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October Garden Guide from Native Edge

by Heather Day / October 1, 2023

October: the full garden list

Plant: ornamental & wildlife

  • Perennials, shrubs, ornamental (clumping) grasses
  • Cover crops for dormant vegetable beds
    • Annual Rye
    • Austrian Winter Peas
    • Clover
    • Elon (Cereal) Rye
    • Hairy Vetch
  • Late: Holloyhocks
  • Larkspurs
  • Native Wildflower Seeds
    • Bluebonnets
    • Indian Blanket (Gaillardia)
    • Indian Paintbrush
    • Mexican Hat
    • Phlox
  • Non-Native Poppies

Plant: herbs

  • Borage
  • Chervil
  • Cilantro, seeds or transplants
  • Dill
  • Fennel
  • Lavender
  • Oregano
  • Parsley
  • Perennials thyme
  • Summer savory

Plant: food crops

  • Artichoke (transplants)
  • Arugula, late month
  • Beets
  • Bok Choy
  • Brussel Sprouts (transplants)
  • Cabbage (transplants)
  • Carrots
  • Cauliflower (transplants)
  • Chard, Swiss (seeds or transplants)
  • Collards (seeds or transplants)
  • Fava Beans
  • Garlic Softneck varieties of garlic do the best in our region
  • Greens, cool season
  • Kale (seeds or transplants)
  • Kohlrabi (seeds or transplants)
  • Leeks (seeds)
  • Lettuce (seeds or transplants)
  • Mustard (seeds or transplants)
  • Radish
  • Shallots
  • Spinach (seeds or transplants)
  • Turnip


  • Oak trees safe to prune


  • Daylily
  • Fern
  • Iris
  • Liriope
  • Spring-Blooming Perennials
  • Violets


  • Add compost to vegetable gardens along with organic fertilizer if not already done
  • Plan wildflower seeds and bulbs to plant in November
  • Mulch tropical and semi-cold-hardy plants like gingers, Esperanza, Pride of Barbados, Firecracker fern, and bananas
  • Take cuttings of tender annuals to propagate in warmth to renew your garden next spring
  • If temps dip, cut basil and preserve in oil in the freezer
  • Collect seeds of annuals to dry and store inside until next Spring


  • Fertilize with an organic slow release formula like 8-2-4 or similar ratio. Avoid products with too much nitrogen. This is the best time of year to fertilize.
  • Brown patch: Apply a quarter inch of compost. Apply corn meal. Find out what’s causing the problem like low drainage spots or compacted areas.
  • Mow high to fend off weed seeds that are germinating. Taller grass shades them out.


  • Caterpillars become active again. Monitor plants for holes and droppings. Control by picking them off or spraying with Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt)

Other tasks

  • Late month: get row cover or plan other protection in case of early frost in November
  • Cut basil to freeze in oil in ice cube trays to use this winter in soups and stews
  • Collect seeds from summer annuals to dry and store indoors until next spring
  • Get houseplants ready to move inside. Investigate for any “buddies” that could be coming indoors with them.
  • Dig and store Caladium bulbs when foliage dies.

Contact us today and have your yard ready for Spring!

Let Native Edge help you carve out your perfect garden space.

Worksite Wednesday: Mulching for Water Conservation

by Heather Day / August 23, 2023

Welcome to Worksite Wednesday, where we walk through the particulars of a project or project feature! Today, we are back at Meadow Modern discussing how mulch aids in plant health and water conservation. We’re also looking at the importance of using local materials whenever possible to conserve transportation resources.#NativeEdge #NativeEdgeLandscape #landscapedesign #waterconservation #austindrought #mulch #mulching #lawncare #xeriscape #xeriscapingRoyalty Free Music: License code: WAUQFQJBG33Q5W13

Lawns to Prairies and Meadows: A Path to Water Conservation, Biodiversity, and Savings

by Heather Day / August 18, 2023

In our pursuit of verdant landscapes, it's time to reconsider the traditional American lawn. The history of lawns, harkening back to European aristocrats of the 17th and 18th centuries, has given rise to expansive turf grass-covered spaces across the United States. But beneath the well-manicured surface lies a staggering environmental and economic cost. Enter the concept of converting these sprawling lawns into thriving meadows – a transformative shift that not only benefits your wallet but also the environment. In this piece, we delve into the journey from lawn to meadow, exploring the ecological advantages and aesthetic appeal that this transition brings, and how Native Edge Landscape can guide you through this exciting transformation.

