Author Archives: VanBeeks

How Our Bin Services Process is An Eco-Friendly Way to Give Back

Yard waste

Is your summer yard looking a little messy? There are always a few leftover piles of debris from your list of gardening tasks that get pushed off to the side rather than put into bags. Whether you have a small task or a larger project, removing old stone, digging out a garden bed, or disposing of old grass can be a hassle to clean up after.

So, what do you do with the dirt you unearth when you’re putting in a new garden feature? What about the concrete, stone or aggregates that you no longer need? You can rely on Van Beek’s Landscape Supply’s bin services. We’ll pick up your landscaping debris and take it all away so you don’t have to worry about it.

The most frequent question we receive about our bin services is, “Where does the soil or concrete end up?” You’ll be happy to hear that we are dedicated to responsible re-use or disposal of your yard waste. In fact, your soil may be treated and incorporated into our own soil mix after a few years, which is a wonderful way to give back to Mother Nature.

Find out more about what we do with your yard waste in our bin services process below.

Concrete, Stone and Aggregates

Removal of concrete

Cracked concrete, old stones and other aggregates are hard to remove from your property. They’re heavy and may incur a lot of charges from other removal companies. Not us. Our concrete and stone removal services are simple and reasonably priced, because we have good use for your concrete.

After we’ve collected your stone and aggregate, we recycle it into a re-usable product. This useful material can be used in home foundations, roadways, drainage systems, and much more. In this way, you’re helping to give back to your city’s buildings and infrastructure, which is definitely something to feel good about.

Sod, Soil and Dirt

Have you dug up your yard to put down a new deck? Or have you dug up soil to put in new fence posts? If so, we’ll pick up the soil and sod in our bin service.

After we do, we bring your dirt to our own soil piles. There, your dirt is mixed with additional nutrients and other soils. The dirt then has to rest for one to two years before it can be used as our own fill soil.

Though it’s a long process, your dirt ends up being sustainably re-used in other gardens and landscaping projects in the area by other contractors and homeowners alike. Think about all of the compost you’re helping to create for a healthier, greener neighborhood and planet!

Try Our Bin Service

Ready for us to take the mess off your hands? We’re happy to help and simply ask that you keep your soil separate from your stone and other aggregates so that we can recycle them correctly. We hope you’ll feel good about knowing that your soil and concrete will be responsibly re-purposed and benefit so many other purposes for a more sustainable world.

Have more questions? Contact us today for more information. The team at Van Beek’s Landscape Supply is always ready to help.

What is the Best Type of Mulch to Use?

mulch pathway through garden

Choosing the right type of mulch  for your gardens is a tough but important decision. The wrong mulch can not only have a drastic effect on how your home looks overall but can also have other negative effects such as being less insulating and not repelling insects as well as other mulches.

Use our mulch guide to help you make an informed decision on the best mulch for your gardens and flowerbeds.

Things to Consider When Choosing Your Mulch

Here are a few of the most important considerations when deciding between different colours and types of mulch, and which will be the most effective for your landscape:

  • House Colour. Of course, the colour of your home is one of the first things you should consider when it comes to choosing from different types of mulch. There isn’t a definite answer about what mulch colour to pick based on your brick, but you should think about your brick or siding colour when you are choosing a mulch in terms of whether you want it to contrast or complement your home. Do you want the mulch to act as an extension of the house in a similar colour, or provide a striking contrast (such as black mulch against red bricks)?
  • Plant Colour. Many people consider the colour of their house when choosing mulch but forget to think about the impact of plant colour. Red mulches, for example, complement green foliage, while black mulch offers a beautiful contrast against colourful florals.
  • Patio Furniture and Other Accent Colours. Patio furniture and other accent colours such as shutters are something else that can be taken into consideration from a decorating perspective. Try and maintain a holistic view of the home when deciding which mulch colour will look best and keep those accent pieces in mind, particularly for areas that will be most visible to visitors.
  • Sun Fading. The truth is that most mulches are going to fade from sun exposure over time. However, to avoid fading, pine bark is the best for holding its colour.
  • Insulating Properties. Beyond adding an aesthetically pleasing finish to your gardens, mulch also insulates the soil and adds nutrients. Black mulch is particularly good for insulation as it absorbs and holds the sunlight.
  • Insect Control. Believe it or not, the type of mulch you choose can have an effect on insect control. Yellow and black mulches have been found to attract insects more than other colours. While cedar and hemlock mulch have a natural scent that repels certain insects.

Have more questions about choosing different mulch types and colours? Contact the experts at Van Beek’s Landscape Supply today, we’d be happy to speak with you about all of your mulch needs.

