New Home Landscape Completion Guide
Congratulations on completing your Supreme Green landscaped garden to compliment your new home!
Great care has been taken by our team during this project to minimise the amount of input required to watch your garden grow and flourish into the final vision that was intended. The following guide is not an exhaustive list. However, it provides an overview of key items that may be relevant for your particular project. Weâ€™d always encourage the use of a professional maintenance crew to care for your garden. As an example, the watering requirement for plants and lawns will change as they become established, as will their feeding requirements. If you also feel that engaging a professional garden maintenance contractor would be beneficial to the longevity of your garden please feel free to contact us for a recommendation. We greatly appreciate your business and we look forward to maintaining our strong relationship into the future. Should you have friends or family that are looking to undertake a landscape project in the future we would be excited at the opportunity to offer our services to them also. Paul Leesment Director â€“ Supreme Green
CONTENTS Lawns Garden Beds Automated Irrigation Systems Lighting Concrete Drainage Systems Timber Decking & Paving Driveway Gate Automation Intercom & Pedestrian Gates Clothesline
02 04 06 09 10 11 12 13 14 15
Lawns (Buffalo variety) If your lawn does not have an automated watering system installed, we highly recommend that it is well watered in during the root establishment phase over the initial few months. It is vital that your instant lawn is kept damp until the root growth has taken hold. This can be achieved by watering your lawn frequently and heavily for the first few weeks, especially in warmer weather (over 20 degrees). Once the lawn has taken hold, watering can be eased off. If establishing during summer months, the lawn areas may require watering everyday. Below is a guide to assist you with understanding how much watering is generally required. LAWN ESTABLISHMENT: The following watering regime is applicable to turf laid in warmer months, however even during the cooler months it cannnot be allowed to dry out: • Week One: Water your lawn heavily twice daily to prevent from drying out. This is especially important if temperatures are exceeding 25 deg and/or windy. Otherwise, once daily should suffice. The lawn should feel ‘sloshy’ underfoot, with the presence of excess water. This will ensure that you’ve watered sufficiently. • Week Two: Water your lawn heavily once daily, or once every two days if there are lower daytime temperatures and/or some rain falling. • Week Three: Water your lawn heavily once every 2-3 days. This should be adequate, unless there are still hot periods reaching above 25 degrees. In which case, increased watering will be required. • Week Four: Water your lawn heavily once or twice per week. This should be adequate to strengthen the lawns tolerance towards reduced moisture levels in the ground. A promising sign of lawn establishment is when it becomes difficult to lift up the edge of the instant turf. This process will be prolonged during the cooler months. • Ongoing: Water your lawn heavily once a week during the hot and dry Spring / Summer periods. As a guide, it is difficult to over water lawn. Allow a generous watering regime when establishing a new lawn during the warmer months. If sprinklers are being used, please ensure that every corner receives watering by hand to prevent drying out. 2 www.newhomelandscaping.com.au
Lawns (continued...) If a warm season grass like Buffalo has been laid, it will go dormant during the Winter months. This may sometimes lose its colour and appear yellowish-brown. This is just a sign of dormancy and nothing to be alarmed at. Signs of growth will become visible during the increased temperatures of the warmer months. We recommend that an organic based fertiliser is applied during mid Spring (apply quantity as per manufacturer instructions). The lawn will require a generous watering after the fertiliser has been applied.
Buffalo fertiliser example
Before the lawns first mow in Spring, it is recommended to hand weed to remove any Winter weeds that may have established themselves. A height of 50mm is recommended to cut your grass. Any shorter length may present a harmful opportunity to expose the bottom of the stems to harsh weather conditions. A recommended approach is to always mow your front and rear yards first, with the nature strip last. This reduces the risk of cross contamination with weeds, as these can be spread through use of your mower. The weed seeds that can remain lodged under the mower will likely die in between each cut. We recommend employing a professional gardener to maintain your lawns and garden beds. If you do employ a maintenance contractor it is beneficial to ask them to use your own lawn mower for the cutting of your front and rear yard and use their own mower for the nature strips to avoid weed contamination. If considering the use a professional garden maintenance contractor, we recommend: Nathan Penhall First Light Gardens 0400 275 675 ďźˆďź‰(email@example.com) Below is a link from one of our lawn suppliers for information of ongoing maintenance of your lawn https://www.lilydaleinstantlawn.com.au/domestic/lawn-care *DO NOT USE ANY TYPE OF WEED KILLER OR SPRAY ON YOUR LAWN WHICH CAN EASILY KILL IT* www.newhomelandscaping.com.au
Garden Beds Plants Any plants that have been installed by Supreme Green have been watered in during the construction of your new home landscape. There is a need to maintain the moisture level of all your garden beds while these plants establish over the first month or two, especially during warm weather. It is also beneficial to use an all-round organic based fertiliser on plants in early Spring to encourage new growth.
