1. Rare and beautiful White Ladies Slipper Orchid (Cypripedium candidum), a beguiling and shy native not suited to most of our landscapes

    May 19, 2017 by MAX

    And best left in the wild!, as seen here, and in nice numbers at this rather secluded and secret site near West Chicago, Winfield areas. A super rare native orchid-  mostly due to illegal,(and  bone-headed) harvesting from the wild. When dug in bloom, mortality rate is off the charts.  Endangered in most northern states, l,isted as threatened in Il.,

    Best admired, and photographed, but leave alone and enjoy this cool plant structure!

     

    native and natural landscaping in West Chicago Il, Wheaton Il natural shade beds, landscapes by ed amx

    White ladies slipper mid may 17, and native species of prairies, Midwest landscapes

    A denizen of wet prairies and fen habitats, with few remaining, so habitat is critical.

     


  2. 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!

     


  3. A unique (and vintage) landscape design and renovation

    February 8, 2016 by MAX
    Vintage landscapes in River Forest and Oak Park. Landscaping in Oak Park.

    This was a fun project- we began with a clean slate here in leafy River Forest. Deep rich soils help to establish this varied palette of shrubs and perennials, seen here in its 3rd season.


  4. Landscapes of 2015 part II, Oak Park Il. landscape designs, by Ed Max of Max’s Greener Places and maxlandscape.com

    December 24, 2015 by MAX
    Landscape design, River Forest and Oak Park, by Ed Max, landscaper

    This complete redo was done in 14-15, and is now filling in nicely! You enter the white birch grove on a paver walkway, through seasonal beds of native dropseeds, roses, azalea and more.

    Seasonal bed care and mulch are necessary items, which we do in spring and all season long.


  5. 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.


  6. 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!!!!

     

     


  7. Ancient white pine of the U.P. of MI. (the Porkies). White pine in the landscapes of the Midwest.

    October 28, 2015 by MAX

    Within part of a lg swath of old growth forest dwells giants:
    white pine (P.strobus) at 150 ft.n 400 year plus yrs old, 300 yr old Hemlock (Tsuga can.), Massive Yellow birch,Striped maple, and majestic Sugar maples.
    Seen here along the Little Carp Trail Fall 2015

    native pines in our landscapes of the Wheaton area, vergreens and poine are important parts of a good landscape design

    150 ft plus 400 yr old + white pine pinus strobus


  8. Monarda (red, newer cultivar)

    June 29, 2015 by MAX

    Of the mint family, so can be a bit aggressive, but worth the trouble. A spectacular perennial for the sunnier gardens and border beds. Seen here in an Oakbrook cottage garden. Also a magnet for hummingbirds and other pollinators.

    Contact us for landscape renovations and updated plantings. Seen here in an Oakbrook landscape: a cottage garden perennial.

    Perennial beds of Wheaton, ed max, landscaper in West Chicago, maxlandscape.com

    This modern cultivar of Red Monarda grew to 6′ this wet June of 2015. Quite impressive as it towers above the other perennials in this shade/sun bed!


  9. Asimina: the native Pawpaw

    April 24, 2015 by MAX
    native trees, Ed max arborist, maxlandscape.com

    Of the custard family, and the only one of
    N A.. Highly edible fruit, long leaf, nice fall colors, a woodland denizen, forms colonies. To 20′.

    Seen here is its truly unusual maroon blossom. Takes two to cross pollinate!

    Site in :

    Full sun, part shade, in rich humus soils really helps.


  10. Potting up bulbs for spring color in the landscapes

    February 28, 2015 by MAX

    Potting up bulbs on a late February day. Sunny, but crazy, cold day !!!  Bulbs can sit unplanted, (but kept cold), and from my experience – once potted up, bloom nicely anyway. I prefer to pot my daffodils,  then set into the woodland shade gardens where I see fit and to fill in. Besides…

    Potting up up the bulbs. A bit late, but we'll see!

    A before shot- March 1

    Most of us cannot remember where they are needed until spring when things are in bloom anyways. I frequently plant on top of other plants that are not visible! So, give it a try- pot them up, force them early, then plant out where needed!