Category Archives: Landscaping

The Native Garden Guide for Northeast Florida

The Native Garden Guide for Northeast Florida

Embracing native plants in Northeast Florida is more than just a landscaping strategy; it’s an investment in the local ecosystem. A native garden provides a natural sanctuary for wildlife, conserves resources, and creates a seamless integration with the regional landscape. This guide will help you understand the practical benefits and beauty of native plant gardening in Jacksonville and beyond.

The Native Philosophy

Why commit to native plants? The reasons are as abundant as the sands on a Floridian shore. Native species like the Saw Palmetto and Walter’s Viburnum have thrived here for millennia, creating a symbiotic masterpiece with local wildlife. They conserve water—precious in every droplet—and stand resilient against pests and diseases, all while offering a buffet for the senses and the local ecosystem.

butterfly on milkweed
Pink Cone Flowers

The Benefits of Native Plants

 Native plants offer several advantages for gardens in Northeast Florida:

  • Low Maintenance: They are adapted to the local environment, requiring less watering and care.
  • Pest Resilient: These plants have natural resistance to local pests, reducing the need for chemicals.
  • Ecosystem Support: They provide habitats and food sources for local wildlife, fostering biodiversity.
Bee on a flower.

Pollinator’s Paradise

A native garden in Northeast Florida is a sanctuary for pollinators. The Coral Honeysuckle and Butterfly Milkweed are not just plants; they’re lifelines for hummingbirds and monarchs, vital threads in the ecological tapestry. And let’s not overlook the Beautyberry, with its jewel-like fruits, or the Maypop Passion Vine, a climactic display of blossoms and a haven for fauna.

Planting and Maintenance Tips

 To ensure your native garden thrives, follow these tips:

  • Research: Learn the specific needs of each plant, such as sunlight and soil type.
  • Planning: Design your landscape to accommodate the growth patterns and needs of your selected plants.
  • Local Nurseries: Purchase plants from local nurseries to ensure they’re acclimated to the regional climate.
  • Professional Consultation: For tailored advice, consult with landscaping professionals who specialize in native plants.
    Firebush:zebra wing butterfly

    Northeast Florida’s Native Plant Compendium

    Whether you’re a seasoned horticulturist or a beginner with a budding green thumb, this list of native plants will serve as your guide to cultivating a garden that resonates with the natural ecosystem of Northeast Florida:

    Sabal Palm

    Sabal Palm

    (Sabal palmetto)

    Appearance: Fan-shaped leaves, iconic silhouette

    Benefits: State tree, resilient, provides wildlife habitat

    Live Oak

    Live Oak

    (Quercus virginiana)

    Appearance: Majestic, broad canopy

    Benefits: Wildlife habitat, iconic Southern presence

    Southern Magnolia

    Southern Magnolia

    (Magnolia grandiflora)

    Appearance: Large, fragrant white flowers

    Benefits: Evergreen beauty, aesthetic appeal

    Florida Anise

    Florida Anise

    (Illicium floridanum)

    Appearance: Star-shaped red or pink flowers, spicy scent

    Benefits: Shade-loving, deer-resistant

    Walter’s Viburnum

    Walter’s Viburnum

    (Viburnum obovatum)

    Appearance: White spring flowers, red fall foliage

    Benefits: Year-round interest, versatile growth patterns

    Firebush

    Firebush

     (Hamelia patens)

    Appearance: Red-orange tubular flowers

    Benefits: Sun-loving, pollinator-friendly

    Muhly Grass

    Muhly Grass

    (Muhlenbergia capillaris)

    Appearance: Pink to lavender plumes

    Benefits: Drought-tolerant, ornamental grass

    Coontie

    Coontie

    (Zamia integrifolia)

    Appearance: Fern-like with leathery leaves

    Benefits: Drought-tolerant, historical significance

    Beautyberry

    Beautyberry

    (Callicarpa americana)

    Appearance: Vibrant purple berries

    Benefits: Wildlife food source, striking fall and winter color

    Oakleaf Hydrangea

    Oakleaf Hydrangea

    (Hydrangea quercifolia)

    Appearance: White flower clusters, oak-shaped leaves

    Benefits: Attracts pollinators, bold fall coloration

    Fakahatchee Grass

    Fakahatchee Grass

    (Tripsacum dactyloides)

    Appearance: Tall, wispy grass plumes

    Benefits: Texture to landscapes, wildlife-friendly

    Sea Grape

    Sea Grape

    (Coccoloba uvifera)

    Appearance: Broad, round leaves; purple fruits

    Benefits: Salt-tolerant, windbreak, wildlife attractor

    Carolina Jessamine

    Carolina Jessamine

    (Gelsemium sempervirens)

    Appearance: Yellow trumpet flowers

    Benefits: Drought-tolerant, pollinator attractor

    Coral Honeysuckle

    Coral Honeysuckle

    (Lonicera sempervirens)

    Appearance: Tubular red or yellow flowers

    Benefits: Hummingbird and butterfly attractor

     

    Maypop Passion Vine

    Maypop Passion Vine

    (Passiflora incarnata)

    Appearance: Intricate purple and white flowers

    Benefits: Host plant for butterflies, edible fruit

    Railroad Vine

    Railroad Vine

    (Ipomoea pes-caprae)

    Appearance: Bright purple flowers, sprawling vines

    Benefits: Dune stabilization, sandy soil adaptability

    Sunshine Mimosa

    Sunshine Mimosa

     (Mimosa strigillosa)

    Appearance: Fern-like with leathery leaves

    Benefits: Drought-tolerant, historical significance

    Butterfly Milkweed

    Butterfly Milkweed

    (Asclepias tuberosa)

    Appearance: Vibrant orange to yellow flowers

    Benefits: Monarch butterfly food source and habitat

    Blue Eyed Grass

    Blue Eyed Grass

    (Sisyrinchium angustifolium)

    Appearance: Star-shaped blue flowers

    Benefits: Low-maintenance, adds texture

    Puple Coneflower

    Puple Coneflower

    (Echinacea purpurea)

    Appearance: Pink-purple petals with a central cone

    Benefits: Immune-boosting properties, attracts pollinators

     

    Black-eyed Susans

    Black-eyed Susans

    (Rudbeckia hirta)

    Appearance: Bright yellow petals with a dark brown center

    Benefits: Drought-resistant, supports pollinators

    Blazing Star

    Blazing Star

    (Liatris spicata)

    Appearance: Tall spikes of purple flowers

    Benefits: Butterfly attractor, aesthetic appeal

    Tickseed

    Tickseed

    (Coreopsis spp.)

    Appearance: Bright yellow blossoms

    Benefits: State wildflower, butterfly attractor

    Blue Porterweed

    Blue Porterweed

    (Stachytarpheta jamaicensis)

    Appearance: Spiky blooms of deep blue flowers

    Benefits: Attracts butterflies, heat-tolerant

    This collection of plants is just the beginning. Each species selected for your garden contributes to the tapestry of a thriving, sustainable ecosystem that celebrates the essence of Northeast Florida.

    By choosing to grow native, you’re not just enhancing your garden—you’re contributing to the preservation and enrichment of Northeast Florida’s natural heritage. A native garden is a living, evolving space that supports local ecosystems and reflects the unique character of the region. Start your native gardening journey and become a part of the collective effort to nurture the land we call home.

