1. Bluebells: a naturalizing beauty for any woodland or shade garden setting (seen here in a Wheaton, Il. landscape)

    May 2, 2017 by MAX
    native and natural landscapes, shade gardens of Wheaton

    Bluebells a bloomin!
    Virginia Bluebells (Mertensia) in bloom in Wheaton, Il. mid April. Quite a show. Mertensias  naturalize well, come up all over, then quickly vanish.

    Also a bumblebee magnet. Important and early species, provides important nectar for pollinators. Even competes well with invasive species such as garlic mustard!

    Bluebells (Mertensia virg.)  a native woodland ephemeral, good for wooded, shaded and wetter areas. Will spread well if content. Mix with later blooming plants such as fern, hosta, zig zag goldenrod, shrubs such as Spicebush, witchhazels, and pawpaw.

     

     


  2. Dance of the Wood Betony (Pedicularis), a lovely parasitic native

    by MAX
    Native landscape by ed max, butterlfy gardens of wheaton, glen elly woodland native species, west chicago native landscapes, natural landscape by ed max,

    Swirling beauty! This semi parasitic native of our higher quality prairies is quite a sight in spring.   Easily spotted when little else is in bloom in the prairie or oak savanna.

    • Not a plant easily obtained. Not recommended for most gardens – just a fun plant worth knowing and looking for while hiking.
    • Always buy native species (especially rarer types) from known and reputable growers. Never dig plants (such as betony), as they will most likely drop dead upon arrival to your gardens!
    • Inquire for plant lists and growers whom are local.
    • Designer Ed Max is also cert naturalist plus cert arborist, and designs many gardens , woodlands, and other properties (both traditional and naturalistic) and meshes native with non-native species for wonderful and varied garden and landscape!

  3. Native species for our native places (like that unsightly border you view out there)

    February 11, 2017 by MAX
    Shade beds, native wildflowers of our woodlands, low maint. ,

    Natural landscapes, with Redbud, bluebells, native plants!

    How many borders do we all stare out at that LACK any sort of function or beauty? Suburbia is loaded with nasty untended and overgrown borders between properties. Full of mulberry (origin: China), Buckthorn (origin: Eurasia), Various honeysuckles (Origin: Asia). None of which do anything but cost monies to remove or maintain.

    Why not cut it out, plant in something worth looking at, AND benefits the local wildlife such as pollinators and monarchs, song birds etc? As I write the statistics bear out some grim news: monarch populations down 80 -90% in the last 25 years, hundreds of song birds- all on the decline.  YOU can help by renovating that border: plant in native shrubs, add a swath of native perennials and prairie species, even add some evergreen for screening (and cover for birds). It’s fun, and rewarding! Contact me for a list of native plants, for color, and healthful attributes for the birds and bees! Pictured is a red monarda in this Naperville landscape design.

    Native Naperville landscapes by Ed Max, maxlandscape.com

    Monarda hybrid (but still a native) is a true magnet for all pollinators, hummingbirds, and butterflys.                         Plant native species !

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Contact us for a list of beneficial trees, shrubs and native perennials for your gardens soon!

     

     

     


  4. Help out the local environment by incorporating native species such as Pale Coneflower (Echinachea), a native species of our prairies.

    January 5, 2017 by MAX
    native echinacea is along lived and easy to grow native species, good for poliinators such as butterfly and bees,

    Pale echinachea or pale coneflower is an easy to grow native wildflower, found in our higher quality remnant prairies of the Midwest. Easy to plug into your sunny landscapes- good for native bees and butterflies.

     

    Native species require little if any fertilizer, little water (once established), no need for pesticides, and are a huge benefit for local and endangered insect and butterfly species- such as our imperiled monarch butterfly. Simply incorporate such species into a sunny bed in your yard. Contact us for further info.

     


  5. Fine foliage of the Maidenhair Fern (seen in this Wheaton Il. shade garden)

    January 2, 2017 by MAX
    Woodland species, native ferns of the Chicagoland area, native landscapes by Ed Max and max's greener places

    Maidenhair fern has an unusual leaf, with black stems. Landscape designer Ed Max’s favorite native fern.

