Using a Professional Tree Planting Service to Install and Care for Trees in your Garden

Using a Professional Tree Planting Service to Install and Care for Trees in your Garden

Frontier Landscaping offers Tree Planting as one of our many Professional Services

Frontier Landscaping provides a tree planting service, we can also help with care of young trees. It is important to develop a plant care regimen of initial watering and fertilizing to establish newly planted trees. We also provide on-going plant health care, such as pruning and regular watering, as the trees develop, particularly in the Summer dry months. Eventually trees will rely less on watering, as their roots develop and they find their own access to water and nutrients, by sending down tap roots. But initially, they’re reliant on us (the landscapers) and you (the homeowners) to make sure they have enough water.

Irrigation Installation

We can set up irrigation to ensure infrequent but deep watering, which is preferred by trees and helps them to develop deep root systems. Trees have very different needs to your vegetable garden. Irrigation sprays should not hit the base of the tree, as this could encourage crown and root rot. Watering should be applied at the drip line of the tree, where the tree naturally directs the water when it rains.

Our Tree Planting Service will Follow a Step by Step Guide, to correctly install your tree. It is important with installation, not to plant trees too high or too low. The tree crown should be just above grade or ground level. You don’t want mulch or soil piled up around the base of the tree, as it can encourage crown and root rot. We make sure to loosen the roots, so that they don’t continue to grow in the shape of the pot it’s removed from. Instead, the loosened roots will reach out into the surrounding soil, which is scraped with grooves, to encourage the roots to penetrate. We keep an eye out for circling roots, these roots can wind around the roots and trunk, and girdle the tree, cutting off supplies of food and water. A quick prune of these problem roots upon planting, can nip any problems in the bud!

Ongoing Tree Care from our Landscaping Service, will make sure that the tree has the greatest chance of growing up healthy and strong. Regular, seasonal applications of fertilizer, and inspection for pests and diseases, are essential, and a part of our regular maintenance visits.

Training a young tree

On planting, a tree will need staking to protect it. We place the stakes on the side of the prevailing wind, making sure to give the tree the support it needs. The ties should be supportive, but not be tied too tightly, so the tree has room to move in the wind and develop strength, just as we build muscles when we move. The tree will then need structural pruning as it grows. Lower branches are left on to give the young tree energy, but as the tree grows taller these branches can be taken off for clearance, or left on and shaped, depending upon the client’s need and the tree’s function in the garden. Regular pruning will help get ahead of any problems, removing excess weight from branches that could cause them to break in Winter storms.

Overall, young trees will benefit from the on-going care of professional experts. Providing care early on will help them grow and benefit your property and neighborhood. Scheduling regular ‘check up’ appointments for your tree will save you costs in the long run.

Preparing for Spring: Yard Maintenance

Preparing for Spring: Yard Maintenance

Yard Maintenance is an important part of preparing your garden for the up-coming year. Whether you have a landscaping crew do this, or you work in the yard yourself. Don’t miss these important steps:

  1. Following the recent snow, clean up any de-icing products from driveways and paths, and keep off planting beds. Add some gypsum to any beds that may have been affected by these products.
  2. You may have already added some soil amendments to planting beds, as part of your Fall/Winter garden maintenance. If not, it’s not too late for this. The Pacific Northwest still has many months of rain before the drier season is upon us, this will help the organic amendment penetrate the soil, and encourage good soil life and drainage.
  3. It’s also a good time to adjust soil pH, if your soil is too acidic, you can add some agricultural lime. If your soil is too alkaline, you can add aluminum sulfate, sphagnum peat or organic soil amendment, (most of these tend to be acidic). Adjusting pH will ensure that your plants can absorb the nutrients they need.
  1. Now is the time to fertilize plants. Rhododendrons, Camellias and Azaleas will appreciate an acid fertilizer mix for their upcoming blooms. Other trees and shrubs can be fed a general organic fertilizer. Your lawn will also appreciate some fertilizer, as it comes out of Winter dormancy.
  2. Cut back grasses; Miscanthus, Calamagrostis and Pennisetum, can now be cut down to the base, so they will be ready for the new Spring growth. The stalks can even be left on planting beds as mulch to keep weeds down. Perennials can also be cleaned up and any dead leaves and flower stalks removed, once danger of heavy frost is past, for example, Sedums and Echinacea.
  3. Pull up any weeds and make sure to dispose of them in your green bin, don’t throw them in the compost bin, unless you want weeds sprouting up! If you didn’t already apply bark mulch or dust, top dress the soil to keep the weeds down.

