Decorative Accent Lighting Tips for Your Home

During the winter, the shorter days darker may make your house look drab. This is especially important to address if you are trying to sell your home, as buyers will often come by in the evenings. One way to boost your curb appeal at night is by adding decorative accent lighting. If you’re trying to sell your house, or just want it to look alive at night, a little accent lighting will really make it stand out!

Choosing the Proper Decorative Accent Lighting

One way to figure out what type of lighting you may need is to look at your home at night. Figure out which areas are the darkest and where you may want to add light. Path lighting and motion detectors are a great way to light up your yard. In addition to lighting up your home, decorative accent lighting can also highlight your landscaping. If you have a favorite element of your landscaping, think about how you can draw attention to it with some creative lighting. Some ways you could do so are by putting string lights on the branches of a tree or using spotlights to silhouette a bush or shrub.

Another easy trick to adding curb appeal to your home is to light up the walkway leading to your front door. Visitors, potential homebuyers, and even you and your family will find the walk safer and much more enjoyable if there is lighting along the path. Low voltage path lights will add a gentle glow and add to your home’s curb appeal.

You can also ask your friends where they think lighting might be helpful. You look at your yard every day, multiple times a day, so getting a fresh perspective can be very helpful in deciding which areas of your yard could use more lighting.

If your house has an outdoor seating area, make sure this area is well lit. String lights are a great way to light outdoor living areas because they are cheerful and help buyers thinks of all the fun they can have on the patio.

Highlighting the architectural features of your home can also help boost the curb appeal. Uplights are a great way to highlight your home’s best features, and you can use them to highlight features such as rocks and columns.

Let the Experts at New Image Help

If you would like help with lighting your yard and creating more curb appeal, we offer landscape services that include modeling, design, and maintenance. We have been in the landscaping business in Arizona for more than 30 years and can help you with all your landscaping needs. For more information on our services, please contact us. Be sure to check our landscaping tips too!

The Best Flowers for Arizona Weather

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Flowers are a great way to add color and vibrancy to your life. With just a little research and preparation, you can plant and grow flowers in your own yard with relative ease. One of the most important aspects to growing healthy and beautiful flowers is picking the right flowers for the ecosystem in which you live. So before you decide on the flowers you want to plant in your yard, find out which ones grow here naturally. Here is a list of some of the most appropriate flowers for a garden in Arizona.

Petunias

Petunias are perfect for the Arizona weather, as they do not grow well in conditions of high humidity and frequent rains. This widely recognized flower can come in all colors and sizes. But regardless of the color they take as they bloom, you can be sure that a petunia is as vibrant as they come.

Marigold

These are some of the most unique and vibrant flowers that you will ever come across. They consist of tight clusters of richly colored flowers in the hues of maroon, orange, yellow and cream. They are incredibly easy to grow in the desert from little seedlings into massive flower plants.

Hibiscus

The hibiscus flower is a resilient one that can grow equally well under full sunlight or part shade. These are special because there are so many strains of the flower that you can plant countless hibiscus flowers and still achieve a flowerbed of great variety. It is important to note that this flower will attract bees, but the world could use some bees!

Brittle Bush

If you live in Arizona, then you will most certainly recognize this colorful bush. It prospers under the sunniest conditions and needs hardly any water. Because of these qualities, these bushes grow wild throughout the state, so planting them in your garden will be a piece of cake. One of the greatest attributes of the brittle bush is the amazing smell of sage that it strongly radiates. That makes this flower a relaxing presence through its wonderful visual and olfactory appeal.

Brighten Your Yard

A flowerbed filled with one or all of these flowers is something that can go a long way in brightening your day and providing a sense of accomplishment. Really, what you are looking for is a flower that is resistant to heat, does not require much water or rich soil, and grows best with full days of sun. There are many more species of flowers that fit this description, so get out there and find the species that suit you the best!

Artificial Turf: Pros and Cons, and Why It May Be a Better Option in Arizona

In Arizona, many people are considering installing artificial turf or grass as part of their landscaping. Because of the arid conditions of the Arizona environment, there are many good reasons to install artificial turf in all or part of your overall landscaping. Artificial turf is generally made up of polyethylene plastic grass on top of a base constructed of recycled, ground up tires. There are many pros to installing artificial grass including:

Lower Maintenance Costs

Green lawns come at a high price. Lush green lawns can account for up to a third of all residential water use. Also, since artificial turf does not require mowing, trimming, or blowing, there is less gas or electric use for the tools. In addition to not having to be mowed or watered, artificial lawns do not need to be re-seeded or replanted. They do not become brown and will stay green all year round for a great looking lawn.

Environmentally Friendly

Because artificial turf/grass is made of recycled materials, it is a good use of materials that might otherwise be in the landfills. Additionally, since an artificial lawn can have a lifespan of up to 25 years, it can be less expensive than real grass.

Stands Up to High Traffic

Because of the durability of artificial turf, it is a great option for high traffic areas such as kids’ play areas. If you’ve ever wanted a putting green in your yard, artificial turf is the way to go!

Highly Customizable

Also, artificial lawns are available in different textures, colors, and blade lengths. The newest generations of artificial grass have been known to fool a lot of people, making them very attractive.

