Bringing Color into Your Landscape

Posted by Jessica Downs on 10/14/2019

Design Color into Your YARD

color - Copy

The best part of designing your landscape is that you get to make it your own. You could create a landscape filled with green foliage or add plants that bloom in all the colors of the rainbow! At Moon Valley Nurseries, you will find anything to complete your dream yard. From flowering trees, shrubs, vines, and flowers - we can help you finish your design. 

Where to Place Your Plants

It’s best to find the right plants for your space, initially based on certain conditions. Once you know what type of colors you want in your yard, you can start to decide where you will install your new plants and trees.

Figure out how much sun the plant would be getting, what kind of soil and drainage there is, and a proper watering schedule and process. Mostly everything with a flower will need a minimum of at least four hours of sun to bloom in the Phoenix area. Once you’ve considered all of these factors, you’re one step closer to finding the perfect plant to add the best color to your yard! 

So now, you know where to place your plant that offers plenty of sun exposure in your yard, and you’re willing to commit to a watering schedule (or just installing a drip system). Now you’re ready to get that dramatic backyard oasis of your dreams and pick the best plants.

Plants to Add Warm Colors

az yellow bells

There are many plants that you can use in your yard if you want to add warm colors to the environment. Some of the best shrubs that will bring warm tones of color to your yard are Arizona Yellow Bells (pictured above), Little John Bottlebrush, Bougainvillea, and Lantana

Plants to Add Cool Colors

Plumbago-Large-5

If you want to add cool colors into your yard, such as blues and purples, you are in luck! Some of our favorite cool-colored shrubs are Ruellia, Purple Fountain Grass, and Plumbago. Of course, you’ll also get plenty of year-round green with any evergreen shrub/tree you plant in your landscape.

Adding Annual Flowers

Though they only last about six months of the year, the best go-to plant for instant, vibrant color would be annual flowers. The many shades of Vincas, Angelonias, and Pentas add fantastic color in the summer months, while also withstanding our intense heat. 

For fall through spring, you can enjoy the endless color choices that geraniums, petunias, and many more have to offer! Annuals are also a great addition to add as a “filler” around other flowering perennials! 

Design for Contrasting Colors

While some people want to fill their yards with dense, green foliage or bright pops of red and orange all over the yard, an important design factor to consider is how your plants, and the color they bring, will contrast with each other. 

Red contrasts with green colors, that one was easy! Yellow contrasts with purple and blue contrasts with orange. You can utilize this information and choose flowering plants that will simultaneously play off of each other while still creating an overall balance.

Add Color to Your Hedges

oleander

A fun idea to add a twist on a privacy hedge would be doing a gradient effect with Oleander! We have white, pink, and red oleanders available at Moon Valley Nurseries, which are just the colors we need to obtain this optical illusion. 

Simply start with a couple white oleanders along a wall, add a light pink, add another white, and then a couple more light pink, and so on. Make a similar pattern to have the colors fade into the red oleander, and bingo! By having the three colors gradually fade into each other, over time, they’ll grow and make the transition even more fluent. If you have a longer wall you’re covering, you can multiply the number of plants needed to fit. 

The effects you can create, and things you can do with plants are limitless and ever-growing! These are just a couple of simple ideas to get your creative juices flowing and thinking of ways your space can come to life with color! 

Visit a Nursery Today

Schedule a Design Consult Here

Stop by your nearest nursery and work with one of our professional landscape designers to help create a work of art! 

Topics: Design

Tackle Your Landscaping Issues [New Homes and Needed Privacy]

Posted by Jessica Downs on 10/10/2019

Design a New Yard with the Privacy You Need

az landscape

New Home in Need of New Yard

Finding your perfect home can be hard, so when you finally do, you might compromise here and there. One of those compromises might be the condition of the landscape. After all, your dream floor plan is harder to find than your dream yard and way more expensive to customize.

Your new yard might be a bit bland, in bad shape, or non-existent! That is where a nursery like Moon Valley comes in to help. Unlike other nurseries, our trees and plants are ready for planting in every size possible. Our wide selection of plant material lets us build you a customized yard designed to make your new house feel like home. Check out some of our favorite trees and shrubs below.

Trees and Shrubs for Your New Landscape

Shumard Oak

Shumard Oak-4

The Shumard Oak is an impressive choice to include in your landscape. This oak tree is a medium-to-large size tree and grows into a canopy with a wide-spreading reach, which creates a large area of shade all around it.

This canopy can also help create a full screen to add more privacy to your home, especially if you are surrounded by two-story homes! This tree is a fast-growing species of oak that is very tough and long-living! This tree is known for its traditional look with large dark green leaves that can grow up to eight inches long.

Little John Bottlebrush

little john

The Little John Bottlebrush, or simply 'Little John', is a versatile and hardy shrub that produces dark red, bushy flowers during the spring through fall. The Little John Bottlebrush is a popular accent plant used in many types of landscapes.

