Raised beds have become increasingly popular among gardeners, and for a good reason. They are an attractive addition to any outdoor space and provide numerous practical benefits that make gardening more accessible and rewarding. Raised bed gardening may be the perfect solution to elevate your gardening game.
Easy to Maintain
Raised beds are ideal for anyone looking for a low-maintenance garden setup. The soil level allows you to work on your plants without bending down or kneeling on the ground. This makes it easier to pull weeds, add compost, and water your plants. The improved drainage means they don’t need as much attention when watering as ground-level soil. You can also control the soil mix in a raised bed, which makes it easier to maintain your plants’ nutrient needs.
The higher elevation of the soil helps water flow away from the plant roots, reducing the risk of fungal diseases and root rot that can occur with overly wet soil. This can be especially helpful in areas of the landscape where water drains slowly or is prone to pooling. Adding gravel or a layer of plastic beneath the soil also helps further improve drainage.
Control Your Soil
Raised beds allow you to control the type of soil you use for your garden. By building up the sides of the bed, you can fill it with soil from a local garden center or make your own blend. This allows you to tailor the soil to your specific needs and the plants that will be planted in the bed.
A good soil mix is essential for healthy plants and a bountiful harvest. A good soil mix will contain both organic material and inorganic materials to provide necessary nutrients, retain moisture, and aerate the soil. Composted manure, peat moss, or coco coir can be used in raised beds mixed with sand, vermiculite, and perlite. You can create your own custom blend of these to make a soil blend for your plants.
You Can Plant Earlier
Raised beds are typically warmer than traditional gardens because they are off the ground. Extra height and insulation of the soil increase the temperature. This can be beneficial in early spring when the ground can remain cold. With a raised bed, you can start planting earlier in the season.
Make harvesting easier
Raised beds can make harvesting easier because the vegetables are up off the ground and in easy-to-reach locations. It can also eliminate bending over and ensures you’re not pulling up weeds or disturbing the soil. This can save time and energy and help your harvest last longer. Raised beds also provide a convenient platform for trellising, so your vegetables can grow vertically and can be easily harvested.
Frontier Landscaping builds raised beds using a variety of materials. We can also add drip irrigation in the beds and outdoor lighting. Give us a call today for a free estimate at (360) 574-8979.
When it’s summer in the Pacific Northwest we want to enjoy the beautiful weather in an outdoor living space. Although outdoor spaces used to just be for patio furniture and a grill they can now include TVs, outdoor kitchens, fire pits, lighting, and more.
Creating an outdoor living space can be a great way to add value to your home and create an area to relax and entertain. Whether you’re starting from scratch or making changes to an existing outdoor area, the time is now to get started on your new landscape.
Suited to your own aesthetic tastes, we can create living outdoor living spaces that extend the hospitality of your home, extend and open up an area for entertaining or create a quiet retreat.
Planning Your Outdoor Living Space
By planning your new landscape project now we are also able to see how your landscape handles drainage issues so we can see if this needs to be incorporated into your landscape project.
Before you start shopping for furniture and think about hardscapes, take some time to think about how you want to use your outdoor living area. Do you want a place to cook and entertain? A spot to relax with a good book or some music? A place for your kids to play? Consider your needs and lifestyle when deciding how to design your space. With these ideas in mind, you can begin to create a design plan that works best for you and your family.
There are endless design options you can create by choosing natural stone, pavers, bricks, river rocks, and more. Our Professionals at Frontier Landscape can help you design outdoor living spaces that are truly your own.
Outdoor Furniture and Accessories
When you’re planning your outdoor living area, it’s important to choose furniture and accessories that match your style. Think about what kind of atmosphere you want to create with your space. If you’re looking for a cozy and intimate vibe, opt for comfortable seating and inviting fabrics. If you want something more modern and sleek, go for metal furniture and low-maintenance materials.
When deciding what kind of hardscaping to add, consider the size and shape of your outdoor living area. If you have a small area, then you may want to focus on creating walkways and adding a few steps. If you have a larger area, then you could add a patio or an outdoor kitchen. No matter what type of hardscaping you choose, make sure it fits the overall style of your outdoor living area.
