September 30, 2010

Irrigation System Components

Filed under: Irrigation Systems,Underground Sprinkler System Service — admin @ 12:55 pm

Installing an automatic sprinkler system by April  Showers Irrigation and Lighting Company is a home improvement project worth considering. Not only will it help maintain a healthy beautiful landscape which you can enjoy with your friends and family, but it’s the most convenient and efficient way to ensure your landscape gets the water it needs without over-or under-watering. When it is properly installed and maintained an automatic sprinkler system will help conserve water too.  This video by Rain Bird is an introduction to spray heads, nozzles, rotors, rotary nozzles and impact sprinklers. Thanks again, Rain Bird for this easy to understand video!


September 28, 2010

Automated Sprinkler Systems, New Jersey

All About Automatic Sprinkler Systems

Want to know more about how automatic sprinkler systems work? Tired of dealing with hoses and watering by hand? Looking for helpful watering tips?

The video below will take you through the basics of automatic irrigation — including how an irrigation system works, the different types of sprinklers and components used in a system, and some key terms and concepts like water pressure, flow rate and valve zones. April Showers Irrigation and Lighting Company will be happy to speak to you about your landscape sprinkler system.  Please call Renee at 732-752-8030 x113 to set up an appointment. Thanks Rain Bird for your great video!


September 23, 2010

What is Xeriscaping?

Filed under: Landscape Design — admin @ 11:34 am

xscaping-patioThis year, in New Jersey,  we have experienced a very hot, dry summer.  There are actually some plants that thrive in this heat and are drought tolerant. 

Live Oak Landscape would like to share with you some of these plants if you are having a hard time  keeping some of your plants alive with this unpredictable weather.

Xeriscaping and xerogardening refers to landscaping and gardening in ways that reduce or eliminate the need for supplemental water from irrigation. It is promoted in regions that do not have easily accessible, plentiful, or reliable supplies of fresh water, and is gaining acceptance in other areas as climate patterns shift.

The term xeriscape comes from “xeros” the Greek word for dry. Combined with scape which literally means a picture or a view of a type of scene, we have the term for a dry landscape. Actually, xeriscaping can and often is very attractive, quite lush and extremely colorful.

Xeriscaping utilizes several principles that make the design unique and water-wise. First and foremost, the design should embrace the concept of an oasis. The cool, lush areas that require the highest use of water should be placed near the area where one lives. The further away from the oasis, the less water consumptive the landscape.

x-scaping-garden borderOur next Live Oak Landscape blog will talk about these important plants and how we use them in your landscape design.


September 20, 2010

Pruning Hydrangeas, Part 1

Filed under: Landscape Maintenance — admin @ 1:23 pm

hydrangea with gatePruning is one of the most abused gardening activities.  We have been pruning for decades when popular plants were evergreen for a manicured, formal look.  Around mid to late summer we whip out shears, clippers, chain saws and electric hedgers and go about pruning our shrubs into balls, boxes, points and light bulbs!  Pruning for the sake of pruning does not address specific needs and almost always does more harm than good.  This is another reason to contact Live Oak Landscape Maintenance-–we are professional and meticulous in our work.

oakleaf hydrangeaBecause there are many branches to the Hydrangea family, each has a unique makeup, acts differently, and commands its own handling for proper growth and bloom.  Whenever there is a flowering problem, it’s almost always because of improper siting or miss-timed pruning.  It’s not complicated:  it is just a matter of matching up the type with its treatment routine.

In following blogs, we will talk about the most popular hydrangeas and give you a guideline for proper pruning techniques.  Live Oak Landscape Maintenance crews will always give you the best in hydrangea maintenance.


September 15, 2010

Pruning Roses

Filed under: Landscape Maintenance — admin @ 12:09 pm

tn_williamshakespeare2000Live Oak Landscape Maintenance crews are asked often about pruning roses. So we would like to share these techniques with you.

Whether hybrid teas, grandifloras, floribundas, or climbers, all roses need extensive pruning to promote the best flowering.

rose prune cutsRoses may be pruned lightly or cut almost to the ground every year.  The usual practice is to remove about one third of the previous season’s growth.  For hybrid bush types, remove all deadwood and cut back old canes to develop an attractive open framework; this encourages new growth, which flowers the same season.  Remove at the base canes that produce only weak growth.  Make cuts at a 45 degree angle about 1/4 inch above a leaf bud.  Be sure the center of the cut canes is creamy-white or light green; brown- centered canes are injured and should be cut further into healthy wood.

climbing rose on gateClimbing roses should not be heavily pruned for several years; remove dead or weak canes and spent flowers.  The pruning goal after climbers are established to is promote lateral stems that produce flowers.  Remove older and less productive canes each year.  On the remaining canes, cut all the side branches that flowered during the previous season to two to three buds.

Ramblers are climbing roses that bloom prolifically in early summer on one-year-old wood.  After flowering many new canes grow from the base of the plant.  When blooming has finished, remove the canes that flowered and train the new ones to a trellis or fence.

When to prune- late dormant season for most types of roses: after flowering for ramblers. Live Oak Landscape Maintenance professionals are expertly trained for all phases of pruning.  If pruning is a mystery to you, call us at 732-752-8030


Sprinkler/Irrigation Systems, NJ

Filed under: Underground Sprinkler System Service — admin @ 10:48 am

DSCN4124At  April Showers Sprinkler Company, we understand that the economic times have been hard on everyone over the past couple of years.  We are offering two new friendly sprinkler/irrigation packages for every budget.  April Showers has brought back the mid-season check as we have found that it is the best way to maintain your system over the course of the year.


September 9, 2010

Drip Irrigation for Formal Patio and Hot Tub Project

Filed under: Irrigation Systems — admin @ 11:27 am

New plantings have been installed at this beautiful project in Scotch Plains, New Jersey.  Next up, Drip Irrigation System.  Scott Sokerka of April Showers Sprinkler Company describes the preparation work to be done and tells us the importance of drip irrigation for newly planted trees and shrubs.  In a future blog,  Scott will  discuss landscape lighting to be installed.


September 7, 2010

Landscape Design/Build: Formal Patio and Hot Tub, Week 6

Filed under: On Site Construction Projects,Video Blog — admin @ 12:17 pm

Live Oak Landscape Architect, John Baranello, describes final stages of this beautiful patio.  Grill to be installed in the new grilling station with wet bar and refrigerator installed in companion station. Decision to be made for cap on these two stations, either bluestone or granite.  Plantings to be installed today and next week, we may have a wrap on this exciting and dramatic landscape design.