It’s not too late to get these 8 vegetables and herbs going, says Marianne Lipanovich, a houzz contributor.  The beautiful garden you dreamed of planting in January is still a bare patch of ground in the hot July sun, don’t despair, Lipanovich continues, gardening articles and books generally recommend spring planting for summer vegetables — the standard caveat of “once the soil has warmed and all danger of frost has passed” is almost a cliché — it’s not too late to get your garden going. Here are Marianne's options to start gardening now:

Published in Landscaping
Wednesday, 17 June 2015 09:39

It's Time to Dress Your Patio and Deck

Get your patio and deck dressed for this summer. says, if you haven’t done so already, it’s time to update.  Houzz continues, while your outdoor furnishings have served you well, after a few seasons it’s a good idea to let go of the rusted metals and faded fabrics and bring in fresh new designs that will last. Update with these stylish finds from the Houzz Shop:



Hanging Planter Baskets, Container Pots and Outdoor Dining Furniture Set the Tone for the Winnetka Patio, Schmechtig Landscapes

Published in Landscaping
Tuesday, 09 June 2015 19:09

New Sizzling Picks for The Grill Master

Outdoor season has finally arrived! Don’t let summer start without these outdoor cooking picks from the Houzz Shop (courtesy of These essential cooking gadgets will help you grill and smoke your food to mouthwatering perfection. So sear your way to barbecue bliss with this selection of grills, tools and accessories. See them all:

Published in Landscaping

These veggies are showing meat who's boss.  Here's a delicious portabella mushroom recipe from Back to Her Roots Healthy Eats and Yummy Treats that is stuffed with a cheesy, herbed tomato filling, these flavorful grilled mushrooms work as a side dish or a great vegetarian main dish. Enjoy this and the other 13 vegetable recipes courtesy of food and drink:

Grilled Herb and Tomato Stuffed Portabella Mushrooms

4 large portabella mushroom caps
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
3 Roma tomatos, diced
1/4 cup each minced fresh basil, parsley, and oregano
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon worcestershire sauce
1 clove garlic, finely minced
1/3 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

1.Preheat the grill over medium heat. Carefully remove the stems from the mushrooms, dice finely, and place in a bowl. Using a spoon, carefully scrape out the brown gills of the mushrooms, dice finely and add to the bowl with the stems.
2.Brush one tablespoon of the olive oil onto both sides of each of the mushroom caps. Place caps, stem side down on the preheated grill. Grill for about 5 minutes, or until just beginning to soften.
3.Meanwhile, mix all remaining ingredients (including the remaining olive oil) in the bowl with the diced mushroom stems and gills
4.Flip the mushroom caps over on the grill, and fill each cap up with 1/4 of the filling, making sure to really pack it in. Close the grill lid, lower the grill to low heat, and cook for an additional 10 minutes, or until the mushrooms are very soft and the cheese is melted.

 Courtesy of Food and Drink and Back to Her Roots Healthy Eats and Yummy Treats

Published in Landscaping
Thursday, 28 May 2015 17:46

28 Fresh Summer Cocktails and Mocktails

Go beyond the gin and tonic this summer and mix up cocktails and mocktails with garden-fresh fruits and vegetables says; pick up rosemary and cucumbers to concoct a grown-up lemonade that will keep you cool on a hot day. Puree fresh tomatoes and jalapeños for a homemade Bloody Mary. Of course it’s a pleasure to drink these tasty tipples but it doesn’t hurt that they’re also packed with antioxidants. Here’s to summer courtesy of!

See all 28 Recipes:

See all 28 recipes as a list:

Cherry Smash
Celebrate fresh cherries with this mint-infused cherry cocktail. Black cherry-flavored seltzer gives the drink the most cherry flavor, but plain seltzer also works well.

Makes: 4 servings

Active Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 10 minutes

1 cup pitted fresh or frozen (thawed) cherries
1/4 cup fresh mint leaves, plus 4 sprigs for garnish
8 teaspoons sugar
6 ounces (3/4 cup) dark rum
1/4 cup lime juice
3 cups cherry-flavored seltzer

1.Divide cherries, mint leaves and sugar among 4 glasses.
Mash everything together with the back of a wooden spoon.
Stir in rum and lime juice.
Fill glasses with ice and top with seltzer.
Garnish with mint sprigs.

Per serving: 161 calories; 0 g fat (0 g sat, 0 g mono); 0 mg cholesterol; 16 g carbohydrates; 1 g protein; 1 g fiber; 2 mg sodium; 131 mg potassium.

Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin C (15% daily value).

Carbohydrate Servings: 1

Exchanges: 1 fruit

Courtesy of

Published in Landscaping

 From Lifstyle at, "Sure, days are longer in summer, but still not quite long enough to squeeze in all the seasonal fun. Stay out after dusk when you light the night with these 8 DIY luminaries, lamps, and lanterns." See them all:

Courtesy of



Outdoor Chandelier, Schmechtig Landscapes, Barrington, IL.

Published in Landscaping
Friday, 22 May 2015 09:05

13 Best Projects for a Long Weekend

Three cheers for the long weekend, says Bob Villa.  He continues, a few times out of the year, we're blessed with a full extra day's worth of time to ourselves. It's the perfect opportunity to run errands, spend time with family, or fix up whatever has been hanging around for weeks waiting to be addressed. But that extra day is also great for tackling a fun home DIY. We've rounded up a few of the best, most joyful summer projects we've seen in order to inspire you to exercise your creativity over the long weekend. This collection ranges from hour-long crafts to extensive multiday projects, so there's an option here to suit every skill level and any schedule.  Read and see the projects:

Courtesy of and

Published in Landscaping

Laura Gaskill, a Houzz Contributor says it’s the little things that can make all the difference in your outdoor kitchen experience, so consider what would benefit you the most — better lighting, prep space, or music. She continues, try adding one (or more) of these fun features, from grill-side seating to a vintage fridge. Read and see more:


Schmechtig Landscapes Outdoor Kitchen Design for HGTV Landscapers Challenge

Published in Landscaping

Enjoy these fun summer outdoor party decorating ideas from House Beautiful and Good Housekeeping.  My favorite is the wheelbarrel!  See them all:


Pool Ideas in Winnetka, Illinois, Schmechtig Landcapes



Backyard Outdoor Living and Entertaining with Pool, Winnetka, Illinois, Schmechtig Landscapes

Published in Landscaping

Here are 9 ideas to revamp your backyard this summer. See them all -

Courtesy of

Published in Landscaping
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