Brighten Your Landscape with Winter Interest Plants

Brighten Your Landscape with Winter Interest Plants

Winter landscapes tend to be drab and dreary in the northeast this time of year without winter interest plants. With Christmas lights packed away, lawns and deciduous trees dormant, a brown deadness seems to dominate the landscape. This can cause an obvious effect on mood.

There is no reason to fall prey to this deadness in your landscaping plans. Many horticulturists plant winter interest plants to add flare and brighten their landscapes during the winter months. Not only does this brighten one’s mood, it offers food sources for local wildlife, which in turn adds color and movement to the landscape.

SHRUBS WITH WINTER INTEREST

Your yard can come alive with the sound of chirping, warbling and singing birds happily consuming a yard full of strategically planted winter-persistent berries. For some inspiration, check out this article by the National Wildlife Federation on ‘WINTER BERRIES FOR BIRDS’.

A variety of bright-berried shrubs and perennials with textured foliage that are at their peak in winter will add color and texture to any winter landscape.  Brightly colored stems, fragrant blooms and enticing fruits bring a wealth of interest to winter borders.

Evergreen shrubs and trees add a pleasing backdrop to colorful winter plantings, such as winterberry or deciduous holly that boasts bright red berries that sparkle and draws the eye.

Pyracantha angustifolia or Firethorn often used as a hedge, on a wall or trellis adorns your landscape with orange-red berries and greenish-brown leaves.

The colorful glow of Cornus sanguinea, or red twig dogwood stems backlit by a low winter sun is a beauty to behold. Evergreen ferns also add color and texture during the winter months. The Athyrium species, better known as the Japanese painted fern, is an excellent choice for any winter display.

Edgeworthia, aka paperbrush, offers fragrant flower buds of yellow and white clusters from December to April, silhouetted by decorative bark, as it drops its leaves mid-December. Witch Hazel blooms with yellow to red flowers sporting threadlike petals that curl up at night and open during the day to emit a lovely fragrance. These blooms last from late fall to early spring.

Winter Daphne is a variegated leaved evergreen shrub that has sweet fragrant white or pinkish star-shaped blooms in late winter to early spring. The Winter Flowering Cherry or Prunus Subhirtella Autumnalis Rosea is an excellent choice for creating a colorful winter hedge or stand-alone tree. Its star shaped, semi-double blooms in pale pink last from autumn to early spring.

While these are just a few really good choices to brighten your winter landscape, getting  a professional landscaper’s opinion as to what type of winter interest plant is suitable for your particular needs is advisable. Every plant has its own particular needs and flourishes best in certain locations and soil conditions. An experienced landscaper can help guide you to get more bang for your landscaping investment.

Contact DiSabatino Landscaping if you would like to consultwith one of our specialists.

302-764-0408 | DiSabatinoInc.com



The Landscape Experts

DiSabatino Landscaping is Delaware’s #1 Hardscape and Landscape Specialist. Give us a call today! 302-764-0408

how to winterize your pond

Watch Our How to Winterize Your Pond Video


Winterizing your pond begins in the fall, as water temperature is a big factor in determining when is the right time to begin the winterization process for ponds and other water features.

Tips to Winterize Ponds

DiSabatino Landscaping of Delaware helps homeowners to properly take care of their hardscaping and landscaping investment. That is why we suggest that you complete the following steps to prepare ponds and other water features for the winter months ahead.

How to Winterize Living Ponds & Other Water Features:

  • Debris Control: Clean out all debris, leaves and silt from the bottom of your pond. The cleaner you can get the pond before freezing weather comes, the healthier your pond will be throughout the winter. Ponds need to be covered with netting in the fall. This netting should be well above the surface so leaves can be easily cleaned. Use a fine-weave aquarium net to sift out excess sludge and debris.
  • Water Change: A water change can be done anytime, but it is much more comfortable if it’s done before the water reaches 60◦ Remember to use dechlorinator if your water contains chlorine.
  • De-Icer: Use a de-icer to keep a section of your pond open to allow oxygenation and gas exchange. This does not warm the overall water temperature of your pond. A de-icer simply allows toxic gasses to be released and oxygen to enter the pond.
  • Pump Care: When temperatures drop below 40°F, the main pump should be removed and filters thoroughly cleaned. Do not leave the pump running on the bottom of the pond. It will lower the temperature of the entire pond by disrupting the natural thermal layers of the pond water as well as adding extreme stress on pond fish.
  • Plant Care: Trim and remove any dying plant material as it appears to avoid debris build-up. In this area, bring inside all tropical plants and set all hardy water lilies to the bottom, if the pond is deep enough to keep them from freezing to the bottom.
  • Fish Care: Depending on the water temperature will determine what food you feed you fish. Cooler temperatures make it harder for fish to digest food properly. Though it is important for fish to bulk up during the winter months, it is imperative that they not be overfed. As this is a complicated topic, here are more intricate instructions on fish care.

