10 Tips For Buying Healthy Fish

https://cepontzsons.com/buying-healthy-fish/

BY: Aquascape
 

Adding fish to your pond provides a whole new element to the overall experience of owning a water feature. In fact, many pond owners decided to install a pond for the sole purpose of fish-keeping. Will you add some colorful koi, or opt for another type of pond fish like shubunkins or sarassas? When purchasing new fish, there are certain things that you should look for and ask about to make sure that you are receiving healthy fish.  

Tips for Buying Healthy Fish

  1. Cleanliness – Look at the cleanliness of the store. If the store is not clean and well cared for, more than likely, the retailer does not care about their fish either.
  2. Dead Fish – If you see any dead fish floating in the tanks – even just one – stay away. This can be an indication of a poorly maintained, diseased tank.
  3. Quarantine – Does the retailer quarantine their fish and for how long? It is very important that all fish are quarantined for at least 14 to 21 days for salt treatments to ensure the fish are not carriers of disease or parasites.
  4. Water Testing and Changes– Find out how often the water is tested and changed. Testing the water monitors ammonia and pH levels, as well as nitrites and nitrates indicating when the water should be changed.
  5. Sick Fish – Look to see if any of the fish are hanging out alone, with clamped fins. This is a good sign that the fish is sick.
  6. Parasites – Ask if new fish are tested for the presence of parasites with a microscope. Doing so indicates whether the fish are carriers of parasites and can be treated accordingly before they are sold.
  7. Net Sharing – Make sure the clerk uses a different net for each tank. Using the same net for all tanks can spread disease from one tank to another.
  8. Clear Skin – Look for fish with no marks, missing scales, sores, or broken or missing fins. Any of these are signs of a bacterial infection or parasite.
  9. Sizes – You need to take the size of the fish into consideration so you don’t overstock your pond. Remember, 1” for every square foot of surface water or five gallons.
  10. Knowledgeable Staff – You want to purchase fish from a knowledgeable and honest merchant that can help educate you about your pond pets.

 

Whatever type fish you choose to add to your pond, first and foremost you want to make sure they’re healthy. Don’t be shy about asking a few questions. In the end, you’ll be glad you took the time to purchase the right fish for your pond.

For more information on fish in your water feature, visit http://www.aquascapeinc.com/blogs/water-gardening/category/Fish

Planning Your Pond Renovation

https://cepontzsons.com/planning-your-pond-renovation/

It seems that spring may actually, truly, finally, hopefully, possibly be here. With that being the case it’s time to stat planning your pond renovations, upgrades, or even initial installation if you have yet to own a glorious life changing water feature.
 
 
BY: Aquascape

Now that spring is officially here, it’s time to start thinking about what you might want to do to change and improve your pond. And if you’re still dreaming of your first pond or water feature, it’s a great time to begin planning!

 

Small Pond with Waterfall and Hostas

 

Many people view ponds simply as an addition to your house – when you build it you are done. While that is true that a pond is indeed another room to your house, you’re never really done with this addition! In reality, it’s actually more like a living thing that is always evolving, so don’t be afraid to add on and change it as often as you want! Whether you simply move a couple rocks, forcing the water to fall in a completely different direction, or maybe you’ll go all out and add a 50-foot stream, a bog filter, or a Pondless® Waterfall in another part of your yard, the possibilities for growing your water feature are almost infinite.

 

Backyard Aquascape Pond with Plantings

 

Right now – when your thoughts, ideas, and mental plans for your dream garden and pond are still fresh in your mind – is the time to get them on paper. Dreaming is always the first step to planning. In your mind, what would be the perfect backyard paradise? Here are some questions to ask yourself as you search for your perfect pond makeover.

 

  • What do you enjoy most about water gardening – the plants, fish, frogs, turtles, birds, or terrestrial landscaping? Build your dream pond with that as your emphasis.
  • What places have you visited that look and feel “perfect” to you? A stream in the mountains?  A spring in the woods?  Recreate aspects of these places on a smaller scale.
  • Where do you spend most of your time when you’re at home?  Will you spend more time outside or inside?  Plan with that in mind.
  • What would make your yard a “paradise?”
  • Would you like to be able to swim with your fish in a natural swimming pond?
  • What do you like (or dislike) about your existing pond?
  • Do you like the tropics? Find some rare plants and bring them into your own backyard.