If you have a smaller area next to a slope consider installing a retaining wall. Retaining Walls can. They can incorporate straight or curved lines, steps, and corners and serve as added seating. Retaining walls are often used for grade changes, and for other functional reasons such as widening driveways, and walkways, or creating more space in a patio outdoor area. More usable area for your Landscapes and Outdoor Spaces.
Paths and Patios
Paths and Patios can be created using slate, brick, concrete, rough stone, gravel, crushed granite, pavers of all shapes and colors, or a mix therein. We can add a path leading through your property to the patio or any route in between.
Should your outdoor living space need any permits we can get those started for you sooner rather than later. In order to have your outdoor living space ready for summer you need to think now and schedule a free consultation!
A garden can be a great source of physical activity and mental stimulation. Still, if you have health issues or disabilities, you may need to adjust your garden before digging in the dirt. Read on to learn how to modify your garden, so it’s accessible and enjoyable.
Raised beds are an excellent way to garden for people who have limited mobility or can’t bend over—these need to be at a comfortable height for seniors and disabled individuals.
Add potting benches to allow people sitting in wheelchairs to reach over the bed without having to climb onto it. The bed height should be 24 inches for someone seated in a wheelchair and 30 inches for someone who will stand while gardening but has difficulty bending and reaching.
Gardening in containers is adaptable to indoor and outdoor gardening. Containers can be placed on patios or porches or along walkways. You can also move them so they get enough sunlight.
Climbing plants are fantastic in the garden and can add privacy or disguise a view. They can also provide visual interest year-round, depending on the selected plants. Make sure you are growing the right plants for the right height and can reach them at maturity. For example, consider growing up if you cannot bend down to harvest cucumbers.
A trellis can be placed in a raised bed, container, or the ground. Make sure plant stakes are not sharp and not a tripping hazard.
Some Plants suitable for vertical gardening are:
Clear and Even Paths
Ensure all paths and walkways are wide enough for someone in a wheelchair. Avoid any slopes or edges that may cause someone to slip or fall. Use a rake to level the soil, especially near the seating area. Be sure that paths have a slight slope so water can run off and prevent slipperiness. Brush hard surfaces with a stiff broom to remove moss.
Adaptive Gardening Tools
Gardening tools come in a variety of sizes for a variety of abilities and situations. If you have difficulty gripping tools, look for larger handled tools or consider adding or modifying existing tools.
These are some of the adaptive gardening tools you might find helpful:
- Kneeling benches or garden scooters can reach plants lower to the ground.
- Arm cuffs go around your forearm and attach to various tools to help extend reach and increase leverage and grip. The tools available for attachment are trowels, forks, and cultivators.
- Telescopic garden tools have an extendable reach, so you can rake or prune by lengthening the handles, even if you are in a wheelchair.
- Grabbers to pick up debris like a giant pair of tongs.
- Hand seed dispensers are simple and plastic for those who have difficulty gripping small objects.
Let us know how we can help make gardening more accessible for you. We create raised beds, seating areas, pathways, and patios depending on your unique needs. Contact us today!
Landscape lighting can add atmosphere and ambiance to your outdoor living space and make it easier to navigate at night. However, where exactly should you install landscape lights? Here are some tips on how to use landscape lighting to create the perfect outdoor oasis and save energy at the same time.
Consider LED lighting
Landscape lighting is a great way to make your outdoor space feel safe, inviting, and romantic.
There are many different types of lighting fixtures that can be used in landscape lighting projects.
The most commonly used type is LED lighting. They have an incredibly long lifespan compared with other lighting options.
Landscape lighting is used to help accentuate your home’s exterior and make it look more attractive. Placing landscape lighting in front of your house can help highlight what you consider to be your home’s most valuable features, like a beautiful garden or a breathtaking view. It can also be used as an additional security measure if you live in a neighborhood that has lots of foot traffic or break-ins.
