01.22.20

Steps built in 2005

Posted in Uncategorized at 6:50 AM by Administrator

I built these steps in 2005 for a family in North Andover. They wanted steps which would allow them to go straight to the driveway or the backyard or towards the front gardens thus I designed and built the half circle bottom step. As you can see from the following pictures, the door is set back from the corner of the house so I included two ‘wings’ with the top step. By including the wings, I was able to wrap the step around the corner of the house and provide a wider half circle bottom step.

These steps were built with segmental wall stones and pavers.

Built segmental stone steps for a North Andover family in 2005
Stone steps built in North Andover in 2005

For information about how Artistic Landscapes can help you with the design or installation of a set of steps, please call us at 978.948.2900 or stop by our Offices on Route One (111 Newburyport Turnpike) in Rowley.

01.20.20

Weekend – Bull Riding

Posted in Uncategorized at 1:02 PM by Administrator

As many of you know, I try to think outside of the box and create landscapes that are unique and specific for each of our clients. This idea of not staying with things that I already know, led us to spend yesterday afternoon at the SNHU center in Manchester, NH watching professional bull riding. If you have never seen professional bull riding then I recommend going because it was great. The competition lasted just over two hours and it was terrific. The time went very quick and watching these athletes try to ride a bucking bull was fun. It was good entertainment for an afternoon after I spent the night plowing.

If you are interested in changing over your landscape in 2020 this is the time of the year for us to start designing and planning your new landscape. Please feel free to stop by our office on Route One (111 Newburyport Turnpike) in Rowley or call us at 978.948.2900 to schedule an appointment.

12.18.19

Natural stone wall in West Newbury

Posted in Masonry, Pavers, Uncategorized at 6:37 AM by Administrator

This West Newbury family wanted a stone wall to separate their driveway from the front yard. They had a paver walkway installed and saw the potential to have a beautiful planting bed between the walkway, driveway and house. The issue was that there was ledge in this area and the grade of the land sloped significantly down towards the driveway.

We jackhammered the ledge down to the point where we could build off of the ledge then built a natural stone wall. We included very large stones that were blended together with more traditional size stones as we believed this look provided the homeowners with the look that they were seeking.

Existing ledge and grade before the stone wall
Natural stone wall with granite coping in West Newbury, MA
Natural stone wall with granite coping in West Newbury
Straight on view of natural stone wall with granite coping in West Newbury
Straight on view of natural stone wall that includes very large stones and traditional stones for a West Newbury, MA family

Tony is a licensed mason in Massachusetts. For information about how Artistic Landscapes can help you with your stone wall needs or any other type of stonework, please stop by our Office on Route One, 111 Newburyport Turnpike, in Rowley or call us at 978.948.2900 to setup an appointment.

12.16.19

Compacting the base for a paver walkway

Posted in Masonry, Pavers, Uncategorized at 6:53 AM by Administrator

After you have dug out for your walkway, we recommend making sure that the existing soil that you leave behind is at a constant grade as you do not want this material to be irregular (some small mounds or low points are bad). Start by spreading 3/4″ crushed stone as the base for your paver walkway. You will need to rake the 3/4″ crushed stone so that it is even before compacting. Compacting is done by using a machine that mechanically condenses the crushed stone into a solid foundation for your future walkway. We use a CR-6 compactor that has a computer on it as the computer displays when an area is fully compacted or needs additional compaction. Once we are fully compacted then we re-check our heights. If the crushed stone is at the right height then we set up the screed bars before spreading 3/8″ crushed stone. We will screed the 3/8″ crushed stone and then we lay the pavers.

Compacted 3/4″ crushed stone base for paver walkway

The most important part of building a walkway is making sure that you have the right base material and that it is fully compacted. For information about how Artistic Landscapes can help you with your walkway or patio, please call us at 978.948.2900 to setup an appointment or stop by our Office on Route One, 111 Newburyport Turnpike, in Rowley.

12.11.19

Loose stone wall along property line

Posted in Masonry, Uncategorized at 6:44 AM by Administrator

This Groveland family had the property line marked with stones but was not a proper wall. Artistic Landscapes was hired to build a natural stone wall that is dry laid (no cement or mortar) along the front property line. The homeowners gathered stones from their property so that we had more stones to work with. We built the two sided natural stone wall with stones that were already on the property.

The existing stones lining the front property line
Completed farmers wall along the front property line for a Groveland family
This is what the top of the farmers wall looks like

For information about how Artistic Landscapes can help you improve the look of your property, please call 978.948.2900 to setup an appointment or stop by our offices on Route One (111 Newburyport Turnpike) in Rowley, MA.

