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A Look Back In Time: Landscaping Trends From the 1920s-50s

Although some of us look at landscaping as more of a business than an art form, the truth is, landscaping has a rich and intricate history that has a lot to say about the social and cultural development of our society. In fact, some speak so highly of landscaping as a form of ancient art that they trace its roots to one of the Seven Wonders of the World – the Hanging Gardens of Babylon created in 600 BC.

While we’re busy installing landscapes that bring the best of modern technologies to our customers, like outdoor televisions and sound systems, it’s easy to forget just how much the idea of ‘landscaping’ has changed over time. Just a few decades back, landscaping was considered an absolute luxury. Only the ‘well-to-do’ could afford to decorate their outdoor space with beautiful garden beds and patios and deck out their backyard with the latest outdoor toys.

Nowadays, some form of landscaping – even if it means a few trees, a small yard, a porch or patio – is expected. That being said, while basic landscaping is the norm, most homeowners actually take it a step further. They feel it is important to enhance the curb appeal to their home and, more importantly, they enjoy having an outdoor space that is completely tailored to their own tastes. Hence, the desire to treat the landscape as an extension of the home, complete with all the comforts and added luxuries of the inside interior. But it wasn’t always this way.

For fun, here’s a look back at the landscaping trends of earlier decades – minus today’s Japanese-inspired spa gardens, outdoor kitchens, and fire pit tables.

The Roarin’ 20′s:

1920′s landscaping was all about the greenery. There was a real desire to celebrate and welcome nature in all its glory, which led homeowners to install bird feeders, bird houses and bird baths, as well as fish ponds and rock gardens… anything that would draw more nature to the home. At this time, bird watching was a shared hobby, so plants and trees with berries (such as holly, hawthorne, nandina, rugosa roses, crabapples) were popular choices.

In the 1920′s home, the front yard was considered the “public place” and was, therefore, the space that received the most attention with regards to landscaping. Most houses featured a wide front porch, often furnished with rockers and swings so that folks could comfortably enjoy the natural outdoor scenery. Most front yards didn’t have fences, and walkways and driveways were typically lined with perennials, such as Canterbury bells, irises, foxgloves, phlox, pyrethrum, coreopsis, hollyhocks, roses, columbine, delphinium, poppies, and carnations and annuals, such as California poppies, cosmos, petunias, snapdragons, verbena, bachelor’s buttons, centaurea (sweet sultan), strawflowers, marigolds, drummond phlox, asters, etc. Shrubs were boxwood, holly, yews, abelia.

The backyard, often referred to as the “service area” was mostly reserved for drying clothes on clothes lines and storing garbage cans, although some owners designated a small area in the backyard as a “private place,” which was usually screened off or fenced in or surrounded by a border of trees or shrubs to shield residents from their neighbors’ watchful eyes and from the sun.

Popular recreational activities often found their way into the landscape design. Campfires, bowling greens, putting greens, and croquet grounds were popular landscape features.

The Dirty 30′s:

The decade of the Great Depression saw little advancements on the landscaping front. Most homeowners were struggling to make ends meet, which meant little to no money was left over to spend on luxuries, such as landscaping. That being said, there were still a few popular gardening trends. Large rose gardens were popular during the 1930s, as were plants such as hydrangeas, lilacs and hostas.

The Booming 50′s:

Consumerism is probably the most appropriate word to describe the theme of the 1950s. And just as it affected most aspects of life in the 50s, it influenced the type and style of landscaping that was popular in suburbia. Looking back now, we typically associate the 50s garden and landscape style with all things ‘tacky’ – garden gnomes, plastic pink flamingos, an overuse of evergreens as foundation plantings and an excessive amount of green lawn. In other words, a far cry from the modern, eco-friendly looks popular today!

While 1950s landscapes may conjure up images of plastic decorations and boxed hedges, the 1950s are actually defined as a decade of “modernism.” Albeit, a type of modernism far different from the so-called “modern” styles of today. With an incredible amount of soldiers returning home from the war in the 1950s, getting married and starting families, the home building industry boomed.