If you would like help with your landscaping needs, please get in touch

302-764-0408 | DiSabatinoInc.com



RELATED ARTICLES:

Fall is Great Time for Fire Pits!

Autumn Maintenance

Check Out Our Portfolio of Fireplaces & Fire Pits


Tree and Shrub Care Specialist

DiSabatino Landscaping is Delaware’s #1 Hardscape and Landscape Specialist. We can help advise you what is best way to create outdoor fireplaces & fire pits  Give us a call today! 302-764-0408

Patio with Fireplace Feature - artisan masonry

How to Maintain Your Outdoor Hardscaping

Generally, wet laid surfaces are low maintenance. Here a few things you can do to keep your hardscaping looking its best.

At least once a year you should scrub down surfaces with a mild bleach cleanser. We don’t recommend power washing because it can cause permanent damage that can void your warranty.

Any moss, mold, mildew, or algae stains can be removed witha solution like Wet & Forget. Never use metal shovels or tools to removesnow and ice.

If you’re using a snow blower, make sure you use rubberblades. Never use de-icers of any kind. They can cause permanent damage frompinning to cracking.

Quality hardscaping and masonry will include an endurablesealer, but staining caulker or from rusting metal and flower pots, grease fromgrill, food and drink or oil and gas.

Keep gutters, downspouts and drains clear because water cancause settlement and erosion, voiding your warranty.

As you can see, hardscaping and masonry don’t require a lotof maintenance, just a little bit of effort keeps it looking good for a longtime.

If you would like help with your landscaping needs, please get in touch

302-764-0408 | DiSabatinoInc.com



The Landscape Experts

DiSabatino Landscaping is Delaware’s #1 Hardscape and Landscape Specialist. Give us a call today! 302-764-0408

10 Autumn Landscape Maintenance Tips

Landscape Maintenance Tips to Perform Before Winter

Timing is everything in the landscaping business. Particular chores or lawn maintenance need done during certain times of the year for best results.

Things, such as properly timed applications will have your landscape reaping the benefits. Doing these maintenance tasks at the wrong time could be a waste of energy or worse. It could actually harm your landscape.

Since very few of us have that a green thumb, we thought sharing some helpful tips for fall maintenance might be in order. Preform these chores to have a vibrant landscape year round. Doing right thing at the right time will keep your lawn and garden looking its best. Continue reading

7 Tips for Outdoor Fireplaces or Fire Pits

7 Tips for Outdoor Fireplaces or Fire Pits

Fall is the time the fire pits and outdoor fireplaces start to light up the yards across our area as the evenings begin to cool. Sitting around an outdoor fire sipping a favorite beverage, roasting s’mores and quietly conversing is a favorite fall pastime.

We thought sharing a few ways to keep your fire burning for outdoor fireplaces or your fire pits would be helpful for our treasured clients and readers.

1) New Fireplace or Fire Pit Installations Need Extra Care

New installs need a little bit of extra care in the beginning. Wait thirty days before the first fire. After thirty days, keep the fire small for the next fifteen days. That makes it a total of forty-five days before a normal sized fire should be built.

2) Keep Flames at a Safe Height

The flames height should be contained within the fireplace or as high as the fire pit capping. Back drafts or sudden gusts of wind are common and hard to predict. Sparks and embers might go somewhere you do not want. The smaller the flame, the less likely it is the fire will get out of hand.

3) Don’t Use Water to Extinguish the Fire

Unless it is an emergency, never use water to put out a fire. Instead, bank the fire by burying flaming logs and smoldering embers with ashes. This will not completely extinguish the fire but it will cause it to die out slowly.

