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When All You Want for Christmas is a Manassas VA Landscape Contractor You Can Trust, Call Grigg Design

All you want for Christmas is a brand new backyard to enjoy when summer comes back ‘round. So that’s what will be. Instead of exchanging gifts this season, you’ve decided to undertake a landscaping project, to build the patio and fire pit you’ve always wanted.

Setting specific goals will help determine what type of professional service provider is best suited to meet your needs. Whether that’s a space designed for recreation, function, or a little of both, the decision to renovate your backyard is an endeavor that should be undertaken with the utmost care. Do your due diligence to ensure you hire a Manassas VA landscape contractor you know you can trust.

Ask around.

Talk to friends and family whose backyards you covet, or visit your local garden center to ask for referrals. There is no better gauge of a Manassas VA landscape contractor’s skills and ability than from its customers. Take these recommendations and develop a list of possible candidates to vet and interview.

Do your research.

Before contacting any company you are considering to hire for home renovation services, check the Better Business Bureau and consult the latest regional consumer surveys that study and rank professional landscaping companies based on price, confidence, and reliability. This sort of background research will better enable you to make an informed investment.

Contact your favorites and the most highly recommended with a thorough list of questions: Are you fully bonded and insured? Can I count on you to see my project from conception to completion? Will you provide an artist’s rendering of the plans we develop together? What kind of guarantee do you offer on your products and services? Ask, too, for a portfolio of past projects — and to see them personally if possible.

Trust your instincts.

Creativity and business acumen are two important factors to consider when hiring a Manassas VA landscape contractor, but so too are courtesy and communication. It is not easy; in fact it’s nearly impossible to work with someone whom you’re not comfortable around. A good working relationship is crucial, and so it’s important to ask yourself to which company you’d feel most comfortable entrusting your home, your yard, and your money.

And so soon you will see the answer is clear:

Hire Manassas VA’s most trusted landscape contractor.

Grigg Design develops more than exceptional landscapes; the family owned landscape and hardscape design contractor has the experience and capability to bring the visions of Manassas VA homeowners to life, and the dedication to customer service. Get started today to beat the spring rush; call Grigg Design at (703) 368-7539 to schedule your landscaping consultation.

Fall is for Fairfax Landscaping

Fall is For Fairfax Landscaping

If there’s a time to start a landscaping project in Fairfax, it’s right now. In the fall. Just ask any professional: The plants will endure less stress, and do quite well as they lie dormant all winter. Come spring, these same plants will have become accustomed to the cold, and will thrive as the short, cold days grow longer and warmer.

And that’s not even to mention the spring rush as everyone hurriedly prepares their homes and themselves for summer’s first hurrah in May. When you call Grigg Design to have your landscape and hardscaping projects started today, you’ll be ready to entertain — no waiting, no construction, just menu planning. (Maybe you’ll even get lucky: Hope for a mild winter, and you might be able to enjoy your new patio, sitting wall or fire pit right through the cooler months.

Looking for a little inspiration?

Take a glimpse at a few of our current projects:

 

 

 

 

 

 

For a beautiful lawn in the spring, start your Fairfax landscaping project now.

Call Grigg Design at 703-368-7539 to discuss your ideas; we are northern Virginia’s landscaping and hardscaping experts, proudly serving the counties of Fairfax, Arlington, Prince William, Loudoun, and surrounding areas.

Experience & Knowledge Trumps Low Prices

Like most things in life, you get what you pay for–and you expect to pay more for experience and knowledge. For instance, companies pay employees who have 15 years of experience more than a recent college graduate.  This same pay scale applies when selecting a landscape design company in Northern Virginia; you would expect to pay more for a company who’s been in business for 30 years as opposed to a company only a few years old.

Companies like Grigg Design know which trees to plant, stones to use and designs to incorporate just for your home!  We’ve seen just about every landscape and we use our experience to create a custom solution that fits within your budget.