We hope that these tips will help you with your yard maintenance.
Contact Frontier Landscaping for help with this and so much more!

Winter Landscape Revamps

Winter Landscape Revamps

Even though winter can be stormy and rainy in the Pacific Northwest, our climate is mild enough that most landscape installations can take place regardless.

A big benefit of landscape renovation in the off season is your landscape is ready to enjoy once warmer spring temperatures resume. Here are a few things you may consider adding this winter.

Retaining walls

Retaining walls are an excellent way to increase your curb appeal. They allow for integration with landscape lighting and maximize your planting space. We can create retaining walls that include staircases, raised or terraced garden beds.
When you add plants and areas for flowers, it breaks up the hardscape and adds year-round interest, it also secures your slope and can be used to redirect water away from your structures.

Our retaining wall projects will leave your landscape beautiful, strong, functional, and long lasting.

We are preferred contractors at Mutual Materials. We can help in all aspects of your wall-building project including design, grading, excavation, drainage and wall construction.

Hedging and privacy screening

Now that outdoor socializing is happening year-round, you may realize that you are outside and in view of neighbors. For added privacy consider and evergreen hedge, mixed border, or landscape trees to separate your property from your neighbors.

Hedging helps not only provide much needed privacy, but it also buffers noise, provides habitat for birds and can provide shade to your patio or garden. As long as the ground is not frozen, winter is an excellent time to get new plants established, with a reduced risk of transplant shock.

Landscape Lighting

Adding new lights can aid with entertaining, safety, and security around your home. Installing outdoor lights can also enhance the time you can enjoy your landscape for entertaining.

Give us a call today to start a project! You will be happy you got yours in ahead of the rush!

Winter Landscape Maintenance Tasks for an Effortless Spring

Winter Landscape Maintenance Tasks for an Effortless Spring

Just because it is winter, doesn’t mean Mother Nature is entirely asleep. Although your landscape plants are dormant this time of year, there are tasks you can do now that will give you a healthier and more beautiful landscape next spring.

Winter clean ups help prevent pest issues over the winter months and get you a head start on spring gardening!

Leaf clean-up

If you haven’t done so already now is the time to gather and pick up fallen leaves from your deciduous plants and trees. While you can utilize leaves as a way to mulch there are a few tips to make sure you don’t lead to pathogens or weeds later.

If your plants showed any signs of disease, do not use those leaves, this is especially important in ornamental cherry trees, rose bushes, and fruit trees. All clippings need to be disposed of away from your landscape. You should also be careful to make sure there are no seed heads in your leaf piles that may try to germinate in your leaves over the winter.

Mulching for an easier spring

Do not mulch over the crowns of your plants or change the depth at the base of your landscape trees. This can inhibit the air circulation and lead to fungal issues with your plants next spring. With mulching, there can be too much of a good thing, so make sure you don’t overwhelm your plants with mulch, create a consistent application and avoid overdoing it on slopes. You don’t want rain to wash away your product!

When properly applied, mulch will help your soil retain water next spring and prevent winter weeds. Be sure to mulch the non-planted areas about three inches deep with compost, mulch, or bark for the best visual impact and practical success. There are winter and early spring weeds, so mulch will help prevent those before they can take hold in your soil.

