Tuesday, April 30, 2013

#AtoZChallenge – Z is for Zen Water Garden

In this hectic, stress-filled modern world, what could be more relaxing and appealing than your own Zen Water Garden? Integrity Landscape excels at transforming your functional back yard into a tranquil, private retreat—your own Zen Water Garden. A serene place where you can relax, unwind, reflect, and recharge your drained battery. Call today for a free consultation.

zen water garden

Monday, April 29, 2013

#AtoZChallenge – Y is for Your Before and After

There are few joys more fulfilling for a homeowner than to revel in the amazing transformation of your property by the Landscape experts at Integrity Landscape solutions. Our many clients tell us that they knew it would be an improvement, but to experience Your Before and After is truly breathtaking. Here are a few of the hundreds of reactions we've received from people viewing their Before and After:

"We just wanted to say thank you for the incredible job you guys did with our front yard landscaping and our patio. We think it turned out fantastic and are really enjoying the transformation of the front yard and the beautiful patio. It was really amazing to watch your entire crew work like a well-oiled machine. They were incredibly fast, hard-working and detailed. By the end result, we are very happy to have chosen Integrity for this job. You guys said what you were going to do, and did just that. In short, you lived up to your name, Integrity."  -- Justin & Bridget L., Oak Creek, WI
before and after pics of raised patio

"The work on the Reflection Pond and surrounding areas is beautiful! I toured it this afternoon. What a delightful place it is becoming!" -- Chuck L., Muskego, WI
before and after pics of elevated entryway

"My goal was to turn my small back yard into a beautifully landscaped sanctuary that I can also share with my family and friends. I now have exactly that. I love it! Everyone who has seen it loves it! My experience with Integrity from start to finish is one of the best I have ever had with a contractor. I would highly recommend them to others and would use them again." -- Randy H., Milwaukee, WI
before and after pics of expanded party porch

Saturday, April 27, 2013

#AtoZChallenge – X is for Xeriscape

If you're interested in keeping your watering bills low, talk to us about xeriscaping. The word is a portmanteau of the Greek word for dry and landscaping, and refers to landscape designs that minimize water use. Because the water department of Denver, Colorado has registered the trademark on that particular word, you can also call this specialized form of garden development water-conserving landscapes, drought-tolerant landscaping, or smart-scaping.

Typically, we encourage planting whose natural requirements are appropriate to the local climate anyway, as well as working to properly manage water flow; those are key components to making sure your property remains low-maintenance and low-cost over the long term.

Key advantages include:
  • lower consumption of water, whether from the ground or the hose;
  • more water available for the community;
  • less time and work for maintenance (i.e. no lawns to mow);
  • full advantage taken of rainfall retention in appropriate planting design, soil grading, and mulching;
  • more likelihood that your landscaping will survive when water restrictions are implemented during droughts;
  • can be more visually interesting than lawns.
Consider your options and ask Integrity to help you come up with a landscaping design that takes full advantage of Wisconsin's weather and temperature, while minimizing the ongoing maintenance thereafter.

before and after of a low-maintenance landscape renovation

Friday, April 26, 2013

#AtoZChallenge – Water Features

A backyard water feature serves as a beautiful, natural place to escape from the pressures of the world. Your water garden is your backyard haven. It’s a place where you can regroup your thoughts, relax, and grow in a way that makes all the rest of life more tolerable, meaningful, and enjoyable. No wonder water features have become an increasingly popular trend in landscaping. It’s our personal world of natural streams, ponds, waterfalls, and wildlife. It’s the calm place in the center of your hectic world.

Water features are surprisingly efficient. Along with being a popular way to reconnect with nature, you can transform high-maintenance expanses of lawn into beautiful, low-maintenance water features.

Consider a waterfall for your back yard.

Water features are environmentally friendly and can be installed anywhere, similar to traditional landscaping. They are completely customizable to meet your unique desires. In addition, water features–like other types of landscaping–mature with age, increasing the value of your home more than any other type of home improvement.

