Category Archives: landscape design

Why Your Yard is Flooding and How to Fix It

When the rain pours, and when the mounds of snow melt, many homeowners may find themselves dealing with a soggy, marshy wasteland instead of a scenic, gathering-friendly backyard.

What’s worse, the neighbor’s yard may be the picture of perfection. What gives? Why is your yard flooding and what can you do to fix it?

Yard Floods and How to Fix Them

Let’s Talk Soil

Clay soil can be the culprit behind a yard that’s less than stellar. Unlike other types of soil, clay won’t absorb as much water, leaving a slushy mess. What can you do? Try adding a thin layer of compost or topsoil to the top of your lawn each year. Over time, it will help provide the cushion of water absorbing soil that your lawn is currently lacking. After you mow, don’t dump those clippings at the curb. Use them instead. Leave a layer of clippings in your yard after you mow to add that extra bit of organic matter — and another topsoil layer. But if it isn’t about clay soil, you might have too much foot traffic running through your yard. You can encourage your kids, friends, and guests to stick to the stone paths and walkways in your yard. You can also aerate your lawn.

On Top of the Hill

The view from the top is great, but if your yard is more towards the bottom of a hill or situated on a slope, water will collect. You do still have options. You can level or regrade your lawn to try to alleviate some of the sloping. If it is a steep hill, look into other drainage systems to help solve your issue.

High Water Table

Some parts of the country have a high water table or a point where the ground can’t hold any more water, resulting in the squishy lawn you may be familiar with. As rain falls and snow melts, the ground can only take so much. While you may be tempted to try to regrade your yard, a high water table might make that solution tricky. You may want to look into a drainage system to deal with the issue head on.

You Can Have the Perfect Lawn

While it can take a bit of work to help your current marshland turn into the backyard oasis of your dreams, it isn’t impossible. You can make it happen even faster by enlisting the help of professionals. Contact Blue Tree Landscaping to get your  yard into shape. From lawns to pools to drainage and fencing, Blue Tree Landscaping is the one-stop-shop for everything you need to care for your yard.

Get the Pool of Your Dreams

One of the best outdoor activities in the summer is taking a dip in the pool…assuming there’s one nearby to use! Whether your current pool is in need of updating, or you’re looking to install a brand-new backyard staple, there are many factors to take into consideration when looking into the process of getting a pool in your backyard. Here’s a general overview of things to keep in mind when researching details for planning

Create a Timeline

Right now, the weather is perfect for outside activities and the installation of outdoor landscaping. Different aspects of construction cannot be rushed, such as cement drying and laying surfaces. Since the summer months are approaching, vacations will be scheduled around this time as well. Be sure to plan early to get the services you need whenever is most convenient for you.

Consider Design

This goes beyond just the shape of the pool. There are many styles to choose from, such as infinity pools and various in ground designs. Certain hardscaping features like tile work, wall finish, and the surrounding ground surface should all be decided before proceeding with installation, as there are details that can add or detract from the overall image.

Choose Fun Extra Features Beforehand

External features are easier to implement later in the pool’s production. However, water slides, underwater bar stools, fountains, and similar details need to be decided on early in the timeline, in case they change the pool’s overall shape or estimated completion date. Take any fun additions into consideration and add them to the blueprints before starting construction.

Decorate

One of the most fun experiences in pool design is creating your own unique backyard features, and there is an abundance of technology on the market right now that will help create a truly one-of-a-kind pool. Lights and accessories can add to the aesthetic and be changed frequently for occasions and events. Consider color-changing lights, surrounding seating, and hidden sound systems that will make the pool the centerpiece for entertaining and home enjoyment.

Explore your options with Blue Tree! We are part of the process every step of the way, from initial planning to installation to putting the last touches on the finished product. Our team of experts will advise you on which courses of action to take to ensure that your pool is as picturesque and perfect as can be. Consider choosing us for a swimming pool project, and do not hesitate to contact us to get started!

