Tag Archives: Lifescape Associates

Frigid Colorado Temps Wreak Havoc on Landscapes

The November snowstorm in Colorado was one of the most severe since the Halloween freeze of 1991.  In 1991, Denver saw a dip from a high of 71 degrees on October 27 to a record low of 7 degrees on October 29. In 2014, Denver went from 64 degrees on November 10 to a record low of -13 degrees on November 12, making it the third largest temperature decrease ever recorded in the area. Even more interesting is the fact that all three record-breaking drops have occurred in the last 12 months.

Source: Pixabay

Source: Pixabay

These temperature swings have taken trees off guard, resulting in brown and frozen foliage. Some trees also went winter dormancy at a weakened state while other plants were at the risk of fatal frost damage.

There are several ways homeowners and landscapers can battle harmful frost.

  • Choose plants that are tough, durable, and proven to thrive in colder climates and your particular region.
  • Prevent planting in frost pockets or areas of your garden where cold air flows and pools. Additionally, place any plants that are more tender in the sunniest spots of your garden.
  • Do not apply any nitrogen-rich fertilizers at season’s end because this will make plants softer and more exposed and apt to frost damage.
  • Insulate soil at the base of trees, shrubs, and plants. Bare soil will not hold heat on its own. A thick layer of mulch or other organic matter can be used to trap in heat, protect roots, and prevent freezing.
  • Avoid dry soil. When soil loses all moisture and becomes dry, it releases heat more rapidly. Thirsty trees, shrubs, and plants will then become stressed and are more prone to frost affliction. When conditions turn dry, winter watering can help to protect trees, shrubs, and plants from falling victim to detrimental freezing.

If a plant suffers from frost damage, don’t automatically give up on it! After a thaw, try pruning out damaged growth, applying fertilizer, creating gaps to remove frost pockets, and re-firming ground soil around plants. If treated properly, some plants can survive and show re-growth come summer.

Is your Colorado landscape looking a little limp after the most recent record-breaking frost? Our team here at Lifescape would love to help bring your landscape back to life and prepare your yard for a beautiful, colorful, and lush spring and summer season. Contact us online or by calling (303) 831-8310.

Design Your Hardscape with Visual Interest

Hardscapes can be just as awe-inspiring as the plants that surround them. While the purpose of a hardscape is largely functional, it can be designed to significantly enhance the look and feel of a landscape.

Once the location and traffic patterns have been decided, the focus can be turned to creating a pleasing combination of textures and tones. From mixing materials to interplanting, there are several design strategies for making hardscapes more attractive.

Source: Lifescape Colorado

Source: Lifescape Colorado

Here are some creative paver, stone, and gravel design ideas for turning hardscapes into works of art.

Soften concrete pavers with green in between. Grass or other foliage joints can instantly add aesthetic value while creating commanding contrasts for a dynamic design.

Traditional European garden elements can be reinvented in a contemporary setting for a striking effect. A sleek allée of pollarded trees becomes a bold focal point in this elegant modern landscape.

Naturally interesting rock formations can become decorative points of interest to break up hardscapes. A moss garden turns this corner into a charming display of nature’s finest carpet. A naturalistic free-form boulder planter will blend in seamlessly while adding sculptural appeal.

Garden beds can be cleverly incorporated into hardscapes to create a cohesive and engaging design. This unexpected succulent bed leverages a curve to bring more green to the scene. A modern courtyard is punctuated by narrow garden beds that make for chic accents in the hardscaping.

Source: Lifescape Colorado

Source: Lifescape Colorado

Even steps can be an opportunity to customize and enhance a hardscape design. Blue fescue and colorful perennials turn these paver steps into a garden in themselves.

Create your own unique blending of materials. A stunning modern-style hardscape design employs gravel, thin pavers, garden spheres, and interplantings. A simple yet striking design takes advantage of a few different materials to create textures, patterns, and pops of color.

Our team here at Lifescape would love to help you remodel your Colorado landscape with a custom design that features artful hardscapes, beautiful beds, and other personalized features and touches that express style and improve quality of life. Contact Lifescape online or by calling 303.831.8310 to set up your consultation.

Design & Plan Your Landscape with Lifescape Colorado

Lifescape is a comprehensive outdoor living solution. Our passionate and experienced team of professionals takes projects from conception to completion making sure every element and design decision aligns with the client’s wants and needs. Committed to the environment, every project is also carefully conducted to preserve resources and reduce carbon footprints.

Here is how Lifescape approaches each phase of the landscape architecture and design process.

During the initial consultation, we like to walk through the project site with our client and begin discussing goals, budget, and any concerns or challenges. This is usually a great time for clients to share any photos with our team to discuss innovative ideas for achieving the type of space the client envisions.

Source: Lifescape Colorado

Source: Lifescape Colorado

We dig a little deeper in the next phase, taking measurements and inventory of materials and elements already on the site in a thorough analysis. Using all this information and the criteria set by the client, we develop a conceptual plan and a project budget. We incorporate options and ranges to give the client the opportunity to customize with decisions related to project scope, materials, and special features.

