Parking Lot Landscape Islands, what is the best approach?

Landscape Architecture for Landscape Architects Forums PLANTS & HORTICULTURE Parking Lot Landscape Islands, what is the best approach?

Viewing 15 posts - 31 through 45 (of 63 total)
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  • #160793
    Andrew Garulay, RLA
    Participant

    Last I checked, bark is a by-product of the timber industry. It is not what the dye is used for. The dye is to color the wood that is being chipped fom old pallets and old fences that you pay to dump which then gets ground and added to the material coming from the lumber mills. The whole problem stems from a good idea that has some negative side effects.

     

    Twenty years ago, bark mulch was pure bark.

    #160792
    Jordan Lockman
    Participant

    You are correct. Too bad. I like the good old shredded hardwood bark mulch that came from the paper mills. That was great. Decomposed into a soil builder and smelled great too. Lately the mulch has been getting worse and worse with more of the junk added to it and for some reason some people want to have fluorescent red mulch around there plantings.

    #160791

    Nothing worse then someone using mulch as a decorative element. 

    #160790
    Jason T. Radice
    Participant

    Who applies mulch in a 4″ blanket? Nobody I’ve seen, thats for sure. I know that is what your are supposed to do, but more often than not, it is more like 1-1/2″ t0 2″. I’ve also seen crews just rake on more mulch, not aerate the old stuff or remove it entirely.

     

    If you use good mulch, then you don’t have the issues with bugs or fungii. Shreded hardwood is indeed the best, but you can get YEARS of an application of pine bark nuggets without adding to it. Just turn it once or twice a year. The developers I deal with actually like to pay for new mulch every spring, as it is a really cheap way to spruce up their property while the crews also install spring annuals. It is a signal spring is here.

    #160789
    Boilerplater
    Participant

    Crushed stone is pretty much ALL they would use in Las Vegas since organic mulches dry up and blow away.  Same thing in Phoenix, from what I’ve seen.  I guess there are plenty of other nefarious activities that people can preoccupy themselves with there so I never noticed a problem with it as projectiles, door openers, etc.  And there it is so dry that weeds only tend to come up around the drip irrigation, making weeding easy.  I think it looks good and lasts a long time, especially granite.

    #160788
    Boilerplater
    Participant

    Here’s one I did that was planted in ’06 or ’07.  Photo was taken last year.  Its in central NJ.  I was surprised that there was such great (total!) coverage by the ground cover junipers.  In this case, the owner really cares about maintenance.  They even put up little signs asking people to use the walkways and not step on the groundcover!  Its in a slightly upscale area where people tend to heed stuff like that.  So often the maint guys just pile mulch on and smother the ground cover plants.  The end bulbs are large, so you have a lot of rooting area and snow piling area.  All the trees were healthy.  You don’t have to worry about snow plow damage with plants like this.  Trees in little 4′ x 4′ or 5′ x 5′ islands…I’ve seen so many failures with that detail.  Its a tough environment for a tree with all that reflected heat and then the winter snow.  The trees often look so sad.  Its hard to get them to build them according to detail with good soil and proper drainage. 

    #160787
    Andrew Garulay, RLA
    Participant

    I like that it is all green, has adequate space for the tree roots, and safe  with unobstructed views, but …. one tree?

    #160786
    Boilerplater
    Participant

    Well, there ARE more trees in the lot!  They’re out of the frame.  That strip between the rows was too narrow, and if I had one on the right side of the bulb it would block the directory sign.

    #160785
    Jason T. Radice
    Participant

    Looks like the tree has be lollipopped!

    #160784
    Andrew Garulay, RLA
    Participant

    I respect you for posting a picture as these always bring critiques out of the woodwork. I totally agree that the bulb is what is necessary for the survival of the tree and the groundcover is functional, green, safe, and looks good.

     

    But why have the double curb hell strip down the middle? It does not look functional, does not allow for anything more than vegetation to dress itself up, is a problem for pedestrians, …. My guess would be to get the required % of green space on the lot. If so, well done in addressing the clients needs within the regulations – that is good design. There is usually a story behind the story.

    #160783
    Jordan Lockman
    Participant

    I think it looks great! That is just what I was asking about at the beginning of the thread. Too bad about the narrow strip between the cars, but the juniper appear to be doing awesome so it does not look bad. Many city codes do not take into account the soil volume needed for trees and require more than necesary in parking lots. The design is very nice and simple.

     

    I could see some users of the parking lot being annoyed by the strip, but if they can’t step over that small island they can just walk to the sidewalk no problem.  

    #160782
    Bill Delaney
    Participant

    On a related note, has anyone used the ‘Swedish’ system for under a sidewalk? It incoporates layers of rock for holding water and supporting surrounding pavement then washing in of soil around the planted area.

    #160781
    Jordan Lockman
    Participant

    I think that it is just a young tree.

    #160780
    Jason T. Radice
    Participant

    Check the trunk and the taper, that ain’t no young tree.

    #160779
    Jason T. Radice
    Participant

    Sounds like a low-tech version of structural soils.

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