Environmental Insights

Smart Watering Georgia: Harnessing Its Full Potential

Posted by Tim Lake on Jun 4, 2021 11:10:24 AM

If you’re a property owner or manager, then chances are you’ve heard the phrase “smart watering” before. Though not exactly a new concept, smart watering systems have exploded in popularity in the past five years, with people all over the world looking to improve the efficiency of their landscapes. 

Many landowners swear by this money-saving irrigation method, both to reduce water waste and to improve the long-term health of their plants and lawns. In this article, we'll explore the science and benefits of smart watering systems, and show you how to get the most from your smart water system. 

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Topics: Water Management

Weathermatic SmartLink: How Saving Water Saves You Money

Posted by Tim Lake on Apr 1, 2021 2:12:33 PM

There is a common myth that running a business sustainably is expensive. It’s an understandable misconception. In recent years the market has exploded with overpriced products claiming to be eco-friendly, on the condition that businesses pay big bucks for installation and upkeep, not to mention the fees should something go wrong. 

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Topics: Water Management

Bridging the Gap: How Environmental Design is Transforming our Outdoor Spaces

Posted by Tim Lake on Oct 29, 2020 3:44:08 PM

When you picture the perfect outdoor space, what do you see? Greenery? Flowers? Shaded areas? Perhaps a bubbling boulder, or a small pond? Each of us has different ideas about what makes a space great, but the chances are, they will all share one thing in common: life

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Topics: Water Management, Environmental Services, Landscape Design

Summer Irrigation Tips for Georgia and the Southeast

Posted by Tim Lake on Aug 4, 2020 4:05:23 PM

 

Georgians know how to handle the heat. Summers in Georgia regularly move the mercury well past 100 degrees. Drought conditions, sometimes lasting weeks, are not uncommon.

While most of us are able to watch the dog days of summer from our air-conditioned living rooms, our plants, lawns, and gardens have nowhere to go.

‘But plants love the sun,’ you might say. Sure, you’re not wrong. But it is important to remember that plants only love the sun if they’re getting enough water.

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Topics: Water Management

Erosion Control For Construction Sites

Posted by Tim Lake on Aug 23, 2017 10:41:45 AM

Erosion control is a major concern on construction sites for a wide variety of reasons: safety, aesthetics, cost control, and environmental concerns. There are many ways to address and prevent erosion problems, many of which I addressed in detail here. But today I’d like to delve a little deeper into the concept.

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Topics: Water Management, Environmental Services

French Drain Vs. Trench Drain Vs. Swale

Posted by Tim Lake on Apr 27, 2017 8:33:31 AM

Water is essential to life, and vital to the progress of civilizations. It is delightful to sip on a hot summer day or to watch falling gracefully into a fountain basin. However, water becomes an insidious foe when it decides to start pouring into your basement or collecting in sodden pools on your lawn.

Drainage, therefore, is a constant concern in the landscape. There are various devices designed to direct water over and through the landscape. Sometimes the terms can get confusing, so today I’d like to clarify the difference between three of the most common water diversion mechanisms: trench drains vs. French drains vs. swales.

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Topics: Water Management

When Is The Best Time For An Irrigation Inspection?

Posted by Tim Lake on Mar 18, 2017 10:05:00 AM

Spring is undoubtedly the most exciting time of year in the landscape. The full creative energies of Mother Nature are bursting forth, with new blooms and new growth everywhere. And all that lush plant material calls for a lot of water! Which, of course, means you’ll want your irrigation system tuned up and ready to handle the job.

Just as with any other mechanical system, it’s very important to inspect your irrigation system regularly. An irrigation inspection, or irrigation audit, will help you discover and avoid problems such as leaks or broken components that could cause damage to your landscape and/or raise your water bill.

You can inspect your irrigation system yourself, if you feel comfortable doing so and have the time. Otherwise, contact us for a professional irrigation system inspection.

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Topics: Water Management

6 Ways To Save Money And Reduce Water Usage With A Smart Irrigation System

Posted by Tim Lake on Feb 14, 2017 9:41:00 AM

Remember life without GPS? We got along, but sometimes it’s hard to remember how. I can’t tell you how many hours and how many gallons of fuel I’ve saved simply by using this one type of smart technology.

I’m sure it’s paid for itself many times over.

Your plants have no need for travel directions, but there’s another type of smart technology that offers similar savings for your landscape: smart irrigation.

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Topics: Water Management

Erosion Control Solutions for Steep Slopes on Georgia Properties

Posted by Tim Lake on Jan 6, 2017 10:05:30 AM
Steeply sloped land is a landscaping challenge, plain and simple. Slopes require careful treatment to prevent erosion which can be unsightly and even lead to property damage, environmental degradation and/or hazardous conditions.

There are many ways to address a slope. Which one to choose for your property depends on a number of factors, including aesthetics, site conditions, and budget.

First, let’s distinguish between two major categories of erosion control: soft and hard. Soft solutions include any flexible infrastructure that helps keep soil in place. This includes the plants themselves, but there are also many types of materials available that supplement and augment the anti-erosion effect of plant roots. Hard solutions, as their name suggests, include the use of hardscape elements.

Here is a rundown of some of the best options we have found for steep slope erosion control in Georgia.

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Topics: Water Management

The 8 Best Trees And Shrubs For Erosion Control In Georgia And The Southeast

Posted by Tim Lake on Oct 25, 2016 10:02:00 AM

When it comes to erosion control, design is often not the highest concern. For that reason, we rarely use trees and shrubs for erosion control, especially on commercial and industrial sites. Instead, we usually consider the best plants for erosion control to be grasses and other low-growing plants that are cost-effective to install, quick to establish and readily colonize an area.

However, we do sometimes run into situations where aesthetics take priority. Certainly on a residential site there’s no reason your sloped areas shouldn’t be as beautifully landscaped as the rest of the property. Many municipal and commercial sites can likewise benefit from a designer’s eye.

In these cases trees and shrubs can be an excellent addition to erosion control plantings. On highly viewed slopes near apartment buildings, retail centers, malls, outlet centers, resorts, and similar developments, trees and shrubs add interest to what otherwise might be a boring and uninspiring slope covered in lovegrass or juniper.

Using trees for erosion control can be beneficial in other ways, too. A mixed planting of trees, shrubs, and understory plants avoids a monoculture and brings greater resilience from pests and disease. Trees can help with noise abatement, reduce the heat island effect in urban areas, and bring a sense of calm to drivers and pedestrians. On highway corridors and interstate exits, strategically planted trees and shrubs are visually appealing and can help to reduce glare from oncoming headlights.  

With that in mind, we’d like to highlight some of the trees and shrubs we’ve found best suited for erosion control in the Southeast.

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Topics: Water Management