How Artificial Grass Can Help Save You Time and Money

artificial grass and gravel

For a better-looking lawn find out why artificial grass is a key low maintenance alternative and what tools you need to keep it looking its best.

Why Artificial Grass is a Low Maintenance Alternative

Artificial grass is a key choice for many homeowners and businesses as it’s much easier to maintain than natural grass and requires little cleaning and maintenance. Consider that artificial turf doesn’t need to be watered, mowed or fed anything to keep it looking beautiful and full. Think about all the energy, time and money you could save.

Learn more about how simple the upkeep is for artificial grass and why it’s a preferred alternative for many families and business owners.

Tools Needed for Artificial Turf Maintenance

As with anything, you need the right tools for the job, and artificial grass care is no different. Having the right artificial grass maintenance tools is essential to the care of your turf to ensure it looks its best for years to come.

Maintaining a natural grass lawn means you need to have a shed or garage overflowing with a large variety of tools and lawn related objects. Rakes, mowers, shovels, grass seed and more, are required to keep grass looking its best. Turf on the other hand, only requires a few simple household items, such as:

  • A hose
  • Flexible rake
  • Stiff bristled broom

Artificial Grass Care Saves Time and Money

With proper artificial grass care, you can save yourself energy, time and money. Over a 10-year period, artificial grass can save you $5,000 compared to sod. A normal lawn requires constant time and attention with watering, fertilizing and aerating. Artificial grass doesn’t require any of that and with some low maintenance always looks great.

dog on artificial grass

 

Artificial Turf with Pets and Children

You might think that if you have pets or children that artificial turf isn’t for you, but that’s not true. Modern artificial grass systems are built to withstand heavy use and unlike conventional lawns, can avoid browning or bald spots from pets and wear and tear. If there are any spills or odours, simply use your hose and a disinfectant to wash away the smell and eliminate bacteria.

For more information, check out our artificial turf FAQ to learn more about artificial turf and its different uses.

If you’d like to speak with someone further about artificial grass maintenance tools or any other lawn related questions, contact the professionals at Van Beek’s Garden Supplies.

DIY Ground Prep for Sod Installation from Van Beek’s

With these tips for ground prep for sod installation you can install your sod yourself, like a pro.

DIY Ground Prep for Sod Installation

How to Prepare Your Ground to Install Sod Like A Pro

When it comes to ground prep for sod installation, there are several factors to consider before starting your new sod installation project. Whether you are looking to repair patches in your lawn or hope to replace a whole area, these tips will leave you satisfied with your ability to create a lush green lawn that will thrive throughout the year.

Repairing Small Areas

For new grass to root ensure that it is laid over rich soil where the roots can pick up the nutrients needed to develop and grow. As mentioned previously, an additional layer of topsoil under your new sod will ensure that your lawn will root correctly for proper growth.

Keep in mind that applying a layer of topsoil and new sod directly over an existing lawn may look unlevel and can affect lawn health if water does not properly drain into the soil. To prevent this problem, you may wish to dig up the existing patch by hand or with a rototiller depending on the size of the area.

Replacing a Whole Lawn

Digging up the old grass with a rototiller will provide a fresh start on which you can grow your dream lawn. After tilling the lawn, be sure to grade with a rake to ensure that the lawn is level so that the water will drain correctly. As mentioned previously, an additional layer of nutrient-rich topdressing soil over the new base will ensure that your lawn will root correctly for proper growth.

After the application, running over the lawn with a roller will remove any air pockets that could affect the rooting process. Whether a small or large project, it is important to continue watering the newly installed lawn to help the roots grow into the soil.

You now know what it takes to install your own sod, but there are some more practical questions to consider before starting the job.

Frequently Asked Questions About Sod Installation

How long does it take to lay sod?

While the specific amount of time to lay sod depends on the size of the area, it should not take longer than a day. After tilling and grading the ground, it is a simple process to lay out the sod over the prepared ground.

When is a good time to lay sod?

You should be aware that it is most effective to lay sod during cooler seasons of the year, particularly on cloudy days. An ideal target range is between 12 and 18 degree Celsius when there is no risk of frost, but when the sun will not stress the new lawn.[1]

When should I start mowing my new lawn?

In general, you will want to wait a few weeks after installing sod before cutting it with a lawnmower. The lawn should be fully rooted into the soil before driving over it.

To find the soil and sod products that will help you create your dream lawn, contact the experts at Van Beek’s Landscaping Supplies.

