Tuesday, June 24, 2008
Part III – Choosing Plant Material for Sustainability (perennials, shrubs, and trees)
Saturday, July 19, 2008, 10 AM to Noon
Guest Speaker: Brice Creelman, Shades of Green
Hope you'll be there!
Thursday, June 19, 2008
If you have sent a message anytime in the past month and still have not received a reply, please resend to the gmail address. I will respond almost instantaneously...;-)
Sorry for the inconvenience, y'all. Plant on.
Saturday, June 14, 2008
During The Drought, it suddenly became fashionable (and practical) to switch to low-water usage plants. Xeriscape and waterwise were the regional catch-words of The Drought. City officials were recommending we use Albuquerque's plant list. Many people (and contractors) began planting desert plants. Bad idea...unless you live in the desert. Sure, those plants worked well as long as there was no rain. But when 2007 rolled around, and The Deluge began, nearly all of those desert plants drowned and their roots rotted. Homeowners and contractors were left scratching their heads...
Here it is, 2008, and most of the country is suffering -- oh, what should we call it -- a recession? An economic contraction? Slowdown? I like "downturn" -- not as partisan or political. (I know, it's an election year, I can be political. ;-) Anyway...So those same people who planted desert plants because their "traditional" landscape died during The Drought, lost their desert landscape during The Deluge. They have lost two landscapes in two years and have to start on option #3, but they might be losing their job soon, or they are caught up in the housing credit crisis, or or or.
Go native, I say. First, when traditional (overused, non-native) landscape plants, like Indian Hawthorn and Nandina suffered because of The Drought, native species thrived. Native grasses (which make excellent substitutes for shrubs), such as Little Bluestem, Big Muhly, Gulf Muhly and Inland Seaoats performed spectacularly all year long. Whereas delicate perennials -- Gardenia, for example -- were intolerant of the sustained heat and lack of rainfall, hardy native perennials bloomed more profusely. Plants like Four Nerve Daisy, Giant Coneflower, Pitcher Sage and Lyre Leaf Sage proved that a natural, organic and native landscape can be colorful, low-maintenance and drought-tolerant. (And still look 'organized'.)
Many MANY clients called in 2006 just to say, "You were right!" Their native plant landscape had survived while their neighbors' plants had suffered -- or worse, died.
Then, when The Deluge of 2007 began, those same clients called again to say, "You were right!" Their plants had continued to thrive. To be sure, they prefer things to be a little on the hot-and-dry side. But, because they were established by 2007, they actually grew taller and wider, and bloomed longer, because of the additional rainfall.
This year so far isn't as hot and dry as 2006, or cool and wet as 2007. But the plants continue to grow happily, no matter what Mother Nature throws our way. Clients who plant the right plant, in the right place, lose fewer plants. And who can't use that cost savings, especially during an economic downturn.
The Dallas WaterWise Garden Tour was held on Saturday, June 7th, 9am to 3pm. Judging takes place in March or April (usually) and is open to residents of Dallas and cities that are customers of Dallas Water Utilities. Would you like to compete in 2009? Check this website -- www.savedallaswater.org -- for participating communities, submission requirements and deadlines. Please let us know if you enter, especially if you win!
Wednesday, June 11, 2008
Friday, June 06, 2008
Thursday, June 05, 2008
Tuesday, July 1st: noon and 3pm
Wednesday, July 16th: 9am, noon and 3pm
August dates in Dallas-Ft. Worth and other markets will be added soon.
We will be closed for Independence Day and summer holiday Thursday, July 3rd, through Monday, July 14th.
Wednesday, June 04, 2008
How does it work? You gather the information and photos, we create your design. To get started we will need:
- Completed new client questionnaire. You may download it from our "services and fees page", or request it by email (firstname.lastname@example.org.)
- Your survey or plat plan. We must have an accurate, legible survey or plat plan of your property. The document must have a scale (e.g., 1" = 20ft) and must be an exact-size copy of the original. You may send a hardcopy by mail, as a pdf file by email, or upload the pdf with your photos.
- Photos of the project site. The number of photos required will depend on the size and complexity of your property and project, respectively. For most suburban residences (less than 1/3 acre), 15-20 photos of the front yard, and 25-30 of the back yard, should suffice. Upload your photos to a free online photo service, such as shutterfly, snapfish, etc. Then, send us the link (to email@example.com).
- Payment. Fees are determined by the size and complexity of your project. Generally speaking, fees for most suburban residences (less than 1/3 acre) are $300 for the front yard, $400 for the back yard, or $600 for the entire property. Please contact us about fees for residences with more than 1/3 acre and all commercial, industrial, municipal or educational properties. Payment may be made by mail or via PayPal using your credit card, debit card or checking account (a 3% processing fee will be added to all PayPal transactions.)
After we have received these items, we will begin your design. Turnaround time will be 7-10 business days; we will mail your design package. David will present your design by phone while I email photos of plants included in your design; together we will bring your design to life.
The process is easy, affordable and good for the planet. One client, who implemented the design herself, received an award from the Florida Native Plant Society. Others solicit estimates for the installation from contractors in their area. Whatever your situation, the online design is a smart choice.
Other green programming includes "Supper Club", an on-air dinner party hosted by Tom Bergeron and attended by celebrities where the conversation has an environmental flavor. "Renovation Nation" explores green upgrades and improvements for your home.
Tune in this evening at 5pm CDT for the official "open house" of Planet Green!