Cons

Some of the negative points about artificial grass include:

  • It may act as a heat source, as it absorbs heat and can feel hot to the touch when in direct sun.
  • Pet owners say that there are pros and cons. Artificial turf does not absorb animal waste; however, it does allow liquids to pass to the ground underneath the turf.

Learn More About Artificial Turf

At New Image Landscape and Pools, we are very knowledgeable about both live and artificial lawns. We would be happy to sit down and discuss the pros and cons of each. We can also discuss your individual needs to determine which type of lawn will be best for your individual lifestyle and home.

5 Reasons You Need A New Pool In AZ

It’s no secret that the Arizona summers can be a little too hot to handle sometimes, often reaching temperatures over 100 degrees, which means that outside activities are often kept to a minimum. Other than the obvious reason to have a pool in Arizona, there are many other ways that a new pool can benefit you. Here are five reasons, as recommended by New Image Landscape and Pools, for getting a new pool.

Arizona summers are HOT!

This is, of course, the most common and obvious reason to have a pool in Arizona. Reaching high temperatures well above 100 degrees throughout the summer months, many consider it a MUST HAVE in any home. It had been surveyed, and nearly one-third of all homeowners in the Phoenix-Metro area (including Phoenix, Scottsdale, Tempe, Mesa, Chandler, and Gilbert) own a pool. So, it may be time to build your new backyard oasis and keep cool this summer.

Increase home value

Professionals in the real estate industry have always argued whether adding a pool will increase the value of your home or be seen as more of a liability. Lucky for Arizona home-owners, having a pool is practically seen as a necessity and can increase your home’s value by nearly 8 percent.

Encourage family time

Summertime also means summer break for kids and what better way to spend time with your family than having pool party? This will encourage your brood to hang out at home where you can know their whereabouts and, if you’re practicing proper pool safety, rest assured that they are in a safe environment as they enjoy their break from school.

Fitness

Forget about spending hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars on the latest home gym equipment that you will only use for a few months. Aquatic exercise and fitness is just as effective and can double as a form of massage therapy for achy bones and muscles. By having your own pool at home, you don’t necessarily have to purchase any additional equipment or expensive gym memberships. The best part, is that you get to work out in the privacy of your own home – the true judgment free zone.

Saves you from the having to go to public pools

Let’s face it, just the thought of going to a public pool gives you an uneasy feeling, but it’s just so dang hot outside and you’re just dying to cool off. By having your own pool, you don’t have to worry about over-crowded public pools and all of the germs that come along with it. You can find comfort in knowing exactly how clean your pool is because you have complete control over it.

If you are considering adding a new pool to your home, hopefully, these five reasons will help make your decision a little bit easier. Start building your new pool today, because there is never any room for the summertime blues in sunny Arizona!

The Pros and Cons of Vinyl Pools

January is the time of year when people start thinking about having a pool installed; the hot summer days of last year aren’t so far behind them that they are forgotten, and the new summer is still far enough away that the new pool will be completed and ready for frolicking in.  Like any good homeowner you have been doing your research and have been reading about – or if you are from back east – have heard about the popularity of vinyl lined pools.   You won’t see many vinyl pools in the Phoenix area, but they have become better known in recent years.  Below is a list of pros and cons to help you determine if vinyl is the direction you want to go.

Pros of Vinyl Pools

  • Cheaper Initial Cost – Of all pool types (fiberglass, concrete or vinyl) vinyl has the lowest startup costs. The materials are cheaper, installation costs are lower, and once the pool is filled, chemical start up is cheaper.
  • Versatility of shape, depth, color and pattern – Easily moldable, a vinyl liner can be stretched to form almost any shape you can imagine…L shaped, Grecian; if the structure can be built, vinyl can be formed to it. Vinyl also comes in many different colors and patterns, allowing you to be creative with your pool design.
  • Retards algae growth – the non-porous surface of the vinyl liner retards the growth of algae, causing less maintenance overall. Very little chlorine is needed for upkeep, keeping maintenance costs down.
  • Smooth on tender feet – Anyone who has spent any amount of time in a pool understands how sensitive feet get the longer you’re in the pool; concrete pools can rub your feet raw after prolonged exposure – the soft vinyl surface will not.

Cons

  • Long term costs are higher – Vinyl pool liners need to be replaced every 7-15 years, costing you as little as $2000 to as much as $4000 each time. This can add up rather quickly and tends to negate the savings of initial installation.
  • More care needed – Vinyl is very thin and tears rather easily; dogs, kids, roofing material that comes that lands in your pool after a big monsoon storm – any or all debris could damage the liner causing you to have to replace it sooner than you originally calculated, again adding to and negating the original cost savings.
  • Discoloration – chlorine can bleach the liner leading to unattractive discoloration. The only remedy is replacing the liner.
  • Resale value – Installing a pool only adds around 10 percent to the price of resale value and a vinyl lined pool adds even less. The industry tends not to respect the value of a vinyl and prospective sellers anticipate problems and shy away from homes with vinyl lined pools.

Decision making

Now you’ve read some of the pros and cons of vinyl pools all that is left is making the final decision.  You may have to spend a lot of time researching and talking to people to help you pick the perfect pool, but in the end, it will be time well spent.  Summer days in the desert can be brutal but when you are floating in your own beautifully designed pool we can almost guarantee you won’t even notice the heat!

If you want more information, please feel free to contact us, we appreciate it!