When selecting any professional to work with, you need to do your homework to ensure you are hiring the best.  When it comes to implementing your project, every minor detail matters. When trying to determine value and quality of the professional you are working with, here are some questions to ask:

  • Is the company/person properly licensed?
  • Do they have adequate insurance?
  • Are they using their own employees or subcontracting?
  • How long have the employees been with the company?
  • Are the trucks marked as company trucks and are the employees in uniforms?
  • How much training have the employees had?
  • Do they wear the proper safety equipment for the task at hand? Have they been properly trained on the equipment and well versed in its use?
  • Is the job site kept clean and well organized? Is Safety the number 1 job on a project?

These are all landmarks of a well-run and trained company and employees. Sure, somebody can do any project or task for less. This is true in any Industry/Profession. However, the question that experienced consumers will ask is “How much does a low price project really cost me? “

Grigg Design is one of Northern Virginia’s premier landscape design & build companies. Established in 1986 we have been providing award winning landscape designs and installations for over 30 years to clients in Fairfax, Arlington, Alexandria, Prince William County and the surrounding areas. We pride ourselves on the fact that a high percentage of our work is repeat business from our clients and referrals.

If you need a Retaining Wall, Patio, Stone Fireplace, stamped concrete or any other hardscape projects, we’re the company you can trust from the design to implementation.  Give us a call today at 703-368-7539 for a free estimate.

BACKYARD SAFETY TIPS FOR MEMORIAL DAY

Memorial Day is the unofficial kick-off to summer. It brings in barbeques, pool parties, and late night festivities with your friends, family, and neighbors. It’s one of our favorite times of the year in northern Virginia! And after you’ve spent several weeks sprucing up the backyard or building your new patio, it’s time to really celebrate in style. But when planning your big kick-off celebration, make sure you take these following safety tips into consideration, so the fun isn’t put on hold to address an emergency situation.

  1. Keep your grill on a level surface and away from your house, garage, mulch and other flammable objects. You want the fire to stay where you put it, not destroy your home!
  2. While grilling, consider an apron to keep grease off your clothes, and use utensils with long handles. Keep these out of reach from small children or guests who’ve maybe had a bit too much to drink.
  3. If using charcoal, properly extinguish the flames once you’re finished grilling. Break up the embers with a long stick or grilling tool and cover the grill to cut off the oxygen supply. You can also slowly sprinkle small amounts of water on the coals to put out the flames.
  4. Always use goggles or protective sunglasses when using lawn power tools to clean up the yard. Put away all tools in a shed or closed off area, so the temptation to play with them is eliminated.
  5. If you need to dig a hole in the backyard to install a deck or fence, or for a planting project, call your local utility company to ensure you won’t inadvertently hit an underground gas or power line.
  6. Consider installing a fence around your in-ground pool for optimal safety. Most safety experts recommend the fence be at least four feet high and have latches out of the reach of children.
  7. Put away any toys or trippable objects that may be around the pool so no one takes an accidental dip.
  8. Always have adult supervision when children are swimming.
  9. If you do not have a fence, and want to keep people out of the pool, look into purchasing a sturdy pool cover.
  10. Inspect any playground equipment for protruding nails or screws, as well as wood rot and loose anchors. Make any needed repairs before the party.

Have ample sunscreen, bug spray, and water on hand. The summer temperatures can climb quickly, causing burns or dehydration. Simple preparations can keep the party going long after the sun goes down.

4 Ways to Perk Up Your Outdoor Spaces With Color

Houzz is a great resource for backyard landscape design ideas. Many of our clients find inspiration from pictures they see on our Houzz page and then call us to design and build.

Established in 1986 we have been providing award winning designs and installations for over twenty-nine years to clients in Fairfax, Arlington, Alexandria, Prince William and the surrounding areas. Call us today at (703)368-7539 to discuss transforming your landscape or hardscape ideas into reality.