 

Aquascape Pond and Waterfall

 

Hopefully you’re well on your way to dreaming about creating or enhancing your own personal paradise.  As you gaze out upon the wintry landscape, imagine what it can look like in the spring and go from there!  The possibilities are limitless and you can always grow and expand with each addition you make.

Pond Plant Feature

https://cepontzsons.com/pond-plant-feature/

POND PLANT FEATURE: UMBRELLA PALM

BY: Aquascape

Umbrella palm (Cyperus alternifolius) is a tropical pond plant that is hardy to Zone 7 that can grow to almost six feet in height. In colder climates, umbrella palm will over-winter if brought indoors and positioned near a sunny window. Dwarf (Cyp. Alt. ‘Gtracilis’) and medium (Cyperus spp.) varieties are available and prove an excellent choice for smaller ponds and container water gardens. The height of an umbrella palm creates a soft backdrop for shorter aquatic plants, such as water lilies.

Umbrella Palm Pond Plant

Larger palms can be invasive without some precautions. Even a small single stalk with roots will grow as a marginal and can be difficult to remove if left alone too long, especially in a graveled pond where the roots will grow deeply into the gravel. This situation can be avoided by planting the large variety of umbrella plant in a plastic tub. The palm will still grow into the tub and its roots will need trimming from time to time, but now the plant can be easily removed for maintenance.

When ready for trimming, don’t worry about destroying the plant by cutting the roots into a smaller size. The plant will regrow again to fill the container. By trimming the root ball and cutting the plant in two, you’ll cut down on the size of the plant so there’s less “wind-sail” to blow it over. You can use a small handsaw to cut through the root ball to lower its height and also to cut the plant in half before repotting. Add the second plant to your pond or give it to a friend.

After the umbrella palm’s root ball is cut to a smaller size, rocks ranging in size from tennis balls to grapefruits are added around the root ball to anchor both the pot and the root ball so it’s not so prone to blowing over in the wind before the roots have a chance to reestablish.

You do not need to add any dirt to the pot or fertilize the umbrella palm. They derive their nutrients directly from the pond water which helps filter the water and keep it safe for all your fish!

Ned Smith Center Pondless Waterfall

https://cepontzsons.com/ned-smith-center-pondless-waterfall/
Ned Smith Center Pondless Waterfall

Ned Smith Center Pondless Waterfall

Check out the final reveal of this amazing pondless waterfall built at the Ned Smith Center for Nature and Art in Millersburg, PA. The pondless waterfall in approximately 26′ in length and is featured in Nature’s Discovery Play Area.
 

The Ned Smith Center for Nature and Art is a small non-profit in Millersburg, PA dedicated to the legacy of our namesake, Ned Smith. He spent a lifetime connecting nature, people and the arts. Our mission remains the same, to merge the arts and the natural world and foster a celebration of both.
 

Ned Smith Center for Nature and Art Pondless Waterfall

Ned Smith Center for Nature and Art Pondless Waterfall

We believe that children should play outside; that outdoor play contributes to skills they can use in the future and good health. For this reason we are adding an area where kids can just be kids, get dirty, use their imagination and explore. This play area will be called Nature’s Discovery Play Area and its mission is “to provide an outdoor ‘yes’ space for children of all ages to gather and discover the textures, sights, smells and value of the natural world while exploring and interacting with natural elements such as wood, stone, dirt, water and plants in a self-directed and unstructured manner.”
 

Ned Smith Center for Nature and Art Pondless Waterfall

Ned Smith Center for Nature and Art Pondless Waterfall

Phase one of the play area will include three major features:

The Burrow, similar to an open roofed bunker, this is an area that is dug out to gently slope below the normal level of the ground and is reinforced by locally harvested logs.

The Tree Fort, octagonal in shape, this low to the ground platform will be less than 4 feet off the ground, enclose three trees and have a rustic branch railing, Children will be able to access the platform in a variety of ways which will include a climbing wall and rope swing.

The Water Feature, this small stream will allow children to explore a miniature “river bed”. The water will be shallow and the bed made of liner and rocks. The water will flow down the stream and magically disappear into the ground where it will be recycled through and used again.
 

Ned Smith Center for Nature and Art Pondless Waterfall install in Millersburg, PA

Ned Smith Center for Nature and Art Pondless Waterfall install in Millersburg, PA

Ned Smith Center for Nature and Art Pondless Waterfall install in Millersburg, PA

Ned Smith Center for Nature and Art Pondless Waterfall install in Millersburg, PA

Ned Smith Center for Nature and Art Pondless Waterfall install in Millersburg, PA

Ned Smith Center for Nature and Art Pondless Waterfall install in Millersburg, PA

Ned Smith Center for Nature and Art Pondless Waterfall install in Millersburg, PA

Ned Smith Center for Nature and Art Pondless Waterfall install in Millersburg, PA

Ned Smith Center for Nature and Art Pondless Waterfall install in Millersburg, PA

Ned Smith Center for Nature and Art Pondless Waterfall install in Millersburg, PA

Ned Smith Center for Nature and Art Pondless Waterfall install in Millersburg, PA

Ned Smith Center for Nature and Art Pondless Waterfall install in Millersburg, PA

Ned Smith Center for Nature and Art Pondless Waterfall install in Millersburg, PA

Ned Smith Center for Nature and Art Pondless Waterfall install in Millersburg, PA

Building a Waterfall in The Woods

https://cepontzsons.com/building-a-waterfall/

Check out this awesome footage of the Pontz crew building a waterfall in the woods. This amazing pondless waterfall was built at the Ned Smith Center for Nature and Art in Millersburg, PA. The pondless waterfall in approximately 26′ in length and is featured in Nature’s Discovery Play Area.

Nature’s Discovery Play Area

Short Summary
The Ned Smith Center for Nature and Art is a small non-profit in Millersburg, PA dedicated to the legacy of our namesake, Ned Smith. He spent a lifetime connecting nature, people and the arts. Our mission remains the same, to merge the arts and the natural world and foster a celebration of both.

We believe that children should play outside; that outdoor play contributes to skills they can use in the future and good health. For this reason we are adding an area where kids can just be kids, get dirty, use their imagination and explore. This play area will be called Nature’s Discovery Play Area and its mission is “to provide an outdoor ‘yes’ space for children of all ages to gather and discover the textures, sights, smells and value of the natural world while exploring and interacting with natural elements such as wood, stone, dirt, water and plants in a self-directed and unstructured manner.”

Phase one of the play area will include three major features:

The Burrow, similar to an open roofed bunker, this is an area that is dug out to gently slope below the normal level of the ground and is reinforced by locally harvested logs.

The Tree Fort, octagonal in shape, this low to the ground platform will be less than 4 feet off the ground, enclose three trees and have a rustic branch railing, Children will be able to access the platform in a variety of ways which will include a climbing wall and rope swing.

The Water Feature, this small stream will allow children to explore a miniature “river bed”. The water will be shallow and the bed made of liner and rocks. The water will flow down the stream and magically disappear into the ground where it will be recycled through and used again.
 

What We Need

The basis of this project is estimated to cost just under $50,000. We have received very generous support from private donations and currently have $39,500. Without another $10,000 we will not be able to complete the first phase of our project and open the Nature’s Discovery Play Area without one of the major features. The more money we raise over the $10,000 the more features we can add to the play area such as balance beam logs, a sensory exploration path, fossil dig area and so much more.
 

Risks & Challenges

Our biggest challenge, as with many other non-profits is funding. Should we not hit our $10,000 goal we will not be able to complete all aspects of the play area that we envisioned. More money means more elements of the play area. We would love to be able to give the children who come to the Center everything on our list. We believe that it is truly an important aspect to childhood and leads to creative, freethinking, problem solvers.
 

Other Ways You Can Help

We appreciate all of the support we can get, but we know that some can’t afford to financially help out. That’s OK, you can help by sharing our campaign on social media, talking to your friends and family or writing a letter to the editor of your local paper. Anything that helps other people find out about the Ned Smith Center, our mission and our project.

Donate: https://www.youcaring.com/nedsmithcenterfornatureandart-1097906

Top 4 Landscape Lighting Trends of 2018

https://cepontzsons.com/landscape-lighting-trends/

Low voltage landscape lighting is an essential addition to any landscape. It extends the hours that you can enjoy your outdoors, as well as adds another dimension of BEAUTY and added security to your property. Below you will find some of the top trends in landscape lighting for 2018.


 

Top 4 Landscape Lighting Trends of 2018

 BY:CAST Lighting
 
Spring is just around the corner and we’re excited about what’s to come. We’ve compiled a short list of the biggest landscape lighting trends to come in 2018. From what fixtures are in to what technology is out, we’ve covered it all.

So make sure to keep an eye out as you drive through neighborhoods this coming season, visit friends, and peruse properties for landscape lighting inspiration. We think you’ll find the following trends are hot, hot, hot!

