With all the storms and rain we have had hit this winter its hard to not be hopeful for spring to show up! I know in California we can all appreciate that we had a pretty mild “Fire season” and that we always need the rain, but its okay to want sunshine too! Our paws getting muddy just walking out the front door is only fun for so long, right?
Get yourself ready for some spring planting, replanting, and total yard makeovers! There are designers ready to help you out to plan your revamp too if you hit a loss of what would work or even simply just look pawtastic. Cindy at Blooming Gardens or Margaret, with A Wylder Design is mighty handy with turning a boring backyard into a picturesque space to make all your neighbors envious! Whether you want a balance between hardscape and keeping it natural, they will bring your imagination to life! Nothing makes new landscape happy than good soil, like the Planter’s Mix. This soil is your all around and go to planting mix. Whether you are putting down seed for your lawn, a full replace of sod, fresh plants/trees/flowers, this soil won’t disappoint! It is a sandy loam, which will be perfect to get my paws in and help you dig out any old plants or soil you want to remove.
Remember to make a big woofing note about your soils too! Plants will utilize the nutrients within whatever soil you plant them in, which in turn means they can take a nice rich soil into something that has a hard time letting plants thrive in. Adding Organic Compost to your existing soil will act as an amendment to what I have already buried bones in, to a thriving soil once again! Nothing will bark “healthy plants!” like good, fresh, nutritional soil.
Are you wanting to build a pathway around your new thriving garden or yard? Take your paws no further than Decomposed Granite (DG)! Not only does the tan/gold color mix well with greenery or even hardscapes, but it will compact and almost harden under all of our paws with a little water and time! Don’t bark up the wrong tree and think its like cement or concrete though! It will chip and crumble like any compacted ground would if you dig into it. All that woofing about it though is not for nothing! A level walking path or even open space for a little sitting area in your yard would be the perfect accent with DG. Easy to maintain, and I won’t be able to get my teeth into it like I might try with a bark path. You can even take this bone one step further and place flagstone on top to make a stone pathway or even just stepping stone style.
Boulders might just be the new chew toy to talk about! They make great accents around your garden or even your pathway. Want to be even more of a bone-a-fied trend setter? Try and find one that has a flat enough surface to place a pot on top! I’ve gotten my paws on some pots that have a center drain hole on the bottom as well as smaller ones around that, and that center hole can be utilized with a bolt and a washer to secure that pot to a post/boulder or stand too! No worrying about those wild winds like we have had so far this February.
We all can appreciate a little rain here in California, but we definitely love having our sunshine to put our paws up in too! This type of weather is the pawfict time to dig up all my bones in the backyard to do a handful of projects! From getting the old soil refreshed with some more nutrients, getting ready for some fresh bark, laying down a paver or concrete pad/patio, or even adding an outdoor living kit.
There are so many ways to get our backyard to become the prime hangout spot for all of our friends, both human and dog! The most common backyard designs listed for this year are outdoor living and “gothic”. This really means, people and pets want to have an enjoyable backyard that is both great to dig in and look at but also comfortable! Too many family members with dogs for your small house? Set up the backyard as an extension, if not a standalone, to your dining/living rooms! Basalite offers many different options to build kits to set up your area to be the perfect host! Whether you want a standalone fireplace to add to your yard, or if you want a whole kitchen set up, they have options for every kind of backyard. One of their pieces will definitely give your friends and family something to bark about!
The gothic style of landscaping really means a lot of dark plants, flowers, and accents! Think of those old Victorian movies who have blood red flowers out front and dark leaved plants accented with thick shrubbery. This kind of landscaping gives me plenty of bone hiding places as well as gives a ethereal look to your property! There are plenty of tall flowering bushes too that can be used as privacy walls if you’ve got those no good nosey neighbors keeping tabs on all my dig spots too! Adding an archway wrapped in vines is a great statement piece, or even some casual lighting to help me keep my paws on the right tack at night! You definitely want to let me help you dig some holes in our existing soil and for sure let me get my paws on mixing in some new soil to make the job go by faster! Nothing says “good dog!” like putting in some hours digging up soil!
Whatever you chose to do with your backyard, make sure you check plants out for being pet safe so I don’t have to pick a bone with you later! Adding statement pieces, whether that’s with planets or fixtures, will always help to make the yard a much more pleasant place to spend your time and disconnect a bit. All of us dogs know how hard it is for you humans to unplug sometimes, but take 5 minutes enjoying the sunlight and plants to recoup from all the screen time. I know I will definitely be enjoying my time more if I got to bark around with you in the yard more often!