It is commonly used to create a unique, informal hedge or as a colorful accent in a desert-style yard. This small-to-medium shrub thrives in our regions and loves the heat. Once these are planted, you will find hummingbirds and butterflies regularly stopping by your yard.

Japanese Boxwood

JapaneseBoxwood_Pruned_MVN_650x650

If you're looking to create a small-to-medium hedge, the Japanese Boxwood is a fantastic pick for your new yard. This hardy evergreen has attractive, bright green foliage that will stand out all year long.  

The Japanese Boxwood shrub has a slow growth rate and does not blossom. This combination means you will spend minimal time cleaning and pruning your boxwoods throughout the year. You can plant them in rows along the border of your property to create a visible barrier or to add symmetry in other areas of your yard.

Purple Lantana

lantana

Purple Lantana is one of the most colorful plants around with an abundance of beautiful purple/lavender that bloom half of the year, from spring to fall. The Lantana thrives in the hot summer months and is highly tolerant to drought-like conditions, which makes it easy to plant anywhere in your yard.

Purple Lantana grows and spreads quickly, which is perfect for covering up the bare ground and adding more color to your landscape. Once established, this ground cover will only need little-to-moderate watering and doesn't need much maintenance throughout the year. For a cleaner, formal look, you might prefer to trim it for a more formal look to your landscape.

Design to Create Privacy

Sometimes it's hard to tell precisely what type of privacy you have in your home until after you have settled in! Your neighbors may have a direct view of your backyard, or your windows might perfectly align to theirs with a clear view of each other's home!

You can fix these issues by designing privacy into your landscape and instantly blocking out the views. Whether you need to block a whole section or add a tall screen to block the views of two-story windows, our nursery has something that will solve your issues, such as the trees listed below.

Trees to Add Privacy

Southern Live Oak

LIVE OAK az

The Southern Live Oak is one of the most stunning trees you can plant in your yard. It produces a wide canopy of dark green, leather-like leaves. The branches and foliage grow into a dense form to create privacy AND shade for your yard. This large privacy tree is drought-tolerant, once established.

If you plant several Live Oaks in a row, it will give your landscape a privacy wall above the fencing in your yard that provides immense protection and shade coverage. This evergreen oak also makes for the perfect ornamental tree and looks gorgeous, surrounded by colorful shrubs!

Italian Cypress

ITALIAN CYPRESS-1

Italian Cypress is a fast-growing tree, perfect for a natural fence! Plant these column trees in a row and create an attractive European-style property divider while also blocking out your neighbors. You can plant these narrow privacy hedges in your yard to bring the look of the Mediterranean to your landscape.

The Italian Cypress tree is a perfect option when you have limited space in your yard. Because of its tall and narrow growth habit, it can be planted anywhere you need to help create more privacy.

Ficus Nitida Columns

FICUS COULMNS-2

These evergreen trees can create an immediate privacy screen around your yard and are the ideal choice to create a perfect yard with a classic look. They thrive in our desert environments and require little water, so they are perfect for Arizona!

Ficus Nitida Columns can handle pruning to any size or shape you need to fit your specific needs and get the job done. Plant these beautiful privacy hedges in your yard and take in the dense green foliage that adds an impressive presence to your landscape.

Ready for Your New Private Oasis?

Schedule a Design Consult Here

Have More Questions?

Visit or call your nearest nursery and let one of our expert designers help you today.

Topics: Design, Planting

Simple Landscape Designing to Complete your Yard

Posted by Richard Wright on 10/8/2019

 

Design the Best Yard for Your New Home

Landscape front yard arizona

So, you just bought a house; congratulations! We can relate to the time, work, and frustration that comes with buying a home and starting a huge investment. From the moment you make the decision, the process starts at full speed! You might find yourself driving through neighborhoods looking for possible options or spending all your lunch breaks and evenings searching through online listings. This could last weeks or months, and it only gets more stressful.

Once you narrowed a few homes down, you could finally start going and seeing them in person to see if it is the perfect fit for your family and their needs.  You finally walked into one house that felt like home, and your mind was set. The floorplan was exactly what you wanted for your growing family. It was perfect.

The Perfect Home Doesn’t Equal the Perfect Yard…Yet

Sometimes when you find your dream home, it doesn’t always come with a matching dream yard. Luckily, creating your new yard to go to with your new home is not as hard as you might think! When you come to Moon Valley Nurseries to complete your yard, we make it as easy as 1-2-3 for you, AND we do all the work! Keep reading to learn how to get started on your design.

Designers3

MOON VALLEY DESIGN PROCESS

Whether you need large shade trees, privacy hedges, or flowering shrubs that will bring your property to life, our team can help you find any plant material for your region to create your dream yard.

