1. Natural stone beauty of the Shawnee, deep in So Il.

    March 30, 2015 by MAX
    native and natural landscapes,maxlandscape.com

    One of many natural rock cascades: this one near the old stone fort, within Giant City   S. P., on a fine, early spring day in March!

     

    Landscape season is upon us, finally!

     

     

     

     


  2. Late winter blooms , 3/18/15

    March 18, 2015 by MAX

     

    maxlandscape.com max's greener places,  Ed max, landscape designer, West Chicago landscapers company, landscape consultations of Wheaton,  Glen Ellyn Il landscaping

    Yes, you can have loads of color in mid March, by planting the right mix of early blooming species such as aconites, witchhazels and more. Max can help with that!

    Spring is the time to spruce up the landscapes. Design services, lawn and garden maintenance, spring clean ups, burns, and shrub and tree care avail. West Chicago based landscape company, near Winfield, and Wheaton, St. Charles and Geneva landscape services.


  3. Early blooming plants in the late winter landscapes of West Chicago and Wheaton area.

    March 13, 2015 by MAX
    maxlandscape company in Winfiled, West Chicago, Wheaton shade gardens and landscaping

    Native and ornamental witchhazels attract pollinators, which is especially important early in the season for these hungry bees, as seen in this colorful landscape in West Chicago Wheaton area. Seen… the hungry honeybee here……and  On March 12th.!!!

    Seen: Hammemalis ‘Arnold’s Promise’

     

     

    Landscape design services ( Glen Ellyn, Wheaton,  Winfield,  West Chicago, Lisle, Geneva gardens, St. Charles Il)  focusing on your likes and needs. Contact us now, the gardens as seen here have started popping! !!

    Spring cleaning up and mulch time too!

    * (for the record…1st blooms seen on 3/10 in this Midwestern woodland garden).

     

     

     

     


  4. Arborist news: spring is prime time to plant trees

    March 6, 2015 by MAX

    Spring is the optimal time to plant trees, especially native species such as Bur oak (Quercus mac.), Red oak (Quercus rub.), Hackberry, Gingko, or Hickory. Many Trees are dug only in spring. So, for best selection, and to avoid selecting trees that have been above ground for too long-again, spring is best. Many woody trees and shrubs spend their winters setting root, in warm weather allocating energy above ground. With a few months to get settled, the new tree will have the winter to begin root development. We have a qualified arborist on staff that can help with selection and installation of your new investment!

    native trees of Dupage co, oaks of Winfield, Wheaton landscapes

    The state champion Bur oak of Mo. Approx. 250 + yrs old and  A giant! Recommended oak for our urban areas, does well with drought, pollutants etc  (click pic to see) Hannibal area.

     

    native trees, custom landscapes of Dupage county

    Old cedar trees: To think what these trees have witnessed over the eons!
    (native red cedar (Juniperus)


  5. It’s almost spring! Time to consider the landscapes

    March 2, 2015 by MAX

    It is time to get thinking about the landscapes. Time is upon us to get moving on that outdated garden, that uneven patio, and that eyesore of a front landscape. You know what I mean. Late winter is the time to get things lined up-so when the spring weather finally (?) hits , you will be prepared to move. Give a call or shoot off that email now!                   WILL SPRING EVER COME? This has been one of the top three coldest, snowiest Februaries on record-crazy!

    landscape company in Wheaton, Il, maxlandscape.com

    A sign of spring: the Winter aconite, which pops while the snow may still be present. Good for pollinators, given it’s early appearance. Though a non native, it will stay put in your woodland or perennial garden. Divide and move around while in bloom.

    Other early blooming plants for the garden: witch-hazels, forsythias, native wildflowers such as bloodroot, trillium, and violas, plus tulips, crocus, and hellebores.

    maxlandscape.com, west Chicago il and Winfield landscapes,

    maxlandscape.com, west Chicago il and Winfield landscapes,

     


  6. 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!

     


  7. Massive White Pine (P.strobus) in winter (click on pic)

    February 8, 2015 by MAX
    Arborsit info, maxlandscape.com, pine trees in the landscapes, max's greener places, Ed Max, arborist

    A grand specimen White pine, on the road close to Princeton’s cemetery, where the state’s largest pine exists.

    Pine and other evergreen materials add so much in our Midwestern winters and the landscapes. Seen here is a grand white pine dwarfing this  (late)  1800’s era home  in Princeton, Il. It would be my guess that this specimen has to be close to the age of the house, making it at least 125-150 yrs old.

     

     

     

     

     


  8. and …..more on those nasty invasives …..