They also add landscaping variety: Water plants are truly the “emerald” jewels of the gardening world. Self-watering and hardy, these plants return year after year. You can even plant tropical lilies that bloom at night! The beauty and low maintenance of aquatic plants provide a truly unique accent to any water garden.

Water features offer space for hardy perennials.

Find serene tranquility in your own back yard. Relax beside a water garden and experience a tranquility that transcends today’s stressful world. Recuperate from your hectic day by listening to the soothing sound of a waterfall. Join the many satisfied homeowners who readily profess that adding a water feature to their landscaping was the best investment they’ve ever made.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

#AtoZChallenge -- V is for Versatility

Versatility means Integrity Landscape offers a variety of specialized services in Landscape Design, Draining Solutions, Grading, Brick Patio & Walks, Landscape Renovation, Retaining Walls, Water Features, and Landscape Lighting.

Whether your tastes are modest, extravagant, or anywhere in between, we have the versatility to deliver the results you desire for a reasonable cost. Whatever you have in mind, Integrity Landscape Services, LLC can add value to your home & your outdoor living space. We take pride in our professionalism, quality craftsmanship, and attention to detail.

before and after of a new patio

As experienced landscape designers, we incorporate your preferred landscape features, such as plants from a select local nursery, a variety of brick pavers to create your custom patio design, a retaining wall, or water feature. It is also important to install all landscape features at the proper grade to prevent damaging water problems. We believe landscaping should be done right the first time. Call today for your free consultation!

patio before and after - now with water feature

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

#AtoZChallenge – U is for Unusual Features

Unusual landscape features such as a fountain, a sculpture, a custom-built fire pit, or built-in grills can create a stunning ambiance for your outdoor activities. They can add just the right touch to make your outdoor entertaining memorable. Integrity Landscape thrives on delivering unusual yet functional features.

outdoor fireplace and built-in grill

Whether fire or water is your preference, we can make sure whatever unique installation feeds your fancy fits your budget and accentuates the positives at your property.

before and after installing a small waterfall
Call today for a free consultation.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

#AtoZChallenge – T is for Tree Planting

Smile and say “TREES!” Trees are a vital landscaping component. When thriving, they make a beautiful contribution to the garden. Adding trees to your landscape, whether it is one specimen tree or a grouping of a certain variety, will greatly improve the appearance and value of your property. Trees can create shady spots perfect for a bench or table. They can block winds and add privacy. Depending on the variety, they can also add color and interest to your yard. Think about whether you want an evergreen, deciduous, or flowering tree.

Choosing the right tree is crucial. Integrity Landscape design experts will offer expert knowledge in tree choice and where to plant it. A major do-it-yourself landscaping mistake is improper tree placement. For example, a tree with surface roots can destroy paving, while a tree that grows taller than expected can interfere with power lines or block views.

Once your trees have been selected and planted they will need to be cared for properly. Providing the right amount of water is probably the most crucial maintenance concern when it comes to trees. Most trees require occasional deep watering, but familiarize yourself with your tree's specific needs. Other maintenance considerations include mulching, fertilizing, and pruning.

With each mature tree potentially adding thousands of dollars of value to your home, you can't afford to make an uneducated decision. The experts at Integrity Landscape can help you select the best trees for your property and growing conditions. They have experience with many tree types and will be able to tell you what will and won't work.

planting mature trees

Monday, April 22, 2013

#AtoZChallenge – S is for Super Service Award

Angie’s List had become the best choice for impartial referrals. Their success is based on the legitimacy of their information and recommendations. They do not hand out awards frivolously. For the third straight year Integrity Landscape has been awarded the elite Super Service Award. With as many landscape companies in Southeast Wisconsin as there are, only 3 qualified for a Super Service Award.

We strive to deliver exceptional beauty and unique appeal for your landscape work. We are only satisfied if you are satisfied.