 

Brass, Bronze, & Copper Fixtures

Outdoor light fixtures earth tone-coated to match your landscape are on the decline. Instead, brass, bronze, and copper are the homeowner’s fixture of choice. The look of today’s fixtures are moving away from trendy and returning to timeless. Brass, bronze, and copper fixtures offer more class and natural beauty as they age with a lovely patina, which is now the coveted look.

Of the three, solid bronze light fixtures steal the show, however: Not only are they stunning to look at and admire, they’re an extremely durable and weather-resistant product compared to some of their inferior alternatives made of subpar material like aluminum. Even copper and brass fixtures are known to bend, corrode, and even break, making bronze the most superior quality of the timeless trio, impervious to damage and corrosion.
 

Outdoor Living After Dark

Today, we’re seeing a major shift in favor of outdoor living: outdoor kitchens, outdoor living rooms complete with rugs, pillows, and throw blankets, and expertly hardscaped fire pits. According to a Houzz study, 83 percent of backyards were being transformed into primarily outdoor entertaining spaces with 73 percent focused on becoming outdoor eating spaces, 53 percent being remodeled into outdoor living rooms, and 48 percent included barbeques and/or fire pits for added touches of ambiance and functionality.

As such, these outdoor living spaces require professional outdoor lighting design and installation. Homeowners spend a great deal of money on these outdoor living spaces and the best way to make the most of this investment is to make sure it can be used at any time with landscape lighting.

Not to mention, the trend has never been to wash out scenes with one-dimensional lighting, it’s to create depth and emotion and to create specific moods in specific areas for specific tasks—like a intimately low-lit area with a hot tub or a lively dining area where bright light is needed to entertain, grill, and keep energy high. This is hard to achieve without the knowledge and expertise of professional designers and top-quality products.
 

LED Lights

Halogen lamps are the way of the dinosaur—put out to pasture by LED technology. It’s been a long time coming, but now 90 percent of our fixtures are being paired with LED lights, truly showing how extinct halogen lamps have become.

Halogens are known for power inefficiency, burn outs, their inevitable replacement, and, of course, heavy maintenance in comparison to LEDs. LED lights are now known for their energy efficiency, reliability, and can look identical to the warm halogen glow people are attracted to.

But make no mistake, the reality of purchasing and using LEDs is not so rosy, though. The LED faces issues with light, heat, moisture, color, false manufacturer claims, and a capable fixture to protect them. It’s important to do your research and buy quality LEDs.
 

Astronomical Timers

Today, most homeowners are opting for astronomical timers over analog timers and photocells. And why wouldn’t they? Analog timers and photocells are fairly accurate and a tad cheaper, but antiquated in comparison; for that little extra investment, homeowners can get the best technology available, and we encourage them to do so.

Photocells sense when light is diminishing, and when it hits a certain level, the landscape lighting system is turned on. Meanwhile, analog timers—the ones that look like old-school dial timers used in the kitchen—are truly archaic in comparison to digital astronomical timers.

Astronomical timers are by far the most sophisticated, precise, and reliable of the bunch, requiring you to program the GPS coordinates of the property or its zip code to determine exactly when the sun rises and sets no matter the time of year. You can even program them to adjust for daylight savings. So, for a little more legwork in the beginning, you get the most accurately timed system every day.

Some people may ask, why are timers even needed at all? The simple answer is: for convenience and security. Rather than manually turning a system on or off, a timer makes the process effortless. Additionally, a major reason why folks install landscape lighting is for security. Ensuring that your system is turned on at dusk—when a homeowner may not be home to manually turn it on—helps ward off potential incidents that are encouraged by unlit houses.
 

Spring for The Best

Spring 2018 is all about implementing the best—the best landscape lighting design, techniques, products, and installation. From the types of fixtures purchased and the LEDs that are paired with them to professional installation and timer programming, it’s all about implementing the best design tools and team to make outdoor living spaces—and an entire property as a whole—safe, secure, beautiful, and usable.

READ MORE: http://www.cast-lighting.com/blog/

Waterfall and Stream (Before & After)

https://cepontzsons.com/waterfall-and-stream/
Waterfall and Stream (Before & After) installed in Lancaster, PA

Waterfall and Stream (Before & After) installed in Lancaster, PA

This beautiful waterfall and stream installation was recently completed in Lancaster, PA. The water feature is approximately forty five feet in length. We built the falls through an existing masonry seating wall already existing on the property. This is first phase of what we hope to be an additional 45? feet or so of pondless waterfalls and stream that will travel up through the front of the home. The water feature flows down to the basin just before the natural stone boulder wall and is outfitted with an overflow that directs into a natural spring pond on the property. Underwater LED landscape lighting was also installed through the feature for nighttime enjoyment. The feature is made of of natural slightly weathered limestone and as per normal the water feature products are from aquascape. Check out more on this project here.

