April 25, 2011

Gazebos in the Garden Landscape

Filed under: Landscape Design — admin @ 7:12 am

A gazebo is like a  porch in the middle of the landscape garden.  It can be a simple roof supported on four plain columns or an elaborate stained glassed, paneled enclosure.  There are so many uses for a gazebo including a quiet place for luncheons, tea, and is a  focal point for parties, weddings and showers.  It is also a great enclosure for a hot tub and in New Jersey, the hot tub can include heat so it can be used during the winter months.  There is nothing like relaxing in the hot tub, absolutely warm and comfortable, with snow swirling down around you!  What joy to break up a dismal winter landscape!

There is no better way to end a terrace or long walk than with a gazebo.  In small garden landscapes, the gazebo may be nestled against a wall and screened from other activities by a wooden lattice, planted with beautiful climbing roses or clematis that is thinned to allow light to filter in.

Gazebos serve as a beautiful  resting place where one may enjoy the solitude and beauty of nature.  Gazebos are a place of peace and rest where the soul can find nourishment and quiet place to browse  a book, write or sketch.  They can be placed for intimate conversation for a  leisurely lunch with a special friend and a  place away from household distractions.  It is also a structure for contemplative life and nostalgic romance of the past.

Live Oak Landscape Architects and Garden Designers have a multitude of pictures and plans for that special gazebo in your landscape design.  We will be delighted to show you some of our designs and help you bring this beautiful structure to your garden.


April 19, 2011


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

What makes a great garden?  Live Oak Landscape Architects and Garden Designers know that it is more than planting shrubs or getting flowers to bloom.  Great gardens, whatever their size, must have a sense of purpose.  This includes small pocket gardens that draw the eyes to the front steps, a rambling cutting garden for blooms inside the house, or a large pleasure garden with meandering pathways that lead to beautiful planting beds.  Color, texture, shape and form are important ingredients to make a garden landscape from ordinary to extraordinary.

Garden planning can be challenging.  It is important to know how the garden will be used and what you expect of it every day of the year since the garden landscape is ever changing. A well orchestrated design that uses permanent architectural elements gives the garden shape and year-round interest. Most gardeners plan only for a beautiful spring and summer but don’t forget the fall and winter; choose some plants for their beautiful fall color or evergreen foliage or for their interesting bark or handsome structure which add winter interest.

Great garden landscapes in New Jersey appeals to all of the senses, not only to the eyes:  A garden should have flowers and foliage you like to touch and smell; trees, shrubs or grasses that rustle in the wind; and herbs you can pinch off to taste as you work outside.

 Live Oak Landscape Architects and Garden Designers pride themselves on designing great garden landscapes and will design your garden from the ordinary to the extraordinary!

April 14, 2011

Landscape Architects and Landscape Designers for New Jersey Landscapes

Filed under: Landscape Design — admin @ 6:32 am

When thinking of a new garden or renovating an old garden, there are several kinds of professional help that should be considered.  While even large gardens can be accomplished as a do-it-yourself project with no professional help, many busy people today consider employing the services of a Landscape Architect, a Landscape Designer (also called a garden designer) and Landscape Contractor.  Live Oak Landscape Contractors employs professional men and women to begin and finish your garden beyond your expectations.

Frederick Law Olmsted, responsible for landscaping New York City’s Central Park, coined the term “Landscape Architects” to describe a person who professionally performs the function of altering and planting the land.  Landscape Architects must take several years of training and pass a test to be licensed in New Jersey. Landscape Designer, or Garden Designer, may not have as much  formal training as the Landscape Architect, but designs outdoor spaces using primarily plants and rudimentary hardscape elements such as patios and decks.  Though both a Landscape Architect and a Landscape Designer may be capable of producing a site plan, it is the Landscape Contractor who takes the approved drawings and uses construction equipment like bulldozers and backhoes to move earth and lay stone. 

At Live Oak Landscape Contractors, employing all three professions and being in the same office, gives us an advantage for vital communication between each other and our clients.  Our company is an enthusiastic group with decades of experience and knowledge to create the garden that you have always dreamed about.

April 12, 2011

Traditional Garden Styles in New Jersey Landscapes

Filed under: Landscape Design — admin @ 10:22 am

Traditional garden landscape  rely on constructed features as well as plants to create harmonious effects.  The largest and most important features are the ground  itself ,which can be manipulted through grading,  and the house, which may be linked to the landscape by an appropirately designed porch or patio.  In successful landscape designs, views from major windows and doors and access between indoor and outdoor space are carefully considered in the  design.

Pavilions, Gazebos and Pergolas

A pavilion is a garden structure usually enclosed, that provides a resting and observation point in a carefully chosen site and is also a beautiful object in itself.  Pavilions were quite popular duing the late 18th and early 19th centuries.

The gazebo or summer house, is a roofed but otherwise open garden building, often of a polygonal floor plan.  It is used in much the same way as a pavilion, but because it is not enclosed, it has a shorter useful season in New Jersey’s  climate.

A pergola, sometimes called an arbor or bower, is an open overhead structure held up by posts or columns that usually supports climbing plants.  It is a very useful landscape design feature in the garden because it frames views architecturally and provides a pleasant sitting area, or simply a lovely accent. Arbors and arches are often interchangeable terms to describe a structure that allows a space to be shaded by vines, although arches can be unadorned, made from wood, metal or stone and look decorative without further embellishment.  One great benefit of an arbor is to provide shade for pausing or sitting.  Both arbors and arches can also act as a soothing transition from one garden space to another, to frame a view and carry colorful flowers or foliage above eye level.

Our Landscape Architects and Landscape Garden Designers at Live Oak Landscape can design that romantic garden  you have always wanted.