5 Winter Plants To Brighten Any Portland Landscape

The Pacific Northwest, and Portland specifically, can become very dismal, dreary, and gray over the long wintry rainy months from October – May. Homeowners stay tucked in their houses drinking coffee, peering outside only to see if there is that small chance that the sun may pay a visit. Finding a bright moment in those long months can be a challenge for even the most positive of attitudes, but you can make it a little easier by donning your landscaping with some good choices of winter flowers perfect for Portland rainy and wintry weather.

5 Winter Plants for Portland

Winter plants, Hellebore great for Portland
Hellebore

1. Hellebore – Traditionally known as a Christmas Rose, these plants are very resistant to frost. They grow well in the shade and provide the perfect little pop of color as part of the buttercup family.
2. Mahonia – Gorgeous shrubs that can grow to as much as 8-15 feet tall. Related to the Oregon grape they are a ray of sunshine with a spray of bright yellow flowers starting December or January and lasting until February or March. The hummingbirds will love this addition to your landscape!
3. Grevillea victoriae – This is probably the most unique of the five offering quirky buds with star burst shaped blossoms. You can find this one in bright colors ranging from red, dark orange, apricot, yellow, and even pinks. This Australian native works particularly well in city conditions.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
4. Hamamelis x intermedia – A fragrant winter bloom. Grows slowly up to 10 feet making it a great city dwelling plant.
5. Cornus sanguinea – Also known as ‘Midwinter Fire’, this plant will reach heights up to 9 feet.  The orange, yellow and red blooms offer a great contrast to the wintry dark greens found in the Pacific Northwest.

Mahonia is a great winter plant for PortlandAll Oregon Provides Landscaping in Portland

Need help deciding what winter plants your landscape needs to bring a pop of color during our rainy season? Let the experts at All Oregon Landscaping help you create a usable and beautiful outdoor space. We provide expertise in retaining walls, outdoor lighting, water features, custom concrete, pergolas, trellises, wood work, and custom outdoor living. Call today to start planning a new life for your backyard and landscape in Portland and surrounding areas.

 Photo 1 by Simon Garbutt – Hellebore

Photo 2 by Stan Shebs – Mahonia

 

 

Lake Oswego Landscape Design by Elida Rivera

We work with pleased clients all over Portland, Beaverton, Sherwood, and many surrounding areas. We are going to highlight a special Lake Oswego landscaping project today. For one of our designers, Elida Rivera, an important step in any new landscaping project is the initial meeting to discuss the design goals and learn what the household wants and needs in their outdoor space. Every household has different reasons for approaching All Oregon Landscaping for their yard projects. This family included children, so their needs were tailored to that.

All Oregon Design Process

The landscape design process for this Lake Oswego family was no different than most of our projects. There are generally three steps involved in any landscape design.

  1. Assimilation of client and site information: Elida visited the home to discuss needs and wants with the client. She also took good observation of the yard’s current condition.
  2. The concept plan: Elida draws up her best ideas for the landscape using all the knowledge she has collected. It is then presented to the client.
  3. The final plan: After the client and designer go over the concept plan, Elida incorporates any changes into the final plan which will be used to carry out the project.

Design Goals For The Lake Oswego Landscape Design

During the home visit, Elida took careful notes about what was important to the clients for functionality and comfort in their yard. Having children had a large impact on this design, and that is reflected in the following design goals.

  • Provide privacy
  • Maximize level play areas for family activities
  • Blending of function and aesthetics – how to include a play structure and a shed in the flow of the landscape design
  • Focus on safety with smooth transitions from one area to the next
  • Indoor visibility of play areas
  • Lighting that provides safe navigation in the evening and is pleasing from inside the home during the winter months
  • A design that compliments the architecture and style of the home, scale of property, and neighborhood

Before and After All Oregon Landscaping

After the work was completed in about 3 weeks, both Elida and the client were pleased with their new yard. Take a glance at the yard before and after All Oregon Landscaping transformed the space.

Before

Lake Oswego landscape design by Elida Rivera

After

After photos of lake oswego landscape design

Do you like what you’ve seen with our Lake Oswego project?  Elida and everyone else at All Oregon Landscaping would be glad to help you design an aesthetic and functional yard.  We specialize in outdoor kitchens, boulders, water features, and more. Call us to discuss all of the possibilities for your yard in Lake Oswego, Beaverton, Portland, Sherwood, and any surrounding areas.

