McCue Garden Makeovers

Should Have been here

Created by Cheryl McCue, McCue Garden Makeovers specializes in taking your tired, spent garden and creating an oasis for you and your family. We come to your home, tour your site and give you suggestions for a beautiful new green space.

From Cheryl:

When I moved to Dallas in 1980 from Ohio (by way of Massachusetts and Buffalo, NY, my birthplace) I couldn’t understand why most everything I planted in our new home struggled and died.  I was painfully unaware of the difference in gardening in North Central Texas from what I was used to.  I began to read, observe, take classes and generally experiment until I learned how to deal with our native soil and our unpredictable, and often extreme, climate.

What started as a hobby to solve the problems of our landscape became a passion.  In 2007 I enrolled in the Master Gardener School sponsored by Texas A & M AgriLife Extension, began doing volunteer work with the program and earned my certification as a Certified Master Gardener.

My passion and my education led me to helping people to work with our climate and growing conditions to improve the look of their landscape to reflect their personal taste and get the most enjoyment out of their gardens.

Everyone’s gardens change over time.  Trees grow and decrease the amount of light a garden receives.  Neighbors make changes to their landscaping or their homes that affect your garden or your view. Playground areas that are no longer used can evolve into perfect areas for evening entertainment.  Plants and flowers that appealed to you years ago no longer seem interesting or have over grown their space. And now, we need to consider being even more efficient about our use of water and planting appropriate plants in our gardens.

An objective opinion from a person knowledgeable in landscape design and horticulture can help you view your garden from another perspective and to see its potential – whether you are an experienced gardener, a novice or do not consider yourself a gardener at all!

For more information on how I can help you improve your existing landscape or create the garden of your dreams, call or email me.  Luckily for us, garden planning and planting can happen any time of the year in North Texas.

Garden Notes

NHG_15ROSE4_25605139Watch out for Rose Rosette Disease.  It is infiltrating our area and I saw a lot of it on some clients’ roses last fall and there is no cure.  Here’s how you know you have it:  the new growth is usually red (although that part is not uncommon), but it comes out very thick and gnarly…some call it a witches’ broom.  There can also be an extreme abundance of thorns on the stems.

Rose Rosette Disease is caused by a virus spread by mites.  It’s airborne and once your plants are infected the recommended course of action is to take them out to stop the spread of the disease.  Be sure you get all the roots out of the soil.  Researchers say you can plant roses in that same spot again.  I don’t know if I would but maybe I would wait a season or two.

If you Google Rose Rosette Disease you will see other options to try.  The only cases I have seen on my clients’ bushes were so severe that removal was the best option.  But you may feel lucky and want to try preliminary measures.

Makeover Tips

Even if you don’t hire a professional to help you, there are things you can do to improve the loShould Have been hereok of your landscape. 

Consider eliminating lots of little pots and using just one large pot with one striking plant.  Or think about letting a clipped hedge grow naturally and imagine how it would change the look. To add color in your garden, look beyond  flowers and consider shrubs or annuals and perennials with beautiful leaves.

If your grass isn’t growing beneath a tree (grass needs sun everyone, there’s no way around it) consider alternatives such as hardscaping, ground cover for shade or just some neat mulch.  And don’t live with struggling plants….pull them out!  Even a bare spot, mulched, looks better than something scrawny and weak. 

If you don’t know why a plant isn’t thriving, give me a call and I can help you by recommending plants that will grow in your conditions.

 

Garden Tips from Cheryl

Daffodil 2It’s been a rough winter in Dallas.

Like you,  I keep thinking we are over the worst.  Then I see the forecasted temperatures and we seem to be in a roller coaster from 75 degrees to deep freezes!  Our poor plants are probably as confused as we are. 

The next few weeks will tell us what has survived this weather and what did not.  This is a great time to look around your garden and landscape and take note of the survivors!  There are evergreen shrubs that are doing all the work right now in keeping our landscapes from looking too dreary.