Design Online with Backyard Builder

Our nursery has created a designer app that has helped our customers envision their goals clearer and faster. The Backyard Builder lets you see the vision for your yard in moments flat. And even better? You can create multiple designs!

You can upload picture after picture and use a plethora of digital copies of our plants and trees to lay around your yard! Always wondered what a Ficus Indian Laurel tree would look like next to the wall blocking the greenbelt over your west wall? Drag and drop into the picture, and now you don’t have to imagine. You can see it clear as day!

You can easily create your account so you can save each design. After saving your images, you are already at the front of the line to have a designer contact you to bring your dreams to life!

Click here to get started with Backyard Builder.

Free In-Store Consultations

Every Moon Valley Nurseries location has expert landscape designers and nursery professionals that will help you create the best design for your yard. We recommend that you schedule a consultation with your nearest nursery. An appointment will guarantee that you are helped as soon as you arrive!

*At-Home Consultations are also available with a small fee. Ask your nearest nursery about availability. *

Click your state below to schedule a consultation with an expert designer today.
Arizona Nevada California Texas

Learn More from Moon Valley Nurseries

Click here to get design ideas that will instantly upgrade your yard.

Click here to see how to pick the perfect trees for your yard when you come to the nursery! 

Click here to find out if a xeriscape design is perfect for your home or property.

Topics: Design

Summer Savings Extended at Moon Valley Nurseries

Posted by Jessica Downs on 9/21/2019

Keep the Savings Going!

LinkedIn Images (2)

This summer has been a great time to save money at Moon Valley Nurseries. Our “Buy 6, Get 1 Free” sale was even more popular than we thought it would be. For the month of September, we are keeping it going a little bit longer to continue passing on the great savings to our customers. 

Free In-Store Design

Every nursery has a team of expert designers and nursery professionals ready to help you start your new project. All you need to do is come in with some photos of your property, and we will walk you through the rest of the simple process.

customer landscape design consultation at moon valley nursery

Click here to learn more about what to expect when you come in for your free consultation.

Wide Selection of Trees, Palms, and More

Piru queen palms in containers in row at nursery

At Moon Valley Nurseries, we have the widest selection of trees, palms, hedges, and other plant material. We also carry exclusive trees that you can't find at any other nursery, such as our gorgeous Piru Queen Palm.

Get some Design Ideas

Hedges can be beneficial and beautiful for your next landscape design.

Layered Landscapes can add depth to your yard and amazing curb appeal.

Take advantage of Moon Valley Nurseries deals this month and instantly upgrade your yard today.

Topics: Design

Pro Tips to Create a Layered Landscape

Posted by Jessica Downs on 9/13/2019

layered landscape

Create a Layered Landscape in Your Yard

How to create layers in your landscape

Creating layers in your yard is exactly what it sounds like! To design layers, you want to add rows of trees and plants together to add depth to your outdoor space. The most common layered designs are three to four sections with each section descending in height, starting from the back.

Create the Perfect Balance

It can be challenging to start planning out your landscape and create the perfect balance of trees and plants within the layers. It is helpful to add a layer or two that stays repetitive and consistent in the overall design. This can be completed by planting identical, or similar-looking plants in groups or rows to create the consistency and balance in the design.

Be Mindful of Your Space

With a layered landscape, you want to also consider the space you will be using for this project. Without height restrictions, you can plant your back row with a variety of larger shade trees or hedge material. If your property does have height restrictions, you will need to consider smaller shade trees or hedges for that space.

Depending on how much space you have in your yard will decide how many layers you can add. Be sure to measure the available space and compare that to the spacing needs of your new plants and trees. This will help dwindle down the best material to use in your landscape.

Add Depth Between Layers

Mixing up different sizes, textures, and colors create an impressive amount of depth and life to your design. Even if you want your entire layout to be green all year-round, mix it up with plants that offer different shades of green, or mix the textures of your plants to add more of a three-dimensional look.

Landscape Garden Layer Guide

Background Layer

The back row is the background layer that features the biggest trees and shrubs. Trees and shrubs planted in this area are used to block views or to provide shade. To create a balanced backdrop to a layered landscape, we recommend planting hedges that stay green all year and have dense foliage. That dense foliage will create plenty of privacy and add a more dramatic effect to any color in front of it.

oleanders in containers at moon valley nurseriesRecommended Trees and Plants for the Background Layer

Ficus Columns

Ficus Columns, also known as the Hollywood Hedge, offer a dense "living wall" that never drops its leaves and stays green all year. A Ficus hedge will also act as a natural sound barrier so you can enjoy a quieter living space.

Oleanders

Oleanders look great in the background of a layered yard because they keep their leaves all year and produce colorful blooms from spring through fall. We carry pink, white, and red Oleander varieties in dwarf-form to fit different aesthetic needs (pictured above).

