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Happy New Year!

January 27th, 2015

Happy New Year!

I am always amazed when another new year rolls by. It seems like we just start a year and before you know it, it’s over and you’re celebrating New Year’s Day again! Whew, those 365 days on January 1 seem like a lot but they sure whiz by quickly! I get mixed feelings every New Year’s Day. I love the celebration and excitement but it’s usually tinged with a little sadness about last year’s resolutions that somehow fell by the wayside. Why is it difficult to keep those resolutions? Instead of losing weight, I gain it; my exercise equipment collects dust by February; another year passes and I haven’t learned more than “Thank you” and “How are you?” in a new language.

Sometimes we just need help in achieving our resolutions. If you have planned to do home improvements but just can’t find the time throughout the year, let us help. We can’t lose the weight or learn Spanish for you, but we can help you beautify your biggest asset: your home, and specifically, your yard. Transform your back or front yard from yuck! to yowza!


Shady Grove Project in Hoschton, GA – BEFORE
Many people incorrectly think winter is the worst time to work in the yard but it is one of the best times to plan and plant here in the South. In fact, January and February are the perfect times to schedule your appointment with our designers to get your personal corner of Eden ready for the summer. You beat the busy spring season while giving your landscape time to flourish in the rains we typically have in late winter. Shady Grove offers beautiful 3D and CAD designs that fit all types of dreams and budgets for your landscape. Our specialty is the 3D design which gives you a real-time perspective on how your completed landscape will look before we break the first shovelful of dirt.


Shady Grove Project in Hoschton, GA – 3D DESIGN
A little planning in January and February allows you to enjoy and bask in your new yard, while your neighbors are procrastinating and unfulfilling another resolution.


Shady Grove Project in Hoschton, GA – AFTER
Now where did I put that cookie?

A Stunning Outdoor Space With a Pergola

July 24th, 2014

When it comes to tastefully decorated and designed outdoor spaces, pergolas can have a transformative effect. These open structures are often seen in gardens where they serve as an easy-to-implement custom landscaping option. Pergolas are appropriate for use in both back and front yards, and small pergolas can also be used over a garage or French doors.

What Do You Look for in a Pergola?


The vast majority of pergolas are made of wood, are constructed in a square formation, and have no walls. Plants and vines are often grown on pergolas to enhance their natural qualities. The specific size, color and design can often be customized by homeowners. How you decide on a pergola will likely depend on the size of your yard, existing landscaping layout, and wood color preferences.

Construction quality and overall value are factors that you should also take into account. A well-built pergola will withstand rain and snowstorms, and its finish will stand up against both rain and the sun. Custom-built pergolas usually provide better value when compared to commercially manufactured models.

Choosing the Perfect Site for a Pergola on Your Property

Ideally, you will have already chosen one or two ideal spots to build your pergola. Covered pergolas provide shade and effectively define a separate outdoor space. Look for a pergola that complements your yard while reflecting your personal style. Its location and purpose will have a major impact on how you choose to decorate. Pergolas used mainly during social and recreational events are usually paired with outdoor seating and furnishings. By contrast, pergolas used within gardens are more prone to be stained and sealed rather than painted. Additionally, furniture is not often placed underneath garden pergolas.

After taking precise land measurements, looking up homeowners association by-laws, and double-checking local construction permit rules for compliance, your pergola can finally be erected. Once it has been secured, you can physically see how your proposed design ideas will work in real life. Depending on the type of pergola you have chosen, the amount of time and effort put into designing the actual space will vary.


Other Pergola Ideas

Although pergolas are generally constructed for a specific purpose, they can also be reused elsewhere in your landscape design. A pergola that has formerly been used in a garden can be turned into a decorative archway over a winding stone path. When adorned with sheer fabric and blooming flowers, a pergola can be used as a backdrop for a summer wedding. They can also be left completely unadorned, but their impact on an outdoor space will not diminish. When used in landscaping, a pergola is a great way to enhance your home’s style and add to its value.

Visit Shady Grove Landscaping for more details and designs!

Summer Lawn Care in Georgia!

June 16th, 2014

As soon as things begin to warm up in spring, it doesn’t take long for things to really heat up in Lawrenceville, Georgia and the surrounding areas! Summer time in the South is long, hot and dry and this can take a toll on your landscaping.

With some extra care and maintenance, it’s still possible to keep your lawn looking green and beautiful year-round. Here are a few tips to help your lawn withstand the heat this summer.

Bermuda and Zoysia are good warm weather turfs and do great in Georgia. Properly mowing these turfs is a primary concern during the long summer months. Warm season turf should be mowed at a 1-to-2-inch mowing height. Keep in mind that mower blades should be sharpened frequently to achieve a quality cut.