Cutting back perennial plants

Many perennials “die-back” to the ground and return effortlessly the following spring. By this time of year you will be able to identify what plants remain woody and above ground and what have retreated back to below ground level. If your perennial truly is herbaceous (no woody above ground structure) you are free to remove the last season’s foliage. Hostas, coneflowers, and other flowering perennial plants are ready to be “put to bed” now.

There are a few perennial plants that can play tricks on you, like potentilla, lavender, and rosemary. These plants have a woody structure and are technically small woody shrubs often grouped with perennials because of their size. These perform best to shearing no more than a third of the whole plant, rather than a tough cut back. If you go too deep they will not grow back vigorously like other perennial plants. If they do get very woody and you can’t maintain their shape, it may be wise to replace them with younger plants.

Spent blooms

There are many reasons to hire a professional landscaper and flowering plants is one of them. Often folks who struggle with “Why won’t my plant bloom,” have mistakenly pruned off the flower buds in the winter.

It is safe to cut off the blooms of hydrangeas and roses in the winter. Do not prune your rhododendrons, azaleas, or lilacs right now, because you may be removing their spring buds inadvertently in the process. If in doubt, consider the bloom time. It’s best to be cautious not to over prune your spring blooming plants if you can’t accurately identify them.

Contact us today for help getting your garden prepared this winter for a lovely spring.

Enjoy your patio this winter!

Enjoy your patio this winter!

Updating your patio can make it an area you enjoy year round. With new restrictions gathering outdoors can give you peace of mind to spend quality time with your family and observe social distance this winter.

Having an outdoor living area creates the feeling of an extension of your home. As we are spending more and more time indoors and at home this year your patio can offer you a personal escape from the stresses of everyday life, distance learning and working from home take a toll and having a patio to escape can help you stay sane and connected to your landscape.

Fire Pits

A fire pit is the perfect spot to gather and relax with your family this winter. They provide warmth, community (even if it’s just your family gathering right now), and the feeling of being around a campfire, right in your own backyard. We are experts at designing your fire pit to integrate into other areas of your landscaping so you can enjoy it year round.

We can integrate water permeable stone or pavers, space for seating, and paths to weave from your home to your fire area and have everything function for safety and long lasting durability.

Outdoor Seating

Comfort is the key to enjoying your outdoor space. Investing in long lasting outdoor seating will make your patio a place you can truly enjoy. The Northwest naturally has a damp winter climate so storing your cushions out of the rain is the key to helping them last longer. You can include a built in storage area into the design of your patio, so that when you want to add additional comfort they are not packed far away.

Including seating to your patio design in the form of benches and seating areas around a fire pit is an additional enhancement that will personalize your space. Adding touches of home can help you blend your personal style with your patio by using pillows, candles, and outdoor art to style your space.

Landscape Lighting

Adding lighting on your patio, not only improves the safety to you and your family, it also changes the mood. We use energy efficient LED lighting to enhance your patio. There are so many different types of outdoor lights available now, we can help you create a style all your own, or mimic the designs in your home. Lights really make a patio or seating area welcoming and we can enhance your system by adding dimmers, motion lights, or uplighting specimen plants in your landscape.
We can install all your lighting needs, from lighting pathways to and from your fire pit, to spotlightling trees you want to see from your back patio.

Bring plants closer to your home with containers on your patio

Container gardens on your patio are the perfect way to bring your landscape closer to your home. Planting a container garden is a great way to have fresh herbs, like rosemary or bay leaf, just a few steps away from the grill or your kitchen door. Container gardening is a great way to bring nature closer to your home and enjoy beautiful plants in all seasons.

You can also change your pots throughout the year to add seasonal interest! Things to plant this time of year include, winter pansies, small evergreen trees decorated for the holidays, or spring flowering bulbs.

We love creating beautiful patios and outdoor living spaces for you to enjoy- year round. Contact us today for an outdoor living space that maximizes your enjoyment, relaxation, and functionality.

