Questions tagged [landscaping]

For larger scale 'landscape' questions.

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30
votes
7answers
47k views

How efficient are stump removal chemicals?

As a skeptic, I am generally wary of any claims that say something that is generally hard is made easy by a product. I was wondering if anyone could offer some advice if they have experience with ...
21
votes
2answers
1k views

How do I go about planning the layout of a sprinkler network for my lawn?

There are several great questions and helpful guides on lawns and lawn-repair on this site. Since it's the lawn laying season now, I've started thinking about laying a sprinkler network prior to ...
17
votes
4answers
139k views

What's the best way to remove 2-6 inches of dirt from my yard?

I am landscaping my yard and need to remove from 2-6 inches of dirt from the entire yard (about 2,000 square feet) to get it level with the rest of the property. The dirt in the yard currently sits ...
17
votes
2answers
378 views

Steps to renovating a lawn completely?

I bought a new home with a moderate size (90x40 ft) back yard. Unlike the front lawn, the back has never been planted and is pretty much home to weeds, aside from a small maple tree. Last year I paid ...
11
votes
3answers
41k views

How can I keep gravel from moving out of my driveway during winter?

I have a gravel driveway going horizontally across a hill, and have trouble keeping the gravel in the driveway, especially during snow. This is because every time I shovel out the driveway, stones get ...
11
votes
2answers
2k views

How do I use tree roots as a landscaping feature?

I'm sure I saw a site on the Internet that showcased using excavated tree roots as a landscaping feature. I was inspired by the idea of "recycling" a tree stump and its rootball into a rockery garden ...
11
votes
6answers
38k views

Removing weeds from brick patio

What is the best method of removing weeds from between the bricks of a patio? We have a dog and don't want to use toxic chemicals if possible. The bricks are closely spaced, probably only about 1/10 ...
11
votes
2answers
192 views

What are some paving options that will not get damaged by de-icing salt?

My wife is disabled with Cerebral Palsy and therefore can’t walk on ice or snow, so we must be able to use lots of de-icing salt on our front path. We would like to replace the paving with something ...
11
votes
1answer
816 views

What's the best way to remove grass/topsoil to prepare for grading?

I want to remove about 250 square feet of grass/topsoil and then lightly grade for drainage below a future deck. Should I: Man up with a spade & a rake? Rent a sod cutter & go deep? Use ...
10
votes
4answers
38k views

How to dispose of sand, concrete rubble and field stones?

I have three piles of rubble from an old stoop I just demolished. Here are some pictures: 1) sand pile: 2) concrete rubble pile: 3) and field stone pile: I have a few questions about how to ...
10
votes
2answers
7k views

Resloping Around Foundation With Mulch Bed

I am getting small amounts of water in my basement after large quantities of rain. I think the issue is related to a slight negative slope around part of the foundation where water is seeping in. I ...
10
votes
1answer
52 views

Newly planted pine tree saplings

What are the best ways to care for my new baby loblolly pine trees? Thank you!
9
votes
3answers
2k views

New House, Dirt Yard, Ideas in Mind, where to begin?

I moved into my house back in December of 2015. We still have a dirt yard and want to try and get something in before summer time. I have had a few quotes that are a little out of budget for me so I ...
9
votes
4answers
1k views

Lawn problem - seasonal grass, thatch, or something else?

I've owned my home for about 3 years now and every winter large patches of my lawn appears to die, but in the summer it comes back to life.... which makes me believe its some sort of seasonal grass. I'...
9
votes
1answer
425 views

What is a good strategy for laying patio pavers?

I would like to lay several patio pavers for a new patio. The pavers are 12" square. The size I want to do is rectangular, and the base is flat with a slight slope away from the house. Should I ...
9
votes
1answer
17k views

Is it beneficial to put plastic or landscaping fabric under mulch?

I am planning on completely re-doing the landscaping around my house and I would like to replace the rock pebbles with mulch. Should I put down a layer of plastic or landscaping fabric before adding ...
9
votes
1answer
952 views

What are some alternatives to under gravel filters for a 3000 gallon pond?