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    Services

    • Landscape Design & Installation
    • Paver Patios, Paver Walkways, Paver Driveways
    • Firepits, Retaining Walls , Seat Walls,
    • Landscape Lighting, Drainage design & Installation,
    • Lawn Care Services, Lawn Maintenance, Lawn Fertilization
    • Lawn Pest Control, Lawn Weed Control
    • Aeration and Top Dressing
    • Water Features, Koi Ponds,
    • Waterfalls, Bubbling Fountains
    • Garden Center & Pond Supply Store

    General Services Areas

    Jacksonville (Jax), Jacksonville Beach, Neptune Beach, Atlantic Beach, Ponte Vedra Beach, Ponte Vedra, Fernandina Beach, Amelia Island, Orange Park, St. Johns, Nocatee

    Location

    GARDEN CENTER
    12501 Beach Blvd
    Jacksonville, FL 32246

    LANDSCAPE OPERATIONS
    (not open to the public)
    St. Johns Bluff
    1057 St. Johns Bluff Rd. N.
    Jacksonville, FL 32225

    Hours

    Monday-Saturday 9-5
    Sunday 10-5

    HOLIDAY CLOSINGS
    New Year’s Day • Easter • Memorial Day
    July 4th • Labor Day • Thanksgiving Day
    Christmas Eve • Christmas Day

    Branching Out: Celebrating Florida’s Arbor Day, January 19th, 2024

    Branching Out: Celebrating Florida’s Arbor Day, January 19th, 2024

    Florida Arbor Day is a special occasion celebrated annually on the third Friday of January. It’s a day that reminds us of trees’ significant role in our environment and lives. This tradition began in Nebraska in 1872 and flourished across the United States, inspiring communities to plant and care for trees. Trees are not just aesthetic enhancements; they are vital to our ecosystem, providing oxygen, improving air quality, conserving water, preserving soil, and supporting wildlife.

    This year, as we commemorate Florida Arbor Day on January 19th, 2024, we aim to delve deeper into the importance of trees, particularly in Northeast Florida. We focus on educating and inspiring our community about the diverse types of trees suited to our unique regional climate and how they contribute to our environment and well-being. In this edition, we explore the best trees for attracting wildlife, the top palms for Northeast Florida, and three fast-growing trees perfect for adding greenery swiftly to your landscapes.

     

    Hands Down, the Best Trees to Attract Wildlife 

     Matthew Barlow, Garden Center Manager

    A diverse range of wildlife is essential for a healthy ecosystem, and certain trees are particularly effective at attracting various animal species. Here in Jacksonville, Florida, we have many trees that serve as habitats and food sources for wildlife.

    Bottlebrush with Hummingbird

    Bottlebrush Tree

    (Callistemon citrinus)

    The Bottlebrush tree is a magnificent evergreen that grows up to 15 feet tall and wide. It’s a favorite among birds and beneficial pollinators due to its intermittent blooming throughout the year. Its vibrant red flowers are not just beautiful to look at but also a vital nectar source for hummingbirds and bees. I’ve observed hummingbirds lingering around these trees even when not in bloom, a testament to their memory of the sweet nectar.

    Bottlebrush trees are ideal for our Northeast Florida climate. They are easy to grow and maintain. Apart from attracting hummingbirds, these trees are also a haven for butterflies, bees, squirrels, and various songbirds. The Bottlebrush is an excellent choice if you’re looking for a versatile tree that can be shaped according to your space – whether as a majestic shade tree or a neatly trimmed hedge.

    Vitex or Chaste Tree 

    (Vitex agnus-castus)

    The Vitex is a showstopper with its unique lilac-colored flowers. It’s a deciduous tree that blooms sporadically throughout the year. Unlike the more common Crape Myrtles, Vitex trees are less widely grown, making them a unique addition to any garden. It’s beneficial to trim the tree after each flush of flowers to encourage more blossoms.

    This tree is a magnet for hummingbirds, butterflies, and bees, including those that produce honey. Like the Bottlebrush, the Vitex can reach up to 15 feet in height and width but can be maintained at a smaller size with regular pruning. Its unique appearance and ability to attract a range of pollinators make it a valuable addition to any garden.

    VitexFlipSide

    Top Palms for Northeast Florida

    In Northeast Florida, palms are more than just trees; they symbolize the region’s tropical beauty. Our climate allows a variety of palms to flourish, each bringing unique charm and benefits to our gardens.

     

    Roebelleni

    Roebelleni

    (Pygmy Date Palm)

    Ideal for smaller spaces, the Roebelenii Palm is known for its compact size and feathery fronds. It’s a charming addition to any garden or patio area, bringing a touch of the tropics to even the smallest spaces. This palm is particularly favored for its ornamental value and ease of care.

    Phoenix Sylvestris

    Phoenix Sylvestris

    (Silver Date Palm)

    This palm is renowned for its elegant, silvery-blue leaves, adding a touch of sophistication to any landscape. It’s a resilient tree, drought-resistant, and thrives under the Florida sun. The Silver Date Palm is a versatile choice for landscapers and homeowners alike due to its striking appearance and low maintenance requirements.

    Queen Palms

    Queen Palms

    Queen Palms are a staple in creating a tropical oasis. Their long, graceful fronds and smooth trunks make them a popular choice. As fast growers, these palms can add significant height and greenery to your garden in a relatively short period. They are perfect for those who want to quickly establish a tropical ambiance in their outdoor space.

    Sabal Palm

    Sabal Palm

    The Sabal Palm, the state tree of Florida, is a symbol of resilience and adaptability. It can withstand various weather conditions, making it a reliable choice for any landscape. Its hardiness and low maintenance make it a favorite among residential and commercial landscapers.

    For more detailed information on these palms and others suited for our region and other considerations for selecting the perfect palm, visit our comprehensive page at Earth Works Garden Center. Here, you’ll discover a wealth of knowledge tailored to the unique climate and aesthetic needs of Northeast Florida.

    Three Fast-Growing Trees for Northeast Florida

    In addition to the palms and wildlife-attracting trees, another crucial aspect of landscaping in Northeast Florida is the selection of fast-growing trees. These trees are ideal for homeowners and gardeners looking to quickly add shade, privacy, or an element of mature landscaping to their properties. Here are three of the best fast-growing trees for our region:

    Red Maple

    Florida Red Maple 

    (Acer rubrum)

    The Florida Red Maple is an impressive tree, reaching 40 to 60 feet and a spread of about 40 feet. Known for its spectacular red color in spring and varied hues in the fall, it’s a visual delight throughout the year. This tree is remarkably resilient, disease- and pest-resistant, and can withstand the varied conditions of Northeast Florida. When planting, ensure it’s at least 20 to 30 feet away from structures due to its robust root system. It thrives in full sun and can tolerate normal or very wet soil conditions, making it an excellent choice for areas with excess moisture.

    Drake Elm 

    (Ulmus parvifolia)

    The Drake Elm is a medium-sized shade tree that excels in our local climate. It can grow 30 to 35 feet tall and wide, making it a perfect choice for providing ample shade. Planting this tree about 10 to 15 feet away from any structures is advisable. In winter, its leaves turn yellow, adding a splash of color early in the season. The bark of the Drake Elm is beautiful, developing flaky patterns over time. This tree is best suited to full sun and well-drained soil, making it a versatile option for many landscapes.

    drake elm
    japanese blueberry 3

    Japanese Blueberry

    (Elaeocarpus decipiens)

    Unlike the first two, the Japanese Blueberry is an evergreen, maintaining its foliage year-round. It can grow up to 30 feet tall and wide, so it should be planted at least 10 to 15 feet away from structures. This tree is known for its reliability and fast growth, providing shade every month of the year. The leaves turn bright orange or red before they are shed, and the berries produced in the fall attract birds, adding another dimension of wildlife interaction to your garden.

     

    Each of these trees offers unique benefits, from the striking seasonal colors of the Florida Red Maple and Drake Elm to the year-round greenery and wildlife attraction of the Japanese Blueberry. When selecting trees for your landscape, consider the space available, the soil conditions, and the overall aesthetic you wish to achieve. These fast-growing trees are not only practical choices for quick landscaping improvements but also contribute to the biodiversity and beauty of Northeast Florida.

    As we celebrate Florida Arbor Day this year, let’s embrace the rich diversity of trees. From the wildlife-friendly Bottlebrush and Vitex trees to the elegant and tropical palms and the rapidly growing Florida Red Maple, Drake Elm, and Japanese Blueberry, there’s a tree for every purpose and every landscape. Planting a tree is more than just a landscaping decision; it’s a commitment to the future of our environment and community. Let’s unite to plant, nurture, and celebrate these magnificent natural resources, creating a greener, more beautiful Northeast Florida for future generations.