Install A Gazebo In Time For Summer

Summer is a time for relaxation and rejuvenation, but the weather can be brutal during the warmer months. Anyone looking for a reprieve should consider building a gazebo for their yard, to cut the sunlight and provide a wonderful aesthetic to any space. Check out some positive features a gazebo can provide; there’s still time to get started on the plans for one!

Relief from the Weather

Many gazebos can be installed with solid roofing and ample shade from harsh sunlight. This makes them perfect for hosting daytime gatherings and getting work done outdoors. In some instances, fans or other electrical appliances can be placed into the design, providing even more relief from hotter days. A combination of versatility and durability will keep your gazebo in perfect shape for any weather.

The Perfect Party Location

A gazebo’s attributes can make it the ideal setting for any get-together, especially if you’ve gone the extra mile for some unique features. Consider putting in an electrical outlet or speaker systems to have automatic entertainment options, or generating enough space for a few pieces of furniture. A TV or gaming system is an automatic plus for sports fans, and even appliances such as a refrigerator or stove top will assist in entertainment endeavors.

Easy Installation

Gazebos are one of the most popular choices for major design accessories, and there are hundreds of designs to choose from! Its features, such as being above ground and smaller in scale, make it a prime choice for sprucing up your summer landscape. Do research on which materials and locations will work best for your backyard, to get premium use from what is available.

Make It Your Own

Customizing your new favorite spot is important, and no matter how simple or frivolous your ideas are, what matters is how your gazebo fits into your everyday use. Create a tiny escape with a few cozy chairs, or go bigger and put a table or bar in for prime entertainment options. Vines or plants surrounding the landscape will add a touch of greenery that accentuates any warm weather, and most of them are easy to maintain.

Contact Blue Tree

Let us help you build the gazebo of your dreams! Blue Tree offers hardscaping services that will assist you with the design and installation of even the most elaborate gazebos. Beyond that, our landscaping services and maintenance capabilities will have your yard ready for summer before it even begins. Explore the full range of what we offer on our website, and contact Blue Tree to get started today!

Make Your Yard Kid-Friendly This Spring


Make Your Yard Kid-Friendly This Spring

With the changing weather, it’s time to start sending the kids outside to play again. If it’s time to renovate your back or front yard, taking the kids into consideration for remodels is a wise decision. Make sure all the corners and surfaces are ready for whatever rambunctious activity they come up with next!

Consider the Materials

Sometimes the location of backyard attributes is less important than the materials that make them up. Installing grass or turf in place of a harder surface is not only a safer option, but it can also be a more aesthetic one. Larger backyards can often incorporate both beautiful views and utility so that kids and parents are both happy!

Patios and walkways also make great additions to any spacious yard, and a little bit of sidewalk chalk can provide non-toxic fun close to home. When the sun goes down, patios also offer perfect surfaces for meals and events. Install lights and comfortable furniture to ensure that every family member is cozy and enjoying themselves when using the patio.

Account for Basic Safety

The appearance of your yard is important, but what happens under and behind surfaces can be pivotal to the overall structure. Always check for damages and general wear-and-tear caused by natural — and human — influences. Water damage and loose parts can cause problems, especially after the winter months, and taking that into consideration will ensure that your yard is safe.

Investing in snow removal services and any efforts to promote general upkeep are a must for conscientious parents and grandparents. Take care of any impending repairs before diving into any major changes to your yard.

Fence it in

If you have children who like sports, craft them a makeshift field by installing a fence that will enclose their play space and offer the privacy you desire. Not only will they have room to call their own, but balls and toys are less likely end up on the other side of the wall, or in the neighbor’s backyard.

Look into investing in a fence for your pool as well; especially with younger children. It will serve as added protection from falling or water incidents that can cause serious harm. This applies to pets too!

Start Today

Get ready for a spring makeover with Blue Tree Landscaping! Contact our team of experts to get a quote on brand-new amenities for your backyard. Whether you have basic commercial landscaping needs or need help with pool installation or lawn care, let us help you optimize your backyard for every family member.

