"Green Star Award" received for environmental sustainability
Tue, Feb 4 2014 09:12 | Awards Recognitions, Children's Play Gardens, Herb Gardens, Organic Edible Gardens, Outdoor Living, Recent News, Sustainable Landscapes, Trends Ideas | Permalink
Urquhart project by HGD receives more honors!
The Urquhart discovery play garden in Alpharetta was awarded the coveted "Green Star Award" by UAC, the Urban Ag Council of Georgia. This professional landscape award is given once a year to projects that exhibit innovative and sustainable solutions.
This back yard was created to provide a healthy and safe place for the children to play and discover nature. Everything is eco friendly from the raised beds of chicken manure compost & worm castings to the selection of plants for an organic vegetable garden, butterfly garden plus other plants in the landscape that will attract pollinators and beneficial insects. Hardscape are permeable. The design is water wise with drip irrigation that has state-of-the-art weather monitoring system for automatic adjustment based on current weather conditions.
Transform your holly bushes
Sun, Sep 1 2013 08:11 | Curb Appeal, Herb Gardens, Italian Garden, Organic Edible Gardens, Perennial Gardens, Pots Containers, Pruning, Small Front Yards | Permalink
|These holly trees have been "limbed up" into tree form|
plus new, more interesting plants added around
for color, texture and an Italian flair
Morphing a holly hedge into an award winning statementHere's an idea you can use! When faced with a huge, boring hedge, consider "limbing it up" to morph it into a row of trees. That was our solution when the City of Atlanta arborist would not allow us to remove these Virginia Highland hollies. The raised canopy gave us space and sun to plant the herb and perennial garden that the client desired. This idea won the 2013 Atlanta Home Improvement, Best Before/After Makeover contest in the landscape division.
The hedge was so fat and robust that it was difficult for the owner to keep up with pruning it off of the unique, yet small driveway. The first goal was to give the client more space.
The photo below was taken immediately after pruning the hollies. Yes, that entire hedge was from only 2 plants! Notice how we selected only a few of the best main trunks on each plant. We then shaped and cleaned out the canopy. Strategic limbs were cut back severely so that they would “bush up” to fill in and grow into a more compact form. Drastic reclamation pruning, such as this, should be done in February while the plant is dormant. This timing, just before the flush of new Spring growth, assures that the plant will not be barren for long.
The next photo shows the holly trees "limbed up" into tree form plus the new, more interesting plantings surrounding the hollies. This client wanted color, texture, herbs and an Italian flair. Notice how we incorporated the Italian cypress that he really wanted for texture. He did not mind seeing the neighbor's house. In fact, he welcomed the more spacious view that this idea presented.
Between the hollies, we placed a large Italian Terra Cotta urn as a focal point. This provides color rear round, especially in the winter when the surrounding perennials are dormant.
The sunniest place in the yard was at the corner, so this is where we placed the main herb garden. See how the pruning of the hollies, addition of the Italian cypress and the herbs plus perennials have transformed the curb appeal of this Midtown home.
|After photo shows how this idea provides better|
curb appeal plus space for the herb garden
at the sunny curb
Read more about this project:
Portfolio photo #1 curb appeal
Portfolio photo #2 perennial gardens