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bobcatnj
05-16-2006, 08:35 PM
im building a burm in front of my house. i need some help with tree/shrub design.i was thinking maybe some dogwoods, bradford pear,cherry tree. i want the trees to keep there uniform shape,that keep the branches up(no low growing branches) and some color.as for the shrubs i was thinking some barberrys, gold thread cypress,and these purple things i see everywhere(cant think if the name). what do u think? the burm is 100 ft x 8 ft .any other ideas?

Dreams To Designs
05-17-2006, 06:58 AM
Bobcat, why would you want to plant the same plants that every poorly landscaped property has? Dogwoods are great small flowering trees. Bradford pears are temporary and will be torn apart by the wind because of the angle the branches grow. If you want a flowering pear, there are much better varieties. Cherries are colorful in the spring, but can be a bit messy. Barberry is a nonnative invasive, but is used often in it;s purple form, because purple is a color besides green. Gold thread cypress naturally want to grow to about 12' tall and almost as wide, if you want the small version, make sure you get gold mops, big difference, but still cliche.

What is the purpose of the berm? Are you trying to overcome a soil or drainage issue, or is this an attempt at sound or sight control? Are you planting it for your enjoyment or the traffic riding by on the street? There is a tremendous variety of plants that will grow in your area and be extremely pleasing to you and traffic if you desire. The soil conditions, amount of sun & shade, compass position, drainage and irrigation should be addressed first, followed by what result you desire from the berm and it's planting before you worry about which specific plants are to be planted. How about something evergreen to add winter interest?

Kirk

AintNoFun
05-17-2006, 10:06 AM
your forgetting mugho pines, daylillies, and some taxus or ilex and you have a landscape that 85% of jersey has..



Bobcat, why would you want to plant the same plants that every poorly landscaped property has? Dogwoods are great small flowering trees. Bradford pears are temporary and will be torn apart by the wind because of the angle the branches grow. If you want a flowering pear, there are much better varieties. Cherries are colorful in the spring, but can be a bit messy. Barberry is a nonnative invasive, but is used often in it;s purple form, because purple is a color besides green. Gold thread cypress naturally want to grow to about 12' tall and almost as wide, if you want the small version, make sure you get gold mops, big difference, but still cliche.

What is the purpose of the berm? Are you trying to overcome a soil or drainage issue, or is this an attempt at sound or sight control? Are you planting it for your enjoyment or the traffic riding by on the street? There is a tremendous variety of plants that will grow in your area and be extremely pleasing to you and traffic if you desire. The soil conditions, amount of sun & shade, compass position, drainage and irrigation should be addressed first, followed by what result you desire from the berm and it's planting before you worry about which specific plants are to be planted. How about something evergreen to add winter interest?

Kirk

bobcatnj
05-17-2006, 05:00 PM
so what do you suggest? its going to be for sound and alittle privacy from the busy backroad.

Dreams To Designs
05-18-2006, 06:59 AM
The berm will do much more for the sound control than plants. It takes about 75' of planted material to reduce the decibel level by 10 points, but out of sight, out of mind. What are the conditions? Sun, shade, compass direction, soil type, wet or dry, irrigation and size of the intended berm to start. I this going to be visible from the home, as well as the street, and do you want it to be interesting to view or just perform a task?

Kirk

wi-dogfish
05-18-2006, 04:35 PM
kirk,

See if this picture of my berm works. Berm is 280' by about 25' across the face. Full sun facing north, In wi zone 4 i believe, sandy gravel clay mix soil. fairly dry. have irrigation in yard to reach lower 1/3. so far i planted pines across the top, cranberry trees across the midsection and some tulips and flowering sping bulbs. Planted a few bushes before i knew much of anything about design. But bushes are small enough i can still move them around.

Would like to plant some decorative grasses. Here's the question, theirs a lot of room here, should i stay with one type of grass like a maiden grass and plant that a little of everywhere or should i plant groups of some different kinds like plant groups of blue fescue around the bottom area then plant a big group of maiden grass here and there and then go on a different area and plant flame grass. So the big question is should i maybe stay with two types of grass or go for 3 or 4 different types? thanks jason

wi-dogfish
05-18-2006, 04:43 PM
try the pic again

wi-dogfish
05-18-2006, 04:48 PM
This is a side view, I couldn't get the back pic to work, but this is kind of a pic of the berm wraps around the back side of the house. Now i have to start planting some bushes, grasses and flowers, thanks for any ideas.

Critical Care
05-18-2006, 09:07 PM
There are certainly effective ways to block sound and add privacy, such as planting a row of skyrocket or moonglow junipers, however there wouldn’t be anything really aesthetically pleasing about looking out at a screen of trees growing up from a berm. Unless if the sound problem is paramount, I’d do a tradeoff.

Yeah, the typical mugos and perhaps some red twig dogwood for winter as well as summer color, etc.

AintNoFun
05-18-2006, 09:23 PM
is that 75 feet of width or depth.. thats a pretty cool fact that i never know.. im def. going to be using that all the time now.. lol thanks



It takes about 75' of planted material to reduce the decibel level by 10 points, but out of sight, out of mind.

Dreams To Designs
05-19-2006, 06:52 AM
ANF, that's 75' deep. But, the out of sight out of mind works almost as well. A staggered screen of evergreens, conifers, broadleaf and deciduous shrubs can make a difference. The berm will reduce the road sound more than the plantings. Solid structures deflect the sound waves, including boulders or fencing.

Dogfish, with the size of your berms, I would suggest many groupings of plants that you enjoy and will make impact. You'll want at least one type of plant to be repeated throughout all the berms to tie everything together, but the rest can be large groupings for impact. Determine where the views are. If there is a patio, what do you look at, a walkway, what is the destination, what's the view from the kitchen window, make it enjoyable all year long, and any other windows that look out into the yard. If you have a window, you have a way to look out, what do you see when you look out that window. Take advantage of the view points.

Bobcat, how about a pic of the area you want the berm to go in and some more information on what you'd like it to do for you.

Kirk

kemmer
05-19-2006, 02:03 PM
do you want fast growning and to end up tall? Nellie stevens holly, doug firs- both end up pretty large. or any evergreen will probly do. what colors do you want

Critical Care
05-19-2006, 07:55 PM
A bit of trivia about trying to block off sound, for whatever its worth.

If you can block off 50% of some noise, such as cars on a road, then you've decreased the sound by 3 decibels. Most people can barely hear the difference in 3 dBs. For us to actually hear 1/2 of what the original sound was, the sound would actually have to be reduced by 10 times.