Welcome

Thank you for joining me in the quest
to make our Landscape Retreats
beautiful and enjoyable!

Here, I’ll share my knowledge and experiences with lawns,
trees, shrubs, perennials, or anything outdoors…
to assist in making your outdoor space, your oasis!

Softscapes

Find information to help with lawns, shrubs, trees, fertilizers, mulch, irrigation, pesticides, herbicides, design ideas…

Watering Schedules

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Rain Sensor

Below are the watering schedules I use here in the Southeast. The wide range is dependent on the maturity of the plants or grass I’m watering.  I recommend having a rain sensor to prevent unnecessary watering…save some $$$!  Adding too much water can cause mold (among other things) which doesn’t allow oxygen to get into the soil to feed your plants and grass.

Summer Watering Schedule
Area Light Time Frequency
Grass Full Sun 12-20 minutes 3x/week
Grass Part Sun to Full Shade 6-10 minutes 3x/week
Beds Full Sun 8-10 minutes 3x/week
Beds Part Sun to Full Shade 4-6 minutes 3x/week

*Fall watering may look much like the summer if the heat continues with no precipitation.  I adjust the fall watering by hand accordingly versus using the Seasonal Adjustment option on the Irrigation Timer.

Spring Watering Schedule – New Seed/Plantings
Area Light Time Frequency
Grass Full Sun 12-15 minutes Daily*
Grass Part Sun to Full Shade 6-12 minutes Daily*
Beds Full Sun 4-6 minutes Daily (or as needed)
Beds Part Sun to Full Shade 4-6 minutes 3x/week

*the idea here is to keep the seed moist not soaked…you may need to break up the watering to twice/day for less time

Spring Watering Schedule – No new seeding/planting
Area Light Time Frequency
Grass Full Sun 12-20 minutes 2x/week
Grass Part Sun to Full Shade 8-10 minutes 2x/week
Beds Full Sun 6-8 minutes 2x/week
Beds Part Sun to Full Shade 4-6 minutes 2x/week

Gallery

 

Trees:

 

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Purple Leaf Plum & Bella

This flowering,

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Purple Leaf Plum in bloom

non-fruit bearing Purple Leaf Plum is now approximately 25 feet tall by 15 feet wide.  It lives in full sun and
produces beautiful pink blooms in the Spring that quickly blow away and are replaced by the deep purple leafs until they drop in late fall.

 

 

 

 

 

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Eastern Red Bud Blooms in Spring

 

I love the Eastern Red Bud because of it’s showy nature.

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Eastern Red Bud flower buds

In the winter it boasts a deep dark brown bark that, in the spring, sprouts the most vibrant hot pink/purple buds all the way up each of it’s branches!
Definitely a sight to see!

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Heart-shaped Eastern Red Bud leaf

The Red Bud completes the show by rolling out these wonderfully heart-shaped purple leafs until the fall late in the year.

 

 

 

 

 

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Dogwood in full bloom – Spring

 

A native to this area is the Dogwood, these are growing naturally in my woods.  The Dogwood has a graceful, delicate feel and look to it.  A great accent tree that generally only grows about 15′ tall and 10′ wide.  The blooms come in the spring and hang around a little longer than the Plum and Cherry flowers.

 

 

 

 

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Huge old Oak – Jamestown Settlement, NC

Oak Tree:  I was impressed by the shear size of this Oak tree…it was on a homestead in the Jamestown Settlement dating back to the 1700s

Shrubs:

 

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Camellia japonica – Fall Bloom

The Camellia is an evergreen with a dark glossy leaf

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Camellia Blooms

…the japonica variety blooms in the fall, where as the sasanqua variety bloom in the spring.  These shrubs can become quite large.  This one is just over 5′ tall and 2 1/2 to 3′

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Camellia Flower

wide, but the one in the front is about 12′ tall and 7′ wide!  Great as an accent shrub or for screening.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Loropetalum – spring bloom

 

 

Loropetalum:  What a cool bloom…and hot pink!  This evergreen shrub produces a burgundy leaf…some varieties of the Loropetalum remain this dark color, whereas others will turn green.

 

 

 

 

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“Iris Shrub”

 

This “Iris shrub” was brought to me in a bag little over a year ago and is showing it’s quite happy in its new home!!!  I haven’t seen any flowers yet but the evergreen leaf is a deep green with a soft look.  I’m hoping to see some blooms this year now that it is settled…and I’m hoping to figure out what this might truly be!

 

 

 

 

 

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Azalea – Spring Bloom

 

Azaleas put on a great show and can go as a standalone or in groupings…always remember to plant in odd numbers…it’s more aesthetically pleasing!  Also, try combining several colors into a grouping for greater “pop.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Weigelia – Spring Bloom

 

Weigelia:  I’m not a big fan of deciduous shrubs but this is one I would recommend to add to your landscape.  This spring bloomer has a vase-like shape in a brilliant pink.  The leaf has a unique look with a darker green running along the outside and fading lighter going inward.

Ground Cover:

 

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Liriope – Summer Bloom

 

 

Variegated Liriope:  New growth popping through the weary winter beaten “leaves.”  I’ll post another shot once the purple flowers shoot up…and  the longevity of the bloom time…spring thru summer is a wonderful bonus!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Ajuga

 

 

Ajuga (Carpet Bugleweed) reptans “Bronze Improved”: I’ve got this creeping evergreen perennial in the shade and it’s happy!  Lilac flower spikes display early spring.  Unusual purple-bronze leaves provide contrast to shrub backdrops!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Creeping Phlox – Spring Bloom

 

Creeping Phlox has a “wow” factor about it!  Great looking in rock gardens…I love how it cascades over edges…really softens paths too.

 

 

 

 

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Vinca – evergreen, late spring through summer bloom

 

Vinca Major:  Great evergreen ground cover for the natural area…easy to transplant the trailing growth to cover more area.  This variety is variegated and gives the illusion of light in these shady areas.

 

 

 

 

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Winter Jasmine – winter bloom

 

Winter Jasmine:  Not as many plants bloom in the winter so it’s nice to see these bright yellow blooms in January/February…depending on how cold/warm a winter we have.

 

 

 

Hardscapes: