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How Does Your Garden Grow?

Your garden can not only be beautiful but can make a positive impact on our planet

M&P Landscaping has been providing the St. Louis Area with high quality, reliable landscaping since 1995. Founder Brad Meyer and his team of 30 arborists, horticulturists, landscape designers, crew and staff can help with any kind of commercial or residential landscaping project.

Teresa Hessel, M&P project manager, says the first question they ask clients is about how they live in their space. 

“It's vital for the success of the landscaping for the design to fit the lifestyle of the homeowner. For example, you might not want to plant a cutting garden or an herb garden in the same vicinity where children or pets will be playing.  So, asking the right questions before a design even starts is key," she says. “Next, you really need to observe the conditions of the property. Is it wet? Which direction is it orientated? Is it shady or sunny? What is the soil like? These are just a few questions of the many that need to be answered before designing."

M&P's next step is to determine plant choice--again, taking into consideration the site conditions and the way the homeowners will use their space. “I like to have a mix of plants that will add interest year-round. I also like to mix edible plants into the regular landscaping. Things like oregano make a great groundcover, as does thyme. Chives make a great accent plant as well...just to name a few. More and more, people are requesting vegetable gardens, fruit trees and other edible plants be part of their landscape. It’s great fun to help plan as each family has different tastes in the foods they wish to grow,” says Teresa. 

Food produced in a sustainable garden is rich in both nutrients and taste. And, sustainable gardening aims at gardening in an eco-friendly way. It’s about giving back to mother nature by using organic growing methods that use less chemicals and “greener” alternatives when gardening, reducing its impact on the environment.

M&P landscapers say they try to incorporate as many water conservation and soil preparation practices as possible into the design of a garden. One way to do that is with the use of plants that are native to the region. It’s easier to grow and sustain these plants because they’re already suited to the rainfall, soil and climate here. Industry experts confirm native plants require less effort and less water to maintain and grow. Also, growing native plants aid in the preservation of the birds and insects in the area by providing food and shelter for them.

Instead of using chemical herbicides, one should use organic methods to control weeds and pests. Many believe that certain beneficial insects are nature’s perfect way of controlling pests without using harmful chemicals. These insects eat caterpillars, mites, aphids and other bugs that consume plants, and they’re completely harmless to pets and people. Ladybugs, for example, are not only cute and considered to be good luck, but they also love eating aphids.

M&P Landscaping can advise you on all of these, and more, sustainable gardening techniques. Your garden can not only be beautiful but can conserve resources and actually make a positive impact on our planet.


Tips for Healthy, Sustainable Garden:

Mulching: creates low-maintenance, healthy gardens; prevents soil drying out, suppresses weeds, moderates soil temperature, adds nutrients, prevents erosion.

Watering: slowly soak root area with hose at least 3 times/week (trees 15 minutes, shrubs 5 minutes); move mulch away from plants to check soil moisture and adjust watering accordingly.

Planting Trees: helps store carbon from the atmosphere into the soil; also helps cool home down in the summer.

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