I get a lot of calls from clients who are stumped on what to do with their sloped yards. There are a variety of plants that I use to resolve erosion issues and ensure less maintenance. Read on to learn about low growing plants that work well on slopes.
Cotoneaster dammeri ‘Coral Beauty’ (Bearberry)
Continue reading Low Growing Plants that Work Well on Slopes
Step 1 – Make a Landscape Design Plan
Step 2 – Plant: Winter is a great time!
Step 3 – Prepare
Clients often ask us what they can do during the winter to get their yard ready for spring, summer and fall. Our answer – tons of things!
- First, create a landscape design plan. Winter is a great time to think about the seasons ahead and work on planning your landscape – consider hiring a designer to create a scaled drawing.
- Second, plant! Winter is absolutely a great time to work on a planting installation. While some perennials may be unavailable the vast majority of our plants do great when planted in the winter.
- Third, prepare. Not ready to start planting? There are still things you can do to move your project forward. Start saving so you have funds available for future projects. Get outside and make notes about your winter garden – what do you like and what isn’t working? Browse garden magazines for inspiration.
Ready to get started? Contact Bright Leaf Landscaping at 919-619-4460 to schedule a landscape design consultation or fill out our online contact form. Design and installation are our expertise, and we are always happy to meet with new clients to discuss potential projects!
Whether you do it yourself or hire a company like ours, landscaping design and installation is an investment of your time and money into your property. Done well it can be a wise investment – with the payout being increased beauty and higher property values. Read on to learn about common landscaping mistakes and how to avoid them.
Put the Right Plant…
Continue reading Putting the Right Plant in the Right Place
Last summer some large Leyland Cypress trees came down on my neighbor’s property resulting in a lot more light in my front yard, as well as some additional space to fill with plants! As 2017 comes to a close, I’m revisiting some of the plants I decided to add to this space – Teddy Bear Magnolia, Magic Carpet Spirea, and Ruby Slippers Hydrangea.
The Teddy Bear Magnolia was the definite winner for me. This is a plant that I’ve been aware of for several years but for some reason had never used. Little Gem is another dwarf Magnolia cultivar, and for whatever reason it seems to be more readily available in the nursery trade. In any case, I’m now a Teddy Bear fan! In addition to large glossy leaves with velvety undersides this dwarf tree surprised me with its relatively quick growth rate. Typically when you pick a dwarf cultivar for smaller size, you also get a very slow growth rate, so I was pleasantly surprised when this tree put on over a 1.5 feet of growth in 1 year.
Magnolia grandiflora ‘Teddy Bear’ – Teddy Bear Magnolia in my yard
Continue reading Checking in on the 3 New Cultivars I Added to my Garden in 2017
Many of my clients are a little confused when I suggest evergreen shrubs. They automatically think the plant is just a plain green shrub. In fact, evergreen plants are simply those that do not lose leaves in the winter. Read on to learn about some colorful choices for evergreen shrubs.
Continue reading Colorful Choices for Evergreen Shrubs
I tend to incorporate ferns into designs for shady sites, especially for properties with deer. My favorites happen to be cold-hardy in NC, plus range in size, color, and texture. Read on to learn about my favorite ferns and why I like them.
Dryopteris erythrosora – Autumn Fern
Continue reading My Favorite Ferns in NC Gardens and Why
Variegated plants are great way to add interest to your landscape and tie in to the color scheme of your garden. Read on to learn about flowering variegated plant options that will provide a bonus pop of color.
Hypericum moserianum ‘Tricolor’
Continue reading Flowering Variegated Plant Options
Summer is a great time for gardens in North Carolina, but unfortunately it is also the time for Microstegium. If you’ve noticed a grassy plant invading your garden in the last several weeks it could be Microstegium, commonly known as Japanese Stiltgrass. Read on to learn more about this problematic plant.
Microstegium is a warm weather annual that shows up once the heat of summer has kicked in. Growing quickly and spreading especially in unmaintained areas, this is a plant that can take over your yard. Hand weeding can help control Microstegium in small areas, and it is a fairly easy plant to pull. I have also had some success in planting other aggressive plants (such as the native Ostrich Fern) in areas prone to Microstegium on my property. While the Ostrich Fern doesn’t eradicate the Microstegium, it does provide some competition against this exotic invasive.
Check out the links below for advice from NC State on the management of this challenging weed:
Need help managing the spread of Microstegium on your property? Contact Bright Leaf Landscaping at 919-619-4460 or fill out our online contact form. Design and installation are our expertise, and we are always happy to meet with new clients to discuss potential projects!
I love nature and wildlife, but I don’t sit well with bugs. This can be a problem since I spend a lot of time outdoors and in my garden. I struggle with beneficial insects because I know they are good, but I have a tough time refraining from foul language and loud screams. Read on about tips for gardeners who are afraid of bugs.
Black and Yellow Argiope Garden Spider
Continue reading Tips for Gardeners Afraid of Bugs
If you asked me what types of plants are most commonly used in my landscape designs, the answer would be dwarf shrubs. The reason is simple – they will fit almost anywhere! Most clients have at least one area of their property that is constrained – the distance between the front of the house and the walkway is a common example. A mixed bed of dwarf shrubs tends to be the perfect solution – the plants are small enough that I can use multiple varieties for interest without creating a bed that will be overgrown in the future. Read on to learn about some of my favorite varities.
Ilex crenata ‘Soft Touch’ – Soft Touch Japanese Holly
Continue reading My Favorite Dwarf Shrubs to Use in Durham Gardens