4) Select Materials Suited to Stand Up to High Temperatures

Build your fireplace or fire pit with materials with a high heating rating. One of the biggest mistakes in fire pit construction is when it is built with concrete block, stones or boulders found around the yard. If not meant to heat up, these materials can crack, splinter or even explode.

5) Keep Fireplace or Fire Pit Clean

A little maintenance always helps. This is true for your fireplace or fire pit. Clean off any debris around the area. Use a clean cloth to keep the igniter and burner holes clear. Logs should be cleaned using a soft brush.

6) Inspect and Check for Gas Leaks

Always check for gas leaks. If you smell gas, turn off the gas supply. Contact your gas company for service. You should also have the igniters and burner serviced by a gas company a minimum of every two years.

7) Protect Your Fire Pit

Use the manufacturers cover or use one that allows moisture to escape. This will protect your fire pit from the elements and prolong its lifespan.

Okay, so there is a little work to keeping your flames burning but it’s well worth it!

DiSabatino Landscaping teamed up with Esposito Masonry creates beautiful custom-designed fireplaces and fire pits for residences in Delaware and the surrounding area. If you would like to find out what we can create for you, please get in touch

302-764-0408 | DiSabatinoInc.com

CONTACT US NOW!

RELATED ARTICLES:

Fall is Great Time for Fire Pits!

7 Reasons to Install a Fire Pit this Winter

Check Out Our Portfolio of Fireplaces & Fire Pits


Tree and Shrub Care Specialist DiSabatino Landscaping is Delaware’s #1 Hardscape and Landscape Specialist. We can help advise you what is best way to create outdoor fireplaces & fire pits  Give us a call today! 302-764-0408

DRAINAGE FIXES TO PROTECT YOUR HOME & LANDSCAPING

7 Ways to Solve Landscape Drainage Problems

Is Your Property Experiencing Drainage Problems?

Anyone who has experienced drainage problems, such as a flooded basement, damage to their home’s foundations and interior understands the importance of proper drainage. It is vital that water is properly directed away from your home’s foundation.

Water management Tactics for Your Home

As more and more building is going on in our area, the amount of porous land is diminishing. This can cause drainage problems for even the most mature properties, as traditional water flow patterns are interrupted. This is something than many homeowners are starting to experience.

Grading around your home to prevent water from building up around the foundation is one-step in creating proper drainage. However, there are a number of tactics effective to help divert water to other areas of your landscape. We thought we would share a few of these with you today.

7 Ways to Solve Landscape Drainage Problems:

1) Downspout Extensions: Add a downspout extension to guide water collected by gutters well away from the foundation so that it does not end up in the basement. This is the most basic and necessary tactic to protecting your home from water damage. Re-route the water across the yard surface to avoid a pooling in one area.

2) Drain Boxes or Grates: Routing water to a surface drain, such as a 12” x 12” square or 6” round grate that keeps debris out, yet lets water flow into the box. Keep in mind that the pipe buried should allow the water to run downhill.

3) Drainage Swales:  Drainages swales are pitched areas lined with stone or grass designed to guide water off your property or to an area well away from the foundation. Water should not stand more than 24 hours unless we have an extreme rain event. Drainage swales prevent standing water, which can lead to mosquitos and other issues. With grass swales, turf should be kept healthy because the root system maintains the integrity of the swale. Whether you have a grass or stone swale, they should be kept free of debris so as not to impede water flow.

4) French Drain: A French drain consists of perforated pipe sheathed by a fabric sock to keep dirt and sand from clogging the pipe. Install the perforated drainage pipe in a trough fully surrounded by gravel before covering with soil and grass seed. This is another effective way to control proper drainage.

5) Dry Well: Simply put, a dry well is a large hole filled with gravel that catches excess water and holds it while it slowly soaks into the ground. It is possible to increase the dry well capacity by burying a commercially available holding tank surrounded by gravel or some other porous substance to control the draining of excess water.

6) Rain Garden: A rain garden located in problem areas of your property could be the solution when an underground spring or creek is the issue. First, the area needs to be excavated and replaced with an engineered soil or gravel soil mix to allow water to slowly absorb. Fill the garden with water loving plants such as ferns, hostas and colorful perennials.