Landscaping Do’s and Don’ts for Small Backyards

Divide Your PlantsSome backyards do not have the luxury of abundant room to personalize, especially in areas that are closer to major cities. This can force homeowners to get creative with their backyards, which can lead to many different positive outcomes. Take a look at some do’s and don’ts to take into consideration before beginning the remodeling process.

Do: Take Company into Account

If your backyard plays host to parties and get-togethers on a frequent basis, a simple aesthetic might be the key to an appealing setting. Tables, chairs, and sufficient walkways are crucial to any successful hosting of an event. Stick to landscaping and decorations that won’t detract from your guest’s experience.

Don’t: Over-Decorate 

Choosing giant features for a tiny space can overwhelm the eye and take up valuable real estate. Often, one or two simple pieces can act as accoutrements to the main components (e.g. a few wall ornaments will match an in-ground pool that takes up most your yard’s foot room). Fountains, statues, and accessories that hold little function can cause clutter. Be conscientious of what you’re working with; less is enough in situations like these.

Do: Choose Functionality

Maximizing surface area can be a key component to expanding any backyard size. Adding a retaining wall can provide multitier opportunities for the gardener in the family, and lighting up the whole space will create an entertainment hub for hosts of every kind. When every inch is cared for, it can greatly increase the enjoyment capacity for everyone.

Don’t: Ignore Your Climate

Whether it’s hot and dry or damp outside, landscaping can suffer if the proper materials are not chosen for a backyard space. This is especially true when children are present; a patio that gets too hot in the summer or lawn components that dominate the space are not conducive to their play or enjoyment.

Do: Contact Blue Tree

It’s time to get started! Blue Tree Landscaping has all the keys to a new and beautiful space that you can be proud of. We offer commercial landscaping services such as lawn care services, pool installation, and beyond for those looking to revitalize any limited backyard. Call us today to explore your options and turn your small backyard into your favorite room in the house!

How to Make Your Yard Tastefully Private

Landscape LightingThere are a few different ways that you can make your backyard or front yard more private. Privacy can be accomplished through tasteful, modern measures, through plants, or through new materials for fences and walls. If you’re interested in remodeling your backyard and introducing a much-needed update, the following examples will be a nice addition to any outdoor space.

Why You Should Add a Wall or Fence

If you have young children or pets, you might want to consider a modern wall or fence design for your yard. This will help you to keep a better eye on your loved ones, and keep them out of trouble. It can also help to keep intruders out, such as deer or other wildlife that may be interested in helping themselves to your garden. A wall or fence can help with nosey neighbors, too.

Consider New Materials and Designs

If you want to add a fence or wall to your yard, the design and material options are seemingly endless. Your fence could be made of horizontal wood panels (instead of vertical), or plexiglass and wood, for example. Not up for a fence or wall? If you’re interested in adding a pergola or similar structure to your yard, consider adding an outdoor curtain for additional privacy.

Make Your Yard Private With Plants

If gardening is one of your favorite pastimes, why not prove it? Make your garden grow to new heights — literally. Plant new shrubs and trees, or help your current plants to grow taller. You’ll be able to create a more natural barrier between your yard and the outside world. Another way to achieve new heights: add raised flower beds, so that your garden appears at various levels. Or, add a row of larger-than-life potted plants for a makeshift “fence.”

You could also add a lattice fence, trellis, or similar open structure — with a modern twist. There are many modern designs available now that will look more tasteful while still being useful. These designs will allow your yard to feel more open, while also allowing for another way to show off your plants. You could add roses or other vines to add a more romantic or private element to your yard, too.

Time to Get Started

Once you have some ideas in mind for your landscaping project, contact Blue Tree Landscaping. Blue Tree will help you at every step of the way, from planning, to design, to realizing your vision.

Landscaping for Modern vs. Traditionally Styled Homes

Decorate Your PatioYou want a landscaping design that compliments the style of your home and makes it a more inviting place for your family and guests — but you don’t want your design to be so “busy” or minimal that it’s distracting. The following are some ideas to consider when choosing a design for your yard, no matter what your home’s style is.

