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Landscaping & Gardening Tips

Landscaping can be an overwhelming task to try to accomplish yourself, but it doesn’t have to be that way.With just a little help you can be on your way to creating the outdoor rooms you’ve always dreamed of.Here are a few tips to get you headed in the right direction:

 

Prioritize:There may be many projects you hope to accomplish, but they usually can’t all be completed at once.Decide on the areas that are most important to you and pick one area to fully devote your time and budget to.You will be much more satisfied by successful completion of one area than little pieces of many areas.

Set a Budget:You can make quality landscape improvements on virtually any budget.Setting a budget will allow you and your designer to realistically plan a successful landscape project.Keep in mind that landscaping is an investment in the aesthetic appeal and value of your property.Proper landscaping can even significantly reduce heating and cooling costs. So, keep in mind the value and return on investment of the landscaping when creating a budget.

Get AssistanceIt’s normal to feel overwhelmed by the task of landscaping and maintaining your property. Recognize that you might need some guidance.  Landscape designers have years of education, training, and plant knowledge that can benefit you. Even just a little bit of guidance, such as a one time consultation, will get your project heading in the right direction.

Don’t Buy Hungry:Your local garden centers can be great resources, but be sure you shop prepared.Going without a plan is like going to the grocery store hungry without a list.You’ll end up with way more than you need and you’ll only be satisfying your momentary urges.Research (or get professional suggestions regarding) the plants you need and stick to the list. If you must to give in to the temptation of something in bloom, buy several. Planting in groups will create a more professional, eye pleasing appearance.

Have Fun:Plants and landscaping can bring so much enjoyment or pleasure into your life.Whether you are a novice or experienced gardener, remember that it is a process.Learn from your mistakes, enjoy your successes.

 

Great Plants for Connecticut:

Here are some wonderful plants highly recommended by Thyme to Plant!

Perennials

Alchemilla mollis - Lady's Mantle: Gorgeous green leaves that hold the dew drops of water. Great front of the border plant for sun or part shade.

 

Coreopsis verticillata - Tickseed: Long-blooming with yellow flowers. Deer resistant. Full sun.

 

Echinacea purpurea- Coneflower: No one can resist all the wonderful new varieties and colors. Attracts butterflies and is deer resistant. Full sun.

 

Hemerocallis - Daylily: There are a nearly endless selection of these summer beauties. Choose re-bloomers like 'Happy Returns' or 'Apricot Sparkles' to extend your enjoyment. Full Sun.

 

Heuchera micrantha -Coral Bells: Wonderful dark purple foliage with white or pink flowers. Many varieties available. Shade or part shade.

 

Hosta - The star of the shade garden. Easy to grow and endless foliage possibilities. Full shade to full sun depending on variety.

 

Nepeta faasenii - Catmint: Foliage is silver grey and fragrant. Delicate, blue flowers cover the plant in June. Full sun.

 

Pennisetum - Fountain Grass: This grass genus has gorgeous, soft arching blades that form graceful mounds in the landscape. Plumes emerge in autumn. Full sun.


Sedum - Stonecrop - So many varieties, so hardy. Great succulent-like foliage in many colors. Experiment with these great plants in any sunny area.


Trees

Acer rubrum - Red Maple:A classic New England tree. Fast growth, beautiful fall color. Plant on the south side of your house to cool in the summer and allow warmth in the winter.

 

Acer griseum - Paperbark Maple:A beautiful, small maple tree with dark, shiny, peeling bark and stunning orange-red fall color. Great small tree for those that can't fit a large maple. Plant where you can admire in the fall and winter.

 

Amelanchier - Shadblow: Great small tree that tolerates wet areas. Works well on the edge of woodlands. Often multi-trunked. 'Autum Brilliance' is a popular cultivar with white flowers and great fall color.

 

Betula nigra - River Birch: Beautiful cinammon colored bark, peeling bark on a tough tree. No insect problems, this tree will perform well virtually anywhere.


Cornus kousa - Kousa Dogwood: Perhaps the best landscape tree. Small tree with wonderful form, beautiful, long lasting flowers in June, amazing fall color and great lookimg bark. Many varieties available. If you only plant one tree, this is the one we recommend.


Stewartia koreana - Korean Stewartia: Very unique mottled bark is a standout on this relatively narrow, pyramidal tree. Beatiful, cup shaped flowers are also attractive in early summer.

 

Shrubs

Fothergilla gardenii - Dwarf Fothergilla: Great, multi-seasonla shrub. Beautiful foliage, fall color and fragrant flowers. Small enough for any landscape and tolerates a wide range of conditions.

 

Hydrangea macrophylla - Big Leaf Hydrangea: Everyone's favorite big beautiful blossoms in blue or pink. Many long blooming varieties now available such as 'Endless Summer'. A classic for any New England Garden.

 

Hydrangea paniculata - Panicle Hydrangea: Large, cone shaped white blossoms that last for months as they fade to pink. Another classic shrub with many new varieties. Perfect for any sunny spot.

 

Buddleia davidii - Butterfly Bush:Every garden needs a butterfly bush. This shrub really draws butterflies like a magnet. It is available in many colors and sizes. Plant in a sunny location and enjoy summer blooms and butterflies.

 

Vaccinium - Blueberry:This native shrub has so many wonderful qualities and it is very underused. Beautiful, green glossy foliage that turns bright red in the fall. Dainty, white sring flowers and of course, the berries! Plant several varieties for pollination and enjoy these delicious shrubs.

 

Viburnum carlesii - Korean Spice Viburnum: The fragrance of the flowers on this shrub are simply intoxicating. Heavenly clusters of fragrant white flowers in spring. Great fall foliage color as well. Tolerates sun or shade.


Of course, there are many more wonderful plants for Connecticut landscapes. These are just a few that are exceptional performers.