Summer Design Trends

6/22/2017

Summer is the ideal time for enjoying your outdoor spaces with friends and family. The summer trends in landscaping for 2017 are keeping design build contractors busy with backyard styles like the ones highlighted below: Natural Materials Landscaping designers have been noticing the minimalist design, which has been dominating furniture, décor and hardscaping materials for years, is no longer in high demand. Instead, homeowners are gravitating towards more natural materials. Requests for clean, geometric and modern designs are dwindling. More and more clients want a more old-fashioned, do-it-yourself look in their outdoor space. Natural materials incorporated in backyard landscaping designs often feature railway ties. These can be used to make free-form decks, swing seating and smaller outdoor furniture. Active All-Age Play Spaces An increasing number of family members are playing together in the backyard to keep active and create deeper bonds. This is evident in the increased request for play spaces for adults, children and even pets. The requests include basketball courts, tennis and Bocce courts. In addition to being great spaces to play, these areas help to prevent weeds. Old and New Mash-Up Many homeowners are no longer choosing one design style and sticking to it relentlessly; a number of outdoor lovers are mixing old and new. This popular trend in architecture and interiors is making its arrival in many backyards. Mixing styles was once a big taboo, however, it is now one of the popular summer trends of 2017. No longer is it about modern or traditional design but combining the two in a compelling manner. This can be done by incorporating modern elements in a traditional landscape or putting traditional elements in a modern backyard. These are just a few of the summer trends that have been making their way into backyards everywhere this year. Contact Ohio Valley Group to create your ideal outdoor living...

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What Should I Look for When Hiring a Landscape Designer?

5/16/2017

What Should I Look for When Hiring a Landscape Designer?

More and more people are enjoying outdoor living by choosing landscape designers to create functional spaces with multiple purposes, such as relaxation and entertainment. As a homeowner, selecting a landscape designer is a big decision. The right designer will have the knowledge, skills and experience to create beautiful, enjoyable spaces that increase your property value. At Ohio Valley Group, we know choosing the right landscaping designer typically involves some amount of research. This is an essential part of the process, as it can help in saving you both time and money. Below are some tips on the traits to consider when selecting a landscape designer: Knowledge and Experience Spending time reviewing the portfolios of contractors you’re considering will give you an idea about their skills and abilities. Many landscapers have websites that showcase their creations. You also have the option of directly consulting with the designers and reviewing their portfolios. Learn about their reputation and how long they have been in business. The landscape design process is complex and relevant experience is required to successfully complete a project. Follow-up/Maintenance Service Options Choose a landscaping designer whose portfolio goes beyond the basics is necessary. Services like landscape lighting and overall maintenance are often requested. Not all landscaping professionals provide the same services, therefore, you should consider the availability of short-term or long-term maintenance contracts. Local Climate Considerations Weather conditions play a major role in landscaping design. As such, your chosen designer should have in-depth knowledge of your local climate. This includes being educated on local plants, trees, shrubs and flowers. He or she should also be aware of rain fall, snow fall and the intensity of sunlight. Do not speed through the process of hiring a landscape designer, wasting time and money. The success of your yard renovation is dependent upon your selection. Get in touch with our design-build experts to explore your...

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3 Helpful Irrigation System Maintenance Tips