Here’s what is on my list to plant more of in my landscape and my clients’:  dwarf wax myrtle, nandinas, yucca, hollies, mahonia (although some of my Chinese mahonia have some burn on the tips, they are doing pretty well), podocarpus and Earth-Kind roses (so far unaffected by rose rosette disease…more on that later).

Perennials popping up are giving me sign of hope:  acanthus, persicaris (red dragon), columbine, and toad lily.  And those daffodils of course are a welcome sight. So far so good!

Call me if you need ideas to replace areas of your landscape that did not recover and to plan for the future of what is sure to be more years of unpredictable N. Texas weather!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Summer 2013

Oak leaf hydrangeaI have had some very interesting client projects this last year.  One homeowner had a large patch of bare dirt where a swing set had been for his now too-old-to-use it children.  It was a blank slate — and his requirements were virtually no pruning or fussing!  I recommended plants that would do well with low watering once established, and required no additional care.  It started as just this one project, then turned into a redo of many parts of his yard.  What fun.

Another project this spring was taking a homeowner’s beautiful front yard filled with hydrangeas, hostas, clematis and plox — all lovely but a bit messy and in need of evergreens for something to look at in the winter. I recommended the addition of some impressive evergreens for shade and a lovely grass for sun so her front yard won’t just be bare mulch this winter!  It’s tricky to plant among established plants, but they homeowners did it themselves according to the plan I gave them and it is truly beautiful.  Check back for  some before and after pics.

If you are contemplating making changes to your landscape, please remember that McCue Garden Makeovers can help decide what to do and when to do it.

Summer 2017 prices are $75/hour with a two-hour minimum for new clients.

McCue Garden Makeovers 214.676.4361      Cheryl@McCueGardenMakeovers.com

About

Created by Cheryl McCue, McCue Garden Makeovers specializes in taking your tired, spent garden and creating an oasis for you and your family. We come to your home, tour your site and give you suggestions for a beautiful new green space.

When I moved to Dallas in 1980 from Ohio (by way of Massachusetts and Buffalo, NY, my birthplace) I couldn’t understand why most everything I planted in our new home struggled and died.  I was painfully unaware of the difference in gardening in North Central Texas from what I was used to.  I began to read, observe, take classes and generally experiment until I learned how to deal with our native soil and our unpredictable, and often extreme, climate.

What started as a hobby to solve the problems of our landscape became a passion.  In 2007 I enrolled in the Master Gardener School sponsored by Texas A & M AgriLife Extension, began doing volunteer work with the program and earned my certification as a Certified Master Gardener.

My passion and my education led me to helping people to work with our climate and growing conditions to improve the look of their landscape to reflect their personal taste and get the most enjoyment out of their gardens.

Services

On-Site Consultation:

An on-site consultation with you in your garden allows me to listen to your needs and suggest solutions to meet your goals for new planting areas or existing planting areas.  The consultation will include:

  • Recommendations to move, replace or add new plants, flowers, shrubs and/or trees
  • Suggesting ways to maximize the beauty of existing trees, shrubs and flowers with shaping or pruning
  • Assessing non-plant features (decks, patios, paths, water features) and how they interact visually with the garden, your home and with your lifestyle
  • Assisting you in prioritizing garden improvements and recommending easy seasonal adjustments that can keep your garden fresh
  • Providing advice to maintain plant health or to solve plant health issues

$75/hour, minimum 2 hours for new clients

Additional Services

Detailed Plan:  If your needs are more complicated than what can be accomplished in a 2-hour on-site visit, I can research options for you and sketch a simple plan.  A second visit will be necessary to discuss the recommendations.  At our initial meeting, we can discuss whether this next step is necessary and about how much time it will take.

$75/hour (no minimum for consultation clients)

Plant Shopping:  If desired, shopping with you to look at plants creates an opportunity to learn more about plants and flowers that are appropriate for your garden. And it’s fun!