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    Services

    • Landscape Design & Installation
    • Paver Patios, Paver Walkways, Paver Driveways
    • Firepits, Retaining Walls , Seat Walls,
    • Landscape Lighting, Drainage design & Installation,
    • Lawn Care Services, Lawn Maintenance, Lawn Fertilization
    • Lawn Pest Control, Lawn Weed Control
    • Aeration and Top Dressing
    • Water Features, Koi Ponds,
    • Waterfalls, Bubbling Fountains
    • Garden Center & Pond Supply Store

    General Services Areas

    Jacksonville (Jax), Jacksonville Beach, Neptune Beach, Atlantic Beach, Ponte Vedra Beach, Ponte Vedra, Fernandina Beach, Amelia Island, Orange Park, St. Johns, Nocatee

    Location

    GARDEN CENTER
    12501 Beach Blvd
    Jacksonville, FL 32246

    LANDSCAPE OPERATIONS
    (not open to the public)
    St. Johns Bluff
    1057 St. Johns Bluff Rd. N.
    Jacksonville, FL 32225

    Hours

    Monday-Saturday 9-5
    Sunday 10-5

    HOLIDAY CLOSINGS
    New Year’s Day • Easter • Memorial Day
    July 4th • Labor Day • Thanksgiving Day
    Christmas Eve • Christmas Day

    Ensuring the Survival of Sensitive Plants in Northeast Florida’s Cooler Climates

    Ensuring the Survival of Sensitive Plants in Northeast Florida’s Cooler Climates

    Northeast Florida, with its unique climatic conditions, presents distinct challenges for gardeners, particularly when it comes to the cultivation of sensitive tropical plants, palms, and citrus varieties. As temperatures dip in the cooler months, understanding and managing the cold tolerance of these plants is crucial for maintaining a vibrant and thriving garden. This comprehensive guide aims to assist gardeners in the Jacksonville, Florida area in safeguarding their sensitive plants from the threats of colder weather.

    Understanding Plant Hardiness Zones

     

     

    A fundamental aspect of gardening in Northeast Florida, particularly in areas like Jacksonville, is understanding the USDA Hardiness Zone of the region. Classified as Zone 9a, this area experiences temperatures that can drop to 20-25°F. Selecting plants that can endure these minimum temperatures is vital to prevent cold damage.

    Zone Map

    Tropical Plants and Their Cold Sensitivity

    Many tropical plants enhance Northeast Florida landscapes, but their sensitivity to cold necessitates extra care during the winter. Important tropical species include:

    Hibiscus

    Hibiscus

    These plants are celebrated for their large, vibrant blooms but are susceptible to frost damage. Cover lightly in a mild frost. Double up your frost cloth in a hard freeze.

    Shell Ginger

    Shell Ginger

    Tropical ginger varieties require protection from the cold to preserve their lush foliage. Shell ginger can freeze back and come back from the gound. Cover if you would like to keep it from dying all the wayback.

    Hawaiian Ti

    Hawaiian Ti

    Cherished for their colorful leaves, they struggle in cooler temperatures. They can come back from the ground after a freeze but protecting them will help minimize the damage to the leaves.

    Xanadu Philodendron

    Xanadu Philodendron

    This dwarf variety of philodendron needs shelter from freezing conditions.

    Croton

    Croton

    Known for their striking multi-colored leaves, crotons are truly tropical. They are sensitive to cold drafts and can take damage under 40 degrees. It is best if you can bring them indoor.

    Stromanthe

    Stromanthe

    Prized for their attractive leaves, stromanthe plants definietly require frost protection.

    Cold Sensitive Palms

      Palms, a Florida landscape staple, vary in their cold tolerance. These palm varieties will sustain damage and or death in a hard freeze.  They will fair better the longer they have to get established. Other factors my include position in your yard and yard’s individual micro climate, the severity of the freeze and it’s duration.

    Some palm species requiring special attention in cooler weather are:

     

    Roebelleni (Pygmy Date Palm)

    Roebelleni (Pygmy Date Palm)

    Adonidia (Christmas Palm)

    Adonidia (Christmas Palm)

    Raphis (Lady Palm)

    Raphis (Lady Palm)

    Bismarckia

    Bismarckia

    Foxtail

    Foxtail

    Citrus Trees and Frost Protection

    In Northeast Florida, gardeners are fortunate to be able to cultivate a variety of citrus trees that bring both beauty and bountiful harvests to their landscapes. Despite the region’s mild climate, occasional cold snaps do occur, and understanding how to protect these trees is essential. Here’s a tailored guide for commonly planted citrus in this region:

    • Meyer Lemon Trees: These trees are robust against cold, managing to survive in temperatures as chilly as 20°F. They can also endure brief dips to 32°F. For regions where the mercury drops below 20°F, consider potting these trees and moving them indoors to escape the cold.
    • Persian Lime Trees: Among the lime varieties, Persian limes show the greatest resistance to cold, withstanding short periods at 21-22°F. Extended exposure to teen temperatures for over half a day could be fatal. They are suitable for open planting in USDA Zones 9-11.
    lime (Citrus x latifolia) tree
    Ornge Tree citrus
    • Valencia Orange Trees: Short spells of cold down to 30°F won’t harm these trees, but prolonged cold can affect the fruit’s quality and deplete its vitamin C levels.
    • Ruby Red Grapefruit Trees: These trees have a tolerance for cold in the range of 15–20°F, yet they are sensitive to frost, which is particularly damaging to the fruit. Optimal growth is achieved in USDA Zones 9 and 10.
    • Tangerines and Mandarins: These varieties show a degree of cold resilience, capable of withstanding temperatures down to 20°F with minimal impact.
    • Satsuma Mandarins (Trifoliate Rootstocks): Renowned for their cold hardiness, mature Satsuma mandarins grafted onto Trifoliate rootstocks can cope with temperatures as low as 15 or 16°F.

     

      Strategies for Cold Protection

      One of the most effective measures is the use of freeze cloth or frost blankets. These specially designed cloths are draped over plants to insulate them from the cold, while still allowing air and moisture to reach the foliage. Unlike plastic covers, which can trap excessive moisture and lead to fungal diseases, freeze cloths provide a breathable yet protective barrier against frost. It’s important to cover the plants before sunset to retain residual heat and extend the cloth all the way to the ground to trap heat more effectively. Additionally, ensure that the cloth is secured to prevent it from being blown away by the wind. Other steps include watering the plants before a freeze, as moist soil retains heat better than dry soil, and using mulch to insulate the roots. For potted plants, moving them indoors or to a sheltered area can offer significant protection. Implementing these basic yet essential freeze protection steps can greatly enhance the survivability of sensitive plants during cold snaps.

      Additional effective strategies to protect sensitive plants from cold include:

        1. Understanding Chilling Temperatures: Temperatures between 32°F and 59°F can stress tropical plants, leading to wilting, yellowing, and reddish-brown spots.
        2. Location and Exposure: Planting sensitive species away from areas with northern exposure and using hardier plants as windbreaks can provide additional protection.
        3. Acclimation Processes: Plants start acclimating in autumn as daylight hours decrease. Understanding this natural process helps in preparing plants for the cold.
        4. Overwintering and Indoor Propagation: Consider relocating highly sensitive plants indoors or to greenhouses as temperatures drop.
        5. Post-Chill Care: After chill exposure, ensure plants are adequately watered and avoid immediate fertilization to reduce stress.

         

        Consulting with Experts

        For personalized advice, resources like Earth Works of Jacksonville can provide invaluable guidance and solutions for specific lawn, garden, and landscaping needs in the Northeast Florida region.

