Tuesday, 14 April 2015 07:56

Edible Plants That Double as Ornamentals

Try growing these tasty plants with your ornamentals for an attractive garden and fresher meals, says Noelle Johnson a Houzz contributor.  Johnson continues, a combination of flowering plants and attractive foliage usually comes to mind when we imagine a beautiful garden. What about the plants we grow for food? From flowering herbs to leafy vegetables, many edible plants have shapes, textures and colors that can add both beauty to the landscape and flavor to your dinner plate. Let’s break down the border between our ornamental and edible gardens and see how edible plants can do double duty.  Read and see more: http://www.houzz.com/ideabooks/44460329/list/edible-plants-that-double-as-ornamentals



Published in Landscaping

Take your home’s outdoor connection to the next step with a serving window for alfresco dining, says Joanna Tovia, a Houzz contributor. The kitchen pass-through window historically was used to hide kitchen clutter from guests and to help maids and chefs deliver food efficiently to formal dining rooms, says architect Rebecca Naughtin. Recently the feature has made a comeback — with a difference. Today it’s often used to ease the transition between indoors and out. What are the benefits of a kitchen pass-through, and how easy is it to install? Read and see more of what Joanna has to share:


Published in Landscaping

The garden bursts into bloom, the garden centers open with cool-season annuals beckoning and gardening begins in earnest, says Barbara Pintozzi, a Houzz Contributor.  Pintozzi says, watch your garden light up with bulbs, go wild for wildflowers and more.  Here is what to see and do in April. Read more:



Published in Landscaping
Wednesday, 01 April 2015 15:38

To-Dos: Your April Home Checklist

Take advantage of spring’s warmer weather to spruce up your outdoor spaces and refresh your entryway and common living areas  Laura Gaskill, a
Houzz Contributor, says  after the grueling winter some regions experienced this winter, many folks are itching to get outdoors and feel a little sun this spring. No matter where you live, answer spring’s siren call with these cleaning, freshening and gardening projects to keep your home in top shape.

Read more: http://www.houzz.com/ideabooks/45142094?utm_source=Houzz&utm_campaign=u1132&utm_medium=email&utm_content=gallery1



Glencoe Landscape clean up and maintenance company, Schmechtig Landscapes

Published in Landscaping

Midwesterners are tired of the winter – especially with the snow and freezing temperatures.  I know I cannot wait to enjoy the longer spring days and see our tulips and gardens come alive.  To ensure a long-term healthy and beautiful landscape, there are important spring clean-up maintenance steps crews perform in the spring. The most important step is the removal of winter debris, including fall leaves, twigs and winter cover. This includes the pruning of perennials and flowering shrubs. Additionally, perennials in your garden may need to be divided and replanted.


Lake Forest, Illinois Landscape Company Schmechtig Landscapes, Spring Landscape Garden Ideas
There are necessary applications of broad spectrum, granular spring fertilizers that will provide the plants a readily available source of nutrients throughout the growing season and aid with new plant growth. By seeking lawn care and garden plant bed care now, you will have a summer full of a healthy rich green lawn along with bountiful flowers. It's also time to plant beautiful annual displays and apply mulch or compost to all plant beds to provide an aesthetically pleasing, nutrient filled layer across the landscape.

Published in Landscaping
Tuesday, 24 March 2015 11:02

How to Hire a Landscape Contractor

Finding a landscaping contractor is not a difficult task, but assessing the qualifications and business practices of an individual or a company can require substantial effort on the part of the consumer on how to landscape. The State of Illinois and most of its municipalities do not define nor regulate the work of landscape contractors, which puts the burden of responsibility and risk on the consumer. Consumers in Illinois can look to the Illinois Landscape Contractors Association (ILCA) to find qualified, reputable and insured professionals providing all manner of landscape services. Through the ILCA, members obtain training and continuing education in both technical and business skills to enhance their business practices and the professionalism of their employees. The more than 800-member firms across the state have unparalleled access to research, publications and product information, as well as an open-line of communication to product manufacturers, educators and researchers. Schmechtig Landscapes has been a member of the ILCA for over 26 years.  Following you will learn how we stand apart and what we can do for you.
How We Stand Apart
1 - We are members of the Illinois Landscape
Contractors Association, American Society of Landscape Architects, Planet, and  Illinois Green Association
2 - We carry workers compensation insurance
and business liability insurance appropriate to our operation, and for the
entire duration of the project.
3 - We are appropriately licensed to do
the type of work – landscaping proposed in your community.
4 - We comply with all state and
federal labor laws to work for you in your town and/or city landscape projects.
5 - We employ state-licensed pesticide
applicators to apply chemicals like Scotts Lawn Care Service performs.
6 - We employ staff who are properly trained
in how to landscape and are qualified to operate the machinery used.
7 - We provide a written estimate that
details the cost of your landscape improvement, the materials being used, and
our contractual obligations for your garden landscape.
8 - We can provide a portfolio of landscape
photography of our work as well as references.
9 - We have a staff of Landscape Industry Certified professionals and licensed Landscape Architects
 Barrington, Illinois Landscape Company Schmechtig Landscapes