A Glimpse into History

The American love affair with lawns was initially inspired by European elites who showcased their affluence by cultivating vast expanses of greenery. Today, the United States boasts lawns covering a mind-boggling 63,000 square miles – nearly the size of Texas. These lawns, dominated by non-native turf grass species, consume copious amounts of water, fertilizers, pesticides, and labor, creating an ecological imbalance.

Meadows, Prairies, and Grasslands: A Paradigm Shift

Converting portions of lawns into ecologically sound alternatives holds immense promise and offer a holistic solution to the environmental and economic challenges posed by traditional lawns.

The Marvels of Meadows

Water Absorption

Meadows outperform lawns in stormwater absorption. Unlike compacted lawn soils prone to runoff, meadows boast looser soil and extensive root systems, enabling effective rainwater infiltration. This natural process recharges groundwater and supports stream flow during dry spells.

Pollution Control

Meadows act as nature's water filter, intercepting pollutants that elude turf lawns. A buffer of native vegetation along streams proves more effective in preventing pollutants and sediment from entering water bodies compared to turf.

Reduced Irrigation Dependency

While lawns in arid climates guzzle water, meadows thrive without excessive irrigation. The native species in meadows are adapted to regional climates, reducing the need for synthetic irrigation.

Flourishing Wildlife Habitat

Meadows promote biodiversity by fostering a diverse array of plant species. This diversity invites insects, invertebrates, and subsequently, birds along the food chain. Avian species that often evade lawns find sanctuary in meadows, contributing to healthier ecosystems.

Pollinator Paradise

Meadows offer a safe haven for pollinators like bees and butterflies. These essential creatures aid in the pollination of crops and flowering plants, which sustains human food production and ecological balance.

Cost Savings and Efficiency

Meadows require significantly less maintenance compared to constant lawn mowing. The cost of labor, gasoline, and equipment needed for lawn maintenance can be curtailed, benefiting municipalities and individuals alike.

A Multi-Sensory Experience

Meadows provide a full sensory experience. The bustling ecosystem enchants with fluttering butterflies, songbirds, and the sway of wildflowers. The aesthetic appeal extends through the seasons, even during winter and the blazing Texas summer, when dried grasses add texture and beauty.

Native Edge Landscape: Your Partner in Transformation

As advocates of sustainable landscaping, Native Edge Landscape is your guiding light in transitioning from lawns to meadows. Our expertise in native plants, ecological balance, and responsible landscaping equips us to help you create areas that are not only aesthetically pleasing but also ecologically vital. Let us transform your outdoor space into a haven for biodiversity, water conservation, and cost savings.

The journey from lawn to a more diverse space is a transformative leap towards environmental stewardship and financial prudence. Native Edge Landscape stands by your side, turning expanses of non-native turf into vibrant swathes of sustainability. As we redefine our outdoor homes, we strive to make them a true testament to the harmonious coexistence of nature and human habitation.

Nurturing Nature Responsibly: Water Conservation Through Better Design

by Heather Day / August 5, 2023

Water conservation is a critical mission for our planet's sustainable future, and Native Edge Landscape has always been at the forefront of this eco-conscious movement. With our vision of responsible landscapes, we employ innovative techniques like xeriscaping, hardscaping, and water-wise plant selection to make a lasting impact on water conservation. Envision what your space could be while we explore our role in creating environmentally responsible landscapes.

Xeriscaping: A Texas-Friendly Landscape Approach

Xeriscaping is a landscape design philosophy that embraces water-efficient practices, reducing water usage without sacrificing beauty and functionality. Here's how Native Edge incorporates the principles of xeriscaping:

  • Drought-Tolerant Plants: Xeriscaping involves using native and drought-tolerant plants that thrive in the local climate with minimal water needs. These resilient species retain water more effectively, reducing irrigation demands significantly.
  • Soil Improvement: By enhancing the soil's ability to retain moisture, xeriscaping ensures that plants make the most of the water they receive.
  • Mulching: Mulching around plants reduces evaporation, keeps the soil cooler, and minimizes weed growth, further conserving water.
  • Grouping Plants by Water Needs: Strategic plant grouping based on water requirements helps ensure efficient irrigation practices.

Hardscape: Striking a Balance

Hardscape elements, such as patios, walkways, and retaining walls, are integral to any landscape. However, too much of the wrong kinds of hardscape can hinder water absorption and contribute to irresponsible runoff. Native Edge tackles this challenge by finding the right balance between hardscape and green space:

  • Permeable Materials: Using permeable materials and aggregates allows for rainwater to seep into the ground, preventing runoff and replenishing the water table.
  • Efficient Contouring and Drainage: Strategic contouring of hardscape elements, combined with efficient drainage solutions, directs rainwater to areas where it can be absorbed or reused effectively. This prevents wasteful runoff and improves water retention in the soil, promoting healthier landscapes.
  • Beauty and Functionality in Harmony: At Native Edge, we never compromise on aesthetics or functionality. Our hardscape designs seamlessly blend with the landscape, delivering visual appeal while conserving water.
  • Local. Sustainable.: We love to use local hardscape materials wherever we can, employing the aesthetic of our Texas landscape and reducing the environmental strain of transportation. Local mulch, Texas cedar, Brazos River rock, hill country limestone. We also employ materials excavated from your site wherever we can, including our local impressive limestone boulders.