Plant fertiliser example
Pruning The need to prune any branches should be considered when they start to encroach over pathways or driveways. A cut-back can be done with a good pair of secateurs. There is no need to prune for the sake of pruning. Pruning is recommended to be done during dormant cooler months, as this will apply less stress to the plants. Plants such as roses require pruning twice a year to encourage better flowering. Pruning of hedges is recommended to be done when they reach the desired height. This should not be required for a number of years until they have properly matured. Pruning the face to maintain aesthetics is also recommended. This will encourage the plants to â€˜bush upâ€™ and join together to create privacy. Using sheers or a hedge trimmer will provide the most desirable result. Regular annual maintenance of established hedges will create a manicured look, while minimising the need for excessive maintenance work in the future. We highly recommend the regular use of a professional maintenance contractor to take care of all garden beds and lawns. Due to holidays or a busy lifestyle, not providing your garden with the attention that it requires can have a detrimental affect. We have also found a trend between a well kept garden and increased home security. 4 www.newhomelandscaping.com.au
Garden Beds (continued...) Weeds Any weeds that grow in your garden beds should be treated or removed before they can potentially spread. One method is to use a herbicide like Slasher Organic Weedkiller. All safety instructions on the bottle should be strictly followed. This should be applied in dry conditions and sprayed directly on to the weed itself, avoiding contact with any surrounding plants. Never use a herbicide product on weeds in your lawn, as this can have a detrimental affect to the lawn. Hand weeding is another method but will often leave weed remnants in the ground that can easily re-grow.
Weed killer example
Watering After the completion of landscape works and handover has taken place, maintaining moisture in the soil surrounding the root zone of your plants is essential. If hand watering, a key focus is to water the soil at the base of all plants and avoid watering the foliage. Depending on weather conditions, a heavy watering every second or third day should be sufficient, easing off after 3 weeks to encourage deep root growth during Spring and Summer. A garden bed should never be allowed to completely dry out. Watering can stop during the plant dormancy of the Winter months, however there will be a need to monitor the soil moisture levels if recent weather has delivered extended periods without rain. As a general guide, plants donâ€™t require as much water as lawns to become established. For some species, such as bamboo, daily watering will be required. Be careful not to give your garden too much love, as many plants can suffer (and even die) from over watering. 5 www.newhomelandscaping.com.au
Automated Irrigation System If your landscape has an automated irrigation system installed, this has already been programmed by our landscaping team to provide an accurate level of watering to your lawn and plants for the current season. Depending on the available location at the time of installation, the controller may be located within close proximity of the garden tap, on the side of your house, or inside your garage. To ensure that your pre-programmed settings are maintained, please avoid turning off mains power to this controller. There is a battery back-up in the event of a power blackout. Auto irrigation systems are not designed to ‘set & forget‘. They require watering level adjustment throughout the four seasons of the year, and have a manual setting for occasional extra watering when required. In winter, they can be be switched off entirely. Soils retain water for longer periods in the colder months, and watering an already wet soil can easily kill plants. Ideally, your garden maintenance professional can adjust the system controller for you throughout the year. There are two models of controllers that we install - mains power controllers for multiple zones of lawns and garden beds, or battery operated if only 1 or 2 zones require irrigation. Both models have an isolation valve lever situated at the mains water tap. We recommend that this is turned off over winter to prevent water pressure build-up during the irrigation system shut down period. This should be switched on again in early Spring. Alternatively, you can switch the irrigation controller to ‘off‘ over winter, however this will continue to build water pressure up. A copy of your irrigation plan has been emailed to you for future reference of the sub-ground components. 6 www.newhomelandscaping.com.au
Mains powered multi station controller example
Battery powered tap mounted controller example
Automated Irrigation System (continued...) A model-specific instruction booklet is provided on how to operate this system. A demonstration on how to operate this will be provided at handover. This comes with battery backup and often a rain sensor (pictured below) to over-ride the watering schedule during rainy periods. The program will return automatically when it dries out.