Spring Has All But Begun — And So Too Should the Spring Yard Cleanup

Will March bring snow to our region, or cherry blossoms that bloom ahead of schedule? The ever unpredictable third month offers something different, but this year, northern Virginia homeowners are rejoicing in the pleasant temperatures, the renewing rains. They’re removing burlap from trees and shrubs shrouded from winter’s cold; pruning branches to make room for new growth; cutting back spent perennials, and pulling up old annuals; and perhaps most exciting of all: beginning to plan their big spring landscaping projects.

But first — before the garden can be laid in, and before the plans for that new flagstone patio can be drawn up, there’s cleanup work to be done.

Prune dead and damaged branches.

Snow and wind (and especially a good strong blizzard) can do a number on tree and shrub branches. Now that the weather has cleared, and for good, prune those that are dead or damaged back to live stems. Use a handsaw for anything larger than a half-inch in diameter, and hand pruners instead of electric shears to shape hedges. (A note: summer-flowering shrubs can be pruned before buds appear, but forsythia and other such spring bloomers should not be pruned until they flower.)

Clean up around plants.

Grab the rake and rid the garden of fallen leaves and other dead foliage that can smother plans and foster disease. Pull up any spent annuals, and remove existing mulch to begin prepping the beds for fertilizer and spring planting.

Compost yard waste.

Those leaves and last year’s mulch, don’t just throw all that away. Compost it! It’s easy to do with a three-foot square of wire fence or even a sturdy plastic bin. Leaves and chip branches larger than a half-inch in diameter should be shredded to accelerate decomposition. Keep the pile moist; aerate every couple of weeks; and voila: ready made fertilizer. Just don’t add any early spring weeds that have gone to seed, because they might not decompose, but sprout instead.

Ensure existing hardscape surfaces are neat and tidy.

Gravel… travels. Rake any that’s escaped back into walkways and patios, and consider ordering more to fill any large gaps. Refill joints between flagstones by sweeping in new sand or stone dust; water with a hose to set it, then repeat. And then break out the pressure washer to rid the surfaces of slippery algae spots or leaf stains.

Now, with a yard free of mess and debris:

It’s time to call Grigg Design to discuss the fire pit, the water feature, the landscaping project that will be the talk of the neighborhood all spring and summer long.

What a Weird, Warm Winter: Protect Your Northern VA Landscape

What a weird, weird winter we’re experiencing. With temperatures in the 50s, the 60s, and even the 70s the week of Christmas, many northern Virginians are rejoicing over the unseasonably warm temperatures, but landscape designers and garden enthusiasts are growing a little concerned about how such unusual conditions might affect the landscape’s survival.

How a warm winter affects your lawn, and what you can do about it:

Lawns go dormant in the wintertime; grass remains alive, but does not actively grow like it does in the spring and summer months. When the winter is warm, things change. Things continue to grow, but will likely grow weak due to a lack of a real chance to rest. This can be incredibly stressful for your lawn, and to prevent your precious grass from dying or falling subject to a lawn diseases, consider the following care tips.

  • Water your lawn once a week (applying at least a half-inch of moisture) when a warm winter sends temperatures into the 50–70 degree range. (But make sure to check the weather forecast for freezing temperatures.)
  • Do not mow your lawn unless you notice the grass is starting grow, and if it does grow, keep the blades below three inches in height. A lawn that grows too tall during the winter months can trap moisture and spread fungal diseases.

How a warm winter affects your plants, and what you can do about it:

Plants respond to temperature and light, both of which are generally in low supply during the winter months. But not so this year. When the temperature rises and plants get more sunshine than they are used to in winter, they can’t help but think it’s springtime and start to bloom or grow. Poor confused plants just won’t react well once the cold weather returns.

It’s nearly impossible to predict when the temperatures will shift, and so it’s hard to know exactly how to prepare your plants for this kind of uncertainty because of all the factors involved. But there are a few things you can do to help keep your northern VA landscape looking lush and pleasant.

  • Lay mulch or leaves in your garden to help your plants survive whatever winter brings. Mulching helps keep your plants warm and moisture in the ground.
  • Make sure to water your plants during the warm period. They’ll have a better chance of bouncing back when spring comes.
  • Bring outdoor potted plants indoors, but make sure to water and provide plenty of sunlight.

