HOW DO I START PLANNING MY PATIO OR OUTDOOR LIVING SPACE?
Purpose – Ask yourself what you want to use your patio for and what you imagine it looks like. Do you want to be able to unwind in solitude or entertain friends and family? Do you want it to have a particular overall feel or can you imagine small details that are important to you? What existing patios that you have seen did you like or dislike and why?
Safety – Consider whether you have specific safety and accessibility limitations, such as small children, pets, or a disability to accommodate.
Size and layout – What opportunities does your yard present, how much room do you have and how large of a patio would you like?
Budget – Consider how much you would like to spend and how much you can afford to spend. What is affordable for your design and for the ongoing maintenance? Materials, such as the type of stone or paver you would like can vary in price. Consider colors, patterns, textures, and any other preferences you may have.
Additional features – Would you want steps and outdoor lighting? A full outdoor kitchen? A sitting wall or firepit?
WHAT DO I DO IF MY PAVERS ARE UNEVEN?
This may be because the base was not properly compacted during installation or the drainage system is not correct. If you feel comfortable attempting to DIY, you can pull up the pavers and measure the depth of the crushed stone footing (should be 4-6″). You can rent a vibratory plate tamper to adjust and compact the footing. Take care of any water or drainage issues around the patio by re-leveling the setting bed and re-install pavers.
HOW TO REVIVE PAVERS THAT ARE DIRTY, MOLDY, OR FADED?
Pavers live outdoors, so they can fade from the sun and get moldy/dirty. We recommend cleaning and sealing your pavers every 2-3 years to protect the colors and prevent them from getting stained. Use a diluted, acid-based masonry detergent. After they are cleaned, allow ample drying time before applying two coats of sealant. You can choose between a “Wet Look” sealer and a “Dry Look” sealer. The wet look sealer enhances the color on your pavers.
HOW TO GET RID OF WEEDS BETWEEN PAVERS?
Some older installation techniques used concrete sand or stone dust in the joints. These joint material settle, run off or blow away over time. Remove any leftover joint material by pressure washing the joints. Then verify that the joint depth is at least 1″ deep. Clean your pavers with an acid-based masonry detergent. After allowing ample time to dry, sweep in Polymeric Joint Sand. Be sure to read the manufacturers installation instructions first.
If any of this seems overwhelming, please give us a call, as we are experts in patio pavers.
WHEN SHOULD I PRUNE MY PLANTS?
As the ground begins to freeze, it becomes more and more difficult to replace plants and softscaping. Fall is a good time to prune plants, add new plants, and freshen up your mulch. Usually, this involves cutting back perennials that are done blooming for the season as well as summer growth from evergreen shrubs.
HOW TO PREPARE PLANTS FOR INCLEMENT WEATHER?
The impact a heavy snow season can wreak havoc on the health of plants. Damage from the weight of snow can physically crush plants as it either piles up on them or falls off overhead roofs. To prevent this from happening, tie the plants up with simple string. If a heavy snow storm is being called for, tying a piece of string around it to keep the plant from splitting due to the weight of the snow only works a day or two before a storm. It is not recommended to leave them like this for the entire winter season.
Preparing your Lawn
Fall is a great time to feed your lawn. A few healthy feedings at this time of year can make a huge difference in the springtime. It establishes a strong root system for the grass, developing a fuller lawn in the springtime.
If you don’t have time to do these preserving tasks for winter landscaping, please call us at 610-636-8662, or fill out our contact form here.