HouseTrends Magazine Features our Willis Courtyard Project
Published on October 1, 2012
We are very pleased to announce that our work for Mark and Kathy Willis' home in Eaton, Ohio was featured in the October 2012 issue of HouseTrends Magazine. The article captures our design process as well as the outcome – creating an outdoor living space fit for the beautiful historic home.
As a historic landmark, the project held many challenges but we were able to capture the unique character of this home in the outdoor space. Want to see more - check out the Willis project in our portfolio or read the full article in HouseTrends Magazine online.
Get to Know The Site Group
Published on September 29, 2012
Interested in what working with the Site Group looks like? Get to know us, our process and hear first hand about the Sullivan project. Ready to get started on your dream outdoor living space - get in touch with us today.
Outdoor Gas Firepits and Fireplaces
Published on July 10, 2012
Imagine walking out your backdoor and relaxing in front of a beautiful roaring fire just minutes later. Outdoor fireplaces are a quick fix for those days and nights when you want to relax in front of the fire in the privacy of your own yard without fighting the wind or other elements that sometimes make igniting a fire difficult. These outdoor landscape features enhance the ambiance of your outdoor living space and light-up instantly. They add a cozy, inviting look and feel to your overall outdoor living space and contain many benefits over traditional wood-burning fire-pits.
How many times have you thought relaxing in front of the fire, toasting marshmallows and engaging in thoughtful conversation with family and friends would be great, only to decide having a fire is just too much mess and too much trouble? If so, an Outdoor Gas Fireplace may be the solution you've been looking for. These beautiful outdoor fixtures are convenient, start-up instantly and – unlike a traditional fire pit – there’s no fussing and waiting to get the fire started. Gas fire-pits are also safer than their wood burning counterparts; they are less of a mess and do not emit embers. You’ll also enjoy the fact that gas fireplaces are less smoky and, therefore, produce less of a smell.
As far as safety is concerned, there are no smoldering ashes, wind-related fire-spread or flying sparks to worry about. That’s a huge plus over traditional fire pits, and an investment you can feel comfortable about.
You’ll also find that outdoor gas fireplaces are an incredible source of warmth with several options to choose from (range or BTUs). You can also pick a design to suit your style; there are many looks and varieties to choose from– traditional fireplace, fire pit, and fire ring. Finally, you’ll be pleased to know that outdoor fireplaces run on liquid propane or can be hooked up to your home’s natural gas output making installation and operation that much simpler.
Enhance Your Curb Appeal With LED Landscape Lighting
Published on July 5, 2012
Are you thinking of enhancing your property’s curb appeal this summer? Landscape lighting with LEDs (Light Emitting Diodes) is a great way to accent your outdoor living space and dramatically improve your home’s curb appeal. LED lighting isn’t just a trend – it’s the future of lighting – and it’s making its way into every area of our lives, including our outdoor living spaces!
LEDs illuminate any outdoor space with show stopping brilliance and beauty that will give your home the positive drive-by drama you’re looking for! These light features are a popular pick to brighten driveways, gardens, and patios alike.
You’ll be pleased to find that LED bulbs are beneficial because they last longer than traditional halogens, thus saving you time and money on bulbs and maintenance. Who doesn’t want to beautify their home while also conserving resources? Here’s another surprising LED fact - you can fit more bulbs on one circuit, thus reducing installation time (even more time saving!). Additionally, these low-wattage bulbs are considered green technology and not only can you feel good about using sustainable resources, you’re sure to love the related cost-savings shown on your monthly energy bill!
Aesthetically speaking, these lights are typically smaller and harder to notice during the day – even the smallest aspects of curb appeal count!, you know? LEDs are also brighter and provide different color tones than traditional bulbs.
If you’re thinking through an outdoor lighting project, be sure to consider adding LEDs to your list. They’re a great way to beautify your space while conserving time, resources, and the environment at the same time!
Published on April 3, 2012
Look into using a pre-emergent herbicide such as Preen to help control weeds. Pre-emergents will kill seeds of any plant, so they need to be applied early to control germination. Be extra careful around annuals and stay well away from kitchen or vegetable gardens! Check the label on your favorite and reapply as directed for longer control. We recommend applying pre-emergents under new mulch, against the soil or last years mulch.
Touch up mulch in beds as needed. Mulch acts as weed control and holds moisture against the roots of the plant. We suggest a 1 ½” to 2” layer on top of the soil, although you may have to only add ¼” or less to maintain that level each year. If your mulch has not decomposed from last year, stirring it with a rake will bring up the color. Check into mulch stains if you want to re-enrich the color but don’t need to add mulch.
Keep mulch 1-2” away from the base of trees. Current research is finding that the “flare,” where the trunk transitions into the roots, needs to be exposed to the air if possible for optimum tree health
Cut off perennials and dispose of the cuttings if it was not done in the fall. Grasses should be cut back to 9” high April 1st or sooner.
Spring is a good time to divide and transplant perennials and grasses. A good rule of thumb is that a plant needs dividing when the center of the plant begins to die out. The roots at that point have become so thick that the center is not able to receive the nutrients it needs to continue growth. Cut each plant into 3 or 4 pie shaped pieces and fill in holes or form new beds with the extras.
Pruning can be done in the spring, but it is good to wait until after the plant has bloomed and/or put on it’s new growth so you don’t lose the bloom or have to reprune…
We use and recommend Osmocote time release fertilizer for a general fertilization. When in doubt, use a blend that contains all 3 elements (Nitrogen, Phosphorus, Potassium) in equal numbers for equal benefit to leaves, roots and stem.
Edge all beds to control turf grass. A square, sharp spade will work, although power edgers are effective.
Spring Planting Guide
Published on March 16, 2012
Here are some great ideas for your spring garden:
Bulbs: Great early color. Coordinate bloom times and colors for longer life. Remember that tulips lose
vibrancy each year while old standards like daffodils and hyacinth get better with age.
Creeping Phlox: Early spring bloomer. Carpets of white, lavender, pink and rose color
Forsythia: Winter or spring? Signals the change and is always exciting
Bleeding Heart: Try the fringed variety for longer plant life and bloom
Dianthus: Pink, rose, white. Very fragrant
Dwarf Iris: Dwarf yellow, purple or blue blooms
Judd Viburnum: Deciduous shrub, wonderfully fragrant white blooms. Koreanspice and Burkwood
viburnums are also very fragrant and a bit larger.
Redbud: Often overlooked. Pink blossoms on a tree with lots of character and informality.