        Maintaining a lush garden in Northeast Florida’s cooler climate requires an in-depth understanding of the cold tolerance of various plant species. By recognizing the needs of sensitive tropical plants, palms, and citrus trees, and employing effective cold protection strategies, gardeners can ensure the survival and flourishing of their gardens through the chillier months. With proper planning and care, the diverse and vibrant flora of Northeast Florida

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        Services

        • Landscape Design & Installation
        • Paver Patios, Paver Walkways, Paver Driveways
        • Firepits, Retaining Walls , Seat Walls,
        • Landscape Lighting, Drainage design & Installation,
        • Lawn Care Services, Lawn Maintenance, Lawn Fertilization
        • Lawn Pest Control, Lawn Weed Control
        • Aeration and Top Dressing
        • Water Features, Koi Ponds,
        • Waterfalls, Bubbling Fountains
        • Garden Center & Pond Supply Store

        General Services Areas

        Jacksonville (Jax), Jacksonville Beach, Neptune Beach, Atlantic Beach, Ponte Vedra Beach, Ponte Vedra, Fernandina Beach, Amelia Island, Orange Park, St. Johns, Nocatee

        Location

        GARDEN CENTER
        12501 Beach Blvd
        Jacksonville, FL 32246

        LANDSCAPE OPERATIONS
        (not open to the public)
        St. Johns Bluff
        1057 St. Johns Bluff Rd. N.
        Jacksonville, FL 32225

        Hours

        Monday-Saturday 9-5
        Sunday 10-5

        HOLIDAY CLOSINGS
        New Year’s Day • Easter • Memorial Day
        July 4th • Labor Day • Thanksgiving Day
        Christmas Eve • Christmas Day

        10 Low-Maintenance Landscaping Plants That Thrive in Jacksonville, Florida

        10 Low-Maintenance Landscaping Plants That Thrive in Jacksonville, Florida

        As a Jacksonville, Florida homeowner, your outdoor space can be a pleasure source or a constant maintenance challenge. Fortunately, the subtropical climate here in Northeast Florida is conducive to a wide array of beautiful, low-maintenance plants that not only survive but thrive, enhancing your property with minimal effort.

        In this blog post, we’ll share our top 10 picks of low-maintenance plants that can effortlessly transform your Jacksonville yard into a lush, green sanctuary.

        1. Muhly Grass

        A native to Florida, Muhly Grass is prized for its pink-purple feathery blooms that make a stunning display in the fall. It’s drought-tolerant, enjoys full sun, and requires little to no pruning, making it a fantastic low-maintenance option.

        Pink hairawn muhly, Muhlenbergia capillaris, perennial tufted ornamental grass with narrow long leaves and small red to pink flowers with awns on elongate panicle with filiform spreading branches.
        Coontie palm (Zamia pumila) cycad plant, green Davie, Florida, USA
        1. Coontie Palm

        Coontie, Florida’s only native cycad, is another excellent low-maintenance plant. It’s extremely hardy and can withstand drought, shade, and even salt, making it perfect for coastal landscapes. It has attractive, fern-like leaves that provide a unique texture to your garden.

        1. Saw Palmetto

        Elevate your plants—literally. Construct raised plant beds using stacked pavers. It provides a unique visual dimension to your garden and helps with soil drainage, ensuring your plants stay healthy.

        Saw Palmetto and Pine Flatwoods
        COREOPSIS
        1. Tickseed

        Also known as Coreopsis, Tickseed is Florida’s state wildflower and a great low-maintenance bloomer. This plant produces vibrant, daisy-like flowers and requires very little attention once established. It’s drought-tolerant and prefers full sun.

        5. Firebush

         

        The Firebush is another low-maintenance native plant with a high impact. It’s a favorite of pollinators and produces bright red-orange tubular flowers. The Firebush is extremely hardy and can handle anything from full sun to shade, and dry to wet soils.

        Firebush Or Hummingbird Bush (Hamelia Patens) Flower
        Gaillardia aristata

        6. Gaillardia

         

         

        Also known as Blanket Flower, Gaillardia is a beautiful, low-maintenance flowering plant. Its red and yellow blooms not only add vibrant color to your landscape, but they also attract pollinators. Gaillardia loves full sun and is highly drought-tolerant.

         

        7. Beautyberry

         

        Beautyberry is a great low-maintenance plant with a surprise. This native Florida shrub has inconspicuous flowers but produces stunning clusters of vibrant purple berries in the fall. It’s highly adaptable and can tolerate a range of soil and light conditions.

        beautiful beautiberry fruits in the garden
        Trees Weeping Bottlebrush

        8. Bottlebrush Tree

         

        For those looking for a low-maintenance tree, the Bottlebrush Tree is an excellent choice. Named for its red, brush-like flowers that attract hummingbirds, it is drought-tolerant, enjoys full sun, and can tolerate most soil types.

        9. Yaupon Holly

         

        Yaupon Holly is a native, drought-tolerant shrub that’s perfect for those looking to add height and greenery to their landscape. It’s an excellent plant for wildlife, and it produces beautiful red berries in the winter.

        Ilex vomitoria. Yaupon Holly Berries. Red Fruits on large shrub under cloud blue sky.
        wax myrtle

        10. Wax Myrtle

         

        Wax Myrtle is another low-maintenance shrub that offers year-round interest. Its aromatic leaves deter pests and produce small, bluish-white berries in the winter. Wax Myrtle thrives in various conditions, from full sun to partial shade and moist to dry soils.

        Each of these plants will enhance your Jacksonville landscape and create a garden that you can enjoy year-round without requiring countless hours of maintenance. The key is to choose plants that suit your specific landscape conditions and personal preferences. For the best results, mix different types of plants (flowers, shrubs, trees, and grasses) to create a varied, layered effect that provides visual interest throughout the year.

        Creating a low-maintenance landscape is a smart, sustainable choice that allows you to enjoy your outdoor space to the fullest. And remember, low-maintenance doesn’t have to mean low-impact. With careful plant selection, you can have a stunning, vibrant landscape that’s easy to maintain, eco-friendly, and simply a joy to behold.

        Enjoy the process of creating your low-maintenance landscape. The satisfaction of seeing your garden thrive with minimal intervention is truly rewarding. So here’s to less time spent on maintenance and more time enjoying the beautiful, thriving outdoor space you’ve created. Happy planting, Jacksonville!

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        Services

        • Landscape Design & Installation
        • Paver Patios, Paver Walkways, Paver Driveways
        • Firepits, Retaining Walls , Seat Walls,
        • Landscape Lighting, Drainage design & Installation,
        • Lawn Care Services, Lawn Maintenance, Lawn Fertilization
        • Lawn Pest Control, Lawn Weed Control
        • Aeration and Top Dressing
        • Water Features, Koi Ponds,
        • Waterfalls, Bubbling Fountains
        • Garden Center & Pond Supply Store

        General Services Areas

        Jacksonville (Jax), Jacksonville Beach, Neptune Beach, Atlantic Beach, Ponte Vedra Beach, Ponte Vedra, Fernandina Beach, Amelia Island, Orange Park, St. Johns, Nocatee

        Location

        GARDEN CENTER
        12501 Beach Blvd
        Jacksonville, FL 32246

        LANDSCAPE OPERATIONS
        (not open to the public)
        St. Johns Bluff
        1057 St. Johns Bluff Rd. N.
        Jacksonville, FL 32225

        Hours

        Monday-Saturday 9-5
        Sunday 10-5

        HOLIDAY CLOSINGS
        New Year’s Day • Easter • Memorial Day
        July 4th • Labor Day • Thanksgiving Day
        Christmas Eve • Christmas Day

        Update Your Landscape: Unleash Creativity with Landscape Pavers.

        Update Your Landscape: Unleash Creativity with Landscape Pavers.

        Jacksonville, with its warm climate and coastal influences, provides an idyllic backdrop for outdoor living. But how do you make your garden truly stand out and, more importantly, reflect your personal style? Enter landscape pavers! These versatile beauties offer a palette of endless creativity for your garden, allowing homeowners to add functionality, flair, and a touch of artistry to their outdoor spaces.

        Why Choose Landscape Pavers?