Who can believe we are already onto a new year?! I can’t wait to get my paws on some new projects in the yard. Digging up old plants, burying bones, and having a barking good time sound like great New Years plans to me! Whether we are just improving on what’s there, or starting a whole new project, there’s a huge selection to choose from! Is our BARK looking a little ruff for wear? Are the plants ready for some new nutrients? What about a nice flagstone pad with a firepit for these paw chilling nights? The options are endless!
Quartzite Silver and Gold adds a great sparkle to the yard while remaining subtle enough for any level of landscaping! Sizes range so much, you are bound to find pieces that will make any size area look pawrific! Wanting to get your paws on something a little more muted? Arizona Buckskin and Rosa are great for that desert or creamy look! With the Arizona’s being sandstone they have a unique richness you can match to any style of yard, plus it’s super easy on my paws just like the Quartzites!
Want to give your neighbors something to really BARK about? Oregon Eagle Patio and boulder pieces make a great pond or waterfall stone! Build them and stack them in all sorts of shapes or designs for a natural look that will make you feel like you’ve found it in the forest. Adding a mix of our Cobble Stone or Drain Rock at the ponds bottom to keep the natural look going for a realistic riverbed. Loose round rock at the bottom means I am less likely to bring any muddy paws back through the house after I inspect your work. Adding in some standard Moss Rock could give you great accent points in your tail waggin’ design too!
All muddy paws aside, we should definitely take the time to enjoy our yards no matter how put together they are or not! Just getting outside to hang out with our paws up or even to run around for some tail wagging and barktacular fun is a great way to spend any time of day! The New Year means new adventures, but don’t forget! We have all year to get our paws dirty!
Along with the holiday season being right at our doorstep, so is the rain! Like any good dog, we love to splash and play just as much as the next pup! Though, sometimes we want to make sure our yards stay as dry as they can too.
If you have a gravel driveway Road Base is a great choice to lay down. Road base will compact and get almost too hard for my paws to get through, BUT you won’t be walking in puddles either! It also won’t shift too much, if at all, under my weight or even your car! You will want me to help dig out any water that’s there already though, standing water and the Road Base don’t work very well together, but it doesn’t need to be totally dry either! If you’ve got some DEEP holes of mine to fill, or a culvert to repair the 4″ Cool Cave is a great base layer and erosion control for those kind of areas. Did you know a lot of the Park systems use it on their trails? I get my paws on some every time I go to the Sterling Point Trail around Folsom Lake on high erosion zones! They might be a little too big for a normal dog like me to get their mouth around, but that’s why it works so well. The Cool Cave can also be topped off with Road Base or even the Crushed Fines to fill in the gaps to make it more solid of a surface too. Then you won’t have to worry about my paws getting in the cracks or any little humans tripping either!
Did you know we have a bark-taskular Cool Cave Base? It’s just similar Road Base but its BLUE! It’s also the same type of rock as the 4″ Cool Cave, so if we want to get our paws matching colors we can! On some of my walks in the neighborhoods I see people using it for functional use but also for decorative purposes! It looks absolutely tail wagging as a color accent in your yards.
Hillsides are so much fun for me to stretch my paws running on, but did you know that BARK can help prevent or lessen the likelihood of any of my play space from washing away? Redwood Ground cover (or commonly referred to as Gorilla Hair) is great for steeper hillsides since it mats together just like my hair might after playing! It is a great accent to add to your yard with a vibrant red/brown color that just BARKS against any plant life I haven’t dug up yet. If you’re looking for one that’s easier to walk on, the Walk-on Bark is a great choice too! Both of these are easy on the paws and easy on your yard.
You know those old towels you use to dry me off? Or the bed sheets I have left too many pawprints on to wash off? They make great frost covers for your more sensitive plants with going into the cold season! Just a little extra protection for your sensitive plants will go a long way to getting them through our furry weather! I have my coat and you have your gloves, but do your plants have their blankets?
It is only the beginning of February and I am already wanting to wade in water. But what does this do to my friend Mother Earth and her plants? According to my elder friend Farmer Almanac, he says that California will be mild and dry this winter. So that’s what we are going with – mild and dry.