Your automatic lawn irrigation has pop up sprinklers that are fitted with the nozzles specifically calibrated for the correct coverage of your lawn area. These nozzles are readily available from any garden shop if they become damaged by a mower, pet, or any other cause. They can be re-aligned with a twist in the right direction.
Your garden beds have a drip line irrigation system installed under the mulch. This should not require much maintenance, unless accidental damage is caused. 13mm joiners and clamps can be purchased from your local hardware store if repairs are required.
Rain sensor example
Lawn irrigation pop-up example
Drip irrigation tubing example 7
Automated Irrigation System (continued...) To flush any accumulated dirt out of the system a vacuum release button is located at the top (pictured below). This can be pushed down during system operation. This is a non-maintenance component that can be found at the high point of each drip zone station.
Vacuum release example
A customised irrigation layout diagram will be provided to you at handover. A multi-zone system comprises of low voltage wiring located through the garden bed. This connects the irrigation controller to a valve box located near the front tap. For a simple one or two station system the controller will be directly connected to the tap. An isolation valve will also be fitted to allow separate use of the tap. Most systems have drip line irrigation for garden beds and pop-up sprinklers for lawns. On some occasions, adjustable drippers for pots, ferns or vegetable boxes will also be incorporated. Due to automatic irrigation systems requiring on going adjustments for seasonal weather variance, it is advisable to engage a professional maintenance contractor to maintain the settings for you. Be aware that over watering can kill plants faster than under watering, as they can suffer from â€œroot rotâ€?.
Lighting A customised lighting wiring diagram will be provided to you at hand over that is specific to your property. All lights are 12v LEDs that rarely require replacement. Each system is safe for external use and comprises of low voltage wiring through the garden bed, running from light to light. Wiring can also be located under paths and through walls to connect step lights. The cabling runs from the transformer, which is plugged into 240v mains power. A timer has been programmed to turn the lighting on at dusk and will remain on for 4 - 5 hours. The timer can be easily adjusted as the change in seasons brings a change in daylight hours. During daylight savings the dial can be moved around to current time. Ensure the power stays on at the power point to keep current time. They can also be switched over to manual or an electrician can potentially connect it to an internal switch for full manual control. We recommend leaving front lighting on for a set period of time each night. This creates an ambient glow that can act as an additional security measure. Being low wattage LED the power use is extremely low.
Timer and transformer example
Feature plant or tree up-light example 9
We do expect some non-structural movement in concrete slabs throughout the seasons. Even the house slab will move. During the dynamic weather events, variance in soil conditions can cause expansion and contraction of the natural earth.
Some surface concrete cracking is to be expected, as this is within standards and tolerances. Expansion lines are cut in to the concrete in strategic locations, which will encourage any surface cracking to run along these cut lines.
Sometimes the concrete surface crack will deviate from these purpose made expansion lines and show up elsewhere more obviously.
Often we find these cracks can close up again during cold weather. Monitoring for signs of cracks opening up, or surface height shifting either side of the crack is important.
Any major movement or deviation around the cracks are highly unlikely due to our compliance with the Australian Standards for the use of steel re-enforcement embedded within the concrete.
We operate under the National Construction Code and any small surface cracks fall within the Standards and Tolerances guideline. Please refer to link below: http://www.vba.vic.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0020/29063/Guide-to-Standards-andTolerances-2015.pdf
Our compliance with Australian Standards also incorporates the installation of aggi pipes behind all retaining walls installed by Supreme Green. The purpose of these pipes is to collect excess rain water and carry it to a drainage pit.
Some lawn areas and garden bed edges have aggi pipes installed underground.
It’s common to hear excess water dribbling into the pit or out of the discharge point days after irrigation or rain.
These pipes serve their purpose sub-ground and are a non-serviceable item.
If any pits, surface drains or strip drains become blocked with leaves or other debris over time they can have their lids removed for cleaning as required.