$75/hour (no minimum for consultation clients)

Seasonal Consultation: Many clients want me to assess their gardens several times a year:  early spring, summer and fall.  This enables me to review improvements, suggest additional changes and advise you of seasonal maintenance issues.

$75/hour (no minimum for consultation clients)

McCue Garden Makeovers 214.676.4361      Cheryl@McCueGardenMakeovers.com

Makeover Process

How a garden makeover works.

Much like an experienced decorator can rearrange furniture or suggest just the right accessory to make your interior spaces reflect you, I will listen to your concerns and your ideas and suggest ways to improve the look of your landscape to provide the exterior environment you desire. Gardens reflect personal taste so an open exchange of thoughts and ideas is critical.

The first step is for me to visit your garden, listen to your wants and needs and then assess your existing landscape. Usually, there will be obvious suggestions that we can discuss on the spot.  If that satisfies you and you are comfortable with your own ‘to do’ list, then you have the notes you took and we are done! I take notes and photos, too, so I can refer back to them when needed. Once you are a client, I am always available by phone or email for questions about your garden.

If your issues require some thought and research and you are interested in a more detailed plan, then I will come back to you with recommendations.  This may involve another visit to your garden or may be done by sharing information and photos by email depending on what works best for you.

You can implement the recommendations yourself or engage landscape workers you already employ. If you need professional installation, arborists, sprinkler companies, lighting experts, etc., I will be happy to recommend sources that have proven to be reliable and professional.  If you wish, I can go shopping with you for plants and flowers at local nurseries so I can guide you and you can purchase and install them yourself.  And you may consider periodic makeover checkups, seasonally or annually.

Call 214.676.4361 or email Cheryl@McCueGardenMakeovers.com for more information or to schedule a consultation.

Testimonials

After: Knockout roses and stem ginger

What my clients say:

“After moving into a new home that had 12 years of existing and over grown landscaping, I knew I needed help.  The gardens and hedges were just too overwhelming and not my style.  I knew I wanted a variety of plants and lots of color, but didn’t know how to get there.  Cheryl was able to guide me with ideas and suggestions to create exactly what I wanted.  The overgrown hedges were replaced with soft grasses that I love!  She diagnosed a problem with a tree that ultimately had to be removed.  Since my future husband loves to cook, she suggested an herb garden in an area that was previously neglected.  Overall, Cheryl’s professional knowledge and love of gardening has been most beneficial to me in not only creating my vision, but also helping me view my garden as others see it, as well.  She’s my gardening angel!”   

Peggy, Plano, Texas

“Cheryl helped me see my garden and yard in a whole new light.  She showed me how I can move perennials, tear out bushes and plant new things that will give my garden a real makeover without ‘re-landscaping.’ And all of her suggestions are things I can easily do myself.  This is a great investment for any gardener.”

Gail, Colleyville, Texas

“Cheryl McCue of McCue Garden Makeovers transformed our 28′ x 38′ debris strewn wasteland of a backyard into a haven of beauty we enjoy everyday. Cheryl saw the potential of our small city space and designed a plan for the stone patio and four-season flowerbeds that not only complement one another, but are the perfect size for our entertainment needs. Her suggestions for evergreens and perennials gave us an easy care garden that brings numerous accolades from neighbors and friends.”

Michele, Chicago, Illinois

Cheryl is a gardening goddess….I was amazed at the difference her simple suggestions made. She sees so clearly and has such artistic vision. This will be the best money you’ve EVER spent on your garden. Please see her before investing in the wrong plants – her service is genius!! And Cheryl is a delight to work with, so encouraging and positive.”

Ellen, Dallas, TX

Call 214.676.4361 or email Cheryl@McCueGardenMakeovers.com for more information or to schedule a consultation.

Project Examples

Click the picture to begin a slideshow of garden before-and-afters.

For more information or to schedule a consultation, call 214.676.4361 or email Cheryl@McCueGardenMakeovers.com