However, much of the homes built were on the smaller side, leaving limited space for landscaping. The result of space constrictions was “modern” landscaping – a style that was far removed from the overly-embellished look of the pre-war era.

Although modernism was the style du-jour, with the rise of consumerism and the love for all things with a price tag came the fascination with big and showy items. Garden flowers were over-sized, vibrant and colorful, for instance, large tea roses like Garden Party roses, Tiffany roses, and Chrysler Imperial roses were popular choices. And, in line with the whole ‘keeping up with the Jones’ concept, the lawn was the symbol of suburbia dream living. The greener and bigger the lawn, the better! With the boom in consumerism and the desire to keep lawns perfectly maintained, the marketplace was flooded with lawn care products, including pesticides and chemicals for pest control. At this time, the first lawn spreader was also invented.

And there you have it! Times really have changed… next we’ll look at landscaping trends from the 60s to present date. Stay tuned!

Using Rocks for Decoration

The days when blue fescue grass was the only way to landscape your front yard or backyard are over. Many home owners and apartment communities nowadays are starting to decorate their landscape with rocks. Large, medium, and small rocks make an award winning combination for your landscape design, especially when strategically placed together in one landscaping project.

When you use large boulders within your landscape design, they add a certain dimension to the overall look, adding elevation can certainly do wonders for the look and feel of a yard. In addition to the overall attractiveness, it actually can save you money by using rocks for your landscaping, rather than using grass.

Rocks don’t require watering unlike grass, which does require watering. In all actuality, grass usually needs to be watered every single day, which is something that you can avoid by using a truck load of small pebbles throughout the areas of your yard that require landscaping. In many new home communities, landscaping is required by the association, and must be kept up regularly according to their rules and regulations. If you just spent a lot of money on your home, and are not looking forward to the upkeep of your yard, it would make sense to use rocks to landscape your yard to comply with regulations, and to save the extra money that would otherwise be spent on watering your yard each day.

What about when you go on vacation? You can leave the sprinklers, if you actually have any, off because you won’t need to worry about timers, broken heads, or anything else for that matter because the rocks can relax in your yard without any maintenance.

You won’t have to worry about brown spots in your yard like you would normally have to do with grass, and you won’t have to worry about gaping holes that show an excessive amount of dirt either. The initial cost of installing rocks isn’t much different than the installation of sod, and can really spice up the look and feel completely. In a further note, walkways and paths can be formed using rocks to really add a wonderful look to your outdoor living space, and create the ultimate atmosphere for you to relax and spend the days.

If you’re interested in using rocks in your next landscape design project, use a Nursery that has bins of rocks as opposed to buying bags from a handful of bags from a larger retail store. You’ll save money, and you’ll get a much better look.

Buying Wall Home Decor Made Easy

Buying wall home decor is extremely important for every homeowner. No matter if you have to revamp your existing home or decorate a new one, you need to pay special attention to wall decor. As walls draw a lot of attention, you must get the best and unique decor for them. The moving 3D pictures are one such fantastic wall decor which can perfect your interior in every way. These are the latest embellishments in the world of wall decor and have extremely powerful impact.

As there are scores of choices in this genre of wall home decor, you need to follow a step buy step approach so that you can make the best of them.

1. Firstly, you need to establish as to what theme you would like to have for your interior. Decide upon the color scheme or a subject you wish to focus upon. For example, if you wish to have a soothing touch to your place, you can opt for waterfall moving picture. On the other hand, if you wish to have a mysterious feel within your home, you can go for abstract pictures or those with unique subject matters.

2. In case you already have set the theme of your place, you can also find the perfect moving picture to complement it. There are beautiful city scenes including the most popular cites of the world such as NYC. You can also find a number of forest, waterfall, beaches, sunsets, ocean as well as forest pictures in this home wall decor.

3. The size of the wall is also an important consideration while buying a wall decor such as the 3D pictures. The great thing about these accents is that you can get them in small, medium as well as large size. So it is very easy to get a perfect moving picture regardless of the size of the wall where you have to place it.