Leaf Clean-ups

Posted in Plants, Pruning, Uncategorized, Winter Landscape at 7:07 PM by Administrator

We are in the midst of our Fall clean-ups and picking up leaves for our clients prior to Thanksgiving. Despite the very cold weather and constant rain today, we were able to be successful in this leaf cleanup for a Georgetown family. I thank Will, Jesse & Kevin for all of their hard work today in weather that did not make any of us happy to be working outdoors but we got the projects done!

I believe this property had more wet Oak leaves than we wanted, but we were able to remove all of them!

Too many leaves on the grass for a Georgetown family

This looks much better as we removed all of the wet leaves.

Fall cleanup in Georgetown
Leaf clean-up finished in Georgetown

For information about having Artistic Landscapes help you with your leaf removal or to vacuum up leaves that you have already piled near the driveway or road, please call us at 978.948.2900.


Edge restraints along a walkway

Posted in Uncategorized at 6:29 AM by Administrator

We design and build our walkways with manufactured concrete pavers that are secured on top of compacted crush stone by plastic edge restraints. We secure the edge restraints into the base material with 10″ steel spikes as we have found this method to provide a stable long-lasting edge. As you can see from the following picture, the edge restraints are set below the top of the paver as we do not want to see the edge restraints. Once the edge restraints are secured then we compacted the pavers and backfill the area outside of the walkway with freshly screened loam. The height of loam or mulch is the same as the paver therefore you do not see the edge restraints.

Edge restraints with 10" spikes keep the pavers from moving
Edge restraints along a front walkway

For more information about how Artistic Landscapes can help you with your walkway or patio, please call Tony at 978.948.2900 or visit us at our Offices on Route One (111 Newburyport Turnpike) in Rowley, MA.


Curved walkway with granite steps in Georgetown

Posted in Masonry, Pavers, Uncategorized, Winter Landscape at 6:28 AM by Administrator

This Georgetown family wanted a paver walkway to connect their front entrance with the driveway. They selected Genest pavers in the Katahdin and Harborline styles. We complemented the pavers with solid gray granite steps for the front entrance as well as the steps within the walkway. We did not install all of the granite steps together as we wanted to stay more in line with the existing grade of the front yard.

For information about how Artistic Landscapes can help you with your landscaping and walkway needs please stop by our offices on Route One (111 Newburyport Turnpike) in Rowley, MA or call us at 978.948.2900 to schedule an appointment.


How to determine where the front walkway should be located

Posted in Masonry, Pavers, Uncategorized at 6:57 AM by Administrator

This Georgetown family wanted a new walkway that would connect their driveway to the front door. They have found over the years that people walk on the lawn since many of the stepping stones were partially covered by overgrown grass. Although they knew that they wanted the walkway and they knew the pavers that they wanted to use, they did not know where to have the walkway meet the driveway. We helped them by drawing out the walkway with the location of the steps beforehand so that they could look at it and determine if the location felt right. After we painted the walkway lines, we moved the walkway a couple of feet further away from the house and made a larger welcoming beginning to the walkway.

For more information about how Artistic Landscapes can help you with steps or a walkway, please stop by our offices on Route One (111 Newburyport Turnpike) in Rowley or call us at 978.948.2900.


Fall weather and produce

Posted in Uncategorized at 6:38 AM by Administrator

We are entering Fall clean-up time as the leaves are falling and the weather is about to change. It looks like we will have some mild weather for the next 10 – 14 days before the first extended freeze/frost arrives. We recommend that you get as many leaves picked up before they freeze to the lawn as you can while still enjoying this Fall season. We are regulars at Marini Farm in Ipswich and have enjoyed their produce during this whole year. We are now enjoying the miniature pumpkins that we use for decorating as well as the various squashes that they grow. Enjoy this time because it will be winter too soon.

Fall produce from Marini Farms in Ipswich

If you are ready to start thinking about Spring, please call us at 978.948.2900 to setup an appointment and we can begin working on your landscape plans for the Spring. In addition, if you see that we are at our offices on Route One (111 Newburyport Turnpike) in Rowley, please stop and we can figure out a time for us to get together at your property to see how we can help you.


Natural Stone Front Steps with Granite Treads

Posted in Uncategorized at 6:47 AM by Administrator

This Haverhill family loved the idea or natural stone steps but wanted strong, sure footing stones for the top (treads) of each step. So, we showed them a variety of stones that we could build the risers (the part of the steps that is vertical) with and they liked the combination of gray and tan stones. Once we had those stones selected then the homeowner saw the tan particles in the Caledonia granite. We built the top of each step with the Caledonia granite.