7) Rain Barrels: Installing a water barrel or storage well below grade to capture the runoff to use to irrigate landscaping at a later date. This is a great ‘green solution’ to divert water from one location that receives too much water to other areas that are in need of that water.

Of course, one of the easiest ways to fix your grading and drainage problems is to hire a landscape drainage professional. A trained and experienced landscape professional knows what corrective drainage measures will work best for your specific water flow patterns. They will be able to assess the full scope of your drainage issues and create an overall design.

Drainage Problems Before
Drainage Problems Before

Drainage Problems After
Drainage Problems After

Please note this is not a full list of solutions to alleviate poor drainage areas. If you have a wet spot in your lawn or an area you are worried about please give us a call and one of our designers will find the right solution for you!

Interested in Talking with One of Our Grading and Drainage Experts?

Our drainage experts will perform a custom assessment of your landscaping drainage system, call us at 302-764-0408 – email us at reception@disabatinoinc.com or fill out the form on our grading & drainage page.

302-764-0408 | DiSabatinoInc.com

CONTACT US NOW!

RELATED ARTICLES:

Drainage Fixes to Protect Your Home and Landscaping

Got Drainage? Proper Drainage Benefits …

How to Create a Sustainable Garden that Helps Wildlife


Tree and Shrub Care Specialist DiSabatino Landscaping is Delaware’s #1 Hardscape and Landscape Specialist. We can help advise you what is best way to create your outdoor living space  Give us a call today! 302-764-0408

Fire Pit Installation by DiSabatino Landscaping and Esposito Masonry

Fall is Great Time for Fire Pits!

 

Fall is almost here. It’s time to roast some marshmallows and enjoy the cooler evenings by getting the fire pit roaring and creating some great memories.

Add a Custom Made Outdoor Fire Pit to Your Outdoor Living Space

This is the perfect time to upgrade your outdoor living area with a custom made masonry fire pit. A fire pit will increase the value and usability of your backyard space. Activities such as foil meals, sunset cocktails,

A custom made fire pit will make your backyard a gathering place all year long. Sitting around a fire is a great bonding experience for family and friends. Warming oneself by a roaring fire while sharing a drink or meal and gazing at the night sky can be invigorating year round.

Why Add an Outdoor Fire Pit to Your Outdoor Living Space? Here are 7 Reasons:

  1. A Fire Pit Extends Your Entertainment Space
  2. A Fire Pit is Easy to Build and Very Affordable
  3. A Fire Pit is a Great Conversation Spot and Creates Ambiance in Your Backyard
  4. A Fire Pit Makes it Possible to Enjoy the Outdoors Year ‘Round
  5. Having Drinks and Dinner Around a Fire Pit is Very Romantic
  6. Cooking Meals Around a Fire Pit is a Great Family Bonding Activity
  7. A Fire Pit Adds Value to Your Home When it Comes Time to Sell

Whether you are enjoying the warmth as you listen to the crackling of the fire, sipping your favorite beverage, or roasting marshmallows with the kids, there’s nothing like relaxing in the comfort of your own backyard.

DiSabatino Landscaping can transform your home with a custom made fire pit. If you want a beautiful custom made fire pit added to your outdoor living area created just for you, get in touch with DiSabatino Landscaping and Esposito Masonry. We create unique outdoor living areas and patios!

302-764-0408 | DiSabatinoInc.com

CONTACT US NOW!

RELATED ARTICLES:

The History Behind Our Outdoor Spaces

Three Ways to Transform Your Yard Into an Outdoor Room


Tree and Shrub Care Specialist DiSabatino Landscaping is Delaware’s #1 Hardscape and Landscape Specialist. We can help advise you what is best way to create your outdoor living space  Give us a call today! 302-764-0408

7 Great Ideas for Creating a Beautiful Outdoor Living Area

7 Great Ideas for Creating a Beautiful Outdoor Living Area

Want to enjoy the outdoors anytime of the year by creating a beautiful outdoor living area?

Then consider adding a fireplace or fire pit to your outdoor living space. Don’t forget to get the kids involve by letting them cook their own food. There are plenty of campfire recipes to try. Of course there has to be s’mores!