Landscaping for a Modern Home

With a modern home design — think informal with mixed materials, floor-to-ceiling windows, and an eye-catching shape — you can get away with more unique flowers, shrubs, and trees for your yard. You’ll also be able to use certain hardscaping materials, such as concrete or certain rock tiles that might not look as appealing when paired with a more traditional home.

Depending on your home’s materials and color scheme (inside and outside), you might choose a more minimal landscaping design, or else one that’s as quirky and vibrant as your home is. Nonetheless, when it comes to landscaping designs for modern homes, less is usually more. Don’t overload the yard with exotic or unique plants, or too many focal points. Have the backyard, for example, be focused around an outdoor living space.

Landscaping for a Traditional Home

A more traditional home — think of a formal design that may be more symmetrical and rectangular, made of brick or stone, with a gable roof or a front porch — will call for a more uniform design that is neither minimalist nor maximalist, but somewhere in between. You’ll want to stick with hardscaping materials (for walkways and patios) that are similar to the house’s materials (if only in color), and plants that are more common to your home’s region.

For your backyard, a traditional home usually calls for a more “traditional” pool shape, such as Grecian or Roman, but you could also do an oval or kidney shape. You could also add a waterfall or decorative rocks and plants to frame the pool. However, like with a modern home, you’ll want to make your outdoor living space your main focal point.

It’s Time to Take the Next Step

Choosing the right landscaping design for your yard doesn’t have to be difficult. Whether you have some landscaping ideas in mind already, or are looking for someone to help you brainstorm, contact Blue Tree Landscaping to get started on your landscaping project today. Blue Tree will help you with all of your landscaping, hardscaping, and lawn care needs. They’ll help you to realize your vision for your yard, and maintain it all year round, too.

How to Use Contrasting Colors in your Landscape

Blue Tree Landscaping TipsHow to Use Contrasting Colors in Your Landscape

When brainstorming landscaping ideas for your yard, it’s important that your yard is both functional and aesthetically appealing. You want your yard to be functional in that you can enjoy activities like grilling and swimming, but you also want your yard to be enjoyable and inviting. Thus, if you really want to make your yard’s landscaping “pop,” consider using elements of color theory in your landscaping.

What Are Contrasting Colors?

Contrasting colors, or complimentary colors, are the colors that are opposite of each other on the color wheel. Each pair includes one primary color and one secondary color. The three main pairs are as follows: green and red, violet and yellow, and orange and blue. The various colors, and their effects on people, have been studied extensively. Blue and green are considered “cool,” relaxing colors, whereas red and yellow are “warm,” passionate colors. Violet, however, can be a “cool” color or a “warm” color, depending on how it’s used.

How to Use Contrasting Colors in Landscaping

Contrasting colors, when paired together, offer a natural focal point for your yard. If you want to use contrasting colors as a focal point, consider pairing violet and yellow flowers together, perhaps near an outdoor living space, front walkway, or garden. Color theory experts consider contrasting color combinations to be most effective if used in unequal proportions. Therefore, don’t feel like you have to split your yard equally between violet flowers and yellow flowers. Try, for example, an abundance of violet flowers with some yellow flowers mixed in. You can use this method for non-contrasting colors as well, too.

While pairing red and green plants together might bring back memories of Christmas decorations, it won’t come off as a seasonal design unless you’re using seasonal plants like pine trees and poinsettias. Think of red roses, tulips, or carnations paired with a green lawn or green foliage — they will draw attention to your yard in a more subtle way than a combination of blue and orange or violet and yellow.

Further, consider using contrasting colors when decorating your yard. If you want to add an outdoor living area during your landscaping project, try using contrasting furniture or accessories with your plants. For example, you could place a violet chair (or a violet pillow on a neutral-colored chair) next to yellow tulips.

It’s Time to Get Started

If you’re ready to get started on your landscaping project, contact Blue Tree Landscaping. They’ll handle all of your landscaping needs, in addition to hardscaping, lawn care, and routine maintenance.