 

[1] HomeGuides At What Temperatures Can You Lay Sod? Accessed March 2019. Available online: https://homeguides.sfgate.com/temperatures-can-lay-sod-74889.html

How Early Can You Plant Grass Seed?

planting grass seed

If you’re looking to get ahead on planting grass seed, keep in mind that you still need the help of Mother Nature. So, what conditions and temperature does grass seed germinate in? For your grass seed to thrive, it requires the right amount of warmth and moisture. This is why it’s typically recommended to seed in the fall.

If you are seeding in the spring, know that it will take slightly longer for the seeds to germinate. Ideally you need two weeks of continuous daily temperatures that sit between 15 and 20 degrees Celsius. This should allow the soil to reach a temperature of 10 to 18 degrees Celsius.

When’s the Best Time to Plant Grass Seed?

The best time to plant grass seed really depends on what part of Canada you live in and environmental conditions. Pick up a metal thermometer and insert it into the ground approximately 7-10 centimeters. Do this for a few days for consistency and ensure no cold spells are on the way.

If planting indoors, you still need to use high quality soil that is the proper temperature as well. Leave the bags of soil somewhere in the house so they can warm up to the temperature that they need to be before planting anything.

plant grass seed

Different Grass Seeds for Various Weather

Depending on the temperature, different grasses work better in various environments, and you’ll need to follow specific rules to better their chances of survival.

The best grass seed for hot weather is Tall Fescues. This type of grass loves the sun, is drought-tolerant and has strong root systems. The best warm weather grass seed is Annual Ryegrass, also known as ‘nurse grass’, due to its ability to hold back weeds until other grasses can grow. It also germinates quickly.

If you’re looking for the best cold weather grass seed, you should try Canada Blue Grass, as it grows very well in cooler temperatures. It’s also low-maintenance, grows in poor soil and doesn’t mind partial sunlight. For all weather grass seed, consider Bermuda, as it’s wear-resistant and drought-tolerant.

To get more information about the conditions and temperature grass seed germinates, contact the grass seed experts at Van Beek’s Landscape Supply.

Why is Landscape Budget Planning Important?

landscaping

Like any home project, starting a landscaping endeavour can be a lot of work and you need to have a plan in place to help ensure things go smoothly. A project can go off the rails quite easily, so having a landscape budget can help in a variety of ways, including:

  • Helping to keep costs in check
  • Letting you know how much you need to save up or spend
  • Helping to make sure you have the best work done at your price point
  • Allowing you to find out how much things really cost

How Much Should I Budget for Landscaping?

Before any tools are brought out, make sure you know what you need and how much of it will be used. When it comes to soil, mulch, compost, landscape mulch or topdressing, use our material calculator to find out exactly how much of each product you will need. This not only cuts down on wasted product and but also helps you save money. Have a landscaping budget template in place and stick to it.

landscaping budget

Create a Priority List

You may have a variety of projects you want to do around your home but you need to prioritize what needs to be done first. Consider what you want to see finished first, whether that may be the entranceway at the front of the home, more intricate detail or comforts in the backyard or if you’re looking to add curb appeal due to moving.

Minimize the Stress of Finishing Projects

Taking on projects around the home should be fun. You should never feel stressed out or concerned about getting a project done. If you can’t complete all the projects in spring that you would like to due to timing or budget restraints, you can always split them up and do some in the summer instead. Regardless of the season, plan to put away money towards a landscaping budget for new construction and wait until it’s financially feasible to begin.

Start your landscape budget planning today and contact the landscape material experts at Van Beek’s Landscape Supply for more assistance and advice.

Where is Firewood Sourced From?

firewood

In Canada, we are very lucky to have roughly 9% of the world’s forests. Many different types of firewood come from specific areas. Softwood, which derives from coniferous trees, is generally from British Columbia. Hardwood, which is from deciduous trees such as birch, maple and oak, is primarily found in southern Ontario and Quebec.

Different Types of Firewood

With so many different types of trees, it may seem difficult to know what the best choices for firewood in Ontario might be. Here are some questions about an assortment of various woods to help you decide what makes good firewood and which ones you may want to avoid.

  • Is maple good firewood?

Maple is a solid choice for firewood as it is readily available, provides good heat, burns cleans and splits well.

  • Does cherry make good firewood?

Cherry firewood has an exceptional aroma, splits easy and supplies moderate heat, but it does tend to spark more than other hardwoods, which could lead to issues when burned in an open fireplace.

  • Is oak good firewood?

Oak has a higher energy content per cord and releases more heat, as well as providing longer lasting fires and coal beds than some hardwoods.

  • Does pine make good firewood?