        Before diving into the creative uses, let’s take a brief moment to appreciate why landscape pavers are the go-to choice for many Jacksonville homeowners:

        1. Durability: Pavers can withstand Florida’s unique climate, from its hot summers to its rainy seasons.
        2. Variety: Available in an array of colors, shapes, sizes, and materials, pavers are every landscaper’s dream.
        3. Low Maintenance: With minimal upkeep, these stones retain their beauty for years.
        4. Flexibility: Pavers are adaptable to various design visions, from classic to contemporary.
        Curvy pation and steps
        Fire pit circle patio in a pond

        Creative Uses of Landscape Pavers in Your Garden

        Curvy walkway

        Paver Pathways

        Perhaps the most common use, but with a twist! Instead of a straightforward path, create a winding journey through your garden. Combine different shapes and sizes or intersperse with grass or ground cover for a mosaic look.

        Paver steps with rock walkway

        Paver Planters

        Elevate your plants—literally. Construct raised plant beds using stacked pavers. It provides a unique visual dimension to your garden and helps with soil drainage, ensuring your plants stay healthy.

        Raised bed around pool
        Oval raised bed
        Paver bench around firepit

        Paver Benches

        Create a paver seat bench with a back wall. Throw on some outdoor cushions, and you have the perfect spot for those tranquil Florida evenings.

        Artistic Mosaics

        Why settle for plain when you can have art? Use colored pavers to create beautiful patterns or even depict a scene. This works exceptionally well for large patio areas or central garden spaces, turning them into conversation pieces.

         

        Paver Driveways

        A popular choice for homeowners who prioritize durability and aesthetics. They are made of interlocking bricks, making them incredibly sturdy and long-lasting. Moreover, pavers come in a wide range of colors, textures, and shapes, so you can customize your driveway to match the style of your home.

        unnamed 6
        Turf and paver blocks

        Lush Lawn Grids

        Lush Lawn Grids: Create modern, geometric grids by placing large square pavers with equal distances apart and letting grass grow between them. This design works especially well for contemporary homes, offering a neat yet vibrant lawn alternative.

        Circular Patios

        Round patios are gaining popularity and for a good reason. They offer a focal point, are aesthetically pleasing, and provide a gathering space. Use radial patterns with your pavers to accentuate the circle.

        Circle Paver Patio
        Flower bed paver border

        Paver Borders

        Outline your garden beds with pavers to create clean, defined edges. It’s a simple addition but makes a world of difference in making your garden look organized and polished.

         

        Paver flower bed:walkway border
        Landscape bed paver border

        Tips for Unleashing Creativity with Pavers

        1. Mix and Match: Don’t be afraid to combine different types of pavers. This can add depth, contrast, and intrigue to your design.

        2. Level Up: Play with levels. Raised areas, sunken lounges, or multi-tiered gardens can add depth and dynamism to your garden.

        3. Integrate Nature: Let moss grow between certain paver joints, integrate creeping plants, or use the pavers to frame existing trees.

        4. Light It Up: Embed LED lights within your paver structures. This not only enhances safety but also adds a magical ambiance during the evening.

        Paver step lighting
        Sunken flagsont patio w:paver wall

        At Earth Works, we pride ourselves on helping Jacksonville residents bring their garden visions to life with our expertise in landscape pavers. If you’re ready to revamp your garden, we’re just a call away! Let’s transform your outdoor space into a masterpiece of paver artistry.

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        Services

        • Landscape Design & Installation
        • Paver Patios, Paver Walkways, Paver Driveways
        • Firepits, Retaining Walls , Seat Walls,
        • Landscape Lighting, Drainage design & Installation,
        • Lawn Care Services, Lawn Maintenance, Lawn Fertilization
        • Lawn Pest Control, Lawn Weed Control
        • Aeration and Top Dressing
        • Water Features, Koi Ponds,
        • Waterfalls, Bubbling Fountains
        • Garden Center & Pond Supply Store

        General Services Areas

        Jacksonville (Jax), Jacksonville Beach, Neptune Beach, Atlantic Beach, Ponte Vedra Beach, Ponte Vedra, Fernandina Beach, Amelia Island, Orange Park, St. Johns, Nocatee

        Location

        GARDEN CENTER
        12501 Beach Blvd
        Jacksonville, FL 32246

        LANDSCAPE OPERATIONS
        (not open to the public)
        St. Johns Bluff
        1057 St. Johns Bluff Rd. N.
        Jacksonville, FL 32225

        Hours

        Monday-Saturday 9-5
        Sunday 10-5

        HOLIDAY CLOSINGS
        New Year’s Day • Easter • Memorial Day
        July 4th • Labor Day • Thanksgiving Day
        Christmas Eve • Christmas Day

        Embracing Xeric Landscaping

        Embracing Xeric Landscaping

        In the bustling city of Jacksonville, Florida, residents are embracing a new approach to landscaping that not only enhances the beauty of their homes but also contributes to the preservation of the local environment. Xeric landscaping, also known as xeriscaping, is gaining popularity in Northeast Florida due to its numerous benefits. By adopting xeric landscaping practices, homeowners can create sustainable and low-maintenance outdoor spaces while conserving water resources and supporting native biodiversity. In this article, we will explore the advantages of xeric landscaping in the context of Jacksonville, Florida.

        WATER CONSERVATION

        One of the most significant benefits of xeric landscaping in a region like Northeast Florida is its ability to conserve water. The region experiences long, hot summers with occasional droughts, making water scarcity a concern. Xeric landscaping employs water-efficient practices such as using drought-tolerant plants, mulching to retain moisture, and optimizing irrigation systems. By reducing water consumption, homeowners can contribute to the overall conservation efforts and reduce their water bills.

        yucca cactus desert plants
        Pink Cone Flowers

        REDUCED MAINTENANCE

        Another advantage of xeric landscaping is its low-maintenance nature. Traditional lawns require constant mowing, watering, and fertilizing. Xeric landscapes, on the other hand, are designed to thrive in the local climate conditions, reducing the need for frequent maintenance. Native plants are well-adapted to the region’s soil, weather, and wildlife, resulting in fewer pest problems and minimal pruning requirements. This allows homeowners to spend more time enjoying their outdoor spaces rather than constantly tending to them.

        ENVIRONMENTAL RESILIENCE

        Xeric landscaping promotes environmental resilience by embracing native plant species that are naturally suited to the local climate. These plants have evolved over time to withstand the specific challenges posed by Northeast Florida’s weather patterns and soil conditions. By utilizing native flora, xeric landscapes contribute to the preservation of regional biodiversity, provide habitat for local wildlife, and promote a more balanced ecosystem. Moreover, xeric landscaping reduces the need for chemical pesticides and fertilizers, reducing environmental pollution and promoting healthier soil.

        Xeric Jacksonville Beach landscaping
        Xeric landscape lava rock and granite

        COST SAVINGS

        Xeric landscaping can also result in long-term cost savings for homeowners. By reducing water consumption and maintenance requirements, homeowners can significantly lower their utility bills. Additionally, xeric landscapes often require less frequent replacement or repair, resulting in savings on plant replacements and lawn care equipment. Over time, these savings can add up, providing homeowners with a more sustainable and cost-effective landscaping solution.

        AESTHETIC APPEAL

        Contrary to the misconception that xeric landscaping lacks visual appeal, these landscapes can be incredibly beautiful and diverse. By incorporating a variety of native plants, homeowners can create vibrant and colorful gardens that complement the natural surroundings. Native flowers, grasses, and shrubs can provide a visually stunning display throughout the year while attracting local pollinators and wildlife. Xeric Landscaping encourages homeowners to embrace the region’s unique beauty while adding a touch of personal creativity to their outdoor spaces.

        xeric beach landscape cactus and rocks

        A few great plants for xeriscaping in NE Florida

        Xeric landscaping offers numerous benefits to homeowners in Northeast Florida, particularly in Jacksonville. By conserving water, reducing maintenance, promoting environmental resilience, and providing cost savings, xeric landscaping is becoming an increasingly popular choice for sustainable outdoor spaces. Embracing this approach not only benefits homeowners but also contributes to the preservation of local ecosystems and supports the region’s native biodiversity. As we strive for a more sustainable future, xeric landscaping is an excellent way to create a beautiful and eco-friendly environment right in our own backyards.