Weed Control
The use of post-emergent herbicides to kill those unwanted weeds, such as nutsedge, dallisgrass and crabgrass, will keep your lawn looking beautiful all summer long. Apply these weed control products at the beginning and end of each summer to delay their return.

Aeration of Bermuda
Like in the spring, aeration should be performed on Bermuda lawns again in the summer. Aeration reduces soil compaction commonly caused by foot traffic and mowing, improves the soil’s ability to accept nutrients provided by fertilizer and improves the decomposition of grass clippings and thatch.

Fertilization and Mulching
It’s important to apply a slow-release fertilizer on Bermuda and Zoysia during the summer growing season. The nutrients in the fertilizer will enhance turf color and help it withstand the high temperatures. Freshen up your plant beds by adding pine straw for a more finished look.

If you need help with your landscaping, Contact Shady Grove today!

Landscaping Lawrenceville!

April 9th, 2014

Shady Grove Landscape Company has specialized in prestigious, custom-designed landscapes in the Greater Gwinnett, Lawrenceville, and Atlanta areas since 1997.

Competitive pricing, on-staff horticulturists, and extensive knowledge and experience in landscape design and installation make Shady Grove one of the most sought-after landscape firms in Atlanta.


Any home renovation project has the potential to be a dream or a disaster. Hundreds of thousands of gray hairs are born each year during haywire construction projects. Read our overwhelmingly positive plethora of anonymous online reviews and join your friends and neighbors in their fanatic praise of the unique style of landscape construction of Shady Grove Landscape Company. Despite 15+ years of success, Shady Grove has chosen to remain a small, boutique landscape firm that is operated and obsessed-over by its owners. Visions of creativity, attention to detail, value of your time, quality craftsmanship, and love of outdoor life provide us the opportunity to create the landscape of your dreams that will also keep your gorgeous head of hair ‘naturally blonde’.

The Landscape of Your Life

January 23rd, 2012

True love. Self respect. A healthier body. Redder berries. Brighter vibrant-green leaves. While you are inside, busily resolving to be a better person, your plants are also quietly reflecting, scheming and setting their goals for 2012. Maybe this will be the year the Hellebores finally take over the Monkey Grass in the shady garden war. Perhaps old man Vitex will outshine the young, brawny Crape Myrtle in the summer’s gaudiest battle. Wonder if the hydrangeas will bloom this summer as well as the camellias have this winter. Who will triumph – rain or rock?

Winter time is a lovely time of dormancy and self-reflection for all living creatures. These same principles apply to your outside dwellings as well. Our mild, southern, January afternoons are the perfect opportunity to take stock of your landscape. Do your overgrown shrubs to reshaped back into new life? Now is the perfect time for hard pruning. Does your garden have good bones? Now is the perfect time to plant a tree. Does your landscape have interesting and flowing traffic patterns? Now is the perfect time for a new walkway, wall or patio.

Is your new year’s resolution to have a more functional and exceptionally beautiful yard? Need help with accomplishing your vision? Visit Shady Grove Landscape Company’s web site to schedule your design appointment right away. Last year, Shady Grove was booked 12 weeks out in spring. Happy New Year!

Asian Inspired Renovation



Vision Accomplished

September 22nd, 2011



This year, Shady Grove Landscape Company took on the arduous task of coming up with a new logo and branding for our company.  As much as we loved our old one, the colors just screamed 1997 and we all agreed that the tree was too generic and bonsai looking to be evocative of a shady grove.

Along with a new logo, the tagline, ‘Vision accomplished’ was developed as Shady Grove’s new marketing tool. When we sat down to work on the renovation of the trademarks of our company, part of the creative process was to give a name to what we do.  What an assignment!  Think about your job.  Can you sum up the complexity of what you do every day in a handful of words?  After months of work and countless false starts, we believe that this two-word phrase really sums up our goal:  Vision Accomplished – To have the vision and then to make it happen.

The creative process really is just that.  A PROCESS.  Three talented artists contributed their time and efforts towards the goal of a new branding for Shady Grove.  Just for fun, here are a few of the ones on the cutting floor.  We are still considering putting the leaf flames on the side of the trucks!

** Please note that all of the images are property of the artist and Shady Grove Landscape Company.  May not be reproduced without express written permission by both.

Consider This

September 22nd, 2011

The Zen art of walking in a circle (and then back out again) promotes creativity, peaceful feeling and allows for a simple meditation.   The photo above depicts a classic Labyrinth (designed & installed by Shady Grove spring 2011) specifically constructed for that reason.

NOT!  Actually, this neat-looking idea was born from a frustrating

and common problem that we hear from you all everyday:

‘Grass will not grow in my backyard!’

