Saturday, November 14, 2009

Beautiful fall color trees

Fall color is the best time to enjoy the outdoors.  Numerous trees, shrubs and plants that make this time of year explode with all types of color.  From light gorgeous yellow to bright full red.  Here are my recommendations for trees and shrubs that will light your garden landscape.

Chinese Pistache Trees (Scientific Name: Pistacia chinensis)

Loves Full Sun can be planted in USDA Zones: 4-10 This Southwestern tree is a desirable ornamental with attractive, umbrella-like crown. Lustrous green leaves turn a brilliant orange crimson in fall. Very drought tolerant, deciduous and extremely handsome tree. About 30-40 ft. tall and wide. Does well in the desert heat.

Modesto Ash Scientific Name: Fraxinus velutina 'Modesto'

They Love the full southwestern sun.  Can be planted in USDA Zone 8 - 9.  They can grow up to 40ft tall and 30ft wide. An excellent shade tree and moderate grower. Does very well in the southwest, moderate watering check for parasite growth (Mistletoe) deciduous. All varieties of Ash trees will do well in the southwest. Fall cleanup moderate. Stunning full bright Golden Yellow in the fall.

The Raywood Ash tree Scientific Name: Fraxinus oxycarpa.  This is an excellent easy care drought tolerant tree to use for your southwestern landscape or just about any part of the U.S. It grows about 2ft per year but will grow much faster if watered and fertilized more often. The Raywood ash tree turns a fantastic deep red during the fall seasons. It grows to about 50-60ft tall and about 40ft wide.

You can see some photos of these trees at:  Greenhouse Trees

Friday, November 13, 2009

How to make a pond

The placement of any in-ground pond is essential. You will need to consider several factors into deciding where and what you and your family, friends and neighbors are going to actually see when the pond is completed.

You can build your pond, water feature, patio water garden, koi pond or whatever you like to call it, from a variety of materials, including hard plastic liners, rubber liners, rigid plastic or fiberglass liners or even from concrete. This article will tell you how it should be done using the plastic method.

A plastic liner can easily be purchase online or at your local nursery. When purchasing your pond liner, be sure to read the fine print. Basically, flexible liners are either rubber or plastic. Rubber is more expensive but works much better and it does cost more. The thickness should be about 40 milimeters or more and should work well with most average size ponds.

The pool itself should be placed on a low, level area, where it would naturally occur. A small slope is fine especially if you are going to have a waterfall in the garden pond. The water flow needs to look natural and flow down hill. You can leave the ground sloped or even enhance the slope where you intend to put the waterfall while easily leveling the pond area.

It is best to avoid placing the garden pond underneath trees or large shrubs as they will need more frequent cleaning of the pond. Shade will generate more moss, and algae, which means less types of water plants and frequent cleaning. This should not impede your quest for a natural pond. There are many low light water plants that can used. Hiring a pond cleaner is also an option.

Don’t place your garden pond where you will receive runoff containing debris or water from roof tops, street, streams or any water that might be toxic. You will probably want to have plants and fish in the pond which are highly sensitive to foreign chemicals in the water. Even runoff which passes over cement can be effectively toxic. Cement contains lime which raises the pH level. Fish can tolerate a wide range of pH levels, but the constant changes will stress them out and could kill them.

It is important to note what your final view of the pond will look like. A pond visible from a large main window in the home can add considerable enjoyment of your home. If placed in the front entry-way a pond can be quite a view for your visitors.

Imagine coming home everyday and enjoying the koi fish and the soothing sound of water cascading downstream. A waterscape pond feature in your garden will turn your hard day at work into a tranquil environment.

Remember these are pond garden tips and are for those who are looking to do it themselves.

See exceptional ponds at Pond Kits