Yard Renovations for Kids Who Love to Play Outside

Inground Swimming Pool Skippack PAYard Renovations for Kids Who Love to Play Outside

For adults, outdoor renovations usually mean landscaping work, installing patios, and adding outdoor dining and grilling areas, among others. But if you have children, and you’re looking to renovate your yard, consider adding some kid-friendly changes. These renovation ideas will make your child want to spend more time outdoors — instead of playing video games or watching TV — which means that they’ll get more Vitamin D, exercise, and use out of your outdoor space.

Have a Designated Play Area

When brainstorming a design for your landscape, be sure to dedicate a specific section of your yard to your child. This doesn’t mean that they can’t play elsewhere in the yard, only that their swing set, toys, sandbox, and playhouse will be in the same area. Make sure that the area is covered in grass, padding, or soft ground if your child is particularly active. If you have younger children, this is a crucial move — it helps you to keep a better eye on them, and make sure they’re safe while outside.

This is also your chance to be creative and cater to your children’s imagination. Maybe you’ll want to include certain trees, shrubs, and flowers to make their area feel like a jungle paradise or a hidden forest. You could also add a hopscotch or four square area, child-sized furniture, a basketball hoop, a volleyball area, or an outdoor chalkboard — it all depends on what your child likes!

Other Child-Approved Ideas

Adding a pool to your yard is always a kid-approved move. If you already have a pool, or want to add one to your yard, consider adding a water slide or waterfall for your child. Another popular option: add an outdoor movie area. This is a great option for kids and adults alike, and will help you to bond more with your child outdoors. You could set up this area in a way that blends with an outdoor lounge or dining area. Further, you could also add a fire pit so that you can make s’mores with your child on nice summer nights — maybe during an outdoor movie.

It’s Time to Plan Your Renovation

If you’re ready to alter the look of your outdoor space — and make it more appealing to your child — be sure to contact your landscaper to discuss your ideas. Contact Blue Tree Landscaping for all of your landscaping, hardscaping, and lawn care needs — they’ll help make your outdoor vision come true.

Install a Pergola This Winter

pergolaWhy You Should Install a Pergola This Winter

If you’re looking for a quick way to upgrade your outdoor space, consider installing a pergola in your yard. A pergola offers a great way to elevate your yard all year round, for practical and aesthetic reasons.

What is a Pergola?

A pergola is a type of open outdoor structure, usually constructed of metal or wood, that shelters a section of your yard. This type of structure is often used to cover a walkway or an outdoor living space, and it can be attached to your home or stand on its own. It is often used to create a more private outdoor space, offer shade on sunny days, support vines and other plants, and as an aesthetically pleasing focal point for your yard.

There are many different styles of pergolas, but they all utilize an open design with columns and a “roof” of beams. Depending on the style of your home and landscaping, you may want to choose a modern, sleek pergola or a pergola with an arch or Italian-style columns.

An Extension of Your Home

There are many ways that you can use a pergola in your yard, but they are often used as a private, shaded outdoor entertaining space. You may use it to shade an outdoor dining area, kitchen, sports bar, or a relaxing living space. Your pergola might be designed to be light and airy, or covered in dense vines and roses to create a romantic escape. No matter the design, it can transform your outdoor space by complementing your landscaping, pool, and home.

Pergolas in Winter

The winter season may seem like an unusual time of year for installing a pergola in your backyard. However, installing a pergola in the winter will allow you to entertain outdoors as soon as the weather gets warmer. Still, that doesn’t mean your pergola will be unusable until spring. Thanks to outdoor heaters, fireplaces, and fire pits, you’ll be sure to get some use out of your outdoor living space all year round.

During the winter, a pergola can transform your outdoor space into a type of winter retreat. It’s also a great way to embrace outdoor seasonal decorating. Decorate your space with outdoor rugs and furniture in festive colors, lanterns, strings of lights, wreaths, and potted plants.

How to Install a Pergola

If you’re interested in installing a pergola in your backyard, contact Blue Tree Landscaping to make your outdoor vision a reality. Blue Tree can help with all of your hardscaping, landscaping, and lawn care needs.