Winter Landscaping Tips

November 27th, 2012 by ewcAdmin

Even though the spring and summer flowers have faded and the leaves have changed from vibrant green to orange and red, this doesn’t mean that proper landscaping goes out the window. If you want to ensure that your yard looks just as beautiful during the winter months, keep the following in mind:

Use Berries for Color
Many bushes and trees that thrive during the winter months produce beautifully colorful berries that will add a festive look to your landscaping. Additionally, these berries are often a great food resource for local birds.

Consider the Hardscape of the Yard
The hardscape, or yard adornments, are often ignored during the summer months when the yard is full of flowering shrubs and annuals. Consider adding an arbor, bench, or trellis to your yard to add whimsical personality.

Fill Summer Pots and Containers
Annuals aren’t the only plants that can fill your pots and containers. Fill these with broadleaf evergreens, dwarf Alberta spruce, rhododendron, and holly during the winter. If you don’t want to purchase plants, cut some evergreen boughs and arrange them in a pleasing manner. The textures and colored berries will be sure to cheer your spirit and welcome others to your home.

Take Advantage of Four Season Perennials
Perennials that have year-round foliage are perfect for any garden. Plants, such as hellebores, dianthus, and ornamental grasses will add texture and green to your garden even in the coldest months.

The Beauty of Evergreens
Evergreens are a great asset to any winter yard. They add a wonderful array of colors. Although green may be the primary color you think of when you consider evergreens, they come in a variety of colors including blue and yellow. Regardless of the time of year, you should always have at least one evergreen in each garden bed.

Winter is also a great time to stock up on the non-plant elements you’ll need for the next year’s garden, Pierson says. “It’s a good time to bargain-shop for anything for the garden,” she says. Take a tape measure, research plants, figure out seeds you’ll need, and write down what worked and what didn’t in the current year.


For more winter landscaping advice call Brad Hull Landscaping at 860.388.4554 or visit us on the web at www.bradhulllandscaping.com

Brad Hull Landscaping services southeastern Connecticut including Old Saybrook, Clinton, Westbrook, Ivoryton, Essex, Madison, Guildford, Haddam, Old Lyme and Killingworth

Winter Plants CT – Plants that withstand winter weather

November 20th, 2012 by ewcAdmin

Winter weather is harsh on plants, and many plants don’t survive in the cold, frosty climates. A lot of work goes into making a successful landscape, and it’s a shame when the hard work goes down the drain. Plants that can stand up to the brutal pounding of winter’s fury make the most sense to include in a yard or piece of property. Try these plants to keep your landscape alive throughout the dreary winter.

Apple trees look great, and they of course bear fruit. Apple trees are famous for being able to stand up to the cold better than almost every other plant out there. The temperatures would have to reach numbing proportions for them to wither away. You can count on an apple tree making it through to the next year every year. Apple trees are worth investing in.

Lilac bushes also regularly combat the cold and snow. The sweet-smelling, purple bushes are a favorite among many people in cold climates. When spring rolls around, you can be sure that you’ll eventually see those beautiful lilac bushes sprouting up from the ground. The bushes are also versatile and relatively inexpensive, so they make great additions to any landscape scheme. The purple colors will remind you why spring is such a great time to thaw out from the overcast, uncomfortable, cold part of the year.

Lenten roses invigorate many gardens in cold climates. You should consider planting them if you want to see a great plant with plenty of buds every year. These tough plants rarely succumb to the brutal elements of the winter months. They don’t require much care and maintenance either. Not only do they stand up to the cold, but they also draw compliments from people who visit your landscaping works.

Flower Beds in CT- How to prepare for New England Winter

November 6th, 2012 by ewcAdmin

Properly preparing your flower beds for winter will help ensure a healthy bed for spring. Debris from annual and herbaceous plants often become the winter home for disease and undesirable insects, which may then wreak havoc on your spring plants. Make time this fall to get your flower beds ready for winter.