Turfgrass v. Shade

  1. What kinds of turfgrass thrive in the Atlanta shade?  None.
  2. What kinds of grass will tolerate the Atlanta shade?  If you get at least 4 hours of direct sunlight each day, you can try ‘Emerald’ Zoysia, Fescue, or the new Tift-Grand Bermuda (trademark acknowledged).
  3. How do you know when you cannot grow grass? Look for moss.  In my experience, when you see moss thriving, it is in a place where grass does not want to grow.
  4. What if you amend your soil?  With the correct amount of fertilizer, water and sun, Bermuda and Zoysia grass will grow on a sidewalk.  Your crummy clay soil is probably not the problem.  If you are currently perplexed about why your warm-season turfgrass is struggling in your tree-lined backyard, your answer is shade.

Drainage Walkway

5. If you get less than 4 hours of sun, consider a shade garden with Ferns, Hostas, Ajuga, Mondo Grass and Hellebores, Heuchera and Liriope (see photo above).   You could also consider a labyrinth. 

They look really neat!

Wood Work It

February 12th, 2011

Wood Work It - Pergola

Pergola, deck, swing, front porch, steps, or bench. Choose your wood and WORK IT! Danny Cook and our resident wood-workers make magic from screws and boards.

Deck and Steps

Pine, cedar, ipe, or teak. Bask in the sun or protect yourself from it. Enjoy the outdoors in a new room or create a destination in your garden. Take a look at our wood working page for more information.

Wood Work Patio

How-To Winterize Your Irrigation System

February 10th, 2011

how-to winterize your irrigation system
Back in December, and just like every year, I started to receive calls from people asking how to winterize their irrigation systems. It is a very important step in protecting an irrigation system from broken pipes and costly repairs. Unlike most liquids water expands by 10% when it freezes. And since most irrigation systems are installed with PVC, when the battle happens between the PVC and the freezing water – the ice always wins. The chances of this possible damage can be avoided with some very simple steps. It is very important that you complete this checklist when the temperature is still above freezing.

Here we go!
  1. Turn off the supply to the irrigation system. Do not confuse the irrigation supply with the supply to your house. If you are not sure which one this is, turn on a spigot on the front of your house. Then turn the supply valve to the off position.  This may vary depending on what type of valve is in your system. If you have a gate valve turn the handle clock wise until you can’t turn it anymore. If have a ball valve the handle should be perpendicular to the line when closed. The water should still be running out of the spigot on the front of your house when you close this valve. This step will relieve the pressure in the system.
  2. Now, go to your electrical irrigation controller. This step will vary depending on the brand of controller you have. Turn every zone on manually for a small amount of time.  One minute should do it. Remember, no water will come out of the heads because you already turned the water off. This step further ensures that there is no pressure in the system. If your system does not have a controller you will need to complete this step manually at each valve. I hope you know where they all are located!
  3. While you are still at your controller unplug it from the wall.  You can leave it plugged in and save your programming but why waste electricity. If you do decide to leave it plugged in, remember to turn the dial to “OFF”.  You do not want the systems to come on with no water running through the valves. Possible damage could result. You will need to reprogram your controller in the spring if you disconnect the power in this step.
  4. If you have a drain on your system now is the time to open it.
  5. Your system is in great shape at this point but you could go
    further for more security if you choose. If so, open each valve
    box and fill the hole with newspaper or insulation. These will
    need to be removed in the spring. You can also remove each irrigation head and drain the water. This final step is not really necessary in the South.

You Did It!

Your money and your irrigation system should be in great shape for the winter.  Now go inside and enjoy the hot fire and a cup of hot chocolate!

Update Your Grass

February 8th, 2011

Upgrade Your Grass
Have you been considering replacing your high maintenance and finicky fescue with luscious Zeon Zoysia? Or replacing your sunny front yard full of well-established and happy weeds with golf-course-worthy Tift 419 Bermuda?

In our many years experience, the ideal time to install sod is in April and May.  Shady Grove’s technique is different from the rest.  First, we visit your property twice in a 10 day period to spray non-selective herbicide.  Next, we have a top-tilling machine that removes existing roots and smooths the grade.  Then we spread a mix of sand and composted topsoil to improve drainage and add nutrients.  After installing the best quality sod available, we power roll the newly installed grass to flatten seams and ensure proper contact with soil.  Finally, we offer irrigation, weed/feed and landscape maintenance packages that will care for your new turf.  Who said grass is a hassle?

Because the ideal time for turf installation is only an 8 week period, the calendar fills up fast.  If you’re considering a turf upgrade this year and your in Gwinnett County, GA, visit our web site for more information.

Blog by JRedd Designs