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When Is the Best Time to Start Your Backyard Remodel?

By Botanical Decorators
February 18, 2020

If you’ve been contemplating backyard renovation, you may be wondering when the best time to tackle the job might be. Should you address the landscaping project in the winter, so it has a full season to grow, or should you wait until the spring when the ground is warm and inviting for new plants? The answer is not cut and dried, and it largely depends on the type of work you are going to put into your yard. Here is a closer look at timing your landscaping and hardscaping project in the Washington, DC metro area.

Winter – Ideal for Hardscaping and Patio Installation in DC, MD & VA

If part of your plan is to invest in patio installation or hardscaping, then consider starting the project in the winter. This helps in several ways. First, the cost of materials is typically less in winter, because fewer people are shopping for landscaping and hardscaping supplies.

Second, the work causes less damage to your grass and plants. While the team at Botanical Decorators will be as careful as possible when installing your patio, some travel over your lawn and even planted areas is inevitable. The cold and frost help protect plants from damage, while in the spring the new growth can easily be damaged by even the most careful footsteps.

Finally, if you install your patio in the winter, it will be ready for you at the first sign of nice weather. You won’t have to spend the entire spring and half of the summer waiting for the patio to be finished.

Late Fall or Early Spring – Ideal for Decks and Water Features

If your outdoor landscaping idea includes a new deck, winter may not work. If the ground is too frozen, you aren’t going to be able to dig the supports for the deck. Similarly, a water feature that requires underground plumbing is not something you can easily install in frozen ground. However, late fall and early spring are great times for these jobs. This is the contractor’s less busy season, but the ground will be thawed enough to dig in.

Why Summer Is the Worst Time for Your Landscaping Project

When spring starts to warm the area and people are looking ahead to summer, landscaping ideas start to flow, but this is actually a bad time to tackle your backyard renovation. Not only will doing so disrupt your summer fun, but the hot, humid weather in our area makes for difficult work. It is far better to tackle your landscaping and hardscaping project in those seasons when you aren’t using the backyard, so you will have a full season of enjoyment.

Considering Backyard Renovation in Washington, DC, Maryland, or Virginia? Call Botanical Decorators!

If you have been contemplating landscaping or hardscaping in your Washington, DC, Maryland, or Virginia home, don’t wait. Talk about your landscaping ideas with the team at Botanical Decorators today. From patio installation to planted landscaping and hardscaping, we can help you bring your landscaping ideas to life.

Schedule a consultation with Botanical Decorators by calling 301-948-6625 or contacting us online for help today. You can also browse our portfolio to get ideas of what is possible in your Washington, DC, Northern Virginia, or Maryland home.

Landscaping Trends in 2020

By Botanical Decorators
January 2, 2020

The start of a new decade is the perfect time to refresh the look and feel of your home, both inside and out. When it comes to your landscaping, the right changes can help to boost curb appeal, increase functionality, enhance safety, and add value. Make the most of your investment with our on-trend design ideas for 2020, courtesy of the talented team at Botanical Decorators.

Call us today to learn more about the benefits of good landscape design or contact us online to arrange for a consultation for expert landscape build and design services for your Maryland, DC, or Virginia area home. 

Smart Technology

Smart technology is integrated into nearly every aspect of daily life, and in 2020 you can expect to see more of it in the great outdoors. One example of how smart technology can enhance your outdoor living experience is with the installation of a retractable screen. Motorized, programmable screens can be used to create an enclosed space with the touch of a button, keeping pests out while allowing clean, fresh air in. Screens can be installed on most doors and windows, with optional sun and wind sensors that automatically adjust as the environment changes for the ultimate in comfort and energy efficiency.

Indoor/Outdoor Living

2020 is all about having it all, with a trend toward bringing the outdoors in, and the indoors out. Soft, comfortable furnishings, throw pillows, outdoor rugs, and luxe tableware give a more intimate feeling to any deck or patio space, and many outdoor fabrics are UV, water, mildew, and fade resistant.

Stress-Free Lawn Maintenance

Spend less time working and more time with family and friends with a low-maintenance lawn. If you prefer the look and feel of real grass, there are options available to ensure your lawn remains manageable and healthy, using aeration in place of harsh chemicals. For a completely stress-free alternative, you may consider installing artificial turf, ground cover, mulch, or a stone patio for a clean, aesthetically pleasing look.

Sleek Lighting

LED lights can help to transform your landscape with a much longer life span than traditional bulbs and less energy usage. In 2020, outdoor lighting will be sleek, minimalist, and linear, casting a bright warm glow on pathways, pool decks, and landscape features, while remaining hidden beneath sidewalks and structures. For a touch of whimsy or glamour, an overhead fixture or outdoor chandelier can have a big impact on your outdoor living space.

Porcelain Tiles

With so many color and style options to choose from, there is a porcelain tile to suit every taste, style, and budget. This material is incredibly durable and versatile, and because it doesn’t absorb moisture like other types of flooring it is the ideal choice in climates where temperatures often dip below freezing as it allows for expansion. The product holds up well under use and won’t show signs of wear in high-traffic areas such as a patio or pool deck, yet has a rich texture that adds a touch of rustic elegance to any space.

Shades of Blue

The Pantone® color of the year for 2020 is classic blue, and you can expect to see various shades popping up in flower beds, window boxes, pots, and hanging baskets throughout the growing season. Grape hyacinth, lobelia, hydrangeas, salvia, and many more options abound and can add an unexpected pop of color around your yard.