7 TIPS FOR PLANTING YOUR POND

https://cepontzsons.com/7-tips-for-planting-your-pond/

Do you have a pond but have no idea how or what to plant? Well you came to the right place. Featured below are 7 tips for planting your pond from our good friends at Aquascape. Enjoy!

By: Aquascape

 

From colorful water lilies that dance on the pond’s surface to aquatic Forget-Me-Nots that hug the edges of your water garden, it’s the amazing pond plants that put the “garden” in “water garden.”  You can apply many of the same tips and guidelines you use to create your terrestrial flower beds.  Things like color, height, and planting conditions are things you’ll want to consider when it comes to naturalizing your pond with plants.One: Create Interest with Variety. Random placement of plants with varying textures and colors will create more interest than using plants that have all the same growth habit or leaf shape.

7 Tips for Planting Your Pond

Two: Play with Colors. Choose colors you like best and consider the type of lighting your pond receives. Yellow, orange, and white help brighten shady areas, while cool blue and violet tone down the intensity of the sun’s rays.

Three: Go Green. A soft, calming space is created by using different textures and shades of green foliage. The combination is effective on its own, but also looks great when accented only by white flowers.  You can also play with color based on leaf selection alone, since you’ll find aquatic foliage in a range of colors such as red, purple, yellow, and several variegated combinations.

7 TIPS FOR PLANTING YOUR POND

Four: Know Your Plant Size. One of the biggest mistakes novice water gardeners make is failing to realize how big their pond plants might grow. Be sure to take height and width of the mature plant into consideration and allow enough space for future growth.

Five: Short in Front, Tall in Back. This might seem like a no-brainer, but always put shorter plants in front of taller ones.  Most likely, you’ll spend most of your time viewing your water garden from a deck or patio, so keep that sight line in mind when planting your pond.

7 TIPS FOR PLANTING YOUR POND

Six: Group Plants Together. Interior decorators tell you to group like objects together when decorating your home, to create visual impact. Use this same principle when planting your pond. Plant a row of marsh marigolds along a stretch of the ponds edge, as opposed to dotting them all around the pond in single locations.

Seven: Consider Each Plant’s Needs. Be mindful of how much sun your aquatic plants require, along with their planting depth. If a plant requires full sun, that’s a minimum of 6 hours of unobstructed (ie not dappled shade) sun per day.  If you’re not sure what your plant needs, ask the pro at your local garden center or search online for information.

Aquatic Plants in Water Garden
You’ll want to ensure an interesting mix of aquatic plant types for your water garden. Plant a few marginal at the pond’s edge, include colorful water lilies or even a lotus, add floating plants like water lettuce, and include submerged plants to help add oxygen to your pond. Variety is the spice of gardening life, so don’t be afraid to experiment … or follow our handy planting guides below!

 

Small Pond: Plant Placement Ideas

How to Plant a Small Pond

 

Medium Pond: Plant Placement Ideas

How to Plant a Medium Pond

 

Large Pond: Plant Placement Ideas

How to Plant a Large Pond

What once was a Pond was converted to this……..

https://cepontzsons.com/what-once-was-a-pond/

What once was a Pond was converted to this…….. an amazing pondless waterfall feature. This Project included converting an existing pond into a pondless waterfall with single decorative stacked slate bubbling urn feature with driftwood. This included keeping the existing pond liner in place and removing the stream liner and installing a new liner in that area as well as reshape the stream and build a updated new stream and waterfalls. The pond area was converted in to a pondless basin. Two Statuary duck fountains the home owners had previously in the pond were reinstalled into the pondless basin along with submersible landscape lighting. As with all our water feature installs all products were manufactured by Aquascape..

Pond Renovation

Pond Renovation

What once was a Pond was converted to this........

What once was a Pond was converted to this……..

Pond Renovation

Pond Renovation

What once was a Pond was converted to this........

What once was a Pond was converted to this……..

Pond Renovation

Pond Renovation

What once was a Pond was converted to this........

What once was a Pond was converted to this……..

