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Thread: Landscape Experts ?????

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    Landscape Experts ?????

    Last spring my wife won a free landscape plan from a local company. At the time we had a sodded back yard and that's it. Since it was free we had them go all out and do up a long term plan for the backyard. Within this plan we asked for a pool which we did not think would happen for a couple years.

    Well, we ended up with a pool at the end of last summer.

    We like the look of the plan we were given, but some of the plant choices are not something we want. We can't go back a year later now and ask to switch plants out - IMO that's cheezy.

    Our pool is also closer to the fence line then what was initially put in the landscape plan.



    In our real back yard we have 3 feet of concrete around the top and right side of the pool. The top and right side of the pool are 5 feet off the fence as per by-law. That doesn't leave nearly as much space as in the drawn up plan.

    Secondly, the grade of the lawn at the top and left side of the pool/patio is above the pool deck (6-8" at the highest). However, the grade falls below the patio at the right side. So another problem I don't want to have is water draining into the pool when it rains so I have to be careful especially with the limited space at the top. Likely I will do some sort of retaining wall up there, but then I will only be left with under 1 foot for any plantings.

    Do you guys have any suggestions for plants to be swapped out if this was your backyard.

    We are not dead set on any of the ones in this plan.

    We reside in Ontario, Canada so palm tress won't fit
    76549 Liters -- Cartridge Filter -- In Ground -- Vinyl -- TF-100 Test Kit -- AquaVac Robotic Cleaner -- UV Sanitation -- Winter Safety Cover -- Installed 2010 -- Southwestern Ontario, Canada

    Latest Test Results June 25:
    FC - 6, CC - 0, CYA - 40, CH - 110, TA - 90, pH - 7.5

  2. Back To Top    #2

    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Noblesville, IN
    Posts
    104

    Re: Landscape Experts ?????

    When we did our landscaping I took my plans with me and when I saw some of the plants in person I didn't like them and they had no problem offering a substitution. I wouldn't worry about changing some of the plants. They typically want you to be happy.
    16 x 32 15300 gal. IG Vinyl Jandy pump, Jandy sand filter, Paramount circulation system, Automatic pool cover.

  3. Back To Top    #3

    Re: Landscape Experts ?????

    First off, as one who has done designs, I don't think it'd be an issue to go back and ask for appropriate substitutions with notations on a *copy* of the original plan to show what is different, like the grade and dimensions you have now. Often these things are in a computer and can be redone pretty quickly but you probably ought to say that you are not asking for that, just a list of choices for this and that. The designer may in fact be pleased that you have followed the plan as much as you did, and be willing to tweek it a bit to fit reality. You can offer to pay for an hours consultation but it might be waived if you buy something.

    When I do designs, I am thinking "5' large round evergreen, spring flowers and fine texture" here and "1 gallon perennials summer color red" there. Within the theme I am using, and what is in the nursery at the time, I fill in the blanks. So a given drawing can be changed from Tropical to Southern Belle to Austin Hill Country with a change in plants not much different with the drawing. So it is not too big a deal for you to ask anyone at that place or another what is a good substitution for XXX, of a similar height or width or shape (weeping, columnar, etc), with some character that recommends it to the plan like flowers or color or something.

    I am in Texas so I do not recognize some of the plants, so I can't help too much beyond knowing that is a 4' grass or this is a 3' fall bloomer. I expect that the plants were selected for maximum beauty during swim season with some consideration of what the view is out the main window of the house for the rest of the year.

    However, the changing dimensions can be dealt with easily enough. First, I hate, hate, hate having muddy water run into the pool. Got that problem in my yard and the solution, not begun yet, is to build a wall, then add drainage behind it to direct the water to where it needs to go. I find river rock to be a royal pain with our nutgrass that goes right through any landscape fabric and I would prefer to use DIY landscape fabric wrapped perforated PVC, drilled from the top and sides but not through the bottom so the water can be carried in and flow over to that right side where the grade is lower. Not easy after the fact so I suggest you work on that right away. If that cuts into the planting area, then you can select smaller narrower trees or shrubs or vines. What you need there will depend on what the view is in that direction. If you need to block it, find skinny trees or something like that. If you just want something attractive, maybe vines will do.

    As for other changes, as that spot gets smaller, you may want the trees to move to behind that structure to the top right, shade over patio? That close to the pool you want evergreens and no flowers or fruit. Dawn redwood is deciduous I recall so I consider that debris as an issue also. Maybe you have the pool covered and it is no problem for you.

    I do not see which way is north but you always need to consider where the sun is and how the shadows fall. You will want to catch as much sun as possible on the pool to warm it I'll guess, even if there is a heater or solar heater involved, so keep that afternoon sun direction very cleared out.

    One of the most important things as you are planting is to do your soil prep correctly the first time. (Do as I say, not as I do!) Then, understand how the plants are to be spaced out. The drawing ought to be useful to see how far each plant is center-to-center. For maximum beauty, it helps to see how the plants are aligned, in a soft curve or triangle or square (it is OK to use a copy of the plan and draw that right triangle or equilateral triangle in color so you notice it as you are planting. Set all the plants, then straighten up those groupings -- that is a subtle thing but is part of what makes an arrangement pleasing; the even spacing and careful groupings in matching triangles or whatever.

