor kitchen, retaining wall, or a covered porch. These unique features won’t cost any water and will add significant value to your landscaping, especially in the backyard area.

Don’t delay, though! By investing in an outdoor kitchen early in the season, you’ll be able to enjoy it even more this year.

  • Find the Right Plants

Certain plants require water every single day. If you don’t water some species of plants daily, they will look withered and weak. On the other hand, there are some plants that look great year around – whether they get a ton of water or not.

If you plant species like Agave, Sage, Lavender Cotton, and more – you won’t have to water these plants often. These species simply don’t require a lot of water to look great, especially in the spring and summer.

  • Walkways Galore

Walkways are one easy way to change the whole face of your landscaping without using much water or breaking the bank. Using natural stone to create unique walkways to your covered porch, outdoor kitchen, or a sitting area is a great Olathe landscaping idea for the coming months.

  • Maybe a Little Mulch

Ok, this idea might be a little basic. We get that. But there’s really never a bad time to add a little mulch around your landscaping. Fresh mulch looks exactly like it sounds – fresh! You don’t need any water to add a little mulch and this small change will add a lot of life to your landscaping like never before.

Create Your Ideal Landscape…Today!

You don’t need to waste water all the time to keep your lawn looking ideal, especially around this time of the year. Just get in contact with Huston Contracting. As the Olathe Landscaping experts, we’re here to help you create the lawn of your dreams. We look forward to working with you!

 

There’s No Better Time Than Now! 3 Springtime Olathe Landscaping Tips and Trends

Spring has almost sprung for Olathe landscaping. The afternoons are starting to get warm and the sun is creeping out behind grey skies. It’s time to start focusing on the landscape once again. With that in mind, we wanted to talk about some amazing landscaping ideas for the spring.

With 2018 in full swing, we’ve had time to see what landscaping ideas will turn into trends this spring. We believe we’ve pinpointed exactly how to turn your Olathe landscaping from dull to darling in the least amount of time.

There’s No Better Time Than Now! 3 Springtime Olathe Landscaping Tips and Trends

Instead of waiting around, it’s time to take action and make the Olathe landscape of your dreams a reality. It’s time to get in touch with Huston Contracting and take control of your lawn. Here are a few ideas on how to do just that:

  • Climate Focused

Climate matters in 2018, especially in Olathe, Kansas. If you’re making landscaping changes in the spring, you’ll want areas and spaces that you can enjoy through every season. At Huston Contracting, we found a few ways to help you with that.

If you’re building an Olathe outdoor kitchen or a covered porch, you could also consider an outdoor fireplace. The fireplace design and area could be close to the kitchen or porch and provide ideal heating for the space during the cooler months.

  • Water Management

Managing how much water you use on your lawn and landscape is a huge trend coming into this year. You need to focus on low water usage Olathe landscaping trends. Obviously, an outdoor kitchen or patio won’t use much water.

You can also build walkways, incorporate an energy-efficient irrigation system, and add plants that don’t require a lot of watering. Sage and Lavender Cotton are two of our favorites here at Huston Contracting.

  • More Tech, Newer Spaces

Keeping with the theme, eco-friendly innovations are all the rage in the landscaping world these days. Things like low emission lawn mowers, leaf blowers, and more have taken over the market.

The best way to help the environment while still keeping your lawn looking great? Install an irrigation system that use smart technology to keep the lawn watered, but conserve as much of it as possible.

At Huston Contracting, we’ve recently started installing some of these systems and have seen insanely positive results. Many of our customers who have said systems have cut their watering bills in half – while their lawns look better than ever before. Suffice to say, we’ve got a lot of great feedback from these systems.

Let’s Tackle These Trends Together!

With spring upon us, it’s time to start paying attention to your Olathe landscaping. If you’re ready to take your lawn to the next level, then get in touch with our team at Huston Contracting. We look forward to working with you this year!