Fire Pit Installation by DiSabatino Landscaping and Esposito Masonry's Outdoor Living Area

Do you have pizza lovers? Consider adding a wood fired brick oven to make authentic pizza for a hungry crowd. Did you know brick ovens cook quickly and efficiently? Better yet, they are a great way to cook desserts, meats, veggies and more!

Add a brick oven to your outdoor living area

How about a full outdoor kitchen? An outdoor kitchen allows you enjoy an outdoor party while you cook! In addition, it makes you more efficient and  lessens the need to run back and forth to the house. That is why we encourage clients to consider some sort of cooking options for their outdoor living area.

Check out some of our luxurious outdoor kitchens that will make your home the preferred party location. Likewise, be sure to create comfortable seating areas that will have you looking for every opportunity to enjoy the outdoors.

Add one of these below unique features for creating an even better outdoor living space that will extend the usable square footage of your home. Not only will it increase your home’s value, it will give REAL value to your home life. Also consider the savings from staycations, a great way to bond with family without spending tons of cash!

7 Great Ideas for Creating a Beautiful Outdoor Living Area:

  1. A pavilion to keep your seating area comfortable and dry
  2. A pergola is a great way to add shade, privacy and ambience
  3. Custom in ground pools and hot tubs are refreshing touches. Add special features such as waterfalls and ambient lighting
  4. Ponds and other water features, such as a fountain is great way to add character to your landscaping
  5. Create peaceful locations to relax and meditate
  6. A deck off the master bedroom – connect with nature any time of day.
  7. Utilize the front, side and back of house to add a custom made deck with gazebo, gorgeous pergola, pavilion or sun room

The possibilities are endless!

If you want a beautiful custom made outdoor living area created just for you, get in touch with DiSabatino Landscaping and Esposito Masonry. We create unique outdoor rooms and patios!

302-764-0408 | DiSabatinoInc.com

RELATED ARTICLES:

The History Behind Our Outdoor Spaces

Three Ways to Transform Your Yard Into an Outdoor Room


Tree and Shrub Care Specialist DiSabatino Landscaping is Delaware’s #1 Hardscape and Landscape Specialist. We can help advise you what is best way to create your outdoor living space  Give us a call today! 302-764-0408

Summer Watering Guide for Your Garden

Water Can Be Bad: How to Properly Water Your Garden This Summer

A Summer Watering Guide for Your Garden

Summer is here and that means it’s time to start thinking about watering your lawn and garden. Some areas are typically dryer than others, but how do you know if your lawn or garden needs attention before it goes brown?

Do you know the right time of day to water so you don’t ruin your plants? Maybe you didn’t even know you could ruin them by watering at the wrong time.

Watering Myths

There are many myths surrounding when and how to water your plants. It’s important to understand what is true and what is not so you don’t kill your plants with too much, or lack of, water.

One myth is that plants require an inch of water per week in order to survive. While plants do require water, not all plants can go by this idea. A great way to avoid following this myth is to watch the soil. Water the plant to provide enough water to its entire root system and then wait until the soil seems to be drying out before watering again. This keeps the plant healthy and doesn’t cause any issues from overwatering.

Another myth focuses on wilting. Many say if a plant is wilting it requires water. This is only partially true. While wilting is certainly a sign of a plant’s roots drying out, it could also be caused from other factors besides water. The most important thing to do is check the soil. If the soil still has moisture, then the plant could be wilting from root disease, physical damage, or even insects in the soil. It’s important to know what to look for before assuming your plant needs to be watered.

Other myths revolve around types of watering. Some say that overhead watering on a sunny day can scorch the leaves and overhead watering with a sprinkler is bad for plants. The main, and only, reason to be cautious of watering on a sunny day is due to evaporation of the water in the heat. Because of the evaporation, plants receive less of the water you’re trying to provide. As for overhead watering with a sprinkler, it’s true that this isn’t the most efficient form of watering. It’s important to note that watering from an overhead sprinkler can be useful on dry, windy days when the dust might collect on the leaves.

How to Properly Water Your Garden This Summer

Dos and Don’ts

There are several ways you can ensure the safety of your plants this summer. Some are listed above in correction to the myths. Others are fairly simple: watch your plants for “indicators” and avoid getting the leaves wet if you can.

