Posts tagged durango colorado landscaper

Which Patio to Install in your Durango Colorado Landscaping

So you want to spend time in your Durango Colorado backyard, and are in need of a patio, but which type of material should be used?

So you are thinking about  building or replacing the patio area on your property in Durango, CO.  It’s a good idea to envision how your family will use the space before you invite a contractor over to look at your site.  I will touch on three different hard surfaces that are common to use in the construction of backyard landscaping in Durango, Co, concrete, flagstone and manufactured pavers.

Concrete ideas:

Concrete is widely used in outdoor situations, it is versatile, durable, available in

landscape construction concrete patio backyard patio design Gardenhart Landscape & Design

Concrete is good choice for small patio areas.

different colors and relatively easy to work with.  Concrete is great for very high traffic areas and for use in areas that will have patio tables and several  chairs and it is also easy to sweep or wash clean.  It is also possible to stamp patterns into concrete or to acid wash for a different look.  Concrete is readily available in all areas of the country and many contractors are familiar with its use and limitations.

Flagstone:

stone paving walkways Durango Colorado landscpe design ideas for patios

Flagstone is appropriate for low impact areas and informal uses.

Gardenhart Landscape & Design landscape design ideas pavestone patio

Landscape pavers are a good choice for a small patio that gets a lot of traffic.

Many people like the natural look of real stone and choose a flagstone patio for their outdoor hardscaping area.  Flagstone is available locally in several colors and textures at either Eagle Block or Durango Nursery and Supply.  In my opinion, flagstone is most appropriate for use in walkways and informal sitting areas, such as a place to sit and ponder the view or visit with a few friends.  Flagstone requires some skill to cut and fit so that it looks natural and so that it stays in place and does not settle over the years.  Take a look at our Pinterest Patio page for more examples of Flagstone Patios.

Pavers:

In recent years, manufactured pavers have come solidly on the market, available in many sizes, colors and textures.  Pavestone and Belgard are some of the more popular companies, but there are many to choose from.  Individual pieces are set on a sand base and compacted into place once the installation is completed.  They are very durable and suited for use in many applications, including high use areas.  The wide range of colors and textures make them a practical choice in many outdoor applications.

Gardenhart Landscape & Design would be happy to help you decide what materials would work well for your application and why they are appropriate.  We are located in Durango, Colorado and work throughout the Four Corners area.  Watch our you tube video about how we installed a pavestone patio.

Cheers,

David Hart

Gardenhart Landscape & Design

Durango, Colorado 81301

970-749-1555

http://www.gardenhartlandscapedesign.com

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How Do You Select A Landscape Architect, Designer or Contractor for Your Durango Colorado Landscape Project?

How To Select a Landscape Professional for Your Durango, Colorado  Landscaping Project

If you are considering having improvements made to your outdoor landscape this summer, you might be wondering who to turn to for the best advice and the most value for your dollar.  After a quick look at the FourDurango Colorado Landscaper Gardenhart Landscaping Corners Directory Plus phone book under the heading for Landscape we see no less than five landscape architects, seventeen landscape designers and SIXTY FOUR people and companies listed as landscape contractors.  How do you get started?

1)  Do a web search, the first two pages will narrow the possibilities down considerably, leaving you established companies with satisfied clients and their referrals.  I would then look at all of their websites, looking at the content and photos of work completed and read the referrals.

2)  Contact the individuals if they are named and get a firsthand account of their experience with the company.  If they give their name, they are probably willing to speak honestly with you about the landscape designer or landscape contractor.

3)   Call and set up an appointment with the companies or individuals that you feel most reflect the type of work you wish to see on your property

Gardenhart Landscape & Design and I, David Hart, hope that this gives you a good place to start on your search for help with creating the landscape that you have always dreamed of, easy to take care of, affordable, wild fire resistant and practical for our climate in the Durango Colorado area.

In upcoming posts, I will give you some ideas about the skill sets comparing Landscape Designers, Landscape Architects and Landscape Contractors.  You might be surprised that they are quite different.  I will also discuss what to ask during your first interview with a possible designer, architect or contractor.