We like to let our work, and you the satisfied client, speak for our efforts. But if we must occasionally share our pride, this one's something special! Thank you for helping us win a Super Service Award from Angie’s List for 3 straight years.

Angie's list super service award from 2010, 2011, and 2012

Saturday, April 20, 2013

#AtoZChallenge – R is for Retaining Walls

Retaining walls are constructed features designed to restrain soil to unnatural slopes. They situate soils between two different elevations, often in areas of terrain with undesirable slopes or in areas where the landscape needs to be shaped for design considerations. Our experienced designers & installers will engineer your wall system with superior construction, stability, durability, and strength.

Through the installation of a proper, compacted base we ensure the quality of the foundation of your new investment. In addition, by installing a proper drainage system behind all applicable walls, we can reduce the hydrostatic pressure and increase the longevity of your new retaining wall.

By offering quality materials such as Unilock, Keystone, Fieldstone, or Lannonstone, we will provide you with a variety of options to meet your budget so you can enjoy the beauty for years to come.

We offer a wide selection of Keystone products, such as Country Manor or Stonegate, in a variety of colors and the straight-face and sculptured-face units in either gray or light brown. Steps can be added for increased accessibility and decorative pillars can be added for an upscale appearance.

retaining walls Integrity has installed

Friday, April 19, 2013

#AtoZChallenge – Q is for Quarry stone

Naturally rugged and beautiful quarry stone makes a visually appealing choice for your patio or walkway. Quarry stone has been used since ancient times and offers a ageless, rustic look.

With a wide variety of textures, colors, and sizes, quarry stone allows you to express your distinctive style by transforming the ordinary into the extraordinary.

Whether you're creating a free-standing wall with an elegant and charming appearance, holding back a large hill, or just want to kick back and relax around a fire on the patio, quarry stones blend perfectly with nature.

quarry stone pathway

“Natural quarry stone has many innate attributes that make it a green building product: it is natural, low maintenance, and exceptionally durable,” – University of Tennessee Center for Clean Products.

quarry stone patio

Thursday, April 18, 2013

#AtoZChallenge – P is for Patio

Is this the year to turn your yard into a wonderful patio, where you can relax in serene splendor, or entertain family and friends in warm, elegant ambiance? Integrity Landscape experts can design and build a brilliant upgrade you will enjoy for years, that will add value to your home.

Some satisfied patio clients:

Ron S. Muskego, WI
"Happy with the new deck/patio and lights. Our party was a good time and it was great that Integrity completed the job before the party. New patio by the lake looks good and numerous kids have been playing on the beach.”

Randy H. Milwaukee, WI
"My goal was to turn my small back yard into a beautifully landscaped sanctuary that I can also share with my family and friends. I now have exactly that. I love it! Everyone who has seen it loves it! My experience with Integrity from start to finish is one of the best I have ever had with a contractor. I would highly recommend them to others and would use them again."

patio before and after montage

patio with firepit and lighting features

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

#AtoZChallenge – O is for Oasis of Tranquility

Imagine a landscaping upgrade to your backyard that turns your private space into an Oasis of Tranquility. Imagine enjoying your free time while upgrading the value of your property.

Imagine no more. You are but a phone call away from a free consultation from Integrity Landscape that can make your Oasis of Tranquility a reality. Our creative designers are expert at designing relaxing beauty and adding serene elements, such as water features or small fountains.

Integrity Landscape water feature samples

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

#AtoZChallenge – N is for Natural Stone

There is a timeless, elegant beauty to landscape improvements featuring natural stone. Our designers create beautiful patios, walls, and pathways using natural pavers and stone that display an enduring warmth and charm.

Unilock and Paveloc offer many natural textures and colors to deliver inviting outdoor living areas. Custom, decorative borders or inlays augment the installation with timeless beauty and match other natural stone features, such as free-standing seat walls or pillars.

examples of natural stone installations

Monday, April 15, 2013

#AtoZChallenge – M is for Marble Features

Marble is a beautiful, timeless stone. If marble is your choice, adding marble features can deliver stunning results, that easily weather the rain, snow, and ice storms Wisconsin faces on a regular basis.

marble walk-way

Marble tiles can work as part of a courtyard design.

marble pool tiles

Marble can also make an elegant accentuation for a firepit or wall. Or an eye-catching sculpture.

marble accent features

Perhaps the most classic use of marble is in a marble fountain.

lit, marble fountain

Saturday, April 13, 2013

#AtoZChallenge – L is for Landscape Renovation

Investing in landscape renovation dramatically enhances the beauty and value of your home. Our designers effectively blend new ideas with your existing features to make your home exterior feel and look elegant and expensive. Only you know the excellent affordable value Integrity Landscape Services LLC provides.

We specialize in creative, custom designs that embrace modern and low-maintenance plants. We regularly build amazing new patio area renovations with visually appealing elements such as walls, steps, pillars, fire pits, lighting, and water features. Our work speaks for itself:

samples of Integrity Landscape work

Friday, April 12, 2013

#AtoZ Challenge – K is for Kew Garden

One of the most famous landscaped areas in the world is the Kew Gardens in London. Landscapers from all over the world look to the Kew Gardens for inspiration and in admiration.

Kew Gardens originated in the exotic garden at Kew Park formed by Lord Capel John of Tewkesbury. It was enlarged and extended by Augusta, Dowager Princess of Wales, the widow of Frederick, Prince of Wales, for whom Sir William Chambers built several garden structures. George III enriched the gardens, aided by William Aiton and Sir Joseph Banks.

The Kew herbarium is one of the largest in the world, housing approximately 7 million specimens. The herbarium represents plant types from all parts of the globe, especially the tropics.

Kew provides advice and guidance to police forces around the world where plant material may provide important clues or evidence in cases. In one famous case, the forensic science department at Kew was able to ascertain that the contents of the stomach of a headless corpse found in the river Thames contained a highly toxic African bean.

In the South East corner of Kew Gardens stands the Great Pagoda (by Sir William Chambers), erected in 1762, from a design in imitation of the Chinese Ta. The lowest of the ten octagonal stories is 49 feet (15 m) in diameter. From the base to the highest point is 163 feet (50 m).

Each story finishes with a projecting roof, after the Chinese manner, originally covered with ceramic tiles and adorned with large dragons; a story is still propagated that they were made of gold and were reputedly sold by George IV to settle his debts. The truth is that the dragons were made of wood painted gold, and simply rotted away. The building walls are brick. The staircase, 253 steps, is in the center of the building. The Pagoda was reopened for the summer months of 2006, and is now permanently open to visitors.
The Pagoda at Kew Gardens

Thursday, April 11, 2013

#AtoZChallenge – J is for Japanese Garden

A Japanese Garden is rare and exotic landscaping treasure.

According to Wikipedia, Japanese Gardens are traditional gardens that create miniature idealized landscapes, often in a highly abstract and stylized way. The gardens of the Emperors and nobles were designed for recreation and aesthetic pleasure, while the gardens of Buddhist temples were designed for contemplation and meditation.

Japanese garden styles include karesansui, Japanese rock gardens or zen gardens, which are meditation gardens where white sand replaces water; roji, simple, rustic gardens with teahouses where the Japanese tea ceremony is conducted; kaiyū-shiki-teien, promenade or stroll gardens, where the visitor follows a path around the garden to see carefully composed landscapes; and tsubo-niwa, small, courtyard gardens.
Japanese garden

Japanese gardens were developed under the influences of the Chinese gardens, but gradually Japanese garden designers began to develop their own aesthetics, based on Japanese materials and Japanese culture. By the Edo period, the Japanese garden had its own distinct appearance. Since the end of the 19th century, Japanese gardens have also been adapted to Western settings.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

#AtoZChallenge – I is for Illumination

Let there be light! Adding illumination to your landscape upgrade provides a dramatic and distinctive visual appeal.

Key consideration: a little landscape lighting goes a long way. Your eyes need less light outdoors than they do indoors in order to see light, shadow, and pattern. To plan your outdoor landscape lighting, explore your outdoor property at night and envision how and when you want to use your spaces. Then employ a free consultation from Integrity Landscape Services to tap into our experienced, creative ideas.

Light differs dramatically from day to night. We embrace this vital distinction when we make recommendations regarding lighting pathways and other outdoor spaces. We use a commercial-grade, cast aluminum landscape lighting system for beautiful and long-lasting results. Sturdy, stainless steel transformers come with a lifetime manufacturer’s warranty. There’s a full pallet of attractive styles and finishes for your lighting system.

Added bonus: Your improved landscape lighting is not only visually appealing, it also enhances the security of your home.

night view of landscape lighting

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

#AtoZChallenge – H is for Hardscapes

According to Wikpedia, hardscapes, in the practice of landscaping, refer to paved areas--like streets & sidewalks, large business complexes & housing developments, and other industrial areas where the upper soil profile is no longer exposed. The term is especially used in heavily urbanized or suburban areas with little bare soil.

Typical small-scale hardscaping examples include patios and sidewalks. Retaining walls are often used to create boundaries between hardscapes and earth landscaping features, or softscapes. From an urban planning perspective, hardscapes can include very large features, such as paved roads and traffic circles or traffic islands. Most artificial water features are technically hardscapes because they require a barrier to retain the water, instead of letting it drain into the surrounding soil.

From an aesthetic perspective, hardscaping allows workers to erect landscaping features that would otherwise be impossible due to soil erosion, or that compensate for large amounts of human traffic that would cause wear on bare earth or grass. For example, sheer vertical features are possible.

patio as example of hardscape

Monday, April 8, 2013

#AtoZ Challenge – G is for Grasses

Grasses can be a beautiful additional to your landscape upgrade. Consider the following benefits of grasses:
  1. Require low maintenance. Once properly planted, grasses become a perennial addition to your landscape and require very little maintenance.
  2. Add privacy. Tall grasses in a clustered grouping can easily screen an unpleasant view.
  3. Provide texture to beds and borders. Ornamental grasses add lovely and distinctive boarders to your landscape. For example, fountaingrass offers soft, mounding features to vibrant blooming plants.
  4. Soften hardscaping. Grasses mellow the strong features of walls and pavings to make them look less cold and more inviting.
  5. Dress up decks and patios. Placing ornamental grasses in beautiful pots and vases is an easy way to add a vibrant zest to your patio or deck.
  6. Accent a garden. Ornamental grasses are a wonderful tool to make your garden a work of art.
  7. Create lovely edges. Grasses create flowing, natural borders to walks and pathways.
  8. Cover bare ground. If you have a piece of land that is difficult to use, plant grasses for a natural, covered look.
Contact Integrity Landscape for a free consultation about upgrading your home with lovely grasses and other improvements.

landscaping grasses and fescues

Saturday, April 6, 2013

#AtoZ Challenge – F is for Fire Pit

A fire pit can completely upgrade the outdoor enjoyment derived from back yard patio. Here are six reasons to for you to turn to Integrity Landscape for a permanent fire pit upgrade.

  1. Family and friends gathering. Nothing says gather your favorite friends and family together quite like a fire pit.
  2. Improved use of your outdoor space. Fire pits are a great way to extend your party space to the outdoors.
  3. Added option for food preparation. There is no more enjoyable and unique taste than kabobs or marshmallows cooked over a fire pit.
  4. Heat and warmth to extend outdoor recreational use. It is enjoyable to gather and drink around a fire pit on a chilly autumn or early spring night.
  5. Tranquil ambiance for quiet time. When you and your loved ones are spending quiet time together, nothing is more satisfying than cuddling by a fire and gazing at the stars.
  6. Increased value to your home. Landscaping upgrades including a permanent brick fire pit add investment value and selling price to your home.
Call Integrity Landscape Services today for a free consultation about adding a permanent fire pit to your residence.
safe, stone firepit

Friday, April 5, 2013

#AtoZ Challenge – E is for Ecosystem Ponds

One of the most beautiful and natural water features you can add to your home is an ecosystem pond. An ecosystem pond is a water garden that functions together with its surrounding environment, where you work with Mother Nature, not against her.