Midground Layer

The midground layer (or layers if you are adding more than three) features plants that should be from two to six feet, depending on the height of your back layer.

These plants are medium-to-large size shrubs, tropical shrubs, dwarf varieties, and smaller hedge material. This middle layer takes up the bulk of the landscape space and serves several functions by filling in the area.

Hibiscus-sub

Recommended Plants for the Midground Layer

Hibiscus

Hibiscus are medium-to-large-sized shrubs that will add beautiful, tropical colors along the middle of your design. These colors are even more dramatic because of the dark foliage, especially if they are planted in front of a background layer like the Hollywood Hedge (pictured above).

Yellow Bells

Yellow Bells are medium-to-large evergreen shrubs with bright yellow flowers that bloom off and on in spring and fall. This shrub will create a pop in your landscape when it produces its trumpet-shaped flowers.  

Foreground Layer

The front layer features plants between the heights of one to two feet. The foreground is always designed with small shrubs, smaller tropical plants, and smaller annuals.

Plants placed in this layer can be planted in mass quantities and can be used to fill in larger spaces created by the midground layer. You can also allow these plants to spill out towards the front to flow into your ground cover.

gardenia

Recommended Plants and Shrubs for the Foreground Layer

Coral Fountain

Coral Fountain is an excellent foreground option because of how much color it can bring to your landscape. This small-to-medium shrub produces bright coral trumpet-shaped flowers that bloom in waves throughout the year.

Everblooming Gardenia

The Everblooming Gardenia may look as delicate as the white flower they produce, but they are tough against the hot and cold months. This evergreen shrub will add gorgeous white blooms and a beautiful fragrance to the midground layer of your landscape (pictured above).

Ground Layer

The ground cover is the lowest layer of plants and turf that are no more than 12 inches off the ground. This area covers the soil and allows a natural buffer so you're not hugging the foundation with bigger plants or trees that can spill into the street or sidewalk.

The plants and turf used in this area should be selected for their compact growth and can be annuals, ground covers, and low perennials. This area can also provide protection between the foreground and the sidewalk/walkways/lawn.

lantana

Recommended Plants for the GROUND COVER Layer

Lantana

Lantana comes in many different colors, which makes them versatile for use in landscape design. No matter what the customer is trying to create, Lantana will fit in perfectly. Trailing Lantana grows low on the ground and spreads to every direction, filling in any empty space (pictured above).

Myoporum

Myoporum is a great option for ground cover when you are looking for something that is evergreen and spreads rapidly in the landscape. They love full sun exposure and even have small white blooms appear in the summer for a quick display of color.

Ready to Start Designing a Layered Landscape?

Schedule a Design Consult Here

More from Moon Valley Nurseries

Picking the Perfect Tree

3 Designs that will Instantly Upgrade your Yard

Summer Watering in the Arizona Desert

Topics: Design

Create a Garden in the Desert

Posted by Taylor Parsons on 9/10/2019

Growing Food in the Desert

53644365_l

Times are changing. As we tumble forward at the speed of light in the digital age, it becomes more important than ever to slow the pace for a moment and make room for outdoor activities and meals with the family. Tending to a vegetable garden is one of the most rewarding traditions you can carry on to your children.

With two long planting seasons, Arizona is a great region to create a space in your backyard where you can enjoy growing different types of crops.

Although we live in a pretty hot desert, you can grow more crops here than most people think is even possible. It also makes fun memories and delicious meals with your family. Citrus trees help to create an edible landscape with dappled shade to help protect smaller plants from the afternoon sunshine.

Tomatoes, from bite-sized Super-Sweet cherries to two-pounder heirloom Cherokee Purples, will be sure to liven up your garden and your plate. You can also grow peppers, squash, and melons in every color of the rainbow. Just imagine the joy that comes from lighting up your family dinner and holiday spreads with vegetables, fruits, nuts, and herbs that all came from your soil and hard work!

Your urban farm will be beneficial for your wallet and health. It will also be something the entire family can participate in and enjoy together, even the kids!

fruit

An excellent activity for kids to do is to be in charge of watering the garden daily. This will help them learn where food comes from and how to grow it. They can also learn more about soil health and check out the cool worms hidden in the dirt! Kids will be able to see their hard work grow daily and eventually get to enjoy the food they grew with their own hands too.
There's no doubt it will help them eat more veggies, too! Seeing the payoff of their hard work is something that will stick with your kids for a lifetime.

Watering

There are a few key things to be mindful of when growing vegetables in Arizona. In a place where there is so little rainfall, keeping up on your watering schedule is the number one priority for healthy trees and plants. Irrigation systems can help immensely with this task.

Sun Exposure

Another thing to keep in mind is how much sun exposure each plant will need. The sun can be brutal in this region, so a simple install of some shade cloth makes all the difference.

Pests on Your Trees and Plants

Remember to inspect your garden daily for any pests or abnormalities so you can nip them in the bud before they cause real problems to your crop.