 

Landscape Lighting for Winter

As the winter approaches, you will notice that it begins to get darker much earlier, and that days are shortened. To keep things bright and to remind yourself of warmth, it is a good idea to add some landscape lighting for the winter to your landscape. This can be done in the form of LED lighting, or decorative lights to add to the atmosphere of the holiday season. In the Northwest, in places like Portland, West Linn and Lake Oswego, the temperatures can get especially cold during the fall and winter months, and people need reminders of the warmth that is to come soon while they endure the biting cold. There are many ways to add lighting to your landscape during the winter for both practical reasons and aesthetic reasons. The new landscape lights will brighten and enhance the look of your landscape, giving it a bright glow. In addition, it will make is safer, as anyone walking through will be able to see their way, and the lights will deter any potential wrong doers.

When deciding where to place your landscape lighting, take a walk around your landscape and figure out which parts of the landscape you wish to enhance with lighting. There are of course, the necessary places, such as the walkways and the stairwells. You will want these places visible to avoid injury and to make walking up to the door when coming home after dark much easier. And of course, you want to make the decorative aspects of your landscape more conspicuous even during the night. For walkways, try smaller landscape lights that line the walkway, making the walkway illuminated during the night. You can make these protruding lights, or smaller lights that are embedded into the walkway itself. There are lights that are activated once someone steps foot onto the walkway. Motion censor lights are a great idea for walkways and stairways. They will make seeing your way while taking your dog for a late night walk much easier, and they save energy because they do not have to be on all the time.

You may also have certain aspects of your landscape that you wish to highlight during the night hours. Those are also great places to put landscape lighting. If there is a plant or a decorative aspect of your aspect that can be highlighting, do so with alluring landscape lights. They will make your landscape appealing even during the dark hours. Some plants look their best under bright lights during the night. If the tree, plant or flower is particularly unique, you will of course want to highlight it. Try getting landscape lights that match the theme of your landscape, so that they blend in during the day when they are not in use. You do not want the lights to be unsightly and stand out in a bad way during the daytime hours. You have many choices for landscape lights, so choose the one that not only fits in with the landscape, but can do the job in lighting the area for when it needs to be illuminated.

If you have questions call or email us at All Oregon Landscaping, located in Sherwood, Oregon and serving the metro Portland Oregon market.

Fall Pruning in Portland Oregon

Fall pruning in Portland Oregon is an oftentimes heated debate among the landscaping and gardening community as the question of whether or not to prune plants and trees in the Fall comes up. When the Summer begins to wane and the hot days turn into the balmy Fall days, the drive to have scrubs, flowers and trees pruned seems to overtake many homeowners and property holders. Whether you’ve got a small plot of land with a sparse garden and a few trees or a veritable enchanted garden teaming with every kind of plant that met with your design style, fall pruning is probably on your mind. So should you have your plants pruned? If so, what should you have pruned and what shouldn’t you have pruned? To help clear up the confusion, below you’ll find a handy little guide to help you know when, if and what needs Fall pruning this year.

What Shouldn’t You Prune?

When considering having Fall pruning done on the landscaping of your home or business, there usually is a general rule of thumb: leave everything but the deciduous plants alone. Pruning is an excellent way to instigate growth in your plants and is vital to their overall continued health, but when done at the wrong time and on the wrong type of plants, pruning can have a detrimental effect on their health. After the Summer has ended there usually is only a few weeks of mild temperatures before Winter begins to set in, bringing the chill of ice and snow with it, and if your evergreen plants have been recently pruned they are weakened and susceptible to the bitter cold. Deciduous plants are hardier and able to withstand more, but evergreen plants are left to the elements when pruned in the Fall and you might find that come spring your evergreen plants look worse for the wear.

What Should You Prune?

Fall is a perfect time to prune deciduous plants such as scrubs and trees as the loss of the leaves allows you to see points in the scrubs or trees that are hindering the overall growth and health of the plant. With a bare tree it is easy to spot trouble areas where a branch might be dead, diseased or that is growing irregularly and crouching in on other branches. You will be able to find branches of trees that are a safety hazard as well, which can leave you with property damage or injury if a storm or other event weakens the branch even more than it already is. Sticking to Fall pruning for deciduous plants only will help to keep evergreen plants healthy during the long Winter months and give deciduous plants the chance to have any problems rectified before spring sets in and the leaves begin to bloom once again.

When Should You do a Fall Pruning?