Landscape Design-Build-Maintenance in MD, VA & DC

If you are considering upgrading your landscaping or outdoor living space, call the experts at Botanical Decorators at (301) 948-6625 or contact us online today to get started. 

Fire Pit Safety

By Botanical Decorators
November 21, 2019

There are few things more relaxing than a cozy fire on a chilly fall or winter night in the DC area. Between the warmth, the glow, and the pleasing aroma, a stoked fire pit can make an ideal gathering spot for friends and family, encouraging great conversation as long as the wood supply lasts. With any fire there are inherent risks, but with a bit of preparation and some basic precautions, you can fully enjoy the benefits while keeping your family and your home safe.

Tips for a Pleasant & Safe Night Around the Fire

A fire pit can be a great addition to any home in the Maryland, Virginia, or DC area, creating a natural focal point and outdoor gathering spot. Here are a few tips that can help you get the most out of your fire pit while prioritizing safety:

Choose the Location Wisely

Make sure your fire pit is at least 20 feet away from your home, other buildings, and any flammable materials. Choose an open, level location with plenty of space for seating. Avoid portable fire pits, as they can be unstable, fragile, and more likely to cause burns.

Keep the Surroundings Tidy

Use heat-resistant materials like brick, sand, or stone around the fire pit, and keep nearby grass and vegetation trimmed to minimize fire risk. Keep the area clean of lawn clippings, fallen leaves, and other loose debris.

Choose the Appropriate Seating

Avoid chairs and benches that use flammable materials and keep them a safe distance from the fire. Consider adding built-in, permanent seating for extra safety.

Reduce Falling Risks

Remove any trip hazards near the fire pit and consider adding a wall or fence to keep children and pets at a safe distance.

Add a Screen

To keep sparks to a minimum during a fire, consider adding a screen to your fire pit. Do not place the fire pit under eaves, gazebos, trees, or other structures to keep the fire risk at a minimum from floating sparks or embers.

Select Quality Wood

Consider choosing hard woods like oak or maple for longer burn times, and make sure it has been seasoned for at least six months. Avoid green woods or soft woods like pine, as they will pop and spark more often as they burn. Never burn construction materials like plywood, laminated wood, composites, painted wood, or pressure-treated lumber, as they contain chemicals that can be toxic.

Check the Weather

Avoid starting a fire during windy or extremely dry weather, and make sure that it will not be too cold, wet, or otherwise unpleasant.

Keep a Hose Nearby

Keep a garden hose and fire extinguisher within reach in case the fire begins to spread. Douse the fire completely at the end of the night, and check on it afterward to avoid accidental fires.

Check Local Regulations

Before you build a fire pit and begin using it, make sure you read, understand, and follow all local laws and regulations. They may dictate where the fire pit can be placed, when it can be used, and what safety precautions are required. Be sure to consult your insurance provider, as well.

Fire Pits & Outdoor Fireplaces in MD, VA & DC

Add the ambiance and warmth of a natural fire to your patio with a custom outdoor fireplace from Botanical Decorators. Our talented team can design and build a fire pit tailored to your unique style, and we serve homeowners throughout Northern Virginia, Maryland, and the Washington, DC area.

Call 301-948-6625 or contact us online to schedule a consultation today!

Fall & Winter Exterior Home Improvement Projects to Consider

By Botanical Decorators
October 3, 2019

Outdoor fireplace in Washington, DC area

While many homeowners in the Washington, DC, Maryland, and Virginia areas will tackle their outdoor home improvement projects in the spring and summer, the cooler months of fall and winter are excellent times to complete certain outdoor projects.

With less demand on the construction professionals and on your outdoor spaces, fall and winter give you the chance to add curb appeal to your home and prepare for the outdoor living demands of spring and summer.

Are you considering some fall or winter projects? Here are some that can work well for this season.

Painting Projects

If your home’s siding or any of your outdoor living structures are in need of a fresh coat of paint, late fall or early winter works well. Consider power-washing on a mild weekend, as this will remove flaking paint and other dirt and debris. Then, have the pros come in and add a fresh coat of paint. The temperatures this time of year are still plenty warm to allow the paint to dry and cure, and lower humidity will actually help the process along.

Improve Walking Paths

The wet and potentially snowy weather of winter can create problems if you have any loose paving stones or cracks in your sidewalks, which can expand. Use the early fall and winter months to have these repaired, or to design a new walkway altogether. If you’re considering a pathway remodel in the future, tackle this before the winter hits in full force, and you will have a safe walking path to use even if the weather turns frigid.

Clean, Repair & Store Outdoor Furniture

Outdoor furniture takes a beating throughout the summer. If it needs a little TLC, now is the time to do it. This will help it weather the winter well, so it’s ready for use when spring temperatures hit. If you have any built-in furniture, consider having it inspected and repaired professionally to ensure no problems have popped up over the course of the summer.

Add an Outdoor Fireplace

Who says you can’t enjoy your outdoor living space in the winter? If cold temperatures are the problem, consider adding an outdoor fireplace or fire pit. You can gather around it with your hot chocolate even in the middle of winter and continue enjoying your outdoor living space.

Need Assistance for Your Fall & Winter Projects?

If you are considering some of these fall or winter outdoor remodeling or maintenance projects, give the team at Botanical Decorators a call. Put our experience to work for you this season, and you will be ready for a fun spring and summer spent enjoying your outdoor living spaces.

Call 301-948-6625 or contact us online to schedule a consultation today.

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