Keep Watering
Even though the weather is cooler and plants don’t seem as thirsty as they did during the peak of summer, it’s important to continue watering your flowers. Once a week, give them a deep watering to help your perennials grow deep roots. Continue to water until the ground is too cold to hold it.

Remove Weeds
Leaving weeds in your garden over the winter is an open invitation for pests and disease. Remove all of the weeds in your garden and put them in your compost pile if they’re healthy; discard them if they show signs of pests or disease since the heat generated by your compost pile won’t kill pathogens.

Remove Annuals
Immediately after the first killing frost, remove all of your annuals from your beds. Healthy annuals can go in the compost; annuals that have signs of pests or disease should be discarded.

Cut Back Perennials
As your perennials lose their summer stamina and begin to yellow and wilt, cut them back to the soil. Perennials that winter well and add color to your yard can stay, but cut them back in early spring to encourage new growth.

Insulate Your Plants
The plants remaining in your garden beds need to be insulated to protect them from decaying when water accumulates at the roots. Wait until two frosts have occurred, then lay 2 to 3 inches of mulch around your remaining plants; be careful not to cover the actual plants.

Gardening Tips for Cool Weather

October 26th, 2012 by ewcAdmin

There are simple but important tips that can keep garden healthy all through fall and winter and prepare it for the growing season in spring. Here are some tips:

Add Mulch
If the garden is in an area that’s subject to a frost/thaw cycle, it’s important to add mulch to newly planted beds. This should be done after the soil has frozen, as this will keep the temperature constant. If the temperature is allowed to fluctuate, the expansion and contraction of the soil might heave a plant right out of the ground and destroy its roots or expose them to freezing temperatures. The best mulch to use for winter are pine needle, straw and salt hay. In climates that are warmer, this sort of mulching isn’t necessary.

In early spring. the winter mulch should be gently raked away from the crowns of the plants when they begin to bud.

Top Dress The Lawn
As the weather cools, it’s a good time to top dress the lawn, especially if the soil is poor. The top dressing can be a mix of peat, loam and sand. The gardener should also fill in dips and hollows in the lawn at this time to make the lawn even for mowing.

Attend to the Herb Bed
The herb garden also needs attention in cool weather. After a few years, sage becomes leggy and needs to be cut back to the main stem or replaced with new plants. Mint will need to be restrained, and annuals like dill and sweet basil will need to be replaced. Chives can host unwanted grass roots and should be lifted out in clumps, divided and replanted. All perennial herbs should get their last cut in the autumn, so their new growth can have time to harden during the winter.

Tips for Fall Clean Up Of Yard And Garden

October 16th, 2012 by ewcAdmin

Autumn is a beautiful season and the perfect time to take advantage of the slower plant growth to prepare your yard and garden for next spring.

Clean your garden by pulling up all left over plants and weeds and till the soil. Next spring you will have a nice plot of ground ready to plant rather than a big tangled mess of weeds and dead plants.

When the last leaves have fallen, make sure you rake them from your yard and pick up any fallen branches. This will keep them from choking new grass growth in the spring. Fall is the perfect time to fertilize and aerate your yard as well.

When the autumn months draw to a close, it is time to put away the yard and garden tools. Take the time to clean and store them properly so they survive the winter in good shape. Perform maintenance on them if it is needed so when spring returns you can fire up your mower and put out your lawn furniture without having to fix and clean them first.

Don’t forget to check your home to make sure it is ready for the winter too. Clean leaves out of the gutters and trim limbs a little if they might scrape your roof when they are heavy with snow. Fall is not the ideal time for heavy trimming so just do enough so the trees won’t hit against your roof when the cold winter winds blow. A little time spent during the fall can help you avoid big repairs and extra work when growing season returns.