Treating Summer Drought Stress in your Landscape

Fall is  an excellent time for landscape improvements, the sun’s still shining, temperatures are more mellow. Plants love this time of year, it’s perfect to establish healthy roots and still mild enough to work outdoors comfortably.

When you go outside this month to decorate your porch or rake your leaves you may start to notice plants struggling that were looking healthy during the summer. This can confuse and bewilder homeowners. A once healthy fir tree may start dropping its needles, or a mature ornamental tree will drop its leaves a month early. Although it’s  been weeks since the summer heat wave, these are symptoms your landscape was under summer water stress.

What’s normal and what is a sign for concern? This can be hard to determine but here are some troubleshooting tips to help you prevent and diagnose drought stress in your landscape:

Needle drop on your conifers 

You have established conifers that are losing their needles like crazy. This can be dramatic, but it is usually a normal part of getting ready for winter for most conifers. If the interior needles (closest to the trunk) of your trees are shedding that is probably normal.

Signs to watch out for: The center branch (central leader) having dieback issues. This is a sign the tree could not get water into its system. The tips or new growth drying out and losing needles or entire branches. A tree care professional can determine if selective pruning will help your plant recover or not.

Leaf drop or branch die off in ornamentals 

Die out in the crown or on main branches of trees or early leaf drop can be dramatic and very concerning to homeowners. Many deciduous ornamental and flowering trees will drop leaves in order to combat drought stress.  On young plants you can slightly scrape the bark and if you reveal green it’s likely going to be ok. Maintenance involves diagnosing issues, removing any dead wood and in many cases this will restore the plant’s health. 

Early fall color on ornamental shade trees or shrubs

Although beautiful, this can be alarming! Check to see if leaf buds are still developing normally in the dormant period. These can usually be found at the base of the dropping leaf. Be mindful to offer irrigation during dry autumn times, or dry spells prior to a frost.

Perennials browning or crisping, dropping flowers early 

It is not uncommon for perennials to be looking rough by the fall. If you have flowers and ornamental grasses in your landscape that have well established root systems, this is probably not cause for alarm. You can wait for the foliage to begin to die back naturally and then help by cutting back remaining foliage. Landscape technicians will mulch leaving some space for the crown of perennial plants to emerge the next spring.

Plants need a lot less water by the time September comes around, but once the ground is freezing, plants cannot take up moisture, even if the surrounding soil is moist. So water your plants and trees that are in containers and the landscape prior to a freeze.

Disease and Pests 

Pathogens and insects often attack plants when they are undergoing stress. Ongoing landscape maintenance is the key to monitoring and keeping your garden healthy to prevent diseases and infestations before they start. If you do have an issue that requires treatment, increasing the overall health of your soil and plant is imperative to helping your plants recover. Multiple threats will attack stressed plants, so make sure an experienced professional diagnoses all your disease and insect issues.

Landscape techniques to prevent summer drought stress

Regular steady irrigation schedule, adjusted to the seasonal weather conditions is so important to establishing a healthy landscape.

An automatic sprinkler or drip irrigation system. These actually save you money and conserve water by getting your landscape the irrigation it needs in regular intervals. 

Give your landscape trees room to mature, do not plant annuals and perennials right at the base of trees. Give a buffer of 3-5 feet around trees to ensure that you do not drown or bury the base of your tree in bark, compost or other plantings. Young trees need longer durations of deep watering than other plants, so be sure to target their needs specifically.

Monitor slopes and drainage issues. Areas of the landscape on hills or slopes often need water delivered at a slower rate. They also pose a challenge to plant your landscape plants at the proper depth.

Ongoing landscape maintenance will help prevent stress issues, but if your garden is displaying the symptoms of drought stress this fall, we can help you diagnose and salvage your landscape so that by next spring it is revitalized and healthy again.

Call us today to schedule your landscape maintenance or tree care consultation. 