4/21/2017

A well-maintained landscape can enhance beauty and add value to your property.  An irrigation system plays an immense role in keeping your landscape and outdoor space in tip-top shape.  If an irrigation system is incorporated into the layout of your property, it is vital that you ensure it is functioning properly.  Below are 3 useful tips to assist you in maintaining your system: Sprinkler Head The sprinkler head is the part of the underground irrigation system you can actually see. This is the best place to start. Visually inspect each sprinkler head to check for impediments like clogs. After affirming nothing is preventing the sprinkler heads from flowing, you can move on to see if they are faced towards the right direction. Examine Your Water Pressure Your irrigation system could perform below par if your water pressure is not functioning optimally.  If it is too high, the desired area will not be properly covered by your sprinklers. Signs of this include rapidly misting or rotating sprinkler heads. Additionally, low water pressure could result in your system under-performing.  If there are dry areas or the sprinkler heads are improperly rising or rotating, a low-pressure problem could be to blame. To resolve water pressure issues, contact an irrigation professional and schedule an inspection. Check for Leaks Detecting leaks can be challenging. Though uncommon, leaks can occur in the pipes of your system.  Leak indicators include overgrown areas, patches of grass that are greener than others and unexplained damp spots. If waterlogged areas are around the heads, though, this is not an automatic indication of a leak. Standing water around sprinkler heads could signal misalignment or damage to the sprinkler head. As you see from these tips, irrigation system maintenance does not have to be complicated.  Basic care can keep the water flowing and keep your landscaping looking immaculate and...

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Careful Cutting—Working in a Winter Wonderland

12/27/2016

If landscaping winter projects are on your to-do list, keep in mind that they can be dangerous if they aren’t done properly. It’s important to take precautions and stay safe while working outside. Here are some smart safety tips to keep in mind: Wear protective gear. Personal protective gear is a must when cutting wood in any season, but in the winter it’s especially necessary due to the cold. Be sure to wear gloves, a hat under a helmet, hearing protection, and safety goggles to cover your eyes. A warm jacket and chaps will keep your body safer from the elements and the risks of using a chainsaw and cutting wood. Check the conditions. In the winter, the ground is likely to be frozen and it could be slippery in some areas. When cutting wood with a chainsaw, you want to be sure that you have solid footing and aren’t on a slippery surface. Proper footwear with good traction is a must. If you can avoid it, don’t work outside when it’s very windy, snowing, or when there’s freezing rain coming down. Ideally, you want to be outside when there’s little to no wind and the conditions are calm. Store equipment properly. If you’re going to be cutting wood with a chainsaw, make sure that it’s been properly stored. The sprocket cover should be clean and free from moisture. Try to keep the fuel tank dry, and remove any snow surrounding it before getting started. The throttle trigger should also be free of snow. You want your equipment to be as dry as possible in order to ensure that it functions properly and safely. Hire professionals. The very best way to ensure your safety is by hiring professionals to take care of all of your wood cutting and winter landscaping needs. The Ohio Valley Group has extensive experience and the right skills to carry out the job properly and safely. Save yourself the time and the trouble, and simply call in the professionals. You’ll stay safe, and they will too, because they have the right equipment and skills to do...

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Landscape Tips To Maintain Healthy Grass All Year

9/28/2016

Healthy grass can be maintained all throughout the year; however, it will require some amount of effort. The best way to maintain a healthy lawn is to work from the bottom up. Below are some landscaping tips you can you to achieve healthy grass year round: Establish a Substantial Soil Foundation. Grass thrives well in soil that contain a neutral pH. It is also important that the soil has the right amounts of potassium salts, phosphorus and nitrogen for the region. If the soil is not right, there will be problems throughout the year. Additionally, you will be wasting money on soil amendments like fertilizers that will not work properly. This is because the soil is too alkaline or too acidic. Less is More. Start your lawn care in February or April, depending on where you live; in southern parts of the United States, February is ideal for starting lawn care. During these times, the temperature of the soil supports weed growth but the unwanted plants is yet to get a foothold. Begin a six-week schedule for applying lawn chemical. This should start with a fertilizer containing a pre-emergent herbicide. You can move on to using a straight fertilizer with a high content of nitrogen. Spot-spray on separate, selective weed as required. Invigorate Your Lawn. Correct mowing and edging are also great methods of maintaining healthy grass year round. An extremely dense lawn might require spring dethatching. This enables the soil to breathe and allows nitrogen exchange, which is a good place to get your lawn started. Buy or rent a power rake to avoid breaking your back with a manual rake. Clean up is very important. Blow or sweep away excess fertilizer from driveways and walkways on the grass. This will prevent the chemical from being washed into public...

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