Remove Ripe Fruit and Damaged Fruit/Branches/Foliage

Check your plants often and remove any fruit that's ripe and ready to be picked and any plant material that seems unsightly. This will help your plant focus their energy on producing food more efficiently.

Pollinating Plants

AUTUMN-SAGE

Planting some colorful flowers such as Marigolds, Pentas, Poppies, and Autumn Sage will increase your yield by keeping pollinators happy and coming back for more in your garden.

Fertilize

Last but not least, be sure to fertilize your garden! This step is crucial. Our desert soil is very barren, so once those roots soak up all the good stuff, it's time to add some extra food, so they are getting the nutrients they need to grow strong.

Click here to see all the fertilizer products we have to offer for all landscapes.

Moon Valley Nurseries has everything to get you started today.

Here at Moon Valley Nurseries, we have everything you need to get started on your flavorful family adventure. From the perfect starter plants to the premium organic soil and fertilizer, to the friendly and knowledgeable nursery professionals happy to help you grow, we've got you covered!

Topics: Design

Bringing The Tropics to Your Backyard

Posted by Ryan Newton on 8/28/2019

date palms lining a driveway

Here at moon valley nurseries, one of the most popular designs we get asked to create is a tropical backyard. Whether you just put a pool in or love palm trees, we love to do them. Let's face it, we live in the desert, and we want to feel like we are on the beach.

The best way to ensure the success of the plants, as well as a tropical look, is to create a small micro climate by layering taller plants in the back and go lower in front. Taller ones will shade the smaller, more fragile plants.

Palms for Your Tropical Yard

Sago-In-Landscape-650x650-MVN

One of the best tropical/ sub-tropical plants we use in these designs would start with our Moon Valley Exclusive Piru Queen palm. Grown in a very similar climate like Arizona, the Piru Queen palm is grown to withstand the heat, wind, and sun of Arizona.

We love to pair the Piru Queen palms with our Pygmy palms. Our Pygmy Palms are grown to be acclimated to the Arizona heat as well give you a very tropical look without taking up much room.

Sago palms (pictured) can also be used as a small accent palm when strategically placed. Even though they are small, they make a statement.

If we have some room to work with, we love to add our Canary Island Date palm. They are drought-tolerant palms that really add a "wow" factor to any design.

hibiscus-8

Tropical Plants

We surround all the palms with plants such as hibiscus, coral fountain grass, tropical birds of paradise, making it feel like Hawaii even when its 120 degrees.

We finish it off with some lush ground cover such as lantana, wedelia or myroporum.

 

Complete the Tropical Design

You cap that off with some up-lighting, and you are on your way to an island oasis all created with your vision. Moon Valley Nurseries also gives you fundamental watering and fertilizing instructions to help ensure the success of those palms.

We are here from start to finish, and even after, to make the process is simple and easy for you. Moon Valley Nurseries sets you up for success with how we have grown our palms in the desert. When it comes to bringing the tropics to your backyard, go to the Moon!

Topics: Design, Palms

3 Designs That Will Instantly Upgrade Your Yard

Posted by Jessica Downs on 8/23/2019

Transform your Landscape

blog_main_pic_landscaping_around_poolsWith all the varieties of trees and plants available from Moon Valley Nurseries and our knowledgeable landscape design experts, there are infinite ways to put together an entire yard design just for your home.

Our favorite designs are the ones that completely transform our customer's yards overnight. Keep reading to find out how you could renew your yard with only a few trees. No matter what type of design style you are looking for, our design experts can create your perfect yard.

Add a Tropical Background Around Your Pool

Benefits of Planting Palms by the Pool

If you have a pool in your yard, then you are already halfway to having the ultimate tropical landscape. Good job! To finish off the look and bring the tropical island vibes to your home, you want to add some palms around your pool or yard.

Our nursery professionals recommend two ways to add palms to your yard and pool. The first way we might design around your pool is to plant palms close together to create a dense backdrop focused on your pool.

Another favorite design concept is planting palms more spread out throughout the yard to cover the landscape with palms and bring the resort-feel throughout your property.

Three of our ideal palms to add to this type of design are our Piru Queen, Date, and Mediterranean Fan palm varieties.

Palm Variety Suggestions for Arizona

date palms-1Date Palm

Date palms are the ultimate pool palm! You can find Date palms at most resorts and shopping centers. Around pools, Date palms provide excellent shade due to their full fronds and they have practically no litter, keeping your pool cleaner!

The Date palm looks excellent when planted in clusters of 3 to 5 and is hardy to cold and heat, and drought-tolerant.

 

med fanMediterranean Fan Palm

The Mediterranean Fan palm is a great palm that grows in multiple trunks and is considered slow-growing compared to other palm varieties.