Cleaning is rarely needed, as most debris just washes down the stormwater point, similar to roof gutters.
Aggi pipe in lawn exmaple
Aggi behind retaining wall example
Aggi in garden bed example
Surface drainage pit example
Timber Decking & Paving Timber Decking If Merbau timber decking has been incorporated into your project, it has already been sanded and oiled for your immediate use. This oiling should last for up to 2 years before there is a need to re-oil. This requirement may vary depending on the volume of foot traffic, weathering and if family pets make use of it. When your deck requires a new application of oil, there occasionally may be a need to prep by sanding back. In most cases it will need at least a thorough clean prior to oiling, using a specialised deck clean product. Cabot’s ‘Deck Wash’ is a reputable cleaning product, following up with an oil such as ‘Cabot’s Aqua Deck’. This is not a necessity for longevity, rather more for keeping it looking its best. Being a natural material, you may experience some colour leaching out of the tannins in the timber in the early stages. This may be visible on nearby concrete, piers or door frames, and can easily be cleaned off using a diluted household bleach. This shouldn’t affect any surrounding surfaces.
Deck clean example
Deck oil example
Before using bleach
After using bleach
Paving Your newly paved areas will not require extensive maintenance. Leaching may occur and we recommend that this is cleaned promptly to avoid any permanent staining. Applying a sealant is suggested to prevent discolouration. We recommend contacting Gavin at Terraseal to discuss all risks and benefits associated with applying a paver sealant. T 0417 177 707 12 www.newhomelandscaping.com.au
Driveway Gate Automation Front gates to your driveway are fully automatic and come with a battery back up in the event of power loss to your property. This battery backup should last for up to 4 days. Recharging of the battery will automatically occur once mains power has returned. The power isolation switch must remain on at all times. This isolation switch is installed for safe access to your gate wiring in case of any required future maintenance (Pic.1). This isolation switch is located either inside the garage, or on the side/front wall of the house. In the unlikely event of loss of operation to your driveway gate due to a power issue or a fault, a key is provided that will manually override the motor (pic.2). This enables you to manually slide or swing the gate open. This key will be provided to you at handover, along with the remotes to operate the driveway gate. Two remotes will be supplied that come pre-programmed to operate your driveway gate. The remotes often feature 2 to 4 buttons, however, you only need to use the one button to open and close the gate. It is possible for a third party, such as a locksmith, to program the one remote to combine with the garage door remote to reduce the need to carry extra key fobs. The gate is installed with a safety reflection beam (Pic.3). All plants in close proximity will require regular trimming back, so as to not obstruct the beam.
Pic. 2 www.newhomelandscaping.com.au
Intercom & Pedestrian Gates If you choose to lock your front pedestrian gate with the key, it is possible to unlock it using the installed intercom system if we have installed a video intercom with gate strike as part of your package. The pedestrian gate can then be opened from the safety of inside your home via the video monitor. When the intercom call button has been pressed by the visitor at the front gate, you can allow access by pressing the lock release button on the monitor unit to unlock the gate. Your visitor will hear a â€˜clickâ€™ which releases the strike and will be able to push the gate open to gain access. Donâ€™t try turning the handle, as this will remain locked. Our installer will demonstrate this operation to you after install.
Pedestrian gate & intercom example
Gate/Letterbox Keys If you have not been handed the keys to your pedestrian and side gates and letterbox from our landscape supervisor, you will find these in your electricity meter box. For greater convenience and less keys to carry, if you would like all of your gate keys keyed alike you may be able to use a locksmith to combine other keys to be the same.
Your clothesline should not require any regular maintenance, other than re-tensioning lines. In hot weather and over time the lines may start to sag. These can be easilytightened by undoing the end of the line and pulling all lines tight, then re-tying at the end and cutting offthe excess. To raise or lower the clothesline, always doso from the middle of the frame, as this will ensure yourclothesline frame does not go out of alignment and will lock into both sides equally.
Asset Protection If Supreme Green has installed new footpath panels and/or a new crossover as part of our contracted works, you will now be able to contact your Council to request your asset protection bond back. In most cases, Council collected the bond from you at the start of construction or demolition of the original property and will need to inspect to release these funds.
1300 322 888 Mon-Fri