Lighting Your Patio
If you’re looking for a way to spruce up your patio, consider adding landscape lighting. This will create the perfect space for entertaining during summer evenings, and it’s also an excellent way of ensuring safety in your garden by keeping intruders away at night.
There are many different types of outdoor lights that you can use, so start by deciding what type of lighting you want: spotlights, wall packs, or lights on poles. You may also want to think about how many light fixtures you need and what color bulbs would work best to create the right ambiance.
Lighting for Driveways, Walkways, and Steps
The driveway and walkways are typically the first areas people see when they pull up to a home. The light from these areas can be used to help you create a feel for what is waiting just inside.
Lighting up your steps is a great way to create an inviting pathway and can even be used as a safety feature. If you have children or pets, it will help them see where they are going at night. When picking out bulbs, choose ones that mimic natural daylight so people don’t feel uncomfortable when they are outside after dark.
Light Up Your Focal Points
If you need more of a focal point for your landscape lighting, consider using lights on trees or shrubs that line your walkways or use accent lights in between the plants in your flowerbeds.
Put up spotlights that focus all their attention on one tree (or any other part of the yard) to create a focal point and a tranquil atmosphere. They provide a focused beam of light on a certain area, but they don’t reach far into the surrounding area.
Floodlights: These lights typically have an oval or circular shape and cast light over a wide range. You may want to use these on a house’s exterior if you want to illuminate it at night, but they can also be used on landscaping features.
There are also lights for your water features that can be beautifully lit at night.
Let the Frontier Landscaping team install your landscape lighting. We’ll help you find the types and styles of lighting that create the atmosphere you want surrounding your home. Installing the right lighting in the right place in your yard can increase its beauty and functionality. Contact us today!
Ultimately your landscape should be an extension of your home, a place to relax and destress. With a little planning and intention, you can match the elements of design to your personal goals for your garden and landscape. Creating a landscape you can use, enjoy, and relax in are all important things to consider. An appropriately planned landscape design will match the elements of designs with natural and architectural features of your home, and enhance the beauty of your landscape, increasing your quality of life. These days home can become much more than where you relax and rest. Home is now where you work or where your kids go to school and it’s important to maintain your landscape in a way that it reduces your stress level. With landscape renovations, you can regain the ability to relax and recoup at your home while adding value to your property.
Before you hire a landscaping company it’s a good idea to take an inventory of your personal goals for your landscape. You will also want to address any trouble spots, structural, visual and environmental issues your property has like slope or drainage issues. The elements of design can serve as a tool for addressing and improving your landscape.
Line can be applied in various ways to the landscape. The lines of sight from your home into your yard and visa-versa are important to consider when designing your landscape. Where your property sits in relation to the horizon line and the tree line are prominent areas that influence the overall feeling of your outdoor spaces. Lines are also important when you design the transitions between hardscapes and garden beds, like paths and walkway to greenspace and in the edging of turf areas.
Shape and Form
Shape and form are present in a variety of garden features. You need to realize that landscapes are dynamic outdoor spaces, and that plants will change shape and form as they mature. A garden will look very different the first year it is installed than after ten years in the ground. This is why maintenance and plant selection is so crucial to your landscape’s long term health, and your ability to enjoy it.
Shape and form are very critical when determining what hardscape features you want. A large deck can dwarf your garden areas. An expansive turf can make a small yard appear bigger. This is a crucial element to focus on to make the most of your existing space based on what areas you want to enhance what you want to minimize.
The direction of the sun’s path over your home is also an important consideration when assessing your landscape. Of course, you need to be aware of sun exposure for your plants, but there are other direction considerations. West and South sides of homes typically get the most sun and heat, as long as they are not obstructed by another structure or building. The North side is often a challenge in the Northwest, due to more shade and that can coincide with wet soggy soils in the winter. It is also important to know the weather patterns on your property in relation to your structure so you can plan seating areas, structures and plant trees out of wind patterns and sun exposure properly.