These work great in areas where you do not need a ton of height and need something that will not outgrow its planting location. These palms are incredibly tolerant of numerous elements.

Piru Queen Palm

The Piru Queen palm is an exclusive tree from Moon Valley Nurseries. We specially designed our Piru Queen palms for our desert climate. They are custom grown at our farms to be extra hardy in heat and cold.

These palms have distinctive appearances compared to other palms that you will see, and their thicker trunks and fuller crowns make these stand out when compared to the rest. These palms are excellent when planted in groups to add shade and are fantastic in tight planting locations.

Create a Privacy Hedge Around Your Home

Benefits of Planting Hedges to Maximize Privacy

If you feel like you do not have the privacy you want in your home, hedges are one of the best design options that will solve your problem. They even add more benefits to your property as a greener yard, higher property value, and increased curb appeal.

Privacy is one of the most important things to us, and that we get to come home to a place that feels safe and away from the world. Not only does that apply to your home, but also your yard. Some of our favorite plant materials to use for privacy are our Carolina Cherry, Italian Cypress, and Indian Laurel Columns.

Hedge Material Suggestions for Arizona

ficus coulmns-1Indian Laurel Columns

Indian Laurel Columns are our most popular choice for use as a formal landscape hedge. These massive evergreens provide ample shade and perform great when planted along property lines for blocking the sun, noise, wind, and unwanted views.

The Indian Laurel Columns have lush, dense foliage and strong softwood branches. They can be pruned into almost any shape and handle the warmer summer months very well.

CAROLINA CHERRY-5Carolina Cherry

Native to the Southeastern United States, the Carolina Cherry has become a popular choice for its minimal maintenance, natural upright conical shape, and ability to tolerate heat, drought, and wind.

The Carolina Cherry is a small to medium-sized evergreen with dark green, lustrous wavy-edged foliage on brown thornless stems. The foliage can handle regular trimming and be sheared into a tall screen or sound barrier which make them a near-perfect option for many homes.

Italian_Cypress_logo_1-1Italian Cypress

Used for formal entrances, borders, and backdrops, the Italian Cypress is unmistakable with its lush green foliage and tall narrow upright form. Italian Cypress thrive in sunny climates with minimal water, making them a popular choice for just about any landscape.

This hedge material brings immediate formal appeal to your home with a bit of aesthetic from the European countryside.

Start Your Personal Orchard in Your Yard

Benefits of Growing Your own Fruit

The benefits of growing your own fruit include being able to produce fruit that tastes better, knowing that your fruit is pesticide-free, and having multiple varieties of citrus and fruit right in your yard!

Besides the harvest that they bring you annually (sometimes more often!), our citrus and fruit trees grow large enough to create shade in your yard and cool down your yard to grow shrubs and groundcover near your fruit trees. Three varieties that love the Arizona region are lemons, oranges, and apple trees.

Fruit Tree Suggestions for Arizona

650x650-LemonLemon Tree

Meyer lemons are a favorite due to their many culinary uses and their thin peel that makes squeezing the freshest lemon juice a breeze!

A pitcher of fresh-squeezed lemonade is coming right up to make the summer even better.

 

orange-3Orange Tree

You don’t have to live in the Valley too long before you realize how popular Orange trees are around here. From the East Valley to the West, orange groves can be found all over the Phoenix area, from Mesa to Glendale.

Our Naval variety is considered an early fruit producer and typically ready for harvest in late fall through winter.

apple-2Apple Tree

Low-chill apple varieties that grow best in our area include Anna, Fuji, and Dorsett (Golden). When it’s hot and bright outside, these trees can also provide shade coverage.

These are excellent landscape trees that can add beautiful color to any yard.

 

Start Designing with the Moon Valley Nurseries Team

Click here to learn more about our landscape design consultations and schedule a consult today.

Visit us at the location nearest to you and let us help you get your project started!

More from Moon Valley Nurseries

Click here to learn about our FREE in-store landscape consultations. Our design consultations are easy as 1-2-3.

Click here to learn more about growing and harvesting fruit trees in the Arizona desert.

Click here to learn more about the official tree of Arizona, the Palo Verde. Our Nursery Expert shows you why the Palo Verde is perfect for our desert region.

Topics: Homegrown Fruit and Citrus Trees, Design, hedges, Palms

Should You Xeriscape Your Yard?

Posted by Eric Chapman on 8/9/2019

What is Xeriscape Landscaping?

Xeriscaping is a style of landscaping where little to no irrigation is required. In some cases, this even includes maintenance. In Phoenix, this would include trees and plants that are native to our climates or other similar climates.

A misconception we often hear when customers are considering a xeriscape design is that they will not have any color or flowering shrubs and trees, but this is not the case. There are many varieties of plants and trees at Moon Valley Nurseries that can bring your yard color, flowers, and a natural desert look.