     

    Contact Max’s Greener Places for spring designs and installations!

     


  6. A Glen Ellyn landscape design- adds color and privacy to this outdoor living space (3 yrs aft)

    January 21, 2016 by MAX

     

    • Glen Ellyn Il landscape design: showing a small raised bed which encloses this  outdoor patio space and pergola. We used many low maint. native species plus the ever-blooming ‘Rosanne’ Geranium, and Peach ‘Drift’ Rose. A colorful palette of plants to be sure- in this landscape for seasonal color and winter interest.
    • Natural stone walls were built to hold the new planting to compliment this vintage Glen Ellyn residence
    • Perennials and native species selected for their hardiness and drought tolerance.
    • Color year-round with varied species

     

     

    Landscape company in Glen Ellyn, and Wheaton, Lombard landscapes, patios and stone walls by Ed Mx

    An outdoor living space and Glen Ellyn landscape make over & design by Max’s Greener Places. Utilizing native species and grasses ( important for many reasons- CONTACT us to learn more), plus many perennials are seen,  DRIFT roses and juniper for winter cover.

     

     


  7. Great Fritillaries of the woodland gardens, mingling with native bluebells , A Downers Grove shade garden teeming with shade plants, native species, and bulbs , designed by Ed Max, Max’s Greener Places

    December 23, 2015 by MAX
    spring bulbs in the woodland gardens, and along the landscpae paths

    Great Fritillaries are not a common spring bulb for the perennial gardens and are rarely seen in our area. (CLICK on PIC)
    Plant in fall, in deep loamy soils, full or part sun, and that’s it!
    They stand high above the surrounding native bluebells seen here, and the bees love them!
    Seen here in Max’s woodland gardens in West Chicago.


  8. An increasingly rare wildflower seen in this native wildflower garden in Oak Park Il, (pic by landscape designer and naturalist Ed Max @ maxlandscape.com

    December 22, 2015 by MAX
    OaBrook Il landscaping beds full of natibe species and woodland perennials.

    Close relative of the colorful Bleeding Heart, but native and becoming rarer in our increasingly degraded ecosystems of the Chicago region. Rare plants are a passion of Ed Max, and restoring their habitats is Ed’s mission as well as his landscape company.

    Plant in spring in a rich soil, in full shade or part sun.  All Spring Ephemerals such as this dicentra tend to appear early, and vanish just as quickly. With luck, proper soils, and moisture- you will get this cool wildflower to reproduce and naturalize, as it has done here in this Oak Park, Il. landscape  (designed by Ed Max of Max’s Greener Places).

    Contact us now to plan your wildflower garden. Good for you and the pollinators!!!!

     

     


  9. The benefits of fire on this small remnant prairie in Carol Stream, Il, lit by naturalist Ed Max and crew of Max’s Greener Places

    December 21, 2015 by MAX
    caring for rare plants and controlled burns by Ed Max of West Chicago, Il., prairie plants and fire.

    Fire is the key ingredient to maintaining these few prairie remnants we have left in the Chicagoland area, like this one near Wheaton and Carol Stream IL,
    Experienced naturalist and landscape designer Ed Max led his team on this annual burn. As seen in this picture…it was a success!
    Fire keeps the invasives at bay, and recycles the old growth and debris.
    See maxlandcape.com for more on caring for your open spaces.

    Contact Ed Max for advice and ideas for your prairie, and adding native  species to your landscape palette.

     

     

     

     


  10. Designer Ed Max’s landscapes in fall, near West Chicago Il.

    December 7, 2015 by MAX
    Edward Max, landscape designer, landscapers of Wheaton and Winfield, using Drought tolerant species for a sun bed , landscape in West Chicago, Winfield, Wheaton Il area,

    Xeriscapes designed by Landscape designer Ed Max of West Chicago Il, and maxlandscape.com: Cactus, thyme, plus dropseeds( Sporobolus)-all planted in this harsh sunny spot and hold up well. Seen in this West Chicago, Il garden in mid season.