Direction in the landscape has to do with the way you and your family move through your space. If you are designing an outdoor eating or entertaining area it’s important to make your indoor kitchen accessible easy to transition between gathering when you need inside your home and taking it to your outdoor space. Recreation areas also need to be placed in a way to minimize disruptions between play and rest. For example, it’s best not to install a basketball hoop near a calming water feature. Or a dog run that will get muddy in the winter adjacent to a formal seating area. Again, every property is unique and skilled landscape designer will have experience to consider all the directional needs of your landscape.
Texture can play off in both your garden and hardscapes. The types of plants you choose can have a light or heavier texture depending on their color, leaf density and size. In the hardscape, using smooth concrete will give an elegant formal look, whereas rough natural stone feels more rustic and organic. Texture can give the illusion of movement and help to break up harsh lines by softening the transitions between plants and structures.
This is where the preferences of the homeowner really come into play and an opportunity to be creative! Some people prefer more neutral colors when it comes to plants and more formal areas for outdoor seating, while others get excited by vibrant and contrasting colors. It really is a personal opinion. Landscapes that look well balanced have a consistent application of either similar or vibrant colors that maintain visual interest throughout the property. You should also consider how plants change throughout the seasons. To have a vibrant landscape you can add color by choosing plants that bloom at different times and during different seasons. As we go into fall, trees with fall color get the spotlight for visual interest, but you don’t neglect using plants that bloom in the spring and summer.
Every garden has that one darker corner or large tree that shades the space. Value can be attributed to the way the light lays over the landscape depending on the time of day or your plant palette of lighter or darker plant foliage and flowers you prefer. You can lighten up areas and draw attention to them by installing up lights on trees or water features. The value of your plants will also change throughout the seasons. In Spring, gardens have a bright new look of fresh new foliage on trees and shrubs. Once you make it to Fall, trees morph into fall color, evergreen leaves are settled into a deeper green in contrast to the new growth you observe in Spring.
Defining your space and the space between your property and neighbors is a frequent request. This goes hand in hand with creating privacy between neighbors. The right fencing or hedging can help you define your outdoor space to screen away close-by windows, and things like work spaces or recycling/garbage containers.
As long as your garden and landscape functions for your needs there really is no hard and fast rule when it comes to design elements in your landscape. A good landscape designer will work with you to create the design that makes your personal aesthetics with functional details to create a true oasis to complement your life and help your house feel like home.
Contact us today to begin your landscape renovation this Fall.
The summer season is almost here and that means lots of barbecues and quality time outdoors! It might also mean that it’s time to upgrade your backyard to make the most out of the summer months. Imagine having your own custom-built patio at your fingertips, always ready for a family gathering or party.
Frontier Landscaping designs and builds custom patios, using quality materials and innovative creativity. We work with you to design a patio that will work with your space and how you want to use it. We can select pavers and other materials to complement the aesthetics of your home and make the most out of your backyard.
A patio can really bring a landscape together. It becomes the gathering place for everything from brunch to barbecues to birthday parties! Create a special, relaxing, outdoor dining area and living space. It is the perfect place to enjoy the beauty of your backyard patio. It is also ripe for fun additions, beyond the barbecue, such as a water feature. Consider building an outdoor kitchen, new patio furniture, or a fire pit on your patio, to make your yard the premier gathering place for your community. You can also add amazing outdoor furniture or porch swings to maximize relaxation. With proper design and installation, a new patio can enhance your enjoyment of the landscape and increase the property value of your home!
Getting your Patio
To start the process, just contact us through the website or over the phone to discuss the possibilities and get an estimate. The Frontier Landscaping team will then come to your home to survey the space and talk with you about how you envision your dream summer patio. From there, we will build a plan and begin to implement it. Our installation team works quickly and precisely to make sure the design is executed perfectly. We always clean up when we are finished and you get to have final approval over everything we do.
Our expert design and installation team have created many gorgeous, successful patios in the Portland-Vancouver area. All the photos you see here are from recent projects completed by our team. To see more of our work, please visit the gallery section of our website. To discuss your ideas for your patio, contact us online today or call us at (888) 544-5006!