        Heliathus

        Heliathus

        Commonly known as the beach sunflower, this cheerful, low-growing plant has bright, sunflowerlike blooms. A mature plant can cover several feet in diameter, so it makes great ground cover. It will attract many species of butterflies.

        Fakahatchee Grass

        Fakahatchee Grass

        A Florida native grass that is drought tolerant but able to deal with those rainy summer days here in N.E. FL. It is somewhat salt tolerant as well and likes full sun. Many grasses are considered drought tolerant and are perfect for xeriscaping. Others include Pampas, Fountain, Muhly, and Cord grasses

        Sunshine Mimosa

        Sunshine Mimosa

        This is also known as the powderpuff mimosa, because of its distinctive pink flowers that resemble little fiber-optic puffs. It has deep roots, so once you get it established, it requires very little maintenance. A healthy, mature plant can spread as much as 12 inches in a day, providing excellent ground cover. It can even be mixed with grass and mowed without damaging the plant.

        Agave & Yucca

        Agave & Yucca

        Few plants can match the bold and dramatic landscape impact of agave and yucca, both excellent choices for truly low maintenance low water gardening. These amazingly tough plants endure the extremes, hot sun, sandy soil, dry conditions, and salty spots with elegance and style. Combine with landscape boulders for a finishing touch.

        Coreopsis

        Coreopsis

        Its sunny, daisylike flowers are beautiful and great for butterflies and pollinators. Once it is established, it’s sun- and drought-tolerant. A mature plant will re-seed itself, which means you don’t just have it once, you have it all the time. Fun fact: The coreopsis is Florida’s state wildflower.

        Gaillardia

        Gaillardia

        Also known as the blanket flower, it has distinctive bright orange and red flowers. It is highly salt-tolerant, prefers sunny locations, and it will seed itself. As an added bonus, the pretty blossoms can last a long time in flower arrangements.

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        Services

        • Landscape Design & Installation
        • Paver Patios, Paver Walkways, Paver Driveways
        • Firepits, Retaining Walls , Seat Walls,
        • Landscape Lighting, Drainage design & Installation,
        • Lawn Care Services, Lawn Maintenance, Lawn Fertilization
        • Lawn Pest Control, Lawn Weed Control
        • Aeration and Top Dressing
        • Water Features, Koi Ponds,
        • Waterfalls, Bubbling Fountains
        • Garden Center & Pond Supply Store

        General Services Areas

        Jacksonville (Jax), Jacksonville Beach, Neptune Beach, Atlantic Beach, Ponte Vedra Beach, Ponte Vedra, Fernandina Beach, Amelia Island, Orange Park, St. Johns, Nocatee

        Location

        GARDEN CENTER
        12501 Beach Blvd
        Jacksonville, FL 32246

        LANDSCAPE OPERATIONS
        (not open to the public)
        St. Johns Bluff
        1057 St. Johns Bluff Rd. N.
        Jacksonville, FL 32225

        Hours

        Monday-Saturday 9-5
        Sunday 10-5

        HOLIDAY CLOSINGS
        New Year’s Day • Easter • Memorial Day
        July 4th • Labor Day • Thanksgiving Day
        Christmas Eve • Christmas Day

        April Lawn, Garden, and Landscaping Tips 2023

        April Lawn, Garden, and Landscaping Tips 2023

        April is one of our favorite North Florida lawn, garden, and landscaping months as its Spring and oak leaves and catkins have all dropped, the skies are clear with warm temperatures, and the rainy season is still a couple of months away. It’s time to turn all those thoughts of growing a garden and improving your landscape into action. Get out in the sunshine (with sunblock) and start planting and tending to your lawn, garden, and landscape with the necessary fertilization, pruning, and pest control needs of your existing plants and replacing those that need it with new ones.
        “2020 gardening research by Scotts Miracle-Gro and Wakefield Research found that over half of the country (55% of American households) engage in gardening activities and another 20% are planning to do so in the near future,” according to Gardenpals.com.

        Spring lawn, garden, and landscaping

        Planning before engaging in gardening and landscaping activities will dramatically improve your success and satisfaction. Whether your plan is in jotted-down notes or a professional landscape design, the aim is to save you time and money and improve your success and happiness.
        Regardless of lawn, garden, or landscaping type, here are a few helpful tips.

        gardening

        -Prepare the ground before planting by raking out old leaf litter and pulling weeds.

        -If considering an herbicide treatment, remember that the recommended application period for pre-emergents is February and early March before average temperatures rise above 65-70F. Most weed and feed products include fertilizer and a post-emergent herbicide to kill existing weeds. At the same time, many also have a pre-emergent to prevent the germination of new seasonal varieties. Always read the product label and know that Weed and Feed fertilizer products are developed for specific grasses that may harm them if applied to other grasses.

        -Have your soil pH and nutrient levels tested at no charge by submitting a sample to your local University of Florida County Agricultural Extension office. Take several separate samples from different areas of your landscape to submit for testing. Soil testing is essential, considering the macronutrients in fertilizers become less bioavailable below a pH of 6, which starves plants of necessary nutrition, causes water pollution, and wastes your time and money. Learn more on our blog about soil testing.

        -Amend the soil according to the recommendations of a soil test or with your knowledge with the appropriate blend of nutrients such as composts and fertilizers to jump-start the growth of your choice of plantings. Add perlite or vermiculite to tweak the soil’s water retention capacity by increasing or decreasing soil porosity. If you are considering using high-nitrogen fertilizer, apply before the rainy season that begins in June. Although Duval County doesn’t prohibit using nitrogen fertilizers during the rainy season, many counties restrict its use between June and September to protect against water pollution, algae blooms, and fish kills. You can help the environment and avoid wasting money on fertilizer by doing the same.

        UF agriculture extension office jacksonville 1024x768 1
        aeration and top dressing

        -Consider aeration and top dressing the lawn to reduce compaction and improve percolation and nutrient uptake by the turf.

        -Be sure to position plants appropriately in the landscape to provide adequate light and protection from wind and low temperatures in Winter. Don’t plant sun-loving shrubs and trees under the canopy of other trees that will stress them, making them more susceptible to pests and disease. Try to position cold-sensitive plants away from the threat of cold air from Northern exposure.
        -Make salt-tolerant plant choices for coastal-facing properties.

        -Stay aware of your plants watering needs while abiding by your municipal water restrictions, which in Duval County allows for twice-per-week irrigation during Spring and Summer with additional watering for new landscapes and unlimited hand watering. Xeriscaping with native plants and those with low watering requirements conserves water and saves you time and money.

        -Plant your favorite perennials and include Spring annuals for seasonal color. Consider our monthly container gardening recipes for planting ideas. The moderate morning low temperatures and afternoon highs provide the ideal conditions to safely plant palms, trees, shrubs, vines, flowering plants, fruits, herbs, and vegetables.

        Always remember Earth Works staff is here to help with all your lawn care, landscape design and installation and gardening needs. 

        Happy April Gardening!

        Spring Gardening

        Written by John Hawley, Earth Works Content Manager.