Rejuvenate Your Lawn CT

September 28th, 2012 by ewcAdmin

If your lawn is looking thin and brown, it can be rejuvenated to make it lush and green again. Early fall is the perfect time to get started. The warm soil from summer and the cooler fall air is ideal for grass germination. In addition, the seed will have time to become established before the hot, dry months of the next summer.

If there are bald spots, the first step is to find out what is causing them. The reasons can vary from pests to lawn disease. Once the reason has been determined, the appropriate remedy can be applied. The soil from the bald spots will then need to be dug up and replaced with a soil and compost mixture and then reseeded and fertilized.

If the lawn is sparse and there are no other issues, reseeding will refresh the lawn. If you want a beautiful, green lawn, reseeding is not is simple as throwing some grass seed on the lawn. There are steps that must be taken before reseeding, such as mowing the existing grass very short and raking to expose the soil.

In some cases, the entire lawn may need to be redone. This involves grading uneven areas of the lawn to smooth it out and working compost or commercial manure down into the soil. Once the prep work has been completed, new grass seed can be applied.

Rejuvenating a lawn is a labor-intensive job, but the results will be amazing. A landscaping company will have the knowledge and the tools to do the job correctly. Once the job is complete, they will also teach you how to care for the lawn until it has became established. The result will be a lush carpet of green that will be the envy of the neighborhood.

Landscaping – Sloped Lot Challenge

September 18th, 2012 by ewcAdmin

Landscaping a sloped lot can be challenging. Although your Essex CT home likely isn’t located on an extremely steep cliff, you still may have to deal with a lot that presents a landscape challenge due to its slope. However, you have several options for landscaping your Clinton CT lawn, gardens and walkways so that you don’t lose soil in every hard rain and so that your yard stays spectacular.

The primary reason for landscaping your sloped Centerbrook CT yard is to prevent soil erosion. If the slope has been cleared of all plants and trees, the soil will eventually end up at the bottom of the hill. There are almost as many solutions to this problem as there are sloped lots in Guilford CT. You’ll need to decide exactly how you want to preserve the slope. You may prefer grasses, terraced gardens or even dry creek beds or water features.

As you start to plan how you’ll landscape your Old Saybrook CT yard, you’ll need to take a hard look at the slope with which you’ll be working. The goal is to retain as much as the natural slope as possible. Cutting into a slope to landscape it can weaken its existing structure. Instead, follow the natural lay of the slope on your Westbrook CT property to maintain its integrity.

Consider using grasses, shrubs and trees as plantings on your slope to help keep the soil in place. Plants with large, woody root systems help hold the soil in place. Grasses with fibrous roots as well as low-growing shrubs are good choices for a Deep River CT yard. Keep in mind that the bottom of the slope is likely to retain moisture much longer than the top does. For that reason, think about choosing trees that don’t mind wet roots.

After you’ve chosen plants that hold your Madison CT slope in place, you can turn your attention to the view from the top of the slope. Carefully consider the growth pattern of the trees you plant to ensure they won’t block the view in the future. You also need to make sure you leave enough room between plants for maintenance access. With some careful planning and hard work, your Ivoryton CT sloped yard should have the best landscaping in the neighborhood.

If you have any questions or would like a quote please call Brad Hull Landscaping Services. 860.388.4554


Hardscape and Landscape – Spice Up Your Front Entry

September 10th, 2012 by ewcAdmin

Hardscape and Landscape can make a big impression on front entryways. Many residents in Essex CT, Clinton CT, Centerbrook CT and surrounding towns are taking a closer look at the exterior of their home. The curb appeal of your home is comprised of two things your home and your landscaping. If you have decided that your issue with curb appeal stems from your home’s outdated or lower quality landscaping features, the perfect solution may be to spice up your front entry with hardscape features.