    You MUST know the mature size of your plants and then decide if they are to meld together at maturity or stand just touching or stand apart. It is way too easy to smash all the little plants in at first then in 3 or 4 years it is a mess, too crowded together. As you finish planting, if it looks too spaced out, fill in with annuals of some sort, or bulbs or something.
    23,000 gallon in ground pool with rock waterfall and spillover spa, Aqualink control system, Polaris 380 cleaner, Purex Triton Clean&Clear Plus cartridge filter. Located in The Woodlands, Texas.

    Pool owner since Nov 2008, Trouble Free since April 2009. Happy to help when I can.

  4. Back To Top    #4

    Re: Landscape Experts ?????

    Quote Originally Posted by anonapersona
    First off, as one who has done designs, I don't think it'd be an issue to go back and ask for appropriate substitutions with notations on a *copy* of the original plan to show what is different, like the grade and dimensions you have now. Often these things are in a computer and can be redone pretty quickly but you probably ought to say that you are not asking for that, just a list of choices for this and that. The designer may in fact be pleased that you have followed the plan as much as you did, and be willing to tweek it a bit to fit reality. You can offer to pay for an hours consultation but it might be waived if you buy something.

    When I do designs, I am thinking "5' large round evergreen, spring flowers and fine texture" here and "1 gallon perennials summer color red" there. Within the theme I am using, and what is in the nursery at the time, I fill in the blanks. So a given drawing can be changed from Tropical to Southern Belle to Austin Hill Country with a change in plants not much different with the drawing. So it is not too big a deal for you to ask anyone at that place or another what is a good substitution for XXX, of a similar height or width or shape (weeping, columnar, etc), with some character that recommends it to the plan like flowers or color or something.

    I am in Texas so I do not recognize some of the plants, so I can't help too much beyond knowing that is a 4' grass or this is a 3' fall bloomer. I expect that the plants were selected for maximum beauty during swim season with some consideration of what the view is out the main window of the house for the rest of the year.

    However, the changing dimensions can be dealt with easily enough. First, I hate, hate, hate having muddy water run into the pool. Got that problem in my yard and the solution, not begun yet, is to build a wall, then add drainage behind it to direct the water to where it needs to go. I find river rock to be a royal pain with our nutgrass that goes right through any landscape fabric and I would prefer to use DIY landscape fabric wrapped perforated PVC, drilled from the top and sides but not through the bottom so the water can be carried in and flow over to that right side where the grade is lower. Not easy after the fact so I suggest you work on that right away. If that cuts into the planting area, then you can select smaller narrower trees or shrubs or vines. What you need there will depend on what the view is in that direction. If you need to block it, find skinny trees or something like that. If you just want something attractive, maybe vines will do.

    As for other changes, as that spot gets smaller, you may want the trees to move to behind that structure to the top right, shade over patio? That close to the pool you want evergreens and no flowers or fruit. Dawn redwood is deciduous I recall so I consider that debris as an issue also. Maybe you have the pool covered and it is no problem for you.

    I do not see which way is north but you always need to consider where the sun is and how the shadows fall. You will want to catch as much sun as possible on the pool to warm it I'll guess, even if there is a heater or solar heater involved, so keep that afternoon sun direction very cleared out.

    One of the most important things as you are planting is to do your soil prep correctly the first time. (Do as I say, not as I do!) Then, understand how the plants are to be spaced out. The drawing ought to be useful to see how far each plant is center-to-center. For maximum beauty, it helps to see how the plants are aligned, in a soft curve or triangle or square (it is OK to use a copy of the plan and draw that right triangle or equilateral triangle in color so you notice it as you are planting. Set all the plants, then straighten up those groupings -- that is a subtle thing but is part of what makes an arrangement pleasing; the even spacing and careful groupings in matching triangles or whatever.

    You MUST know the mature size of your plants and then decide if they are to meld together at maturity or stand just touching or stand apart. It is way too easy to smash all the little plants in at first then in 3 or 4 years it is a mess, too crowded together. As you finish planting, if it looks too spaced out, fill in with annuals of some sort, or bulbs or something.
    Thanks!

    North is at the top of the picture, we get loads of sun at the back of the property.

    The landscape company doesn't have its own nursery, they just do that labor and planning, not the growing.

    As far as heaters go, we have a gas heater.

    I'll try and snap some pics of the backyard for better reference of what the space looks like.... if it ever stops raining.
    76549 Liters -- Cartridge Filter -- In Ground -- Vinyl -- TF-100 Test Kit -- AquaVac Robotic Cleaner -- UV Sanitation -- Winter Safety Cover -- Installed 2010 -- Southwestern Ontario, Canada

    Latest Test Results June 25:
    FC - 6, CC - 0, CYA - 40, CH - 110, TA - 90, pH - 7.5

  5. Back To Top    #5

    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Central Massachusetts
    Posts
    2,690

    Re: Landscape Experts ?????

    Yea, plant changes on paper are easy. Its done all the time.
    14,000 gallon IG, Vinyl. Hayward 3/4 hp superpump, Penatair IC40 SWCG, Pentair automation, Hayward sand filter, Aqua Comfort heat pump, Hayward 400k Lo-Nox LP heater.

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