Ponds are one of the most important ecosystems on the planet. They play host to a total interrelationship of all organisms in the environment--such as birds, fish, frogs, plants, and many microscopic organisms. Ponds not only create a natural ecosystem in their defined environment, but they also fit into the community or life cycle of the entire ecological region. So you are helping your neighborhood as well.

ecosystem pond

Thursday, April 4, 2013

#AtoZ Challenge – D is for Design

Innovative design with classic, timeless beauty is Integrity Landscaping's hallmark. Why not take advantage of our free consultation and site analysis? We offer experienced and creative designers who thrive at developing custom designs for your property. Have something in mind, but can’t quite see it? Let us help make your vision a reality for a lovely landscape, a timeless brick patio and pathway, serene water feature, or perhaps a sturdy and elegant decorative wall. Call today for your free consultation and blueprint.

It's an important indicator of professionalism to work from a design that both the homeowner and the landscaper have agreed on, both to avoid unwanted changes and disappointment as well as to keep costs within a set budget.

landscaping blueprint

before and after landscaping

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

#AtoZ Challenge – C is for Construction

Construction is the process Integrity Landscape Services undertakes to improve the appearance and function of your property. The skillful and experienced Integrity team can transform your outdated rear private setting or increase your curb appeal in as little as one day. Our workers are respectful, efficient and truly hard working. We keep the construction site clean during the process, and strive to create as little inconvenience to your daily routine as possible.

patio under construction

Our clients rave about how we meet that goal:
They were cheerful, professional and prompt. They also impressed my next-door neighbors that they asked Integrity to submit a bid for a job on their property. Back in 2004, the same company did my front walkway, I was happy with that work, which is why I employed them again. -Judith H.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

#AtoZ Challenge – B is for Brick

Brick is a wonderful and powerful option for landscape improvements. Brick has incredible natural beauty, with a myriad of color and shape options. Brick is durable and elegant. Brick is amazing flexible for a patio, a pathway, a fire pit, a wall, a grill enclosure, a water feature, and so much more. Ahhh brick, we salute you!

Contact Integrity Landscape for a free consultation about brick landscape options for your home.

Brick patio

Monday, April 1, 2013

A is for Angie’s List Super Service Award Plus a Bonus A

Welcome to Integrity Landscape’s first year of participating in the worldwide A to Z Blogging Challenge!

Bloggers around the world are posting a topic each day with a sequential letter of the alphabet: today’s April 1st blog post is about a topic that begins with the letter “A.” April 2 is “B,” April 3 is “C,” and so on. No posts on Sundays and we finish with Z on April 30. This will be quite a challenge but we intend to have fun and we hope entertain and inform you about the many possibilities and options in landscaping.

A is for Angie’s List Super Service Award

Angie’s List had become the best choice for impartial referrals for all manner of services. Their entire success is based on the legitimacy of their information and recommendations. They do not frivolously hand out awards. For the third straight year Integrity Landscape has been awarded the elite Super Service Award. With the many landscape companies in Southeast Wisconsin, only 3 qualified for a Super Service Award.

We strive to deliver exceptional beauty and unique appeal for your landscape work. We are only satisfied if you are satisfied.

We like to let our work, and you the satisfied client, speak for our efforts. But if we must occasionally toot our own horns—this toot is a beaut! Thank you for helping us win a Super Service Award from Angie’s List for 3 straight years.

Bonus A: ARLEE BIRD! Special thanks to the A to Z Blog Challenger Creator Arlee Bird. This is a wonderful phenomenon. We are happy to participate and want to thank you for the time and effort to make this worldwide Blogger initiative a reality. Keep up the good work, Arlee!