We decided to include several vertical pieces of granite closer to the house and one solid piece of granite across the front of the top landing. We believe this added some more interest to the steps and was in proportion to the house (one big slab of granite felt like it would be too heavy/big for that step).

The following picture shows the prior set of steps. Note that the bottom step is wider than the top landing. Because the homeowner liked that detail, we built the new steps to have those same dimensions.

Existing steps that were replaced
Granite steps with natural stone risers in Haverhill

For information about how Artistic Landscapes can build you steps into your house or within your yard, please call us at 978.948.2900 or stop by our Office on Route One (111 Newburyport Turnpike) in Rowley, MA.


Drainage in a Patio in Newburyport

Posted in Uncategorized at 6:26 AM by Administrator

This Newburyport added a beautiful farmer’s porch to the front of their house over the last year. The homeowners wanted access from their driveway to the front porch so we installed a 3′ deep solid granite landing as their step from the patio up to the porch. Because of the change in grade between the driveway and the porch and to the door into the house, the patio had to be built sloped towards the house. You never want to bring water towards the house but in this case, it was required. In our attempt to protect the basement from absorbing water, we installed a 5″ wide NDS drainage channel between the patio and the house. The drainage channel should receive any water that flows towards the house and this water will then empty into a 4″ drainage pipe that flows out into a dry well that is in the front yard. We believe these extra precautions will allow for the inside of the home not to get wet while providing a safe transition between the driveway and the door to the house as well as to the porch.

NDS Drainage Channel between a patio and door in Newburyport

For information about how Artistic Landscapes can help you with your drainage issues, please call Tony at 978.948.2900 or stop by our Offices on Route One (111 Newburyport Turnpike) in Rowley, MA.


Playground wood chips

Posted in Uncategorized at 6:30 AM by Administrator

According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission – Public Playground Safety Handbook issued in 2008 (there may be a more current version or more authoritative source for current information, so do your own research). Table 2 of this handbook states that 9″ of wood chips is an acceptable surfacing material for a childrens’ playground. This information is informational only and you should rely on your own engineer or a person who is in a position to provide detailed information for your personal circumstances. Following this guidance or the guidance from someone else, does not guarantee that a person will not get hurt, or killed, if on a playground with this type of material.

Our clients are concerned with wood chips that may have been treated with chemicals thus we bought Certified Playground wood chips that are 100% virgin engineered wood fibers. The following picture shows the balance of the wood chips that we have for this year.

These certified playground wood chips are available in Rowley for a cost of $48 per yard. Delivery is available for an additional fee. Please call us at 978.948.2900 for more information or to request some wood chips before they are gone.


Winterization of Irrigation Systems

Posted in Uncategorized at 6:02 AM by Administrator

Here in New England most in-ground irrigation systems need to be winterized before the pipes freeze. We will be blowing out irrigation systems everyday for the next 10 days. Blowing out your irrigation system is accomplished by connecting a hose from our air compressor and forcing air through all of the buried pipes and the backflow preventer. We service all types of irrigation systems from Reading, MA up to Newburyport and out out to Rockport.

If you would like to be added to our schedule or get more information about winterizing your irrigation system, please call us at 978.948.2900 or send us an email through our website.


How are granite steps built?

Posted in Uncategorized at 6:22 AM by Administrator

We are often asked how we build granite steps as you may be able to see three sides of the steps and most people want to make sure that their new steps will look great from every angle. We normally build the steps by digging a footing that extends below the frost line as that ensures that the steps do not move. Once the footing is prepared then we install the granite steps.

We normally install the lowest step first then we install granite fillers from the back of this first step to the house or porch. The granite fillers are only 6″ wide so they provide stability without the cost of whole step. We don’t believe a whole step is needed to go back to the house or porch because most of the step would be covered by the granite steps that will be installed on top. In this instance, we have the lower step followed by a landing that is 4′ wide and 3′ deep. The landing is resting on the lower step and supported by the filler pieces. We believe this is an economical way to build steps that are structurally strong and look beautiful.

Granite Steps

For information about how Artistic Landscapes can help you with your steps or walkways, please stop by our Offices on Route One (111 Newburyport Turnpike) in Rowley, MA or call Tony at 978.948.2900.

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