Water-Wise Plant Selection: Flourishing Sustainably

Native Edge Landscape understands that striking landscapes can still be achieved without excessive water consumption. Our approach includes:

  • Native Plants: By incorporating native plants, we ensure the landscape is in harmony with the local ecosystem, reducing the need for additional watering and promoting biodiversity.
  • Drought-Tolerant Species: Carefully selecting drought-tolerant plants promises a vibrant, resilient landscape that thrives even in dry spells.
  • Smart Irrigation: Using advanced irrigation systems, Native Edge can help you deliver the right amount of water at the right time, minimizing waste while optimizing plant health.

Water Conservation is a collective responsibility, and we here at Native Edge lead by example, spearheading eco-friendly practices that prioritize xeriscaping, responsible hardscape, and water-wise plant selection. By embracing these principles, we can create stunning landscapes that prosper without straining precious water resources. Join us as we promote sustainability and choose to nurture nature responsibly, creating a greener world for generations to come. Together, we can ensure a thriving future for both our landscapes and our planet.

Pergola Perfection: A Journey through History and Versatile Design Options

by Heather Day / July 22, 2023

When it comes to creating enchanting outdoor spaces that blend beauty and functionality, few architectural features rival the allure of a pergola. These elegant structures have graced gardens and landscapes for centuries, evolving in style and material options to suit diverse preferences and purposes. By now, you’ve seen our most recent project, Steel & Cedar, in which we highlight a charming pergola perfect for the Texas backyard landscape. In this blog, we embark on a captivating journey through the history of pergola design, exploring its enduring charm and the myriad of style options and materials available today. At Native Edge, we believe that a well-crafted pergola can transform any outdoor area into a sanctuary of relaxation, while embodying the principles of sustainable and environmentally responsible landscape design.

Heavy cedar timbers are joined with exposed hardware to form the structure of this pergola, topped with corrugated metal roofing that protects this gorgeous outdoor kitchen space from the elements. The back wall of a pergola cleverly houses spacious storage concealed behind sliding barn doors.

The Roots of Pergolas: A Historical Overview

The origins of pergolas can be traced back to ancient civilizations, from ancient Egypt to Rome. Initially serving as shaded walkways or passageways, these structures provided respite from the scorching sun and often supported climbing plants, creating a natural canopy. As the concept spread throughout the Mediterranean, pergolas adorned Roman gardens, draped with vines and foliage.

Varieties of Pergola Styles

Classic Mediterranean Pergola

Inspired by the timeless charm of ancient Greece and Rome, the classic Mediterranean pergola exudes a sense of elegance and simplicity. With sturdy columns and clean lines, it becomes a captivating focal point in any landscape. Adorned with climbing plants like bougainvillea or wisteria, this style infuses vibrant colors and delightful scents into the surroundings.

Zen Pergola

Embracing the principles of Zen gardens, this style reflects simplicity and tranquility. Crafted with natural materials like bamboo and timber, the Zen pergola provides a meditative space, inviting a sense of calm and harmony to the garden.

Contemporary Pergola

Celebrating modern aesthetics, the contemporary pergola features sleek lines and innovative materials like metal and composite options. This style harmoniously complements contemporary architecture and design, adding a touch of sophistication to outdoor spaces.

Rustic Wooden Pergola

Radiating warmth and charm, the rustic wooden pergola celebrates the beauty of natural materials. Crafted from reclaimed wood or rugged timber, it adds authenticity to the landscape, seamlessly blending with the surrounding environment.

Partial Pergolas

Occasionally, only a bit of shade for seating or plantings is needed, or you're simply looking to highlight a particular area or feature in your space. A partial pergola may provide the perfect solution. Plant with vines and let even a small space become a dreamy focal point.

Materials for Pergolas: Exploring Sustainable Options

Cedar Wood

A popular choice, cedar wood combines elegance with sustainability. Sourced from responsibly managed forests, cedar is naturally resistant to decay and insects, making it a durable and eco-friendly option for pergola construction.