Once we arrive at the final material selections and project scope, we are able to devise planting and construction plans. Every detail is meticulously calculated and blueprinted to ensure a smooth and economical execution.

Before construction plans are set into motion, our project construction operations manager reviews the designs and plans with the client and together they set a starting date for the project.

An additional pre-construction meeting with the client, manager, and on-site foreman offers the chance to discuss how the project will be directed and architecturally supervised. Change orders are reviewed and addressed swiftly, and a punch list is created and the construction agreement is pending until completion.

Source: Lifescape Colorado

Source: Lifescape Colorado

The service team then takes over from here. This team of horticulturists administers aftercare and completes any necessary work per the warranty walk-through. The client can work with our maintenance team to design a custom program for regularly maintaining their landscape.

As our service team takes care of weeding, pruning, trimming, watering and any other maintenance needs, you enjoy more time actually enjoying your beautiful new landscape.

If the white winter in Colorado has you dreaming of a lush and colorful spring landscape, contact Lifescape online or by calling 303.831.8310. We’d love to discuss a potential landscape architecture project and set up your initial consultation.

Grow Brilliant Trees with Natural Mulch from the Yard

If your aim is to achieve better tree health and form, mulching is one of the best practices you can adopt.

What is Mulching?

The act of mulching involves placing materials over the soil surface to help reduce water loss, prevent erosion, and reduce weeds. Mulched trees are healthier and more resistant, and you’ll end up spending less time fighting common tree problems.

There are many different kinds of mulch with the two major types being organic and inorganic. Inorganic mulch is not recommended because it does not improve soil structure or provide nutrients. Organic mulch, on the other hand, improves soil quality and fertility and decomposes naturally. Wood chips, pine needles, hardwood, softwood bark, leaves, and compost mixes are all considered acceptable types of organic mulch.

Source: Pixabay

Source: Pixabay

Tips for Growing Brilliant Trees with Natural Mulch 

  • It’s crucial to forego laying down your organic mulch until the area has been fully rid of any lingering weeds. After weeding, make sure the layer of mulch is thick enough to prevent future growth.
  • You’ll need to replenish your mulch several times a year. This practice will help maintain the ideal 2 to 3 inch depth optimal for better mulch performance.
  • Don’t over-pile mulch against the trunks or stems of plants and trees. Doing so can stress the stem tissues and can lead to the development of disease, insect problems, and girdled roots. Also, if mulch is piled high on the trunks of young trees, rodents may inhabit the area and chew away the bark of the tree.
  • If finer mulch is blanketed too thickly, the penetration of water and air may be reduced.
  • Specific plants will benefit from different kinds of mulch, so do your research before choosing a mulch.

    Source: Pixabay

    Source: Pixabay

Improper mulching materials and practices can result in damage done to your property. Always remember not to go overboard with mulching, as too much can be harmful to your trees. However, with proper methods, the health and value of your trees will skyrocket!

Do you need some guidance with growing brilliant trees on your landscape? Contact Lifescape Colorado today to schedule a consultation.

Build & Transform Your Garden Into a Wildlife Friendly Space

Being able to create a habitat where birds and other creatures can safely live is an incredibly fulfilling part of being a property owner. Even our smallest of neighbors can add charm to our landscapes, ward off pests, and help nurture our gardens. At Lifescape, we love the idea of intentionally landscaping for wildlife; it’s never too late to entice birds, butterflies, and more to come visit and perhaps stay awhile.

Tips for Transforming Your Garden into a Wildlife Friendly Place

If you’re ready to take the leap into wildlife landscaping, the following tips will help you bring and keep nature close.

Source: Pixabay

Source: Pixabay

Scale down your lawn. Lawns are an unnecessary, oftentimes harmful addition to residential areas. Not only do they eat up an alarming amount of egregious synthetic pesticides annually, but they also provide none of the shelter and food sources wildlife require to survive. In lieu of a manicured lawn, a wildlife-friendly garden or habitat reverts back to healthier pre-development land conditions and will attract the birds, butterflies, and wildlife you seek.

Add concentrated areas of vegetation. Research native plants, so you can intentionally plant islands with groundcovers, wildflowers, and other vegetation. Integrating groups of islands is a good way to provide animals with sufficient cover.

Provide water. Water is arguably the most essential component of a wildlife habitat garden. The water sources you provide will greatly benefit any wildlife you attract. Ponds are a wonderful water source and can transform into breeding grounds for reptilian and amphibian species.

Source: Lifescape Colorado

Source: Lifescape Colorado

Provide supplemental housing and food. Nesting boxes and houses give birds and their young additional security from predators. Birds also benefit from well-placed feeders, especially in winter when food is scarce.

Control your pets. Cats and dogs can be detrimental to your wildlife garden. Cats are known to hunt and kill birds and small mammals just for sport, and keeping them indoors will help keep both them and our feathered and furry friends safe.

Are you looking to trade in your perfectly manicured lawn for a thriving wildlife habitat? Lifescape is here to help plan and implement your vision.