Pine ignites easily which makes it great for kindling. It also produces a hot flame that burns rapidly. It can be messy to work with but it smells great.

firewood

Help Stop the Spread of Tree Diseases to Different Areas

Diseases and pests are the biggest culprits that can severely hurt trees. To help avoid spreading these issues make sure to:

  • Burn the firewood where you buy it
  • Buy certified and heat-treated firewood where available
  • Gather it yourself if regulations permit
  • Check with all parks and campgrounds about their firewood rules

For all of your firewood needs and more, make sure to contact the professionals at Van Beek’s Garden Supplies.

We Have a New eBook. Download Your FREE Copy of The Advantages of Sodding and Seeding

Early fall is a good time to rejuvenate your lawn.

A question we get asked often at Van Beek’s Garden Supplies is whether sod or grass seed is best.

The short answer is that both can be effective in growing lush, thick and very green grass around your home.

It just depends on what you want for your lawn, how much time you have and your budget.

 

 

Make the right decision when you download your FREE copy of The Advantages of Sodding and Seeding.

 

 

 

 

The things you’ll learn

There are 4 criteria homeowners in Oakville and Mississauga usually consider when deciding to sod or seed their lawn for the year:

  • Money: Budget is always an important factor
  • Time: How to get the best results as quickly as possible
  • Quality: It has to provide value for the dollars and effort spent
  • Maintenance: Easy ways to keep your lawn looking great

The Advantages of Sodding and Seeding takes a closer look at each of these items and details what to expect if you choose to use sod or seed.

It’s a great starting point; especially if you’re new to planting and growing grass for your home.

Take a look inside

Here’s a small preview of what you’ll find inside your FREE copy of The Advantages of Sodding and Seeding.

Want to see the rest?

Then visit our special download page to request your complimentary copy right now.

Don’t forget about the topsoil

Using high-quality triple mix soil and proper ground preparation is essential for sodding or seeding.

That’s why your FREE copy of The Advantages of Sodding and Seeding includes a helpful section on getting the most from your soil.

It features 4 easy-to-follow steps along with a listing of the tools you’ll be using.

Whether you sod or seed your lawn, topsoil is perhaps the most important element you need.

The time and effort you make in soil preparation will drastically improve the performance and appearance of your lawn.

For more helpful topsoil tips:

How to get your FREE copy of The Advantages of Sodding and Seeding

It’s easy, fast, and free.

 

 

Visit our special download page and complete the easy-to-fill form (it takes less than 10 seconds).

 

 

 

 

As soon as you hit the DOWNLOAD GUIDE NOW button on that page, we’ll instantly email your copy straight to your inbox.

Ready to sod or seed? Let us help

Before you start sodding or seeding your lawn, we encourage you to read the following blogs:

And when you’re finally ready to begin, you can:

Contact us to learn more about our triple mix soil

Tackle These End-of-Summer Landscaping Jobs

Summer is over

September’s almost here at Van Beek’s Garden Supplies and with it comes the unofficial end of summer.

(For the record, the actual end of summer/first day of fall is Friday, September 22).

In the next couple of weeks:

  • Back to school will be in full swing
  • The busy holiday season will start (Thanksgiving is around 6.5 weeks away)
  • Outside temperatures will gradually get cooler

Which means you won’t have much time to work in your garden.

So before things get too hectic, make sure you take care of some small (but very important) end-of-summer landscaping jobs.

Grass seedSow some fresh grass seed

It’s still warm enough here in Oakville and Mississauga to seed (or reseed) your lawn with fresh grass seed.

Here’s what to do:

  • Work and rotate the topsoil
  • Spread the grass seed down as per its instructions
  • Cover the area with straw, compost or mulch
  • Follow a fall lawn care schedule of watering twice daily

The roots should start to grow quickly with grass filling in shortly thereafter. When this happens, reduce your watering schedule.

The benefit of doing this now: You’ll give your lawn a healthy head-start to survive the winter. Plus, it’ll look nicer, thicker and fuller once spring hits.

Spread one last layer of triple mix soil

Triple mix soil is an important and healthy combination of three important ingredients:

  • Compost
  • Sandy soil
  • Black loam

Fresh soil delivery will give your garden or tree beds the vitamins and nutrients needed to get through the winter.

Here’s a question for you: When was the last time you put down fresh topsoil?

If the answer is way back in the spring, your landscaping has devoured all the good stuff it needs.

In other words: Right now, your garden is hungry.

And the best way to keep it healthy and happy in fall and winter is with soil bags filled with new topsoil.

The benefit of doing this now: Summer heat and dryness can be hard on your lawn and garden. New triple mix soil helps with recovery and makes gardening that much easier come springtime.