Benefits of a Xeriscape Landscape

There are many benefits to designing a xeriscape yard or property. For our region, it incorporates the natural beauty around us into our own yards so well! Two huge reasons to consider xeriscaping your yard is its minimal upkeep and water usage.

Conserving Water

Xeriscaping your yard with the right plants and trees will drastically change how much water you use annually. A typical yard uses about 20,000 gallons of water a year, and xeriscaping can potentially cut that down to half the water usage.

Minimal Maintenance

Xeriscape plants and trees love the sun and do not need much water. All you have to do is watch for weeds once in a while to be sure they aren’t damaging the existing landscape. Minimal pruning may be needed throughout the year, depending on your preference for a manicured or natural look.

Xeriscape Plants

golden barrel At Moon Valley Nurseries, we recognize that offering waterwise plant material is good for our environment, and that has made xeriscaping a design that has been growing quickly in popularity. We make sure that every Moon Valley Nursery offers a whole pallet of xeriscape options so that every customer can find what fits their needs.

Golden Barrel Cactus – This slow-growing cactus brings a bright golden hue to your landscape and grows perfectly round. (pictured)

Redyucca_shrub_mvn_650x650

Desert Spoon – This drought-tolerant plant produces silver-grey foliage that can grow up to six feet high and wide and is perfect for an accent piece in the landscape. 

Gopher Plant – Sometimes also called ‘Silver Sponge’, this upright-growing small shrub adds a unique look to a xeriscape design.

Red Yucca – If you want to make sure your yard has color that pops from down the street, this is an excellent choice. They bring texture to your yard as well as vibrant red flowers shaped like spikes at the end of the foliage. (pictured)

Xeriscape Trees

Desert Willow

DESERT WILLOW

Named for its resemblance to willows, the Desert Willow is a perfect xeriscape tree. This drought-tolerant water-wise tree performs well in any landscape in our region. The hardy Desert Willow handles extreme temperature ranges and produces exotic-looking blooms from May until September.

This fast grower requires little maintenance and does best with just enough water to keep it green and blooming throughout the warm summer months. The foliage can also offer light shade to plant material under or near the canopy.

Museum Palo Verde

museum palo verde bloom specimen (1)

The Museum Palo Verde tree is a popular choice for customers looking to decrease their water usage. This low-maintenance tree is easy to grow with full sun and minimal water. The Museum Palo Verde’s layered shade makes the tree allow light in your yard while providing very cooling shade for your home.

Another awesome feature is that this tree produces colorful, vibrant yellow flowers that cover the entire tree during the summer until fall. As this hybrid Palo Verde grows, the canopy will offer more shade, so you can plant ground covers or grass around the trunk.

Chilean Mesquite

ChileanMesquite in container

This hybrid Chilean Mesquite brings the classic desert/xeriscape look with a few beneficial surprises. For starters, this is a thornless variety of mesquite! No need to worry about hurting your hands when around this tree. The Chilean Mesquite has a wide canopy of soft, bright green, fern-like foliage covering its dark twisting branches.

No two Chilean Mesquite trees are the same as the branches always have a different growth pattern. The branches on this mesquite create a fun display of shadows through the night with landscape lighting. Available with single or multiple trunks, our drought-tolerant hybrids can fill many landscape needs with the versatility of being able to grow in the open desert, transitional areas and fits perfectly with the needs of a xeriscape-designed yard.

Get Your Free Xeriscape Design Consultation at Moon Valley Nurseries

There are many ways to be smart and xeriscape your landscape. Come see a design specialist to get started! Click here to get started.

Topics: Design

Moon Valley Designers Help at Every Step

Posted by Colleen Johnson on 6/27/2019

Get The First-Hand Experience

fall planting trees backyard

Step into the shoes and experience what it’s like as a designer at Moon Valley Nurseries and how involved our designers are with your yard from start to finish. Colleen Johnson, a designer at our Surprise Nursery, shares one of her favorite projects below!

One of the many perks of being a Moon Valley Nurseries Landscape Designer is the incredible relationships established with our clients:  our customers become friends and ultimately become Moon Valley family. My job is never a chore, but a craft, in delivering beautiful sanctuaries for homeowners to retreat to from the clamor and hassles of everyday life. There is no greater responsibility and honor for me than when my customers entrust their property to my design concept. A task I willingly accept.

I am here today at my customers’ home on a balmy, sun-drenched spring morning in the northwest part of the Valley of the Sun to add one more tree that will complete the customers’ yard. Incorporating the design with layers of textures and colors, finding the perfect placement of trees and shrubs, complimenting the hard lines of travertine and pool water features, comes the Magnum Opus to finalize the homeowners’ project.

In the rising heat of the morning sun, my wonderful customer hands me a freshly squeezed ice-cold lemonade with lemons picked from the Lisbon Lemon tree Moon Valley planted one year earlier. They invited me to sit. We are waiting together as I “lounge” on the customers’ swing hanging from one of the sculptured beams of the pergola, with iron chains oxidized through monsoon seasons creaking ever so quietly with rusty repetition.

