Outdoor Kitchen & Patio with EP Henry Pavers,
EP Henry Incorporated sponsored the Mid-Atlantic Hardscape Trade Show (MAHTS) in Atlantic City, NJ from February 11-13. The trade show offers a wide range of educational seminars tailored to hardscape installation crews, landscape designers and landscape company managers. Approximately fifty vendors attend and set up trade show booths to promote their products.
Much of the show is a marketing platform for EP Henry products. EP Henry paver and wall system products were some of the earliest available in the industry. Though an early innovator, EP Henry products have not kept up in aesthetic appeal when compared to other producers such as CST, Techo-Bloc or Unilock. It seems they have realized this in the last few years and made some positive advancement in both the colors and the styles of the product. In wall systems they have added the 3-length Coventry wall which allows for a variety of block sizes and a much more dynamic character. The 3 piece modular, the Cobblestone & the Bristol Stone are paver systems with an end product that has a character at the higher aesthetic and quality end for paver installations. EP Henry still produces the Coventry paver lines, which for many people look unattractive and outdated. Overall, I see EP Henry moving in good directions. It is not my first choice, but if a client asks for the product I have and will continue to use it.
The vendor line up at the show is limited overall. Focus Industries was there with a display of landscape lighting products. I’ve known these guys for a few years and like the products. Focus Lighting has a wide range of budget oriented LED landscape lighting products. The ratio of quality to price is outstanding and I especially like the Small Ledge LED light (SL-42). Ray Murray Incorporated was there with outdoor kitchen product displays. I have worked with them on FireMagic and Twin Eagles brand orders in the past. The Twin Eagles is an outstanding grill with a very positive price to quality ratio. The company was started by an innovator who helped develop some of the better known company products over the years and recently started his own venture. All products are made in the USA. Aquarius Irrigation was at the show presenting a wide range of products for water features. The aqua bloc system is always a show stopper for an efficient approach to building pond less water features in the landscape.
The education seminars range in quality. Installation oriented seminars tend to get moderate reviews from the field installation teams who attend. I received my International Concrete Paver Institute (ICPI) certification at the MAHTS show during two day long seminars several years ago. Those courses were taught by an especially well qualified concrete paver installation professional and I learned a good deal. This year I focused on internet marketing seminars. They were also taught by an extremely well qualified professional who understood the topic in specific relation to the landscape industry.
Overall, I recommend the MAHTS show for any landscape contractor in the Pennsylvania & New Jersey regions. It is rather inexpensive overall and well worth every penny in my experience. The show is an opportunity to stay current with landscape industry products, knowledge and other professionals in our industry.
With the recent snow storms, the Garden Design offices are a winter wonderland. It is hard to imagine that spring is less than a month away. Winter a great time to start planning your spring landscape projects. Visions of outdoor living can warm the freezing days of winter. Start the process by contacting a qualified landscape design professional. During this slow season, landscape designers will have more time and energy to devote to your project since most people aren’t planning that far in advance. You may also save money in design costs since designers aren’t as busy. Planning garden designs early can allow your projects to be constructed in spring and you can start enjoying your outdoor living spaces.
People aren’t commonly considering landscape design in the winter. Therefore, landscape designers aren’t as busy and they may be anxious for new projects. This is the time to get the most value for your design costs. Landscape designers will have more time to devote to your project during the slower winter season. That can result in a more personal attention to your design and a more expeditious process.
If you wait until spring to start thinking about your landscape designs, it could be the end of summer before you see those visions get built. Complete the designs in the winter and get the project under contract. Then your project construction can start early and you can be enjoying your new outdoor living spaces once the weather is inviting. You may also save some money on construction. Some companies will provide a winter contract discount if you sign and provide a deposit early enough.
Start thinking about landscape designs now. Hire a qualified professional landscape designer such as the design team at Garden Design. The design process will warm your spirit as you dream of your future outdoor living spaces.
The completed landscape ready to enjoy!
When you look out your windows, do you see a place that invites you to come out and relax or do you look at your property line with a shrub or two, perhaps a tree. We took this border and made it a destination, a place to view all season. Some place to enjoy without leaving your property.
We took this ordinary border of the property and made it a place to unwind, relax, and enjoy one’s own property. The irregular flagstone path leads you to a special spot with nature wrapped around you. Ornamental grass, perennials, shrubs are all a part of this landscape when completed.
A lush outdoor living room with shrubs, trees, and perennials and grasses to relax and enjoy the beauty of nature.
This ordinary back yard was on a bank so it was not very usable. We cut the soil 4′ from the foundation of the house to give a sitting wall and a planter. This gave us more level space to create the patio. A landing was created with stairs to get to the concrete paver patio. Perennials, shrubs, and a tree was planted to give privacy for the outdoor living room and to be able to observe continuous bloom throughout the season as you relaxed on the patio. Notice that this is not an expensive house but the outdoor living room makes the house!!! See the before below!
Notice this rather ordinary, inexpensive house. A well designed landscape can transform a property, it did this one!
There are so many subtle elements that make a landscape beautiful. Two of the ones that I pay particular attention to is texture and shape. What do I mean by that? Some leaves are fuzzy, some are shiny, some are dull, some are delicate looking, some are evergreen and very thick and look like they could withstand the winter. There are many elements of design that create a beautiful landscape but if you pay attention to how you put the textures and shapes together, it will make the difference between a landscape that doesn’t quite measure up to your critique eye but yet you can’t quite put your finger on why. It could very well be that! When I am designing, I am thinking of the texture of the leaf as well as its shape. You also need to pay attention to the shape and the texture of the flower. If you put different varieties of plants with shiny leaves together, it doesn’t look right. You want to put something delicate next to something heavy, something shiny like a holly next to something dull like a taxus. A round leaf next to a grasses leaf or a needle, an evergreen next to a deciduous shrub or perennial. If the leaves are large, they need to be balanced with needles, grasses, or smaller
Two very important elements of design are texture and form. Landscapes that are beautiful were designed by someone who paid attention to texture and form.
different shaped leaves around them.
Those are some of the subtle differences in designing that create beautiful spaces. Go out into your landscape and look at it with a critical eye and see if the suggestions I made could help you landscape be all that it can be.
What kind of mulch should I use? Facts about dyed mulch.
Did you know that all dyed mulches and many other mulches are made out of grinding up wood pallets that may have had chemical spills or harmful products on them. Tree stumps are also common in mulches. Only bark mulch is the highest quality and will prevent you from getting artillery fungus all over your mulch. Spores from the fungus will fly to shiny objects like cars, siding, or anything close by. It is very difficult to remove from objects even though they are tiny dots, there are hundreds of them. Artillery fungus does not adhere to bark. Typically bark mulches are not as evenly ground as mulches that use other wood products but they are much better for your plants and our environment. Think about all of the dye that is washing off every time it rains into the soil and then the water table where we all get our water to drink! Think about all the people using dyed mulch because it does keep its color longer. That is a lot of pollution.