What can an ILCA Landscaper Member do for you?
 - Lawn Mowing and Lawn Care Service
- Weeding, Fertilizing, Core Aerating
- Pruning
- Mulching
- Spring Clean-Up & Fall Clean-Up
- Annuals & Containers
- Holiday Lighting
- Snow Removal
Landscape Designing/Landscape Architecture
 - Site Analysis
- Landscape Ideas
- Outdoor Kitchens & Outdoor Living
Room Areas
- Garden Landscape to include Vegetable
Gardens, Perennial Gardens, Annual Gardens
- Sport Courts
- Pools & Outdoor Spas
- Water Features, ponds, fountains
- Fireplaces & Fire Pits
 Northbrook, Illinois Landscape Company Schmechtig Landscapes - featured in CS Interiors Magazine

 - Plant Installation
- Landscape Edging
- Retaining Walls
- Excavating & Grading
- Carpentry & Decks
- Landscape Lighting Contractor
- Landscape Stone
- Brick & Concrete Masonry
- Landscape Rock
- Fences & Gates
- Green Roofs & Walls
- Patios, Driveways, Walks
- Irrigation System including drip
- Erosion/Flood Control
 Winnetka, Illinois Landscape Company Schmechtig Landscapes - ILCA Award Winning Property

 - Landscape Trees
- Tree Care/Arborist
- Soil Preparation
- Weed, Insect & Disease Control
just like Scotts Lawn Care Service performs
- Nursery Sales
- Ecological Plantings

Published in Landscaping

Learn how to choose systems and plants, and what it will cost to bring green up a garden wall or bring a bit of the outdoors inside your home. Jennifer Blaise Kramer, a houzz contributor, shares what is vertical gardening and how to get started. Read More:


Published in Landscaping

 Sharon Sorenson looked outside of her kitchen and saw what would look like a small gray bird with touches of yellow. To her it was a vision bordering on the miraculous, writes Mary Jo Bowling, a Houzz Editorial Staff Member. Sorenson has transformed her yard from 2 acres of grass dotted with a small stand of birch trees and some juniper bushes flanking the driveway into a landscape abundant with plants that produce nectar, seeds, nesting material and shelter.  Naturalist Alan Gehret, curator of collections at the John James Audubon State Park Museum & Nature Center in Henderson, Kentucky, says “Over the last 10 to 20 years, we have seen some bird species populations drop dramatically — some as much as 50 percent. This is largely due to loss of habitat and alteration in their environment,” he says. “When it comes to creating habitats, every little bit helps. When someone creates a place like the Sorenson’s, it provides safe havens for birds and makes a difference in their survival.”  Sorenson story is amazing, her photo's breathtaking and she would like us to consider new ways to garden.  Read and see more: http://www.houzz.com/ideabooks/45000067?utm_source=Houzz&utm_campaign=u1076&utm_medium=email&utm_content=gallery2


Landscape Design Wilmette, Illinois Schmechtig Landscapes

Published in Landscaping
Friday, 13 March 2015 10:05

17 Ways to Work a Deck

Layer it, bump it out, wrap it around a tree. Get inspiration with these ideas for adding a deck to your yard says Laura Gaskill, a Houzz Contributor.  Laura continues saying, a deck can beautifully bridge the gap between indoors and out, providing an inviting, comfortable space from which to enjoy your backyard. And far from being a basic rectangle at the back of the house, a deck can be customized to fit your house and lifestyle. Read on for 17 deck designs to get your creativity flowing: http://www.houzz.com/ideabooks/44894024?utm_source=Houzz&utm_campaign=u1076&utm_medium=email&utm_content=gallery8



Ipe Decking Idea around Pool, Winnetka, Illinois Landscape Company, Schmechtig Landscapes

Published in Landscaping
Tuesday, 10 March 2015 13:23

Slow Down: The (Lost) Art of Laziness

Do you go to bed with to-do lists flashing through your head? Give yourself at least one weekend day off and find places around the home to slow down and recharge. Try one of these ideas to give yourself a break from Liz Durnan, a Houzz contributor & freelance writer and editor. 

Read and see more of Liz's ideas:



Landscape Design Ideas with Fire Pit, Long Grove Illinois Landscape Company, Schmechtig Landscapes



Relaxing Features to include in your Landscape Design: Pool and Spa Design Idea, Northbrook, Illinois Landscape Company Schmechtig Landscapes



A Relaxing Landscape Design with Pond and Waterfall Feature, Barrington Hills, Illinois Landscape Company, Schmechtig Landscapes



Published in Landscaping
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