Thanks,
David Hart
Gardenhart Landscape & Design
970-749-1555

http://www.gardenhartlandscapedesign.com

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Hiring A Landscape Architect, Designer Or Contractor in Durango Colorado

Choosing the Best Landscaping Professional in Durango Colorado

You may be confused by the many companies and individuals listed under the general heading or an internet search for landscaping.  Not surprisingly, there are different skill sets for architects, designers and contractors. In this post I hope to offer some understanding of the differences between them and help you to hire an appropriate

Gardenhart Landscape & Design builds rock wall skid steer moves boulders for wall landscape design

Landscape Contractors use equipment to construct the design

company or individual for your project.  One note of caution, currently Colorado does not license or regulate the title “Landscape Architect or Landscape Designer” so anyone can use these titles to describe their abilities, regardless of their education and work experience.

I will outline  the skills involved in each of these areas as well as their education and what situations they are most suited for.  Of course, there is always some overlap within all aspects of professional life, but this will get you started.

Landscape Architect: Most likely with a Master’s degree from an accredited university, a member of a large firm that does large-scale public works projects, parks, airport design, regional transportation designs etc.  Capable of guiding public meetings and creating numerous concept and design drawings.  Also able to produce residential design and planting plans as well.  They are more often hired by municipalities and developers for their abilities to promote and sell the concepts to the public or investors.

Landscape Designer:  Hopefully holds either a Bachelors of Arts or Science in Landscape Architecture from an accredited university.  They may also hold horticultural degrees from colleges or vocational schools, but it is important for them to have some formal schooling.  They are capable of producing detailed drawings, to scale, showing all aspects of the proposed work, along with recommended plants and hardscape materials.  They will be more informed about what plants do well and the climate demands of the specific location.  They may not want to install the project, but want to sell you the design and let you find someone to do the rest.

Landscape Contractor:  The owner will often have some schooling in landscape or horticultural programs and has learned lots by working in the industry for several years, figuring out things as needed but many of these contractors may or may not have design experience beyond what they have seen others do. Many landscape companies do lots of different types of work, sprinkler installation and repair,  tree care, aerating and fertilizing , lawn mowing and weeding etc.  Other companies will specialize by installing landscape features such as retaining walls, water gardens, flagstone patios, outdoor kitchens along with lawn and planting areas.

If you have read this far, you probably are interested in finding out about me, David Hart owner at Gardenhart Landscape & Design, working out of Durango Colorado, in the southwest corner of the state. To be clear with regards to the above post, I consider myself a “Landscape Designer”.

landscape renovation repair of retaining wall durango landscape designerColorado landscapingl

Gardenhart Landscape & Design re-builds a boulder wall near Durango Co.

I graduated from Utah State University with a B.S. in Landscape Architecture in 1983 and have lived in the Durango area ever since.  Gardenhart Landscape & Design is a design-build firm, providing comprehensive oversight from start to finish.  We incorporate a natural, native look into all of our projects, using best practices in the industry.  These include native plants and stone, low water and fire resistant design principles and a deep understanding of the local soils and climate.

Cheers,

David Hart

Gardenhart Landscape & Design

970-749-1555

http://www.gardenhartlandscapedesign.com

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Landscape Watering Dilemmas in Durango Colorado: How Much?

Wildlife Resistant Landscape

How Much Do I water these Trees and Perennials?

How much do I water my SW Colorado landscape?

There is a very similar outcome when you water too much or too little.  One way to really decide whether to water or not is to actually feel the soil.  If you will dig down about three inches and grab a handful of soil and try to squeeze  it into a ball.  If it sticks together, then it still has sufficient moisture.  The problem with over watering is that the water molecules replace the oxygen in the soil and causes distress to plants.

Durango Landscaping Services by Gardenhart Landscape & Design

Sod & Grass use different amounts of water than many Trees and Plants

Signs of Over watering from Gardenhart Landscape & Design

It seems to me that my garden has not been growing very well and perhaps it is because it has been over watered.  The soil at my house is very hard packed river bottom and even though we have  tilled the garden area and applied compost and soil amendments numerous times, we still do not have a “well-drained soil”.  Watering here is difficult, too much and it runs off and not enough we water only the surface, which encourages shallow roots.  Ideal soil will absorb water down to about eighteen inches or deeper, then allow it to gradually dry out over a predictable period of time.  The plant roots will seek the moisture by going deeper in the soil,  thus they are less susceptible to dry times.

Durango Colorado Landscaping Companies help figure out how much to water

How Much Water Does Sod Need?

In summary, watering is very site specific, depending on your soil composition and the requirements of the individual plants.   As long as the soil will absorb water, deep watering is preferred.  You must pay attention to what is going on with your plants and the soil they are trying to grow in.