If you are going to be pruning  evergreen plants it is best to give them at least about two months to become hearty again after a pruning before the cold of Winter sets in, so try to limit evergreen pruning to no later than mid-Summer. For deciduous plants Fall pruning can be done at any time, but it is best to wait until the leaves have all fallen as the trees or scrubs limbs are unobstructed. If you are unfamiliar with the various types of plants in your garden or landscaping it is best to turn to an experienced landscaper to have your Fall pruning done so that come Spring your home or business looks as beautiful as ever surrounded by healthy trees, scrubs, flowers and more.

All Oregon Landscaping Hosts Niagara Parks School of Horticulture

Recently, All Oregon Landscaping hosted a group from the Niagara Parks School of Horticulture. The renowned horticulture school came all the way from Ontario, Canada to tour one of Portland Oregon’s top landscaping companies.

The tour was conducted by the owner of All Oregon Landscaping, Craig Prunty. He showed the enthusiastic and burgeoning landscapers his company’s Sherwood, Oregon facility. During the tour, Craig shared his 30 years of experience in landscape design and his vast knowledge of the industry.

Of course the main attraction of tour was All Oregon’s 20-acre, private nursery that contains more than 8,000 different plants.

The horticulture students got a rare and priceless tour of one of the most successful landscaping companies in the Portland metro area. All Oregon Landscaping is a family owned business that has been transforming average yards into work of arts for more than 23 years. Their work has appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show, in Sunset Magazine, and at local lawn and garden shows.

An outsider may ask why a company as big and successful as All Oregon would spend their valuable time showing a bunch of students around their campus. After all, All Oregon tackles multimillion dollar projects; their design and project management teams have over a century of experience; and the company has a staff of 20 skilled and dedicated individuals.

Well, All Oregon Landscaping is more than just a landscaping company. They care about their industry and the next wave of landscapers. They want to give back and there’s no better way to do that than spending some quality time “talking shop” with students from a renowned horticulture school.

Niagara Parks School of Horticulture
The Niagara Parks School of Horticulture is located in Niagara Falls, Ontario. Accepted applicants not only undergo academic instruction but they receive hands-on training at the world Famous Niagara Parks Botanical Gardens. A 3-year diploma from the school carries a lot of weight within the industry. If you’re looking for a career in gardens, and want a practical alternative to college, then you should definitely enroll in Niagara Parks School of Horticulture.

Four varieties of plants for Fall color

At the end of the summer, color in your garden begins to fade. Some homeowners will accept the encroaching winter and others will take the opportunity to utilize colorful late summer plantings. Not sure what to pick? One of the best techniques to see what looks eye catching is to take a drive. Spend an afternoon driving thru West Linn, Lake Oswego or different neighborhoods in Portland. If you are having a tough time envisioning where color should go, do this, pour a cup of coffee put on your slippers and walk around your yard, the vision is that easy. If you are still stumped about color and selection, call or email All Oregon Landscaping, it’s what we do. The following are some of the best plants every gardener should have in their fall or autumn garden.

Echinacea

This is a specific type of flowering plant belonging to the daisy family known as Asteraceae. It contains nine species and they are collectively known as coneflowers. Generally, they are endemic to most parts of the eastern and northern Americas. These plants are found growing in dry prairies and moist areas and even in the open wood areas. They often show up as huge and show heads exhibiting their composite flowers. Generically, the name Echinacea is derived from the Greek word “echino” which means sea urchin. This plant is called as such simply because of its spiny center disk. They are commonly cultivated in many home gardens especially at the end of the summer wherein its showy flowers are effective in adding color and vibrancy to the surrounding preparing for the coming of autumn or fall.

Black Eyed Susan

Another kind of plant which is excellent to plant in your fall garden is known as the Black Eyed Susan or scientifically known as Tetratheca Hirsuta. It’s a climbing type of plant which usually grows between 0.1m and 0.9m high. It comes with a woody rootstock where multiple stems arise and exude roughness and hairy texture at their ends. It also comes with leaves alternately arranges at its stems in whorls or oppositely. Pink, deep pink and purple-tinted flowers go blooming from the months of July until December specifically the native species. This makes it a perfect choice for months where autumn and fall are starting to take over.

Itea

Itea is considered as a genus of ten species of small trees and shrubs. Leaves form alternately and bear flowers that are small. Each flower contains five sepals and five petals, usually borne in spikes or racemes. This plant is usually found native in the eastern parts of Asia and deciduous species in the eastern part of North America. Some of the species of Itea are propagated for ornamental purposes and planted in gardens because of their long pendant-like and fragrant flowers. Such species include the I. yunnanensis and evergreen I. ilicifolia from western and central China.

