3 Landscaping Trends We’re Thankful For

November 20, 2012

First rain in 30 daysThanksgiving is a wonderful time to give thanks for what inspires and sustains us. Here at Landscape East & West, we’re feeling grateful for the increasing popularity of sustainable landscape maintenance and design.

As longtime providers of Portland and Hillsboro landscaping, we have seen firsthand what a huge difference eco-conscious landscaping makes. Taking the “green” route limits our use of precious resources like water. And best of all, earth-friendly landscaping can be just as attractive (or more so) as traditional approaches. Here are three landscaping trends we’re especially thankful for:

1. Outdoor LED Lighting

LED lights are quickly making Edison’s incandescent bulb a thing of the past. LED bulbs are 80 percent more efficient than traditional bulbs. This means they last far longer – as long as 30 years, in the case of landscape lighting. Our landscape design clients are delighted with the fact that outdoor LED lighting is extremely versatile; available in a wide swath of colors; and may easily be focused on their favorite garden or architecture features.

This new lighting technology allows us and other landscape maintenance and design firms to complement your landscaping with beautiful, energy-efficient lighting. A few tips for choosing the best LED lights for your yard: If you live in a snowy climate, choose a snow-shedding light design. (LEDs are cool-running; they do not produce enough heat to melt snow.) Those who live in rainy climates would do well to simply select 12-volt LED lights instead.

2. Rain Gardens 

We’re thankful that more landscaping enthusiasts are looking for ways to slow the rush of rainwater into nearby rivers. Why is this important? Because when water washes over city streets and other impervious surfaces, it picks up toxic pollutants that are deadly for downstream ecosystems.

Rain gardens help by holding lots of water, which can then drain slowly down through the soil – a natural filtration process. In addition to improving water quality in this way, rain gardens also create habitats for birds and butterflies. Finally, because rain gardens can absorb so much liquid, they are a form of protection against flooding. In our 30-plus years providing Tigard and Hillsboro landscaping services, we’ve also seen how rain gardens provide hours of garden enjoyment while boosting curb appeal.

3. Smart Irrigation Systems

We’re more than pleased that irrigation technology has developed to the point at which wasteful watering (such as when it’s already raining) is no longer a given. Today’s “smart” irrigation systems may be equipped with sensors that detect when watering is necessary – and when it’s just a waste. Here at Landscape East & West, we’re happy to install the “smartest” irrigation systems around, so you won’t see your plants being watered in the middle of a deluge.

A beautiful garden is a constant source of enjoyment. Our clients are grateful for the gorgeous landscapes we create and maintain for them. And they, like us, are thankful for the eco-friendly landscaping techniques listed above.

[Photo by: Dave Sizer, via CC License]