    January 27, 2015 by MAX
    native landscapes by max's greener places, winfield, il, maxlandscape.com, landscaper in west chicago

    Snowfall on the unfrozen river in January. Again, invasive buckthorn can be clearly seen along the shoreline-(the low heavily flocked shrubs)  plus super invasive Reed Canary grass dominating the shoreline, with floodplain tree species rising above.  Off Geneva Rd, the west branch of the DuPage River.

    From Wiki info:

    Rhamnus cathartica is a deciduous shrub or small tree growing up to 10 m tall, with grey-brown bark and spiny branches. The leaves are elliptic to oval, 2.5–9 cm long and 1.2–3.5 cm broad; they are green, turning yellow in autumn, and are arranged somewhat variably in opposite to subopposite pairs or alternately. The flowers are yellowish-green, with four petals; they are dioecious and insect pollinated. The fruit is a globose black drupe 6–10 mm diameter containing two to four seeds; it is mildly poisonous for people, but readily eaten by birds, which disperse the seeds in their droppings.
    The species was originally named by Linnaeus as Rhamnus catharticus.

    The seeds and leaves are considered toxic to humans and animals, causing stomach cramps and laxative effects thought to serve a function in seed dispersal. The chemical compounds responsible for this laxative effect are anthraquinone[9] and emodin cathartica as the genus name Rhamnus is of feminine gender.

    Rhamnus cathartica is shade-tolerant, moderately fast-growing and short-lived. It is a food plant of the Brimstone butterfly. The sulphur-yellow males are indicative of the plant’s presence.

    Allelopathy-
    Secondary compounds, particularly emodin, have been found in fruit, leaves, and bark of the plant which may protect the plant from insects, herbivores, and pathogens.[12] Emodin present in R. cathartica fruit may serve purposes of prevention of early consumption, as it is found most in unripe fruits, which allows seeds to reach maturity before being dispersed. Birds and mice significantly avoid eating unripe fruits, and if forced to ingest emodin or unripe fruit, the animals regurgitate the meal or produce loose, watery stools.
    Allelopathic effects of exudates from R. cathartica leaf litter, roots, bark, leaves, and fruit may reduce germination of other plant species in the soil. Soils in buckthorn dominated areas are higher in nitrogen and carbon than normal soils, which speed up decomposition rates of leaf litter.This can result in bare patches of soil being formed and R. cathartica performs well in such disturbed habitats, so this may be adaptive for the setting of its seed.

    The species is naturalised and invasive in parts of North America.[3][14][12] R. cathartica has a competitive advantage compared to native trees and shrubs in North America because it leafs out before native species.[15] The early emergence of their leaves in the spring and can shade out the growth of native plants. 27-35% of the annual carbon gain in R. cathartica comes from photosynthesis occurring before the leaves of other plants emerge. [9] Soil in woodlands dominated by R. cathartica was higher in nitrogen, pH, and water content than soil in woodlands relatively free of R. cathartica,[16][17] probably because R. cathartica has high levels of nitrogen in its leaves and these leaves rapidly decompose.
    R. cathartica is also associated with invasive European earthworms (Lumbricus sp.) in the northern Midwest of North America.[18] Removing R. cathartica led to a decrease of invasive earthworm biomass of around 50%.[19]

    Control methods[edit]
    It is difficult to control because it sprouts vigorously and repeatedly from the root collar following cutting, girdling, or burning.[21] Herbicide application to newly cut stumps is a popular and effective control method. However, seeds stay viable in the soil for several years before sprouting, so repeated treatments and long-term monitoring of infested areas is required.[22] Garlon and Tordon, as well as their derivatives, have been found to be effective chemical means. Roundup can be used but is less reliable. [9] An application of these chemicals in early winter reduces the risk of negatively impacting non-target species, as most have gone dormant by this time. It is also easier to spot infestations at this time of the year, as its leaves stay out an average of 58 days longer than native plants.[9]
    Mechanical control methods such as pulling and chopping of plants are more environmentally friendly, but also very time consuming. Plants with stems less than half an inch in diameter or less than a meter tall can easily be pulled, but pulling risks disturbing the roots of adjacent, native plants and harming them as well.[22] Propane-weed torches may also be used to kill seedlings and they will generally not re-sprout if burned in spring or early summer.[9]

     

     

     

     

     


  9. Invasive Buckthorn; it may look nice cloaked in snow but….

    January 25, 2015 by MAX
    maxlandscape.com, invasive species

    Buckthorn (nasty invasive) shrouded nicely but choking the light and the life out of our woodlands and open spaces.

     

     

     

     

     


  10. A winter landscape (at the Mo. Botanical Gardens)

    by MAX
    arborist info, ed max, maxlandscape.com, tree info

    Bald cypress in the foreground, Dawn Redwoods beyond. At the rear of the photo you can see the original home of founder C.Shaw.