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        Services

        • Landscape Design & Installation
        • Paver Patios, Paver Walkways, Paver Driveways
        • Firepits, Retaining Walls , Seat Walls,
        • Landscape Lighting, Drainage design & Installation,
        • Lawn Care Services, Lawn Maintenance, Lawn Fertilization
        • Lawn Pest Control, Lawn Weed Control
        • Aeration and Top Dressing
        • Water Features, Koi Ponds,
        • Waterfalls, Bubbling Fountains
        • Garden Center & Pond Supply Store

        General Services Areas

        Jacksonville (Jax), Jacksonville Beach, Neptune Beach, Atlantic Beach, Ponte Vedra Beach, Ponte Vedra, Fernandina Beach, Amelia Island, Orange Park, St. Johns, Nocatee

        Location

        GARDEN CENTER
        12501 Beach Blvd
        Jacksonville, FL 32246

        LANDSCAPE OPERATIONS
        (not open to the public)
        St. Johns Bluff
        1057 St. Johns Bluff Rd. N.
        Jacksonville, FL 32225

        Hours

        Monday-Saturday 9-5
        Sunday 10-5

        HOLIDAY CLOSINGS
        New Year’s Day • Easter • Memorial Day
        July 4th • Labor Day • Thanksgiving Day
        Christmas Eve • Christmas Day

        Landscape Lighting by Earth Works

        Landscape Lighting by Earth Works

        With only a limited amount of time in the day, extend the time to enjoy your landscape with outdoor lighting. Landscape and architectural lighting illuminate, beautify, and provide safety and security for home and property owners. Have an Earth Works landscape designer create a custom lighting plan and schedule your installation from our Kitchler LED low-watt lighting options inventory.
        We are committed to keeping our entire landscape sales and installation team up to date with state-of-the-industry field training in professional landscape lighting options and installation techniques.

        Earth Works Outdoor Lighting Design & Installation

         Outdoor Lighting Fundamentals Lecture
        Outdoor Lighting Designer Trevor Rosendahl, Manager of Nitelites of Jacksonville & Joel from Kichler provide an in-depth discussion of landscape & architectural lighting design theory and application at a recent Earth Works of Jacksonville staff training event.

        Topics Include: 1) Designing to client’s personality and selling the dream and look. 2) Layout from left to right. 3) Benefits of core drilling in tight spaces. 4) Zone and lighting wire runs. 5) Types of lighting runs. 6) Automation and layout. 7) Kichler lighting voltage requirements. 8) Kelvin color temperature options and recommendations.

        Outdoor Lighting Service Training
        Earth Works Owner, Mark Fechtel provides information on company training resources for high-quality outdoor lighting services in Northeast Florida and reasons it’s important.

        Outdoor Lighting Training in Jacksonville
        Bruce DeBolt provides an overview of what Earth Works’ periodic lighting training days involve at our most recent event at a client’s home in Jacksonville’s Southside on Monday.

        Consistency of Outdoor Lighting Service
        Mike Oaks explains the importance of consistency and ensuring lighting installation staff is on the same page, following the proper procedures for setting up client outdoor lighting systems. Kichler and North Florida Irrigation were critical to the success of this training day, advising Earth Works staff on proper techniques, new product options, and how best to set up for customer satisfaction and value.

        Infrastructure for Outdoor Lighting
        Patti Sanders, Earth Works Landscape Designer, discusses outdoor lighting options and infrastructure we provide under paver driveways and walkways to accommodate wiring for lighting and other purposes with every completed project.

        Benefits of Outdoor Lighting
        Timothy Jeror shares some perspectives as the Earth Works Pond Construction foreman and visual artist on the benefits of outdoor lighting to enhance the beauty and enjoyment of one’s home.

        Landscape Lighting Installation Tips
        Adam Cooprider provides a few landscape lighting installation tips, including securing your wiring runs together for ease of repairs and additions to your system and the availability of metal guards to protect the wiring from lawn care equipment damage.

        outdoor lighting jacksonville
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        Services

        • Landscape Design & Installation
        • Paver Patios, Paver Walkways, Paver Driveways
        • Firepits, Retaining Walls , Seat Walls,
        • Landscape Lighting, Drainage design & Installation,
        • Lawn Care Services, Lawn Maintenance, Lawn Fertilization
        • Lawn Pest Control, Lawn Weed Control
        • Aeration and Top Dressing
        • Water Features, Koi Ponds,
        • Waterfalls, Bubbling Fountains
        • Garden Center & Pond Supply Store

        General Services Areas

        Jacksonville (Jax), Jacksonville Beach, Neptune Beach, Atlantic Beach, Ponte Vedra Beach, Ponte Vedra, Fernandina Beach, Amelia Island, Orange Park, St. Johns, Nocatee

        Location

        GARDEN CENTER
        12501 Beach Blvd
        Jacksonville, FL 32246

        LANDSCAPE OPERATIONS
        (not open to the public)
        St. Johns Bluff
        1057 St. Johns Bluff Rd. N.
        Jacksonville, FL 32225

        Hours

        Monday-Saturday 9-5
        Sunday 10-5

        HOLIDAY CLOSINGS
        New Year’s Day • Easter • Memorial Day
        July 4th • Labor Day • Thanksgiving Day
        Christmas Eve • Christmas Day

        March Lawn, Garden, & Landscaping Tips 2023

        March Lawn, Garden, & Landscaping Tips 2023

        Our March Lawn Garden and Landscaping Tips revolve around the fact that March ushers in longer days with warming soils that lift lawn turf from slumber and encourage new growth throughout the landscape.

        Did You Know This About March?

        -We add nearly one full hour to our day in March. (March 1: 11:32:24, March 31: 12: 27:30)

        -Daylight Savings Time begins on Sunday, March 13 (Spring forward; Fall back).

        -Spring officially arrives on Monday, March 20.

        spring 1
        edibles march3

        Get To Pruning, Planting, & Watering:
        We’ve likely seen our last frost and freeze days. New growth appears everywhere, from the oak trees’ recent leaf and catkin drop to those woody stems pruned back from winter damage. Plants with brittle stems that have no green remaining, we can conclude, were lost to old man winter and can now be safely replaced.

        The University of Florida IFAS Extension office recommends March edible plantings of Arugula, Eggplant, Kohlrabi, Ginger, Peppers, Swiss Chard, Tomatillo, Tomatoes, Boniato, Spinach, Sweet Potatoes, Lima Beans, Bush Beans, and Pole Beans, Cantaloupes, Carrots, Corn, Cucumbers, Okra, Onions, Peanuts, Peas, Radish, Squashes, and Watermelon.

        Emerging from a Record-Dry Winter
        Besides the cold Winter, your lawn, garden, and landscape damage could have been from lack of precipitation. “Retallying the winter stats of 2022-23, in Jacksonville, we had our 72nd warmest December, the 41st warmest January and the sixth warmest February,” according to News4Jax Weather Insider. “Add it all up, and we had the 16th warmest Winter! The bigger winter story was the total lack of rainfall. Just 3.85 inches of rain the entire Winter!” That’s compared to an average winter rainfall in Jacksonville of 9.5″. Check your irrigation system for proper operation and get ready to increase your watering regimen.

        drought

        In Duval County, water restrictions lessen during Daylight Savings Time, allowing twice-per-week residential landscape irrigation with no limits for new landscapes and hand watering. “Residential properties with even-numbered addresses or those ending with A-M** may water on Thursday and Sunday; properties with odd-numbered addresses, those ending with N-Z*, or properties with no street address may water on Wednesday and Saturday, according to the City of Jacksonville. “Non-residential irrigation is only permitted Tuesday and Friday. Irrigation is not permitted between 10 am and 4 pm.” Be vigilant in ensuring your lawn and garden are sufficiently watered. Earth Works lawn care division recommends two weekly rain or watering events for a healthy lawn.

        chinch bugs

        Chinch Bug Threat Strong During Drought Conditions
        Drought conditions can increase the chance of chinch bugs infestation in your St. Augustine turf. Chinch bug season in North Florida is typically March through November. “Chinch bug damage can be confused with certain lawn diseases or other physiological disorders,” according to Texas A&M. “For example, brown patch is a common disease affecting the leaf blades of St. Augustinegrass. Brown patch symptoms, however, usually occur in a circular or semi-circular pattern, as opposed to the irregular-shaped areas of dead and dying grass that result from chinch bug feeding. Chinch bug damage also can be difficult to distinguish from that caused by drought.”

        Let Earth Works Lawn Care, Fertilization and Lawn Pest Control service take the work and worry out of your beautiful lawn.

         

        When to Fertilize?

        Palms: For palms we recommend quarterly fertilization with heaviest feeding in Fall and Spring and lighter fertilization in Spring and Winter. We recommend: Palm Tone by Espoma and Jacks Palm Food 16-5-25 that’s water soluble with micronutrients.