Crape Myrtle

This pant is chiefly known for its long-lasting and colorful flowers. It has barks that shed all throughout the year. Some species are woody in nature while most come with fluted and sinewy stems and opposite leaves that look simple and usually vary in sizes. It’s vibrantly colored and long-lasting flowers make this plant a perfect choice for your autumn garden.

Excelerite-Mother Nature’s balancer

For people having a difficult time getting their plants and gardens to grow, they may be confused as to what could be wrong and what they can do about it. Quite often, the problem is nothing more than a lack of necessary nutrients in the soil. Over time, nutrients and minerals necessary for healthy plant growth have been depleted.  A proper pH balance in the soil is necessary for lawns and plants.  These needed minerals must be restored somehow.  Excelerite is a natural occurring element that helps promote a balanced pH level in the soil.

A great product that replenishes minerals to the soil is Excelerite, which is available in powdered form. This substance is completely natural and non-toxic, and has been proven to increase farm crop yields in different climates. Ready to spread right out of the package, this dry powder will restore the lost minerals and nutrients that the soil must have before healthy plants can grow.

With Excelerite, there has been no crushing, enhancing, or modification as is the case with artificial soil enhancers. It is ready to use in its original natural form, just as potent as Mother Nature made it. Maximizing the health of the soil will assure that plants will remain healthy for years, while being better able to resist extreme temperatures.   The Northwest is famous for its streaks of weather.  Hot spells, cold snaps, dry season and the most famous of them all rainy season, Excelerite can provide a buffer to these extreme swings from the environment.

Increasing the fertility of the soil by adding Excelerite will promote the growth of beneficial microorganisms, which will do their part to keep plants healthy. A re-mineralized lawn will also produce plants that need less irrigation. This nutrient enrichment will also make plants more resistant to drought and diseases.  Excelerite helps keep the balance of soil to a pH level between 6.7-7.3

Farmers who have made a long-term investment in soil replenishment using Excelerite have found it to be an affordable way to increase crop yields while reducing the cost of irrigation and pesticides. Many have been amazed at how they have been able to improve their yield in less than a year. This great product will work well in lawns and gardens, enhancing the growth of bright beautiful plants.

This mineral has many benefits, talk to All Oregon Landscaping to see if this product is something your yard would benefit from.

All Oregon Landscaping

Our greatest love here at All Oregon Landscaping is sacrificing a perfectly decent Saturday to work outside, building a fire pit or installing a new deck. That’s what we do—we’re people who prefer the great green outdoors to all else and we genuinely love working with you to turn your property into a masterpiece that suits you and your lifestyle.

But what matters most isn’t our greatest love; it’s your greatest love. If you’re reading our blog, you may already be intrigued with the idea of changing something about the way your home or yard looks. You may be ready for something new or different, or you may want to refresh your garden or spruce up a nook that receives lots of sunlight during the summer. You may have spent years rattling around in the same yard ready for a change, or are just moving in to a new place that needs some special help. You may have an exact idea about what you want or perhaps you have a quiet feeling that something could be better, or more beautiful, or more like something you’ve seen at a neighbor’s house or online. Whatever the reason you’ve landed here on our website, our staff enjoys planning new projects and completing them. Call us—we’d like to tour your property and then show you what we can do.

We have found wonderful opportunities to see things we otherwise might never see, like a long, winding basalt stone pathway that stretches from the back door of one Beaverton family’s home, through a small wooded area, and towards the yard of a friendly neighbor.

The view of Lake Oswego is a delight—especially in summer and especially from the yard of a house where the patio has been designed and built by one of the project managers at All Oregon Landscaping.

And then there’s the amazing plant life, and the water features, and the hardscapes that we can do…

In order to properly understand the All Oregon Landscaping Crew, we need to go all the way back to 1981, when Craig Prunty first started designing and installing gardens and ponds in Oregon and Washington. Craig brought his younger brother Tony on board in 1990, and with Tony’s specialized expertise in construction and architecture, they have a combined 53 years of experience creating spectacular landscapes in Portland, Beaverton, Lake Oswego, Tualatin, and West Linn.

And there’s nothing quite like the passion of those who love their yards so much they are willing to open them up to a team of strangers (see the above list of Oregonians—we’re strangers now but we may quickly become friends) to wander through them, trampling across lawns and through flowerbeds. We frequently notice that local homeowners are every bit as fun as their properties are.