Renowned for its rapid growth and renewability, bamboo is an excellent eco-conscious choice for pergolas. Lightweight yet robust, it creates a Japanese Zen-inspired pergola with ease.


Materials like aluminum and steel offer contemporary pergola options. These metals are durable, weather-resistant, and can be recycled, making them a sustainable choice.

Recycled Materials

Embrace sustainability further by using recycled materials such as composite decking or salvaged wood. Integrating recycled elements reduces environmental impact while adding character to the space.

Throughout history, pergolas have stood as timeless symbols of elegance and beauty in outdoor design. From their ancient origins to contemporary interpretations, these open structures continue to captivate our imaginations and enhance the allure of outdoor spaces. At Native Edge, we believe that pergolas not only provide shade and architectural elegance but also exemplify our commitment to sustainable and environmentally responsible landscaping practices. Whether you seek a classic Mediterranean retreat or a Zen-inspired haven, our expert team can bring your pergola dreams to life, merging style and sustainability for a truly transformative outdoor experience. Let us craft a pergola that aligns with your vision, turning your garden into a sanctuary of relaxation and serenity, while embracing the principles of a sustainable future.

Maintaining Your Wildflower Prairie & Setting Yourself Up for Success

by Heather Day / June 3, 2023

In a blog post last month, we talked all about the benefits of planting native wildflowers in place of traditional lawns. Transforming your front lawn into a vibrant wildflower prairie can bring beauty, ecological benefits, and a love of native aesthetic to your landscape. However, maintaining a wildflower prairie yard requires a different approach compared to traditional lawn care. In this blog post, we'll explore some essential care and maintenance practices to help you nurture and sustain a thriving wildflower prairie.

Year One
Year Three: Here you see a diversification of species, and a fresh planting incorporating more native grasses.

Diversify with Native Grasses

While wildflowers are often the main focus when seeding a prairie yard, incorporating native grasses is equally important. Native grasses provide structure, enhance the overall aesthetic, and contribute to a more natural appearance. When choosing your seed mix, consider including a variety of native grasses that will complement the wildflowers. These grasses typically take longer to mature, so combining grass planting with wildflower seeding ensures a balanced timing of growth and a more visually appealing landscape.

Allow for Seed Production

A crucial aspect of wildflower management is allowing the plants to go to seed. This process ensures the self-sustainability of your prairie and encourages the natural dispersal of seeds for future growth. By letting the flowers fully mature and scatter their seeds, you're supporting the long-term success and expansion of your wildflower population.

Manage Aggressive Species & Combat Weeds

While diversity is key in a wildflower prairie, it's essential to manage more aggressive species within your seed mix. Some wildflowers might dominate the landscape, inhibiting the growth of other species. Regular observation and manual removal of these dominant plants prior to them going to seed can help maintain a balanced and harmonious mix of wildflowers.

Weeds can occasionally find their way into a wildflower prairie yard, competing with the desired plants for resources. Regular weeding is essential, particularly during the establishment phase of your prairie. Identifying and removing weeds promptly will minimize their impact on the overall health and appearance of your wildflower ecosystem.

Supplemental Watering

While wildflowers are generally resilient and adapted to native rainfall patterns, providing supplemental water during the early spring can give them a boost. This extra hydration helps them establish strong root systems and encourages more robust growth and blooming throughout the season. Aim for deep, infrequent watering rather than frequent shallow watering to promote healthier plant development.

Creating and maintaining a wildflower prairie yard requires a different approach to traditional lawn care. By diversifying with native grasses, allowing for seed production, managing aggressive species, combating weeds, and providing supplemental water during the early stages, you can ensure a thriving and sustainable wildflower prairie. Embracing these practices will not only enhance the beauty of your landscape but also contribute to the ecological well-being of your surroundings. Enjoy the natural splendor and the multitude of benefits that a wildflower prairie yard brings to your sustainable future.

Cherrywood Charmer

by Dillon Tuttle / May 5, 2023

The home owners of the Cherrywood Charmer were seeking an aesthetically pleasing, environmentally sensitive landscape that would complement the existing large custom deck, which is used both as a peaceful refuge and for some entertaining. This project involved a full-property landscape renovation as the landscaping around the home had been largely untouched for twenty years. It had been in a state of decline in recent years, accelerated by the recent Austin freeze.

The design solution in the backyard focused on expanding the idea of the peaceful refuge by installing meandering paths through diverse plantings intended to draw the user into the landscape, highlighting the presence of the large shade tree that is central to the sense of privacy and enclosure of the space, and implementing a large, calming water feature. The stone borders and pathways are comprised of nicotine limestone sawed chop block that beautifully compliment the impressive three-pump water feature.