For the next 45 days my masters are focusing on two main items ~ which always begin with a PLAN!
Spend some time on your irrigation~ with water being such a precious product, we all want to make sure it is used to the utmost efficiency. Broken lines, rerouting lines and testing your system should be key. Draw your garden area out to include irrigation plans. Set your timers and valves correctly. It will save you time (and $) in the long run.
Devising ways to hold back your soil ~ You know, a way to contain your moist fresh soil! You don’t want that good Growers Blend spilling out of it’s area. Whether it is a full grown planter bed make with block or an edging made with moss rock, a method of retention is needed. When you measure, allow for areas to walk, note where the sunny spots will be, and don’t forget about our friend irrigation. And again it all plays back into your Plan. Most of all by defining planting areas, I will know where the good soil is to lay in!
Option B for planting ~ just purchase one of our Tarter Stock Tanks. We have oval and round, with multiple sizes to choose from. I know that it is not easy for me to dig in, but easier for my masters to manage.
Ahhhhh September, cool nights and warm days- it’s the best. My Owners love that pumpkin spice stuff, to me it’s just OK. Did you know that September is the 2nd most patriotic month of the year?
With Patriot Day (9/11), Constitution Day (9/17). International Peace Day (9/21) all happening this month, that’s a lot of honor in one month! Not to mention that FALL begins.
So on to Fall projects-
Create defensible space ~ Any type of hardscape; rock, flagstone, pavers and walls. This project is the most important of all. You can create a barrier and beautify your home. Always start with measurements. We can assist you with your ideas and dreams!
Clean up ~ All I can say is buy dirt. Deadhead and trim. Then top dress with fresh planters mix or growers blend. Your plants will thank you with fresh foliage. You can pick up a small amount or we can deliver a larger amount.
Invite Friends Over ~ Enjoy the space you have created! Us dogs love company and affection. Happy Digging!
What season is it? What day is it? For some reason, I hear that a lot these days. To answer the question- today it is the Fall! My time to roll in the leaves, enjoy the cooler nights and the smell of the harvest….All the things us doggies love, besides digging. After all our hot and smokey summer days, digging would actually do me and your garden good. Some garden TLC is in order.
By TLC, we mean adding nutrients back in that have been depleted.
First and foremost, Dig, dig in deep, and dig some more. To really be efficient till your soil down 8 to 12 inches (wow that’s great). But even 4 to 6 inches can be an improvement for the soil. Then you are ready to start the soil amending process.
Second, amending (that’s a big word) of the soil. A great add in is Nufiber compost – coming straight from the central valley. If you soil does not need this rich of a blend- try our Growers Blend or Planters Mix. After the amending (adding in) is complete, leave the soil alone for a day or two so. The organic materials (soil enhancements) will have time to decompose and provide nutrients into the soil. Yummy for your soil!
Your amended soil with bless you tremendously. You have now created an opportunity for moisture retention. Your garden will yield a large, healthy and nutritious crop; your flowers will shine and your trees will thrive.
Last, but not least, check your watering. Repair any damaged lines, or reroute as needed. Look at your watering times. Our daylight is changing.
Take time to smell the flowers and as always – Happy Digging!
Now who doesn’t love November….Our cool nights have begun (aka me by the fire), the leaves are falling (aka me rolling in leaves) and my master is inside making treats that may fall to the ground (aka me licking floor). So from my perspective….not a bad gig. But as always, my master is working, working, working. While I am sleeping, sleeping sleeping. And what are they doing?
* Maintain if no Rain – So the rain does not always fall on the plain. If we have a dry spell, turn the water on for a bit to keep your plants happy. And don’t forget about those potted plants under cover.
* Protect- don’t neglect – Everything likes to be warm. This includes the soil. A nice layer of bark would make those roots happy. My master has many varieties to choose from! If mud is a problem, maybe a crushed rock is the solution. This will keep the mud down and much easier to drive or walk on.
* Cold can be controlled – So you are getting a bit of a chill in the evenings? Well good thing my master has firewood and kindling in stock! Now a 1/4 cord can fit into the back of a pickup, lickety-split it can be home for you. Or if you need a larger portion…..call and set up a delivery. Oh yeah, don’t forget to grab a bundle of kindling too.
So whatever this season brings for us all, just remember a warm fire, a cute dog (aka me), with family and friends makes all things better. Happy Digging!