Clean paving stonesClean and seal your interlocking patio stones

Did your interlocking stone pavers stain or discolour over the summer?

Yes?

Well, now’s the perfect time to clean and seal them before fall and winter arrive. Otherwise, they could lose even more of their colourful lustre.

If you want to tackle this job yourself, just follow these simple steps:

1.      Wash: Clean your patio stones completely with a garden hose or high-pressure washer. 2.      Mix: A bucket full of water and stain remover detergent until it’s nice and soapy. 3.      Dump: The water/detergent combo on your stones and let sit for 20 minutes.
4.      Scrub: Once the 20 minutes have passed, deeply scrub the mixture into your stones with a brush. 5.      Look: Any tough stains which are still there should be handled with a concrete stain remover product. 6.      Top-Up: Joints between stones should be filled halfway with polymeric sand.

The final step is to apply the interlock sealant of your choice. Don’t use too much and always follow the directions on the label. If necessary, add a second layer once the first has dried completely.

Planting can boost curb appealSmall touch-ups to improve curb appeal

These are little jobs which can have a big impact on the look and feel of your outdoor landscaping:

  • Paint: Any dull or worn out areas should be spruced up with just a little bit of paint

 

  • Mulch: New mulch will revitalize your garden and provide an extra layer of protection against the cold

 

  • Plant: Getting late summer flowers and fall flowers in the ground now gives them ample time to adapt to your topsoil and bloom in full

 

  • Replace: Any burnt out bulbs in your home landscape lights should be replaced now before it gets too cold and dark out

Need help tackling this list? Come to Van Beek’s

Whatever jobs you want to finish before summer officially ends, Van Beek’s has you covered:

To start, you can contact us with any questions you have. We’ll get back to you ASAP with the answers you’re looking for.

Or, if you already know what you’re looking for, request a FREE quote. Again, we’ll be in touch quickly with the information you need.

Contact us to learn more about our triple mix soil

Have You Gotten Your FREE Copy of Why Interlocking Pavers are Better than Poured Concrete or Asphalt?

Before summer ends, you’d like to update your patio or driveway.

That way, it’ll be perfect when the warm weather in 2018 hits.

But you aren’t sure if you should replace your interlocking stone pavers or go with something new, like poured concrete or asphalt.

At Van Beek’s Garden Supplies, were partial to the beauty and visibility interlock paving stones offer.

 

There are other benefits to using interlock pavers, which you’ll discover in your FREE copy of Why Interlocking Pavers are Better than Poured Concrete or Asphalt.

 

What you’ll find inside

Inside Why Interlocking Pavers are Better than Poured Concrete or Asphalt, you’ll learn about the three most important factors to consider when planning your outdoor project:

  • Fleibility: Do you have multiple design options available to you during installation?
  • Care: How easy is it to maintain and protect interlock, asphalt or poured concrete?
  • Safety: What (if any) are the safety risks associated with whatever product you choose?

And since Oakville and Mississauga can be subject to extreme weather conditions or changes, this FREE guide also looks at the impact it may or may not have.

Get a sneak peek

Here’s just a snippet of what’s inside your FREE copy of Why Interlocking Pavers are Better than Poured Concrete or Asphalt:

To see everything, just visit our special download page to instantly get your FREE copy.

The reasons we put together Why Interlocking Pavers are Better than Poured Concrete or Asphalt

As mentioned at the top of this blog, we think interlocking stones are the way to go.

In fact, we carry a large selection of interlocking stone products form Canada’s top brands, including:

  • Unilock
  • Permacon
  • Navascape
  • Best Way Stone
  • Triple H

Over the years, lots of people have come to us with questions about interlock pavers; especially when compared to concrete and poured asphalt.

That’s why we put together Why Interlocking Pavers are Better than Poured Concrete or Asphalt; to give you an easy-to-use guide you can refer to anytime.

How you can get your FREE copy

We’ve made it incredibly easy to instantly get your own copy of Why Interlocking Pavers are Better than Poured Concrete or Asphalt.

  • First, visit our special download page.
  • Then, complete an easy-to-fill form (it takes less than 10 seconds).
  • Finally, click the “DOWNLOAD GUIDE NOW” button on the page (you can’t miss it).

That’s it. You’re done.

We’ll instantly email your own copy straight to your inbox.

Want to know more about our interlock paving products?

Have questions about interlocking pavers or similar products like rock flagstone?

Contact us with whatever you’d like to know (including asking for a FREE quote) and we’ll get back to you ASAP with the info you need.

Ask for a FREE quote