How a warm winter affects your bushes, and what you can do about it:

Shrubs and bushes remain relatively unaffected no matter the type of winter northern Virginia sees. Why? Because they usually set their bulbs in the spring.

The exception here is if flowering bushes attempt to flower; the cold air takes away valuable moisture and warmth from the buds and dries them out causing them to die, so you may simply have fewer blooms in the springtime. And there’s sadly not much you can do about that.

Have questions about how to care for your northern VA landscape this winter?

Contact the landscape and hardscape design experts; contact Grigg Design.

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Summer Is A Fine Time For Landscape Design in Northern Virginia

Ah, summer.

The season of garden-fresh vegetables, and grilling on the patio with friends.

The season of quiet reflection beside a bubbling fountain; of watching children as they jump from stone to stone along the path through your backyard.

In whatever way you choose to spend, summer is the season for being outdoors.

It’s now you start thinking of how you can spruce up the backyard for your granddaughter’s wedding at the end of June, or the big Fourth of July party you’ll throw.

Now is the time to call Grigg Design:

For all of your landscape & hardscape, design and build projects in northern Virginia, the family-owned Grigg Design is the expert, and we’re listening to the experts.

An industry survey has revealed latest residential landscape design trends.

It’s all about sustainable, and low-maintenance design in 2015. According to the 2015 Residential Landscape Architecture Trends Survey, conducted by the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA), the most popular design elements were those that demanded ecological sensitivity: to preserve the environment, conserve water, and reduce landscape maintenance.

ASLA expects the following project types to be among the most sought-out landscape, and hardscape designs for 2015:

  • Native plants (85 percent)
  • Native/adapted drought-tolerant plants (83 percent)
  • Food/vegetable gardens (79 percent)
  • Fire pits/fireplaces (78 percent)
  • Low-maintenance landscapes (78 percent)
  • Permeable paving (77 percent)
  • Drip/water-efficient irrigation (74 percent)
  • Rain gardens (74 percent)
  • Lighting (72 percent)
  • Rainwater/graywater harvesting (71 percent)

“Consumers care about designed landscapes that are attractive, easy to take care of and eco-friendly,” said Nancy Somerville, Honorary ASLA, executive vice president and CEO of ASLA. “The survey shows that homeowners increasingly see opportunities to improve the environment right in their own backyard.”

There are projects, and then there are amenities.

Among those who seek out the work of landscape and hardscape design enthusiasts such as Grigg Design is well know around northern Virginia for, survey respondents indicated to ASLA that after sustainability in terms of importance ranked amenities.

But what amenities, specifically?

  • Fire pits/fireplaces (78 percent)
  • Lighting (72 percent)
  • Grills (63 percent)
  • Outdoor furniture (63 percent)
  • Seating/dining areas (63 percent)
  • Wireless/internet connectivity (60 percent)
  • Planters, sculptures, garden accessories (55 percent)
  • Counter space (53 percent)
  • Outdoor heaters (46 percent)
  • Stereo systems (45 percent)
  • Movie/TV/video theaters – 38 percent)
  • Utility storage (38 percent)
  • Sinks (37 percent)
  • Refrigerators (35 percent)
  • Outdoor cooling systems (including fans) (29 percent)
  • Showers/baths (27 percent)
  • Hammocks (20 percent)
  • Bedrooms/sleeping spaces (9 percent)

Interested in designing, and installing a rainwater garden, or an outdoor patio perfect for sitting, and sipping, and dining? Call northern Virginia’s landscape, design, and build experts: Grigg Design.

This annual survey conducted by ASLA was redesigned for 2015, and a new methodology for clearly ranking the popularity of different types of landscape projects was introduced.

Founded in 1899, ASLA is the national professional association for landscape architects, representing more than 15,000 members in 49 professional chapters and 72 student chapters. Landscape architects lead the stewardship, planning, and design of our built and natural environments; the Society’s mission is to advance landscape architecture through advocacy, communication, education, and fellowship.