Pond Renovation

Pond Renovation

Top Home Trend for 2018

https://cepontzsons.com/top-home-trend-2018/

The Top Home Trend for 2018 isn’t inside the home, it’s on the outside. The concept of bringing the indoors outside is as popular as ever. If you haven’t been exposed to whats available today, i suggest you look into it….
 
By: Cast Lighting
 

Outdoor Living: Bringing the Indoors Outside

According to HGTV, the No. 1 outdoor home trend of 2017 was the concept of bringing the indoors outside—and we see no signs of a slowdown this coming spring and summer. With the introduction and desire for outdoor kitchens, rugs, couches, ottomans, tables, and cozy blankets and pillows, the most prominent home trend of 2018 will continue to be outdoor living—the seamless transition from your home to your outdoor space.

According to a 2017 Architect Magazine article, outdoor living spaces continued to be the most popular “special function room” for the sixth consecutive year. Six in 10 architectural practices surveyed by the American Institute of Architects said outdoor living spaces were popular features in the homes they built, and the survey also noted that 69 percent of homeowners increased outdoor living options along with landscaping.
 

Why Outdoor Living Spaces are Trending

One of the initial reasons for the rise of outdoor living spaces was the 2008 financial crisis. More and more Americans were opting to stay home for vacation to save money—and the word “staycation” became a part of our everyday vocabulary and lifestyle.

But today, the trend is just as popular, extending beyond economic reasons. According to the most recent Houzz Spring Landscaping Trends Study, there are several motivations for homeowners to invest in their outdoor living space. Among the most popular reasons are the following: 56 percent of homeowners choose to update their backyard to make it more entertainment friendly; 44 percent desire to make their yard more functional; 34 percent wish to increase home value and resale value; and 27 percent want to create more living space.

In fact, according to Remodeling.com’s “2017 Cost Vs. Value” report, outdoor living areas continue to produce a sizable return on a homeowner’s investment. Cost recouping for patios and decks range from 55 percent to 71 percent—on par with bathroom remodels, additions, and replacing roofs and exterior siding.
 

What Outdoor Living Enhancements & Additions are Popular?

The Houzz study revealed that backyards were undergoing several different kinds of additions and improvements: 83 percent were being transformed into primarily outdoor entertaining spaces, 73 percent focused on becoming outdoor eating spaces, and 53 percent were being remodeled into outdoor living rooms.

How do these spaces come to life? By adding an array of features! Sixty-nine percent of homeowners chose to add patios to enhance their outdoor living space; 38 percent choose to add a deck; 48 percent decided to include barbeques and/or fire pits for added ambiance and functionality; 19 percent added sound systems; and 14 percent built outdoor kitchens.

We’re expecting even more of a rise in fire features—including permanent custom-built fire pits and portable tabletop fire pits—in 2018.
 

A Spotlight on Landscape Lighting

For evening entertaining, safety, security, and the ability for your clients—and their guests—to adore their backyard, professional landscape lighting is a must. In fact, the American Society of Landscape Architects’ 2015 trends study ranked landscape lighting the second most popular design element of the year. The Houzz study similarly revealed that seven in 10 homeowners install lights to illuminate their hardscape. And, of these homeowners, 58 percent of them go green with LED.

Additionally, seven in 10 homeowners taking on landscape lighting projects are lighting their deck or patio; five in 10 are using lighting around paths and trees/shrubs, and a third are lighting steps.
 

The Effects of the Outdoor Living Trend

One direct effect of the outdoor living trend is the boom of the hardscape Industry. The demand for hardscape products—boulders, edging, and pavers—in the U.S. is expected to increase nearly 6 percent each year, making hardscaping a $3.5 billion industry by 2021, according to a recent study by The Freedonia Group.

A surge in landscape lighting product sales is also expected. The Freedonia Group study projects a 3.4 percent growth year-after-year through 2021.

Sadly, these numbers are truly representative of what’s going on in the industry: Homeowners spend a fortune on creating unbelievable outdoor living experiences, but then forget to budget landscape lighting. This is a huge oversight that needs to be addressed at the onset of any major backyard project. Homeowners spend a great deal of money transforming their property into amazing outdoor living spaces, but then they aren’t as safe as they could be due to lack of lighting; they also aren’t used to their fullest potential or shown off as much as they should due to poor lighting.

Our advice is to include landscape lighting design into your budget. Making this investment on your outdoor living investment will only increase the value of your home and your outdoor experience as a whole! Enjoy all the hard work you put into your place!