I'm considering building a pond in the metro Atlanta Georgia area. I've owned a pond before that had an under gravel filter when we moved into the house. The filter was essentially a network of white ...
9
votes
2answers
5k views

Raising the ground in a large area that will eventually be a patio. What type of substrate to use?

I'm gearing up for a bunch of landscaping at my new home. The backyard is kind of a mess: rotted-out deck, terrible lawn, low spots, high spots, etc. It's mostly all going to get redone. This ...
9
votes
1answer
109 views

Getting sand out of rockery

We live in the desert. The previous house owner had the back yard landscaped with a plastic layer on top of levelled sand and then 2-3 inches of rock on top. Rock size 1-2 inches across. The wind ...
8
votes
4answers
187 views

Looking for plant recommendations for newly landscaped front yard

I am trying to find the right type of plants to put along the edge of my front yard on a terraced level. It has no shade and the plants will be next to a brick wall that separates this level from the ...
8
votes
3answers
48k views

How long does mulch last?

Our house is in need of mulch around bushes, trees etc. We are finally getting around to address this, and have calculated we need two yards to get around 2 inches of mulch onto everything. We live in ...
8
votes
2answers
496 views

Why do landscapers seem to always plant the most slow growing trees in parking lots?

I see this consistently - oaks, usually. Why not plant trees that are short lived and grow quickly (mulberry, tulip poplar, etc.) instead? And almost always the trees they plant never make it to ...
8
votes
2answers
451 views

Oak tree - arborist says needs to be removed?

I have a very nice oak tree in my backyard that is about 100-150 years old. The tree is in a good visual shape and we trim it about every two years. However, there is a wound on tree's stem, about 25 ...
8
votes
1answer
10k views

How can I dispose of gravel?

The previous owner of my house decided to plant two large junipers in front of the house and fill around them with ~1-2" diameter gravel. I've already taken out the junipers but now I am left to deal ...
8
votes
1answer
11k views

Is it a good idea to build a paver patio near a large established tree?

I would like to build a paver patio next to a large tree that has a 3" wide root at ground level. I do not want to damage the roots of the tree, so it seems like my only option is to build a raised ...
8
votes
1answer
780 views

What should I do about old invasive redwood roots after the trees are cut down?

Our redwood trees were too big and too close to the house so we had them cut down. Now we will grind out the stumps and remove the large roots. However, the ground is totally saturated with the ...
8
votes
1answer
154 views

What is the most efficient long term way to destroy and kill the invasive weed named “Japanese Knotweed”

I absolutely hate Japanese knotweed with every inch of my body! It grows anywhere and everywhere on the South Shore of Massachusetts. My question for you wonderful people out there is, “What is the ...
7
votes
4answers
729 views

Beginner Starting from Scratch: Weedlot to Enjoyable Garden [closed]

I live in the Pacific Northwest (Portland), and I have a small urban back yard (20'x30'). In the decade I have owned the house, I have never really done much with it, and it has ranged from boring ...
7
votes
4answers
637 views

Would a Crinkle Crankle (Serpentine) Wall be strong enough to sit on?

We are designing a courtyard with a knee wall that would be run between lawn and brick patio. The idea is to define the space and to provide a comfortable place to sit. This is an old house on an ...
7
votes
4answers
1k views

Hardy plants for wind break in the Rocky Mountain West?

Here in Montana, high winds are a common cause for both gardening problems and poor energy efficiency in homes (as well as maintenance issues). Can anyone recommend some low-maintenance plants that ...
7
votes
3answers
169 views

Hearty Flowering Perennial for curbside appeal

I'm lost in a sea of articles with none of them actually answering my question so I turn here. Currently I plant mums every year in my front yard (Midwest region: Kansas, Lots of sunlight on the area)...
7
votes
1answer
295 views

Can I add new soil on top of existing lawn without trouble?

I have a very uneven back yard, from a combination of settling, bad maintenance, and a very enthusiastic dog (digger) that a previous owner kept out there. As part of a large backyard landscaping ...
7
votes
2answers
362 views

Where can I find a large shrub to replace one that died in a hedge? (See details)

With the drought last year I lost two fairly large (~ 5 foot tall) Photonia/Redtip shrubs that were part of a hedge. I've been to several nurseries, but the biggest one I've seen for sale anywhere is ...
7
votes
1answer
568 views

Can I trim my canary palm trunk or is it a lost cause?