We also installed a custom key hole garden made from red cedar with built in trellis supports and a nearby slimline rainwater cistern for produce gardening and irrigation.

In the front yard, our focus was an update to the existing landscape to increase curb appeal and provide a sense of connection with the backyard landscape. New bed lines were defined to capture the areas in which lawn would thrive, and native and adapted planting were implemented along the perimeters of the landscape to draw the eye of passersby. A new railing was also added to the front porch to provide better accessibility for the home owners. 

The Cherrywood Charmer is now a beautiful and sustainable landscape that reflects the homeowner's vision and the expertise of Native Edge Landscape.

Austin Outdoor Living Tour 2023

by Heather Day / May 3, 2023

Native Edge Landscape is excited to announce that its latest project, The Cherrywood Charmer, will be featured on the Austin Outdoor Living Tour this Saturday, May 6th! This property showcases some of the best sustainable landscaping practices and features a variety of outdoor living spaces that seamlessly blend together.
One of the standout features of this project is the 3-pump recirculating water feature. We’ve also included a custom keyhole raised vegetable garden, which allows for maximum growing space while minimizing water usage. Additionally, the property includes a rainwater cistern demonstrating Native Edge Landscape's commitment to sustainable design.
Visitors to the Austin Outdoor Living Tour will also have the opportunity to explore custom stone pathways and a variety of native plants, all expertly curated by the team at Native Edge Landscape.
Tickets for the Austin Outdoor Living Tour can be purchased at Don't miss this opportunity to see The Cherrywood Charmer and other inspiring outdoor living spaces!

March is Flower Month

by Heather Day / March 4, 2023

March is officially here, and that means it's Flower Month! With the arrival of spring, the world around us begins to bloom with vibrant colors and fragrant scents. It's the perfect time to celebrate the beauty of nature and to appreciate the role flowers play in our environment. At Native Edge Landscape, we're big fans of flowers, and we believe that incorporating native flowers into your landscape is an important part of sustainable and responsible landscaping.

Native flowers are plants that are indigenous to a particular area and have adapted to thrive in the local climate and soil conditions. They have evolved over time to be perfectly suited to the local ecosystem, and they provide important benefits for local wildlife, such as pollinators like bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds. In addition, native flowers are generally easier to care for than non-native plants because they're already acclimated to the environment.

At Native Edge Landscape, we focus on sustainable and environmentally responsible landscape designs, and that includes the use of native flowers. By incorporating native flowers into your landscape, you can help to create a more diverse and resilient ecosystem that supports local wildlife and promotes a healthy environment. Plus, with so many different types of native flowers available, you can create a stunning and unique landscape that truly showcases the beauty of nature.

Here are just a few of the many native flowers that we love to incorporate into our landscape designs:

  1. Blackfoot Daisy - This beautiful white and yellow flower is native to Texas and is known for its resilience in hot and dry conditions.
  2. Mexican Hat - A popular wildflower in Texas, the Mexican Hat is a bright yellow and red flower that's perfect for adding a pop of color to your landscape.
  3. Purple Coneflower - This lovely purple flower is native to the central and eastern United States and is a favorite of pollinators like bees and butterflies.
  4. Bluebonnet - The Texas state flower, the Bluebonnet is a stunning blue flower that blooms in the spring and is beloved by Texans everywhere.

These are just a few examples of the many native flowers that can be incorporated into your landscape. At Native Edge Landscape, we work closely with our clients to create custom landscape designs that showcase the beauty of nature and promote sustainability. If you're interested in incorporating native flowers into your landscape, we would be happy to help you get started.

So this March, as we celebrate Flower Month, let's take a moment to appreciate the beauty and importance of native flowers in our environment. By incorporating them into our landscapes, we can help to create a more sustainable and healthy world for generations to come.

Mount Bonnell Native Oasis

by Dillon Tuttle / June 24, 2021

We have had the pleasure of working on multiple projects for this property over the past few years! It has been great to watch the property change and turn into the native oasis it is today! The most important aspect of this property that the owner wanted to maintain was that all the plantings were native to Central Texas. The back of the property was filled with native plantings around the pool, and the property owner wanted a cohesive look with her beds in the front yard that had become overgrown. We removed the old plants and added in some of the same native plantings that were found in her back yard. Yaupon Holly was added along the property line to provide extra privacy from the neighbors and flowering natives were clustered to make the property more pollinator friendly!

Another request from the owner was that we make the property more inviting during the evenings. We added in some outdoor lighting to highlight the trees, as well as lighting that illuminated the pathway up to the house and around the back of the property. This added a dreamy element to the space, making the property more inviting to guests.