Cheers,

David Hart

Gardenhart Landscape & Design

970-749-1555

http://www.gardenhartlandscapedesign.com

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Monument Plant (Frasera speciosa) Green Gentian in Bloom Now: The Tallest Wildflower I’ve Seen!

Monument Plant

View the Monument Plant near Durango Colorado

While I have been out in the alpine regions of Colorado, recently, I have been seeing the tallest wildflower blooming. These tall spikey, green multi-flowered plants are called the Monument Plant, (Frasera speciosa) or Green Gentian. I haven’t seen a good show of these wildflowers for many years.  So I started to wonder why they bloom en masse so infrequently.  I did some research and found out that the indicator to a good blooming period is for a wet July & August, 4 years prior….can you imagine that it takes four years for a plant to bloom like this?  It is a monocarpic plant, i.e., one which grows many years, flowers once, then dies.  Perhaps the most well know monocarpic plant is the Southwest’s Century Plant. 

A great local webpage by swcoloradowildflowers.com is found at http://bit.ly/a7sVWa which provides a lot more information and great photos!

I have seen great displays at Coal Bank Pass and in Crested Butte Colorado.  I recommend to get out and see some of these tall wonders.  They are amazing.

Cheers,

David Hart

Gardenhart Landscape & Design

970-749-1555

http://www.gardenhartlandscapedesign.com

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Best Trees to Plant in Durango, Colorado

Gardenhart Landscape & Design Recommended Everlasting Tree Varieties to Plant in Southwest Colorado

There are many great resources regarding recommended trees to plant in the Durango area.  Gardenhart Landscape & Design’s recommendations are based on years of landscape design and installation and appropriateness in our area with special attention to deer & disease resistance, overall hardiness, ease of care, beauty and  size.  Gardenhart’s list includes:

  1. Ginnala Maple
  2. Wasatch Maple
  3. Western Hackberry
  4. Russian Hawthorn
  5. Green Ash
  6. Thornless Honeylocust
  7. Brandywine Crabapple
  8. Gambell Oak
  9. English Oak
  10. Schumard Oak

Evergreens:

  1. White Fir
  2. Meyer Juniper
  3. Utah Juniper
  4. Limber Pine
  5. Austrian Pine
  6. Eastern White Pine
  7. Southwestern White Pine
  8. Scotch Pine

This link directs you to the unsuitable trees as recommended by the City of Durango.  The list of trees on the link are not planted in Durango because of one or more of the following undesirable characteristics: Prolific seed production, invasive habits, fruit, pods, thorn bearing, weak limbs and/or structure and insect and disease problems.

According to Ron Stoner, one of the city of Durango’s favorite trees is the Wasatch Maple.  It is very hardy and looks great!

landscaping in Durango Colorado

Fall Maple Color

Durango nursery lists all zone 3 shrubs and trees.

If you have other questions about type, location and watering schedule for certain trees, let me know.

Cheers,

David Hart

Gardenhart Landscape & Design

970-749-1555

http://www.gardenhartlandscapedesign.com

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Best Perennials to Plant in Durango, CO That are Resistant to Deer & Rabbits

What to do about deer eating bulbs

delicate and tasty bulbs

Best Perennials to Plant in Durango, CO That are Resistant to Deer & Rabbits

How do you deal with the critters that are hungry?  Early spring when there is little to eat, the deer and rabbit are pervasive.  It is very difficult to keep them out of gardens and from eating my early blooming bulbs.  They both eat my daylillies and tulips  on the  south  side of my home every year. Daffodils, rhubarb and grape hyacinths generally go unscathed.  Amazingly also they will nibble on the fresh new growths of rose bushes, of which there is only one in our yard.

Several of our local Durango gardeners like to use a product called Bobex, which is sprayed on your plants.  It makes the plants unappetizing to these critters and they are less likely to eat them up. I do not have personal experience with this product, but some swear by it.  I also think that there are several other brands that work the same way, I would ask at your favorite garden center for their personal preference. Organic Gardening Magazine has several ideas on how to control garden pests.

Locally,  Durango Nursery and Supply’s recommended zone 3 perennials that are more resistant to deer is a very helpful list.  The only really proven way to control the deer and rabbits is to put up a very big and sturdy fence.

Cheers,

David Hart

Gardenhart Landscape & Design

970-749-1555

http://www.gardenhartlandscapedesign.com

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