Whether people are driving by your Guilford CT, Old Saybrook CT or Westbrook CT home or they are walking up to your front door, you want your home to impress them. Hardscape can be installed in your yard to add decorative appeal to spaces that currently lack luster and flair. Hardscaping involves the use of decorative stones, tiles and more. You can consider how your home’s exterior may benefit from natural stone flower bed borders, brick pavers used in a new walkway, a gorgeous water feature and more. There are so many different possibilities available to you when it comes to adding hardscape features to your home. The right mix of features will add style to your space while enhancing curb appeal. Some features, such as pathways, may add function to your space too.

Before you can install hardscape features to your home in Deep River CT, Ivoryton CT or Madison CT, first you have to decide which hardscape features will be installed. Creating a hardscape plan is essential to creating the ideal impact from your efforts. You may consider researching hardscape designs in various home improvement books. However, you may benefit more significantly from receiving custom advice specific to your home’s needs by talking to a landscaping professional with experience with hardscape design and installation.



If you have any questions or would like a quote please call Brad Hull Landscaping Services. 860.388.4554



Pet Friendly Yards CT

September 4th, 2012 by ewcAdmin

If you have family pets, you no doubt share your yard space with them on a regular basis. However, many yards throughout Essex CT, Clinton CT, Centerbrook CT and other nearby towns are simply not pet-friendly. Some of the vegetation featured in these yards may be toxic to your pets, or they may simply feature sharp points that can poke and harm your pet. Further, when pets and people share yard spaces, the result is often hassle, stress and inconvenience for everyone involved. Pets may roam into areas where you don’t want them, and they may create foot traffic patterns in your yard. Further, they inevitably will leave behind messes for you to clean up.

You can, however, take a few steps to make your yard in Guilford CT, Old Saybrook CT, Westbrook CT or another local community more pet-friendly. One option to consider is to install a gate or fence around a specific area of the yard. This can allow you to create a safe zone for your pets that is free of dangerous or toxic vegetation and where your pets are free to roam without hindrance. The rest of your yard can stay in pristine condition without the effects of pet damage, pet messes and more.

While installing a pet area in your home in Deep River CT, Madison CT, Ivoryton CT or another Connecticut community is the ideal solution for some, it is not ideal for everyone. For example, some yards are simply not large enough or laid out right to accommodate a fenced-in pet area. Another option to consider is to lay paver stones or natural stones to create a foot path where the pets normally travel. Consider removing toxic plants and installing safe, native vegetation. Your professional landscaper can assist you with these efforts and can help you to create a truly safe environment for your pet.


If you have any questions or would like a quote please call Brad Hull Landscaping Services. 860.388.4554



Backyard Retreats CT- A How To Guide

August 27th, 2012 by ewcAdmin

Backyard Retreats- A How To Guide

The desire to maximize the use of your yard is a common one, and you may be wondering how you can turn your back yard into a private oasis or retreat. You may have the desire to create a lush, quiet garden area in your Essex CT, Clinton CT or Centerbrook CT home. Perhaps you want to create a more fun and lively retreat area that is ideal for hosting friends and family for backyard barbecues and get-togethers. Understanding what you want to use your space for is the first step toward creating the perfect back yard on your property.

After you have a general idea about what you want your finished back yard to be used for, you can then begin planning and designing the space. Whether your home is in Guilford CT, Old Saybrook CT, Westbrook CT or another similar area, you do want to create design plans and sketches for your space. Avoid going into the yard to tear up the existing vegetation and decorative features without a firm plan in mind of what you want to do. You can also go a step further and cut out design ideas from images in a magazine.

Some homeowners in Deep River CT, Madison CT, Ivoryton CT and other local areas have difficulty creating a great plan. They lack the functional knowledge of landscaping design, or they simply want to create a more professionally designed space. Some may develop a fabulous design, but they lack the time or skill required to install their design ideas. When you need assistance in the design plans for your back yard, contact a landscaping company for assistance. Brad Hull Landscaping has the expertise to help you create the patio, hardscape and landscape for all of your outdoor needs.


If you have any questions or would like a quote please call Brad Hull Landscaping Services. 860.388.4554