Back Yard

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Brighten Your Winter Garden. Support Backyard Birds!

By | November 16th, 2017|Back Yard, Birds, Winter Care|

A female cardinal waits to drink melting snow. Many beautiful bird species, such as the Cardinal, Blue Jay and Downy Woodpecker live in Chicago year-round. With a cold and bitter winter forecasted ahead, you can play a crucial part in helping our feathered friends make it to spring by providing them with water, [...]

Case Study: From Draining to Entertaining

By | November 14th, 2017|Back Yard, Case Study, Drainage, Easy-Care Plants, Family-friendly, Landscaping, Natural Stone, Outdoor Living, Outdoor settings, Paving and Hardscaping, Pergolas|

Drainage issues in the backyard created problems for our clients. A rainstorm would leave the backyard flooded for days, meaning their children couldn’t play outside without getting completely muddy. The soggy backyard, paired with the family’s small deck, didn’t offer much opportunity for the family to enjoy their outdoor space. Our clients wanted a play [...]

New Plants & Products for Outdoor Living

By | March 7th, 2017|Back Yard, Easy-Care Plants, Fire Features, Landscape Accessories, Maintenance, New Plants, Outdoor Living, Paving and Hardscaping, Plants|

Here are some of the noteworthy plants and products for outdoor living that we discovered last month during iLandscape, our annual industry trade show. New Plants: Fiber Optics Buttonbush is a variety of the native shrub with showy globe-shaped flowers. Bears fruit and nectar that supports wildlife. Prefers wet locations. 5-6’ h. Full sun. Summer Ruffle Hibiscus is [...]

Create A Certified Wildlife Habitat in Your Garden

By | January 17th, 2017|Back Yard, Birds, Butterflies, Eco-Friendly, Landscaping for Birds, Native Plants|

We all love feeling a connection to nature and wildlife when we visit nearby parks and forest preserves. Have you ever thought about bringing that feeling home? There are many things you can do in your own yard to create a garden that attracts wildlife, regardless of how much space you have. You don’t need [...]

Case Study:  Don’t Redo… Renew! 

By | February 4th, 2016|Back Yard, Case Study, Outdoor Living, Outdoor settings, Pergolas|

The renewed outdoor setting with a large fiberglass pergola. It accommodates an L-shaped sofa, dining table and 4 chairs, an outdoor grill, planters and foundation plantings. A multi-level patio, sitting walls and the hot sun beating down doesn’t exactly create the most inviting or safe space for our clients with small children. [...]

Case Study:  Stepping in a New Direction

By | January 5th, 2016|Back Yard, Case Study, Decks, Drainage|

The new deck accommodates a six-seat dining table and grill. The new patio offers closer views of the backyard. The old playset area was replaced with fresh plantings and lawn, creating a pretty view from the new ground level patio. Our clients spent several years renovating their 100+ year old Victorian home [...]

What’s your garden vision?

By | December 8th, 2015|Back Yard, Curb Appeal, Garden Planning, Outdoor settings|

A client's garden vision is the best starting point when we take on a project. Sometimes it's crystal clear, other times it's in need of refining. If it's the latter, browsing through our portfolio for ideas helps. Websites like Pinterest and Houzz can also help seekers discover looks they like and compile them in a gallery or an idea book. [...]

Planning A Dog-Friendly Yard

By | July 13th, 2015|Back Yard, Pets|

Our mascot Wrigley on a scent walk. You spend a lot of time planning your ideal outdoor space. You make sure to include all of your must-haves like a sitting area, lush landscaping, an area for the kids and maybe even a fire pit or water feature. Don’t forget to also plan for the furry [...]

Hoppy Father’s Day

By | June 16th, 2015|Back Yard, Easy-Care Plants, Gift Giving, Outdoor Living|

Imagine a Beer Hydrangea bearing frosty mugs of ice cold, frothy beer, ready for Dad to pluck off and enjoy on a hot summer afternoon. This is a re-post from June 2012. Craft beers continue to be introduced and enjoyed by many. We wish all dads of legal drinking age a Happy Father's Day. [...]

It’s National Pollinator Week

By | June 16th, 2015|Back Yard, Eco-Friendly, Green Living, Landscaping for Birds, Pollinators|

This week, June 15-21, 2015, is National Pollinator Week, and we thank the contributions of bees, birds, butterflies and bats-- small creatures that play a big yet overlooked role in producing an astounding variety of vegetable and fruit crops that sustain the world. The USDA says pollinators "help to produce crops like apples, blueberries, strawberries, melons, peaches, potatoes, [...]