Below is a canary palm in my front yard: I had a tree trimming service some out and trim away the branches. They didn't do anything to the trunk though - I asked them to come back out, and the guy ...
7
votes
0answers
69 views

water use for blue spruce outside natural environment? [closed]

I live below the natural range of blue spruce in a hot grassland habitat. How much water does a blue spruce need to thrive in this hot dry landscape?
6
votes
7answers
23k views

What is the best method/saw to cut through tough palm tree fronds with? (30-foot Queen Palms)

I have a pole saw with a typical pruning saw blade and it works great on fresh green palm fronds (which I really shouldn't be cutting, but I don't want them touching my roof line) but the ones that I ...
6
votes
4answers
232 views

Could rain barrels be considered suitable substitutes for rain gardens?

My county requires rainwater management to be incorporated into lot plans for new construction if a certain percentage of the lot is impervious. This seems a sensible measure. We are under the ...
6
votes
4answers
49k views

Can I place plants in the ground in the original pots they came from the nursery in?

I am redoing the landscaping left by the previous owners of my house. When going to nurseries I find that everything comes planted in a pot. When thinking lazily about it, at one time I considered ...
6
votes
2answers
703 views

Do Landscape Designer/Architects require a license or permits in Canada? [closed]

I reside in Toronto, Ontario, Canada and wish to start out on minor landscaping projects, and continue to work my way up. Do I need formal certification that is required by law to operate? I realize ...
6
votes
5answers
2k views

Measuring height difference over 200 meters without clear line of sight?

I recently got access to a piece of land including a spring and a pond. Since the terrain is slightly sloping after the pond´s drain, I thought on using the water flow to power a small hydro station. ...
6
votes
4answers
5k views

When to use grass seed vs. “weed and feed”

I have a stretch of my otherwise healthy South Florida, St. Augustin lawn that has thinned out over time. It's a long, but relatively thin (maybe 15' by 3'), stretch of the yard that is in the shade ...
6
votes
3answers
202 views

Ground cover for 2000 sq.ft (half full sun / half partial shade) with 60º slope

I am at Southern California. I need ground cover for 2000 sq.ft. with 60º slope and help for choosing the right flowering low ground cover. There are 30 rose plants at present, so prefer ground cover ...
6
votes
2answers
6k views

French Drain Below or Above Retaining Wall?

I have water running into my crawl space and part of the reason I believe is from hill run-off above my house. I have 3.5ft high retaining wall all around the uphill side and water comes up underneath ...
6
votes
2answers
8k views

Trees in narrow space behind retaining wall

Context We have 2 ft (60cm) high retaining wall and 2 ft behind the retaining wall is a 4 ft (1.2m) high fence. Naturally there is backfill with 5/8" crushed stone directly behind the wall. This ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

New construction, rough top soil spread, how to flatten it?

I recently moved into a new construction here this December, and since we have cold winters where I live, the builder was not going to do any landscaping for us. What they did was spread some (very) ...
6
votes
1answer
831 views

Tree roots in storm drain

A 12" square catch basin collects water from my driveway and transports it under the lawn to adjacent stream about 150 ft away via 4" corrugated buried pipe. They used corrugated covered w/stone (vs ...
6
votes
1answer
3k views

Soil Depth for Bougainvillea

I am an architect working on a project in Malibu, California. This is new construction of a single-family residence. The house features a green roof and the client is convinced that it must be planted ...
6
votes
1answer
875 views

Does my garden brickwork need mortar?

We recently redesigned the walkway through our garden to our back door. This involved lots of scaping of the land -- especially to change the waterflow away from the house. The new walkway ends with a ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

How do I landscape a sloping and flood-susceptible yard?

My wife and I just moved into a house in Arkansas a few months ago and have noticed a few drainage issues with the back yard, it has roughly a 5 to 10 degree slope (east to west) and is fenced in. The ...
6
votes
1answer
3k views

Is it a good idea to make a brick patio on my septic tank?

I have a pile of bricks and pavers (left behind from the previous owner). My septic tank is exposed a little in one corner, right at the base of my porch steps. I was thinking of scraping the tank ...