Custom Designs for Your Yard

design consultation in nursery

My original design with plants and trees planted late in the fall season covers the pergola’s upright posts with Moon Valley’s most aromatic Star Jasmine vines with tendrils weaved and laced around each one filling the air with a sweet jasmine aroma that even Chanel could not replicate. Near to the pergola we planted our 48” specimen Jacaranda tree, now in full bloom, with cascading violet flowers wafting in the breeze in concert with their soft fern-like leaves.

The Jacaranda’s wispy, delicate canopy has become a majestic showstopper of color and beauty contrasted against the harsh backdrop of the desert terrain. In the southwest corner of the yard, a stately Southern Magnolia tree adorned with leathery, dark green leaves was also planted and is providing much-needed shade to this particular section of the yard. To the joy of the homeowners, magnificent virgin white blossoms have bloomed, emitting a delicate lemony fragrance that can incite any discouraged soul from its malaise. From one bloom to another, scores of industrious bees, graceful butterflies and whizzing hummingbirds gather the sweet nectar of the gods.

Banished far from any close proximity to the pool in an area dedicated only to this plant is my favorite shrub – the much-maligned Bougainvillea. It is wild. It is messy. It is beautiful. For me as a designer, this plant, hands down, is the one plant that will provide the most singular pop of color and the most dramatic effect to any landscape design. The Bougainvillea bloom is truly beautiful despite its unfortunate, less than tidy reputation.

Off in the distance, in the southeast corner of the yard is Moon Valley’s planting crew. Voices carry over the breeze of English and Spanish, laughter and talking as these hardworking men dig the hole for the crown jewel of the yard. Sounds of shovels and picks striking the hard, impenetrable ground coincides with the chatter of men.

By far, our planting crews are the hardest working people in the company. Day in and day out, in extreme heat and cold, monsoons and haboobs, hail and scorching temperatures, they dig, and they dig, and they dig. They are the labor and the final caretakers and deserve not only a thank you, but also a firm handshake given in admiration and respect.

The Crane is Here and the Planting Begins

tree planting crane

The rise of commotion and flurry of digging faster and deeper is the result of the news that the crane has arrived. While the men finish digging the hole and amending the soil with our Soil and Water Conditioner, John, the foreman, and two other men hurry to the front to meet the crane operators to discuss the particulars in raising the tree and moving it over the house into the sweet spot in the backyard.

Everything down to the smallest detail is determined so that in symphonic harmony the tree is hoisted into the air and gingerly placed directly into the hole without mishap or error. No one is complacent even though Moon Valley planting crews plant large trees such as this every day of the week. No tree or crane job is ever the same.

John moves the truck into position while the crane operators place the counterweights to stabilize the crane. The two crewmen climb into the Moon Valley truck and ready the tree for lifting. Once the tree is firmly tied up, the crane operator slowly lifts the massive tree from its side and lifts it vertically to stand upright. The tree hovers about 3’-4’ off the bed of the truck. The men quickly work to cut the metal straps from the container and begin to break down the sides and the bottom of the box freeing the immense root ball from its confinement. The homeowners and neighbors gather around all the while taking videos with their smartphones.

Ever so deliberately, the tree is raised by the telescopic arm of the crane – the boom - and unhurriedly is transported over the house and finds its way into the backyard. With radios, the crane operator onsite gives instructions to the operator in the cab to move the tree exactly in place. The whole process is like a fine Swiss watch that is perfectly timed in logistics and coordination: a sight to behold of impressive workmanship and technology.

The tree finds its new home and is turned and placed to the homeowners’ satisfaction. The planting crew finishes the planting of compacting the earth, building a well and watering and feeding this most spectacular tree our Moon Juice.

What is the feature tree, the Magnum Opus, planted in the backyard? We planted our absolute evergreen, Moon Valley exclusive 60” specimen multi-trunk Indian Laurel, aka the Ficus Nitida. This beautiful waxy green leaf tree with a vibrant white trunk, in my humble estimation, is the Dom Perignon of Moon Valley trees.

The thick dense canopy provides a block of shade that not even the magnificent sun can penetrate. The Ficus Nitida grows ever so wide, ever so dense, ever so beautiful. It truly is the central masterpiece, a prized perfection of a tree in any landscape. But for these homeowners, the Ficus Nitida is the showpiece that completes their dream yard and home.

While the homeowners stand in awe at their new tree as it fits so perfectly with the rest of the plants Moon Valley has planted, I hurriedly drink the rest of my lemonade and jump into my car with the hopes of making future Moon Valley guests happy and satisfied customers.

Click here to learn more about our design process and how simple it is to get started!

Topics: Design, Planting