Outdoor Lighting & Your Home

Outdoor Lighting & Your Home

(Above: An Evening in Watertown, Design: Monica Fairbairn, Installation: A Yard & A Half, Photo: Daniel Nystedt) The days are getting shorter, but that doesn’t mean you have to coop yourself up inside after work. Enjoy your beautiful landscape all season long by installing an outdoor lighting system!   Low-Voltage Lighting We recommend low-voltage lighting to enhance your evening enjoyment of your property. The quality and intensity of this lighting is closer to candlelight than traditional…

September Garden Tips

September Garden Tips

When the leaves change and the kids are back in school, it’s time to divide, plant, and improve your soil!   PLANTING & DIVIDING 1. PERENNIALS Be sure to plant your mums, asters, and other perennials asap; they need at least 6 weeks before the ground freezes to establish their roots. Protect your investment and keep watering any new plantings through the Fall. Are your plants outgrowing their beds? Expanding beyond their space and into your…

Plan for Snow Before It Hits

Plan for Snow Before It Hits

For the 2nd year in a row, A Yard & A Half is offering snow plowing, snow shoveling and ice removal services for homeowners in Newton and Brookline.   The Farmer’s Almanac predicts “above-normal amounts of snowfall” starting in November for our area.  Contact us now to set up a contract so we can keep your property snow-free as soon as winter arrives.   We’re committed to the safety of our clients and workers and the health of…

Make Your Fence Come Alive!

Make Your Fence Come Alive!

Feeling a little claustrophobic in your own yard? Bored of your traditional fence? If you’re looking for some privacy from the neighbors, but don’t want to feel closed in, consider installing a visually dynamic “living fence”. Plant shrubs and trees around the perimeter of your yard to maintain a boundary while adding color and attracting pollinators.       If you want privacy throughout the year, try a wall of evergreens like Cypress trees (left)…

August Garden Maintenance & Watering Guidelines

August Garden Maintenance & Watering Guidelines

With all the heat and sunshine of summer, it’s critical to know when, how, and how much to water your lawn, trees, and plantings. Proper watering is the best way to protect your investment in your plants!  Determining the needs of individual plants and parts of your property will take some time, so check out our watering guide for basic tips on your trees, shrubs, perennial beds and lawns. Remember that these guidelines are no substitute for regular observation of…

Growing Fruit At Home

Growing Fruit At Home

Growing fruit at home is a great way to make use of your land and enjoy in-season fruit! 5 Quick Tips for getting the most out of your home fruit growing: Pollination: Plant 2 varieties within a species to get cross-pollination (Jonafree with Liberty, for example). Or attract pollinators by planting fruit companions such as these. Short on space? Carol Stocker of the Boston Globe suggests simply putting a blooming branch clipping from a crab…

Award-Winning Installation!

Award-Winning Installation!

One of our installations, “Kyoto Meets New England – An Entrance Courtyard”, will be recognized at the international conference for the Association of Professional Landscape Designers next week in Boston!   The winning installation was designed by Christie Dustman and Company and installed by Senior Landscape Construction Crew Leader, José Flores. In addition to being featured in Design New England Magazine, this North Reading, MA installation has now received APLD’s world class Silver Award for…

Identifying Fruit Tree Diseases

Identifying Fruit Tree Diseases

We’ve received a number of calls lately from clients wondering what to do about the moldy peaches and other signs of fruit tree diseases they’re seeing. Below are some tips for identifying fruit tree diseases, as well as pictures of common problems. Firstly, it’s important to know that most fruit trees are susceptible to some common diseases. Growing fruit trees requires either some tolerance for imperfections or a willingness to take on a high maintenance…

Sensory Garden Plant List

Sensory Garden Plant List

This summer turn your garden into a Sensory Garden! Sensory gardens are fun for children because they’re full of plants that appeal to senses of touch and smell, as well as having eye-catching, bright colors. Here’s a starter list of plants for a sensory garden. Unless otherwise noted, all perennials are native to North America (many to New England), hardy to zone 5, drought tolerant, and low-maintenance. Many of the red flowers attract butterflies. Enjoy!…

See Boston Gardens On June 11th

See Boston Gardens On June 11th

Every year since 1995, hundreds of exceptional private gardens nationwide are selected to participate in The Garden Conservancy’s ‘Open Days’. On Sunday, June 11th from 10am-4pm the Greater Boston Area Open Days will feature outstanding gardens, some with historical pedigrees and others representing remarkable accomplishments of local gardeners and landscape designers. One such designer whose garden will be featured is our partner, Christie Dustman. Admission to each garden is $7. For discounted admission tickets ($35…