        Birds of Paradise: These heavy feeders require fertilization to maximize foliage and flowering capacity. While the UF/IFAS recommends quarterly fertilization Tropical Plants of Florida recommends bi-weekly fertilization in Spring and monthly during the Summer months.

        Crape Myrtles: Crape Myrtles are heavy feeders that respond well to liquid and granular balanced fertilization as often as every two weeks during Spring and Summer. You’ll want to use a balanced fertilizer such as Jacks All Purpose 20-20-20.

        Roses: Consider monthly fertilization from mid-February through November for optimum foliage and blooms on your roses. Roses are highly susceptible to powdery mildew and leaf spot that you can curtail damage from with regular Bonide copper fungicide treatments.

        Fruit Trees: “You can apply a slow-release citrus fertilizer in March, June and September or apply 6-6-6 or 8-8-8 starting in March once every six weeks through September,” according to Becky Jordi, the Nassau County extension director and horticulture agent. “No fertilizer should be applied from October through February.” We recommend Jacks Citrus Feed.

        Weed & Feed Facts:

        We are at the right time to consider Weed & Feed fertilizer. They typically contain a pre-emergent herbicide for preventing weeds from germinating. The “N” component of fertilizer’s NPK macro-nutrient makeup is nitrogen, which is not necessary in high concentration at this time. However, phosphorus and potassium (PK) can provide current benefits for root health. 

        LEARN MORE

         

        earthworks landscaping

        Plan Your Landscape Design With Earth Works
        Interest increases among home and business owners wanting to redesign their landscapes, and Earth Works Landscape Designers are here to help. We offer site visits and consultations with CADD drawings of plans that we can then schedule and install. Our landscape designers and installation crews are courteous and knowledgeable and strive to complete your project’s vision on time and within budget.

        Seeding Jacksonville

        Seeding Jacksonville, LET’S GROW A BOTANICAL GARDEN
        Thursday, March 23, 2023 • 5:30 pm – 8:00 pm
        WJCT Studios
        Join us at Seeding Jacksonville for an evening of cocktails and a discussion on the health and future of the Jacksonville Arboretum & Botanical Gardens. The Arboretum will share insights on its remarkable achievements over the past year and provide a glimpse into its exciting future.
        Plus, learn how a botanical garden can serve as a green hub of its community and gain a new perspective on its potential impact with guest speaker, Mary Pat Matheson, the CEO of Atlanta Botanical Gardens.
        With her proven leadership skills, Mary Pat has successfully transformed Atlanta Botanical Gardens into one of the top 10 gardens in the country! What an exciting opportunity to learn from her extensive leadership. Mary Pat will be speaking on “Connecting to community – How a botanical garden can be the green hub of its community.”

        TICKETS AVAILABLE

         

        Our Spring Sip & Shop is Back!
        Join us at Earth Works Gardens from 11 am until 2 pm for complimentary beverages served by one of our landscape designers, who can answer your landscape design questions. Enjoy the renovated facilities at Earth Works Gardens while you Sip & Shop!

        And see you next month for more Lawn Garden and Landscaping Tips!

         

        Sip Shop Earth Works Gardens

        Written by John Hawley, Earth Works Content Manager.

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        Services

        • Landscape Design & Installation
        • Paver Patios, Paver Walkways, Paver Driveways
        • Firepits, Retaining Walls , Seat Walls,
        • Landscape Lighting, Drainage design & Installation,
        • Lawn Care Services, Lawn Maintenance, Lawn Fertilization
        • Lawn Pest Control, Lawn Weed Control
        • Aeration and Top Dressing
        • Water Features, Koi Ponds,
        • Waterfalls, Bubbling Fountains
        • Garden Center & Pond Supply Store

        General Services Areas

        Jacksonville (Jax), Jacksonville Beach, Neptune Beach, Atlantic Beach, Ponte Vedra Beach, Ponte Vedra, Fernandina Beach, Amelia Island, Orange Park, St. Johns, Nocatee

        Location

        GARDEN CENTER
        12501 Beach Blvd
        Jacksonville, FL 32246

        LANDSCAPE OPERATIONS
        (not open to the public)
        St. Johns Bluff
        1057 St. Johns Bluff Rd. N.
        Jacksonville, FL 32225

        Hours

        Monday-Saturday 9-5
        Sunday 10-5

        HOLIDAY CLOSINGS
        New Year’s Day • Easter • Memorial Day
        July 4th • Labor Day • Thanksgiving Day
        Christmas Eve • Christmas Day

        Flooding Yard Fixes in Northeast Florida

        Flooding Yard Fixes in Northeast Florida

        Flooding, topsoil erosion, uprooted trees, and fungal diseases require flooding yard fixes that Earth Works strives to provide for Northeast Florida homeowners and businesses. While we cannot control the weather, we can consider monthly average rainfall and conclude that our Florida rainy season is July through September. Weather patterns such as La Nina and El Nino provide information on whether we should expect more or less rain during the season.

        No matter how challenging your drainage issue may appear we’ve probably seen worse and can provide you with drainage solutions to suit your needs.

         

        Drainage Fixes:

        Adequately addressing the potential for flood waters and soil erosion on your property requires properly engineered drainage solutions for your impervious surfaces, including roofs, driveways, decks, patios, and water gardens. Fundamentally, drainage is removing water from an area. However, stormwater regulations developed to protect the environment and prevent flooding restrict the percent of your property that can be built upon with impervious structures and the extent of required onsite stormwater storage. Allowable drainage systems include gutters, French drains, channel drains, swales, permeable paving material, and storm drains. Earth Works landscape designers regularly consult with clients to remedy flooding yard problems that meet state and municipal stormwater regulations.

        Tree Staking:
        Tree staking protects newly planted tall trees from excessive rain that softens their roots grip while preventing wind from blowing them over, resulting in tree and property damage. Six months to one year is the typical time recommended for staking newly planted trees such as palms and other tall, heavy trees. While most plants don’t require staking, even naysayers must admit that tomato plants can benefit from staking. Earth Works Landscaping division stakes large trees for its clients and the garden center stocks staking kits.

        Fungus:
        Fungal treatments become necessary as fungus is one of the underlying problems that occur from too much water in your garden that can be a result of poor drainage. Fungus thrives in damp environments and can quickly devastate a wide variety of plants. We see powdery & downy mildew, black spot, brown patch, leaf spot, and blight on vegetable plants, fruit trees, shrubs, ornamentals, shade trees, and lawns. Bonide Copper Fungicide and Neem oil are both approved for organic gardening and are available at Earth Works Gardens. Additionally, the Earth Works Lawn Care division can diagnose and treat fungus in your lawn along with providing turf fertilization, disease, weed, and pest control.

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        Services

        • Landscape Design & Installation
        • Paver Patios, Paver Walkways, Paver Driveways
        • Firepits, Retaining Walls , Seat Walls,
        • Landscape Lighting, Drainage design & Installation,
        • Lawn Care Services, Lawn Maintenance, Lawn Fertilization
        • Lawn Pest Control, Lawn Weed Control
        • Aeration and Top Dressing
        • Water Features, Koi Ponds,
        • Waterfalls, Bubbling Fountains
        • Garden Center & Pond Supply Store

        General Services Areas

        Jacksonville (Jax), Jacksonville Beach, Neptune Beach, Atlantic Beach, Ponte Vedra Beach, Ponte Vedra, Fernandina Beach, Amelia Island, Orange Park, St. Johns, Nocatee

        Location

        GARDEN CENTER
        12501 Beach Blvd
        Jacksonville, FL 32246

        LANDSCAPE OPERATIONS
        (not open to the public)
        St. Johns Bluff
        1057 St. Johns Bluff Rd. N.
        Jacksonville, FL 32225

        Hours

        Monday-Saturday 9-5
        Sunday 10-5

        HOLIDAY CLOSINGS
        New Year’s Day • Easter • Memorial Day
        July 4th • Labor Day • Thanksgiving Day
        Christmas Eve • Christmas Day

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