A Nice Yard will Increase the Value of your Home

Only a few people know that yards have a very influential yet very frequently undervalued role in keeping the value of a house high. People spend a lot of time perfecting the interiors with expensive renovations, up to date furniture, and even energy efficient systems. While these all contribute to a home’s value it is important to note that what you do to your home outside is just as important as what you do inside. All Oregon Landscaping can help you evaluate your yard.

First of all, a very aesthetically pleasing yard means that you can catch the attention of the potential buyers even from afar. Imagine someone looking for a house and that person drives past your house. If you have a very attractive yard, the chances of that person stopping and getting out of the car to ask about the house is high, as opposed to a drab looking yard. It’s no coincidence that when you think of Lake Oswego, West Linn or Dunthorpe your mind is thinking about the front yard, this is the first impression that comes to mind. This concept is very simple: an attractive yard means more attention, and thus more impact on the market.

Of course, yard does not just mean the front yard. It also refers to the garden at the back of the house. Some people would find it more enticing to have their own little space at the back to relax, have a barbecue, or use as their little vegetable or herb garden. When you have a well groomed space at the back, it means there are a lot of possibilities or functions for the house rather than just a dwelling place. This is a surefire way for you to increase the value of your house.

The main key to a nice yard to increase the value of your property is good maintenance and a pleasing aesthetic quality to it. Have a vision on how you want it to look like. Do you want it to have a certain style that is congruent with the style of your home? Do you want to add some extras such as a pool, barbecue, or a mini organic garden? Do you want it to be grand looking with a fountain or several well manicured plants? Do you want your yard to evoke a certain emotion or character? These are just a few questions that you need to ask yourself in order for you to have direction for the look of your yard.

Ask professionals to help you out in determining the correct plan in fulfilling your dream yard for your home. All Oregon Landscaping is one of the major companies that can help you create a yard that will match what you envision and tie it all together with the right materials and the right plan in order to get the look that will undoubtedly increase the value of your home.

There is no doubt that working on having a home that has a lot of value to it will be beneficial in the future. Make sure that you have the right vision, plan, and materials. A nice yard is the key to having a great home!

All Oregon Landscaping utilizes the Forno Bravo pizza oven

Improving your outdoor living areas may appear to be somehow difficult and time consuming especially if you are someone who does not have ideas on what type of furniture, accessories or landscaping that would look best.  If you’re looking for a new way to entertain you should look at a Forno Bravo pizza oven.  If you want to have the best landscaping, All Oregon Landscaping, Inc can offer landscaping, designing and building solutions that will make your outdoor space truly an extension of your beautiful home.

Some people do not mind decorating or accessorizing their outdoor spaces and they are often busy designing the interiors of their home. But those who often held parties, gatherings or dinners outdoor may find it very important to make sure their outdoor spaces look as elegant as their homes from the inside. This is the reason why All Oregon Landscaping exists as it helps homeowners achieve the kind of style and design that they want for their outdoor living areas.

All Oregon Landscaping can install water features, retaining walls, patios, pergolas, outdoor lighting, concrete boulders, decorative pots and more. For those who love eating outdoors with family or friends may want to have a special kind of feature where they can make their food without getting inside the house. Grillers are very common but if you are pizza lovers, you can’t miss on having a Forno Bravo pizza oven in your outdoor living area.

Having a pizza party is a great way to get your guests involved in creating their own pizzas. Also, the smell of baking pizza can awaken everyone’s appetite. All Oregon Landscaping is a dealer of Forno Bravo pizza ovens and kits so if you hire us to design your outdoor space, we will suggest a Forno Bravo pizza oven.

There are different designs and styles of these pizza ovens available and you can choose one that goes well with the current design of your outdoor space or on what you think would be most convenient for you to use. Pizza ovens are not just used for pizza as it can also work on other types of outdoor cooking.  People who are keen about experiencing good tasting pizza should consider pizza ovens. They can be made out of clay, bricks or wood. Depending on your personal preference, you can always find out that is suitable to your style.

If you think achieving that perfect look for your outdoor living space won’t be that easy, think again. All Oregon Landscaping simply has all the solutions you need to make it stylish and practical.  They have designers and builders that can install accessories, water features or walls in your outdoor spaces. They also can work on installing the pizza oven and will arrange it in accordance to the style you find to be most preferable, convenient and accessible for everyone.

Eating outside the house can be a great way to experience a great time with friends and family. You don’t have to always stay inside the house when having dinner because the ambience of eating outside your home is much more different.