Chinook Landscaping and Design – Landscaping Calgary Specialists
Calgary, Alberta
Mon-Fri 8:00 AM- 5:00 PM.
22 Jan 2020

Do you really need a landscape design?

We have seen many landscapers in Calgary push their landscape design packages to Calgary homeowners but do you really need a landscape design?  Landscape design components can look great on paper but quite often the beauty is not translated into being practical or affordable. As well, if a landscape design is not accurately created it can cause many issues once your installation begins.

Landscape designs can cause more problems than they solve

A landscape designs main purpose is to give you and your landscape contractor an exact plan to create your landscaping project.  We have seen some designs where measurements are not accurate, grade changes are not accounted for and landscape design components just don’t fit in the spaces they are supposed to.  When these mistakes occur it can cost you money to re-install the comments and/or cost you time wasted on head scratching.  Drainage issues may also occur when grade changes are not taken into account.  These drainage issues can cause major issues with your landscaping and in the end these issues will cost you money.

Choose your landscape designer carefully

If you do plan to go ahead with a landscape design make sure you are diligent in choosing a designer with several years of experience in Calgary.  There are many landscaping companies in Calgary, some of them are very new to the city and they may not understand the climate changes, drainage issues and other factors that come with Calgary’s unique weather.  If you have a smaller project then a landscape designer is likely not going to be needed.  You can save the design costs and put the money towards the actual landscape work.

Smaller landscaping projects usually do not need a landscape design

If you have a smaller landscaping project such as patios and walkways, fence, mowing pavers or small garden bed retainers then you likely won’t need a landscape design.  These smaller landscaping components can easily be sprayed out on your property.  A spray out design on your property is the best design of all as it is there in front of you and drawn on the space the landscaping component is going to occupy.  Revamping garden beds is another time when you probably don’t need a landscape design.  Allow for mature growth when you plan a garden bed and place the shrubs in their pots in the garden.

When we recommend a landscape design

Landscape designs can be a very important part of your landscaping process but not in all cases.  We recommend a landscape design for our Calgary landscaping customers often.  Landscape designs are particularly important if you have a large landscaping project.  A large landscaping project with multi levels or large grade changes is another case where you may need a landscape design. If you have a new home with no landscaping in place yet then a landscape design will be helpful but only if it is done correctly.  If you are a visual person and cannot visualize your landscaping then you will benefit from a landscape design to help you see the overall plan more clearly.

Check out our landscape design Calgary page for more information.



21 Jan 2020

When is it time for Lawn removal?

Many lawns around Calgary can begin to look old, overgrown and weed infested over time.  Even new lawns can look sick and poorly established if the loam underneath was not installed properly.  The question is when is it time for lawn removal?

Bad soil or loam means your lawn will struggle

Many newly installed lawns were not properly prepped with good quality loam, some properties have little or no loam and the sod or new lawn was just laid on top of silty clay.  You may have purchased a new home from a builder in winter only to discover a sick poorly established lawn once spring arrived.  Bad soil or means your lawn will struggle and you will struggle trying to get it looking healthy again.  Regardless of what you do to help it your lawn will still have problems getting established and staying healthy.  New sod care  with Fertilizer your lawn will help a little but only in the short term.  Aerating and powering raking are also short term solutions.  Poor soil means it is time for lawn removal.

Weed infested lawns can be an endless battle

What to do with weeds? If your lawn has been infested with weeds and there seems to be more weeds than lawn then it is likely time for lawn removal.  Many weeds like dandelions for example can be controlled with herbicides or by weeding by hand.  Other more evasive weeds like clover and quack grass can take over lawns quickly and they are not easily controller by herbicides or hand weeding.  Weed infested lawns can be an endless battle.  You may find yourself weeding on a daily basis and you still aren’t able to keep up with the weed problem.  It iss time for lawn removal if weeds have taken over your lawn.

Lawns growing over and above sidewalks and walkways

Over time your lawn can begin to get higher and higher until it is many inches above your walkway or city sidewalk.  This happens because the lawns roots are getting larger and larger taking up more space beneath the grass blades.  This causes the lawn to rise up making it very awkward to trim or mow it properly.  You may also notice that your lawn is leaching soil onto your walkway because the soil is above the walkway or sidewalk.  Dew worms can also cause major problems with lawns and they are also in many cases, responsible for pushing up lawns and leaching soil onto walkway.  You need to remove old sod if dew worms have become a persistent problem.

We can help you with sod or lawn removal and answer any questions you may have.






16 Jan 2020

A great alternative to salt for your walkway

For many years now Calgarians have been using salt or gravel to melt snow and ice from their slippery winter walkways and sidewalks. Salt can be especially harmful to your plantings and sod and other landscaping. A little salt is ok but too much salt can cause short and long term damage to sod, shrubs, trees and perennials.  Not only is salt damaging to the foliage but more damage is caused by salt being taken up by the plants root systems.

Salty spring runoff is harmful

In the spring or during warm chinook weather, the snow melts and mixes with the salt.  This salty spring run offThe water and salt is absorbed by the plants root systems and eventually reaches toxic levels.  In spring, during new plant growth, you may notice your plants are slow to leaf out or they are not showing any signs of life.  Your lawn or sod may look brownish and the grass blades may be mushy. Minimize salt damage to your lawn in Calgary.

Lava rock is a good option

Lavagrip is a great option to using salt or gravel.  Lavagrip is actually crushed Lava rock that provides a very grippy surface when applied on walkways on patio surfaces.  The lava rock is harmless and won’t damage your plants or lawn.  Lava rock is porous and this allows your plantings to still get air even if you apply a lot of lava rock to your walkway.  Lavagrip will not melt ice and although it provides a good drip on top of ice it is still best to shovel your walkways clean of snow and ice.