Archive for June, 2009

How Do I Set My Sprinkler Clock?

The overall goal in watering the plants in your Outdoor Living Spaces should be to promote deep root growth.  As the roots grow deeper, you can water less frequently and therefore, conserve water.

I have three post on water scheduling that address the different mistakes made by people when watering the lawn.  I recommend starting by reading these three posts and implementing the strategies mentioned in those articles.

Three Things You Are Doing to Kill Your Lawn Part 1
Three Things You Are Doing to Kill Your Lawn Part 2
Three Things You Are Doing to Kill Your Lawn Part 3

After implementing these strategies for one growing season, start next year again by eliminating the syringing, but by reevaluating how often you need to water. 

You may even get to the point where you only have to water your lawn once every ten days in the hottest months of the summer depending on your soil type and the microclimate of your lawn areas.

Good luck and save money and water!

Introduction to Conservation in the Landscape Podcast

Artisan Landscape Outdoor Living Podcast Episode 4.
Introduction to Conservation in the Landscape

Conservation in the Landscape

Conservation in the landscape does not have to mean desertscaping or ‘zero-scaping’ as it is frequently and improperly called.  You can have a lush, green Outdoor Living Space and still have the space be very sustainable.

The original term ‘Xeriscape’ was coined in Denver in 1978 after the drought in 1977.  Broadly defined, ‘xeriscaping’ means to group plants of like water needs and use more plants with low water needs and fewer plants with high water needs.  This is the simplest form of conservation.

uyuni_road_cactiUnfortunately, conservation in the landscape has soured many people towards responsible landscaping because the term ‘Xeriscape’ has been ignorantly interpreted as ‘Zeroscape.’

‘Zeroscaping’ or ‘Desertscaping’ which is the more correct term for an all rocks, hardscape and cactus landscape, is unappealing to many people, and therefore, people tend to think that you can not conserve in the landscape unless you use all rocks and cactus.

Ironically, though an all rocks, hardscape and cactus landscape uses less water, it also increases the heating and cooling requirements of the structure it surrounds because the micro-climate around the structure is drastically changed.

There are many factors, like heating and cooling, other than water conservation that play a major role in conservation in the landscape.  I have come up with a list of seven categories that I will cover in this series of posts and podcasts that will help to give ideas to conserve in the landscape.

These seven categories are: Water, Electricity, Time, Function, Recycling/Pollution, Organice Applications and Energy.

I will include the links to all the posts in this series here at the bottom of this post, but I would recommend starting with the three part watering series called “Three Things You Are Doing to Kill Your Lawn” on the Gardening and Maintenance page.  You can also access these posts from the link below “How Do I Set My Sprinkler Clock?”.

Introduction to Conservation in the Landscape Podcast


How Do I Set My Sprinkler Clock?

Your Concrete Just Won’t Grow

Watering with a Firehose

How to Hire a Gardener (or just a lawn mower)

I am asked all the time if I know someone that mows lawns, pulls weeds, or does other small yard maintenance and enhancement projects.  Now I do–me. 

lawn-mowingMy decision to provide lawn mowing and other gardening services comes as a result of weathering the current economy, but is very good news for all of you out there that have begged me in the past to take care of your yards.

I have avoided this in the past because I knew that if I wasn’t the one to come and actually mow your lawn, I would have to charge way too much for the price to be competitive…so now I am going to come and personally mow your lawn, so you get the eyes of a real expert on your yard each week.

With my eyes on your yard each week, we can start to freshen up the small details that have annoyed you for years and work towards a healthier yard that will look better and better each year. 

I will be offering a monthly sprinkler check as an upgrade to your mowing service.  With this service, I will be checking for breaks and poor coverage and then implementing the watering strategies I cover in my posts on how to water.  Your lawn will be healthier and you will be able to save some money on your water bill in the future.

As well as the sprinkler check, I will be offering pruning, dead heading, and general clean-up services.  Proper pruning and dead heading will help your trees, shrubs and perennials to be healthier and produce more and larger flowers and fruit. 

Of course I am available for enhancement projects and for other small projects like weeding.  I am considering even offering holiday lighting this year, depending on the demand.  If I do go forward with the holiday lighting, we will be offering lit, stand-in trees for both the Halloween and the Christmas holidays.  Stand-in trees are a secret that Temple Square uses to make their grounds look so beautiful during Christmas.

So, leave a comment below with your contact information and I will get in touch with you.  As a note, if you do leave a comment, I will not post your personal information on my website.

Thanks all and happy gardening!

live, play, enJOY…Life OUTSIDE!


Do You Want to See My Yard? Part Six

My children spend all of their time around the water feature when they play outside.  And I love to leave the window in my bedroom open a crack at night so I can lie in bed and listen to small waterfall.

I have six koi in my pond, and I used to have a turtle in my pond, but we had a problem with her hibernation last winter and she is not with us anymore.  The goldfish in the pond are left overs from feeding the turtle, and they have grown quite large now.

A water feature tends to take over as the center piece of your Outdoor Living Spaces, no matter how large or small.  Everyone I do a pond for says that the pond is hands down the best addition to their yard.

Do You Want to See My Yard? Part Five

My back yard is in desperate need of the walls and ceilings for my Outdoor Living Spaces, but I keep running out of time and money. 

I have a deck planned and three separate pergolas, only one of which will function as an outdoor room for the table and chairs tucked away by the head of the water feature.

The trees behind my swing will be the ceiling for that little space when they grow up.

I have, however, been able to tuck away several accessories that give the back yard that whimsical feeling that makes us feel comfortable outside.  Some of the accessories have been purchased, but others my kids have made, like the gazing balls and the little hidden caterpillars.

Do You Want to See My Yard? Part Four

I just love to walk across the thyme lawn in my front yard!  The scent is heavenly and two of my six varieties of thyme are starting to bloom.  The thyme was placed using the same informal flower bed design philosophy as the rest of the yard.


Thyme is a great floor for an Outdoor Living Space.  As always, let me know what you think of my front lawn.

Palmer Residence

palmer-residence-before-0011The Palmer Residence is a project which incorporates an Outdoor Kitchen, Dining, Hot Tub, and Great Rooms.  Click below to check out the design and the before pictures.

Palmer Residence Design

Palmer Residence Before Pictures

Allen Residence

bad-lawn-016The Allen Residence is a flower bed and Outdoor Dining Room that I designed and installed in Hooper, UT and completed late in May 2009.

Allen Residence Design

bad-lawn-003Allen Residence Before Pictures
Allen Residence Progress
Allen Residence Pergola
Allen Residence Completion Pictures

Flower Bed Design

I like to say that in all of my flower beds, each plant is placed with purpose!  The purpose is much more obvious with the straight lines, even numbers and geometric shapes of a formal planting, but harder to conceive with the organized chaos of an informal planting.

Either way, I design beds with year round color and impact.  Click on the links below for more information about flower bed design philosophies and for examples of flower beds.


Call today for a free consultation.  I do travel for large jobs.

Artisan Landscape Outdoor Living Podcast Episode 3–Informal Flower Bed Design Basics
10 Easty Steps to a Beautiful, Informal Flower Bed
Informal Flower Bed Design Pictures
Do You Want to See My Yard Part One

    Your Name (required)

    Your Email (required)


    Your Message