What does all this mean? It’s very simple. An indicator plant is the first plant that will wilt or otherwise show signs of distress in the garden. Once you’ve located this plant, find the cause of its distress, whether it needs watering or some other attention, and ensure the other plants are safe from the cause. If it needs to be watered, chances are the other plants do as well. If the indicator plant is affected by a bug or root disease, chances are the other plants are fine and perhaps this plant should be removed. Know the differences in what and how these factors affect plants before assuming the plant needs watering.

Why is it important to avoid wetting the leaves of the plants? Wet leaves can breed diseases and can provide less water to the roots. By keeping the leaves wet, water is unable to get to the root of the plant and spread throughout the entire plant to keep it alive. It is also a factor that any plant-related diseases are prone to attaching to the leaves of the plant and thrive in water.

Conclusion

It’s important to ensure your plants are well taken care of. Avoid any of the myths above and always do your research. If you have a new plant or are unsure if something is a myth, look it up and research proper information before caring for your plants incorrectly.

RELATED ARTICLES:

5 WATERING TIPS FOR YOUR NEW PLANTINGS

WATERING TIPS FROM DISABATINO LANDSCAPING IN DELAWARE


Tree and Shrub Care Specialist DiSabatino Landscaping is Delaware’s #1 Hardscape and Landscape Specialist. We can help advise you what is best way to maintain your landscaping!  Give us a call today! 302-764-0408

The Best Summer Blooming Shrubs to Add Color to Your Landscaping

The Best Summer Blooming Shrubs

Blooming Shrubs This Summer

Looking for the best shrubs for your garden this summer? Check out these great summer shrubs to add some life to your garden!

Low Maintenance

There are many types of shrubs out there that produce flowers or attract birds and butterflies to your yard, but some of them are so high maintenance that many people tend to avoid them. Shrubs are the least of most summer concerns because it’s one more thing to look after and remember to take care of.

These shrubs are low maintenance and still attractive to the eye and birds and butterflies:

  • Bluebeard Shrub
  • Butterfly Bush
  • Carolina Allspice
  • Hydrangeas
  • Oleander
  • Potentilla
  • Rock Rose
  • Rose of Sharon
  • Shrub Rose
  • Smoke Bush
  • Spirea
  • Summersweet

These shrubs all have a low-maintenance care regimen for their summer blooming, creating an easy, yet beautiful, addition to your landscaping for the summer months. Visitors and passersby can enjoy the beautiful colors of these amazing shrubs and you can be happy with the lack of effort it takes to have them.

Flowering Summer Shrubs

Size

Some shrubs are larger than others and can take more room from your yard. While they are beautiful, they can take away from other plants and flowers you may want to keep. It’s important to know what size a plant or shrub will be before you decide to add it to your garden.

These plants will grow to be no more than 3 feet max and will still look amazing in your garden:

  • “Becky” Shasta Daisy
  • Black-eyed Susan
  • Blue Mist Shrubs
  • Coreopsis
  • Daylilies
  • Late-blooming Astilbes
  • “May Night” Garden Sage
  • Pinks
  • Sedums
  • St. John’s Wart
  • Yarrows

With no more than 3 feet of growth, these plants and shrubs could be your choice. Or perhaps you’d like something slightly larger, but nothing to take over your garden. Try these, as they grow no more than 6 feet:

  • Bee Balms
  • “Bonica” Rose
  • Foxgloves
  • “Knockout” Rose
  • “Martha’s Vineyard” Rose
  • Michaelmas Daisies
  • Oriental Lilies
  • Purple Coneflower
  • Russian Sage
  • Summer Phloxes

If you are still seeking to go larger, these plants and shrubs can get up to a maximum of 10 feet:

  • Butterfly Bushes
  • Hollyhocks
  • Hydrangeas
  • Rose of Sharons

There are so many others out there that could provide the color and style your garden seeks. Be sure you know what you want before you purchase.

Conclusion

If you don’t know what will fit your garden best, do some research. Find plants and shrubs that grow to just the right size and have just the right colors. Most places for research will even tell you if, and what kind of, birds or butterflies are attracted to each plant. This could provide some extra color and fun to your garden.


Tree and Shrub Care Specialist DiSabatino Landscaping is Delaware’s #1 Hardscape and Landscape Specialist. We can help advise you what is best way to maintain your landscaping!  Give us a call today! 302-764-0408