12.09.19

How to prep for a paver walkway?

Posted in Masonry, Pavers, Uncategorized at 6:37 AM by Administrator

We were asked what needs to be done to prep for a paver walkway, thus we thought we would discuss this here today. The first thing that we do is start digging out the existing loam or materials as we will need to install a compacted stone base. We figure out how deep to dig based on the type of soil that exists on the side and if the walkway is going to be used for just people to walk on or if there will be vehicles driving on it. If vehicles are going to drive on it, then that is a different conversation as this conversation assumes that it is just for people to walk on. We will normally dig 8″ – 10″ deep and about a foot wider than the walkway. It is important to dig deep enough and wide enough to allow for the stone base to have enough holding capacity to hold the pavers while allowing for water to drain into the native soil. We use a laser level to ensure that we will have a consistent grade of the base materials as we do not some areas of the walkway to have 10″ of crushed stone while other areas have only 6″. We recommend reading the ICPI website for more information.

Excavated base beneath a paver patio in Georgetown, MA

If you would like to see how Artistic Landscapes can help you with your walkway and patio needs, please call us at 978.948.2900 or stop by our offices on Route One (111 Newburyport Turnpike) in Rowley, MA.

12.06.19

Winter Flower Arrangement

Posted in Pruning, Uncategorized, Winter Landscape at 6:31 AM by Administrator

We enjoy being artistic and making things that do not cost money. We made this winter flower arrangement by picking up some fallen limbs of a white birch tree (they were resting on the ground in these pieces), kept some of the flowers from some perennials that we pruned to the ground as we were preparing a garden bed for winter and included some greens from a foundation shrub that we pruned and limbs from a christmas tree that were pruned off so the christmas tree would sit in the stand.

By combining all of these materials, we were able to make this winter flower arrangement without buying any materials.

Winter flower arrangement in Georgetown, MA.

For information about how Artistic Landscapes can help you with your pruning or decorating needs, please contact us at 978.948.2900.

12.03.19

Winter Wonderland

Posted in Uncategorized, Winter Landscape at 10:43 PM by Administrator

The snowfall from yesterday and today created some beautiful landscapes. I was appreciating the beauty during the many hours of plowing that we did. Following is a picture of a deer watching me plow in Ipswich followed by an example of the roads in Topsfield.

I was being supervised while plowing in Ipswich by a couple of deer (the other deer is just to the right of this picture).
Snow covered trees in Topsfield.

For information about having Artistic Landscapes LLC help you with your snow plowing needs, please call us at 978.948.2900 or stop by our offices on Route One, 111 Newburyport Turnpike, in Rowley, MA.

11.20.19

Leaf Clean-ups

Posted in Plants, Pruning, Uncategorized, Winter Landscape at 7:07 PM by Administrator

We are in the midst of our Fall clean-ups and picking up leaves for our clients prior to Thanksgiving. Despite the very cold weather and constant rain today, we were able to be successful in this leaf cleanup for a Georgetown family. I thank Will, Jesse & Kevin for all of their hard work today in weather that did not make any of us happy to be working outdoors but we got the projects done!

I believe this property had more wet Oak leaves than we wanted, but we were able to remove all of them!

Too many leaves on the grass for a Georgetown family

This looks much better as we removed all of the wet leaves.

Fall cleanup in Georgetown
Leaf clean-up finished in Georgetown

For information about having Artistic Landscapes help you with your leaf removal or to vacuum up leaves that you have already piled near the driveway or road, please call us at 978.948.2900.

11.11.19

Edge restraints along a walkway

Posted in Uncategorized at 6:29 AM by Administrator

We design and build our walkways with manufactured concrete pavers that are secured on top of compacted crush stone by plastic edge restraints. We secure the edge restraints into the base material with 10″ steel spikes as we have found this method to provide a stable long-lasting edge. As you can see from the following picture, the edge restraints are set below the top of the paver as we do not want to see the edge restraints. Once the edge restraints are secured then we compacted the pavers and backfill the area outside of the walkway with freshly screened loam. The height of loam or mulch is the same as the paver therefore you do not see the edge restraints.

Edge restraints with 10" spikes keep the pavers from moving
Edge restraints along a front walkway

For more information about how Artistic Landscapes can help you with your walkway or patio, please call Tony at 978.948.2900 or visit us at our Offices on Route One (111 Newburyport Turnpike) in Rowley, MA.

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