Landscaping for Form and Function: Making the Most of Your Space with the Elements of Design

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 Benefits of an Automatic Irrigation System

The Benefits of an Automatic Irrigation System

This summer has been beautiful in the Northwest, but prolonged sunny days can dry out your plants, wreaking havoc on your landscape. Installing an irrigation system saves you time and money in the long run. It preserves valuable water resources, using less water more effectively, saving you time and money on utility bills.

Having an irrigation system makes it possible to enjoy your summer without the worry or time consuming task of hand watering, or even worse returning from a weekend away to find your garden scorched. Irrigation systems can be adjusted as your landscape matures and timers can be set easily by the property owner as the seasons and weather patterns change.

Effective watering is the foundation to a healthy landscape. Even drought tolerant plants need a solid foundation, with regular watering over the first 1-3 years to establish strong healthy root systems. Regular compost application, barkdusting, and mulching garden beds will also aid your landscape in water retention. Proper watering helps your plants with fertilizer uptake, overall plant health and your soil stay healthy by maintaining the proper balance of nutrients. Plants cannot take up nutrients when they are in a state of drought. Even weeds are better controlled when your landscape plants are thriving.

Proper watering is the most important requirement to establishing long term plant health and preserving the investment you make when renovating your landscape. Installing irrigation is an investment to your landscape. Having an automatic irrigation or sprinkler system increases the value of your property. Maintaining your irrigation system is also important to make sure you prevent breaks, leaks, and maintain pressure. Frontier Landscaping can help you set up or repair your irrigation, allowing you to get back to the summer activities you enjoy. We guarantee all our work. Call (360) 574-8979 or send us an email to arrange a site visit for an estimate today.  Due to COVID-19 our construction crews are booked out past the point of irrigation being needed.  We would be more than happy to assist you with an estimate so you can install irrigation over the winter or spring for the next hot summer.

Landscape & Irrigation Guarantee

Frontier Landscaping provides expert irrigation design, installation and repair to residential and commercial properties in Vancouver, Portland, Battleground, Kelso, Longview, Camas, Clark County and Multnomah County.

Landscape Services for Property Managers

Landscape Services for Property Managers

In addition to commercial and residential landscape services we also partner with property managers to alleviate the burden of landscape maintenance from their already full plates. We will work with you on an individual or group of properties to set up a clear and consistent maintenance plan that keeps your tenants satisfied all months of the year.
We make sure it’s done right and with the best environmental practices we can offer. Let us help you set up a landscape maintenance services that includes:

  • Lawn Care, complete with regular mowing, edging and fertilizing
  • Tree care including 24 hour emergency tree service
  • Leaf clean up and garden bed maintenance
  • Hardscape Maintenance, including pressure washing and moss prevention and removal
  • Planting beds
  • Pruning, mulching and leaf removal
  • So much more
When you’re overseeing a property or multiple properties you need to partner with a landscape company you can trust. We have highly skilled staff that are the best in the business. We have been active in the Vancouver and Portland areas for over thirty years and it shows. We provide efficient plans for your property with a budget tailored to your priorities. 

In addition to residential and commercial services we also service:

  • Individually managed property or home
  • Commercial complex or office
  • Group of properties managed by same company
  • Estate or property the includes extensive grounds
  • HOAs or Neighborhood Associations
  • Apartments, Townhomes or Condominium Communities

Property management has many scenarios, you need to have a company you trust to handle the unexpected. If unfortunate issues arise we are skilled at both emergency tree removal and storm clean up.We also provide the preventative care to reduce the risk to your tenants. You never know what to expect during Pacific Northwest Winters and we are experienced to handle whatever Mother Nature sends our way.

Contact us today to start your property management plan.

Maximize your Summer Landscape with Patios!

Maximize your Summer Landscape with Patios!

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.

Paver Patio & Firepit

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!


Call us today for a free quote on all your landscaping needs!