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This forum contains 51 topics and 208 replies, and was last updated by  johnmiller01 1 month, 1 week ago.

Brownstoner July 31, 2013 at 10:53 am

We've Updated Our Spam Protection

Our tech team has made some pretty big updates to combat spam in the Forum.

*One is a plugin that should filter out most of the attempts by spammers to register in the first place.

*Two, Forum users now have the ability to mark spam when they see it. If enough users mark a post as spam, it will automatically disappear.

Very sorry for all the spam lately. We hope this puts a lid on it.

Garden Design and Maintenance April 2, 2014 at 3:00 pm

Garden Design needed for Brooklyn backyard

I’ve been working on my garden for several years now and would like to keep a lot of what’s there but have a professional come in and give me some advice about cleaning up and fixing what’s there. I have a limited budget but am looking forward to getting started soon.

Garden Design and Maintenance March 19, 2014 at 2:16 pm

Recs? Garden Design + Outdoor Playspace for Kids

I am looking for a garden designer/architect for a typical Brooklyn brownstone backyard, approximately 20′ by 45′. We have finally conceded that the yard mostly belongs to the kids and their friends for the next decade, and we need help.

Can anyone recommend someone that has experience designing spaces for young children? I’ve come across a lot of great garden designs, but a lot of it is not exactly family-friendly, both in terms of use and maintenance.

The part we are having trouble with is that we have a lot of requirements for the backyard and not a lot of space — must be kid-friendly, allow for semi-private tenant space, swing/play equipment for kids, dog-friendly, provide storage space, new fence, easy-care plantings … the list goes on! The good news is that the yard is mostly a blank slate.

Also, any photos, tips, and resources would be greatly appreciated.

Many thanks in advance!

Garden Design and Maintenance March 8, 2014 at 5:49 pm

Garden or Plant design recommendation?

Hi — we took down a tree and cleared our backyard in the fall. Now we have a dirt plot and some hardscaping. Looking for someone to come in and look at the space, light, soil, etc. to give advice on plants and design. Not looking to do anymore hardscaping. Thanks in advance!

Garden Design and Maintenance June 1, 2013 at 11:28 pm

Help – Contractor Putting Deck Footings Down Destroyed My Garden

Help – the general contractor I hired to put cement footings down for a steel deck, listened carefully as I asked him to preserve as much of the garden as possible – and then his workers basically destroyed it.  I’m so upset and am almost tempted to fire him, the garden was my pride and joy and it didn’t occur to me that I had to lose all my plants to put down footers for a 8×10 2nd floor deck covering half the width of the property.  I found dirt covering mint and a rose plant on the opposite side of the property (which I’d said shouldn’t be disturbed, it’s a small patch), and after carefully preserving greenery 2 days ago while the GC was present, the workers completely buried it yesterday when the GC wasn’t present.  I have called and emailed the GC but is this just par for the course?  I don’t want to overreact, but the GC didn’t seem to think preserving greenery would be a problem.  When the greenery is covered with 3′ of dirt – it’s obviously a problem. 
I’d love to hear from others who have dealt with this.  Any gardeners out there who managed to keep the garden and end up with a raised deck, stairs and a terrace?  Or did you have to grow the garden back once the construction was done?  (the garden was entirely perennials, have been there for 10 years, I’ve been at the house for 6 years, I inherited the garden and it’s only gotten prettier – until now).

Garden Design and Maintenance May 28, 2013 at 2:32 am

Removing a giant tree?

My neighbor has a 10-story tree in his backyard that was pretty scary to watch during Sandy. Judging from the giant old trees that fell over in Carroll Park during the storm, I reckon that its roots aren’t that deep or wide and its presence seems incredibly risky to several homes in the area, including the one with the tree (which is not owner-occupied). I planned to ask him about it once I had an idea of the options.
Does anyone have experience with this situation?  Is cutting down a huge backyard tree possible? How expensive is it? I suppose it’s possible for us to have it trimmed, but that would seem to only put off the threat.

Garden Design and Maintenance May 20, 2013 at 9:56 am

Has anyone used DIG for landscaping their yard?

I walked by DIG on atlantic this weekend and checked out their website. Seems like they do fairly extensive yard renovations and plantings. I am in need of a fairly major overhaul (new hardscape, planters, plants, possibly a fence). Has anyone used them for anything similar. Anyone have other recommendations?
Thanks

Garden Design and Maintenance May 20, 2013 at 9:17 am

Selling home from outside NYC

Hi all-
We are living outside NYC (out of the country, actually) and are interested in selling our brownstone. Has anyone been through the process? Any advice? We told the broker we were planning on working with, and he seemed a bit stumped…(We know we have to be present for the closing..)
Many thanks!!
Cat

Garden Design and Maintenance May 15, 2013 at 12:20 pm

Anyone Needing Good Garden SOIL?? or fill??

Hi there,
We are excavating some top soil from our back garden at the end of this week.
The soil is a mix of high quality mushroom soil and was installed years ago. We had pavers installed over.. and thus has some sand integrated in the mix. There might be some small rocks, too. You’d have to take as-is. We will bag it up for you, though
We also have an amount of broken pavers and cement from a tree enclosure… if anyone needs fill for a project. Most of this is already bagged up in managable contractor bags. 
Please contact us asap with contact info. We will have to have it carted away early next week, otherwise.
 

Garden Design and Maintenance May 12, 2013 at 12:50 pm

Where can I buy reclaimed brick?

Anyone know of a local source?
Thanks.
 

Garden Design and Maintenance May 12, 2013 at 11:52 am

Where to find codes/regulations for two-family dwellings?

Sorry but I have searched high and low for an official document of the codes and regulations for 2 family dwellings but have come up dry, can someone post a link please?
thanks
 
 

Garden Design and Maintenance April 30, 2013 at 10:39 am

Resale value and artificial lawn

We live in a first floor apartment in Park Slope with a small backyard. It currently has some grass, which is not thriving. After much effort, I think we have to accept that it’s too shady for grass. We have two options: A bluestone patio or some artificial lawn. I would never have thought I’d even consider fake grass, but the new stuff is surprisingly nice. Aesthetically speaking, it’s not my ideal but it’s not a horror show either. We have 2 small kids and I think they’d love it. A bluestone patio would be pretty but not exactly ideal for flopping down and rolling around. Here’s my question: From a resale point of view, does artificial grass hurt us? We’re not planning to move anytime in the immediate future, but there’s the possibility that in 3 or 4 years, we might find a new place. 

Garden Design and Maintenance April 30, 2013 at 7:24 am

Wood facade contractor

Can anyone recommend a good contractor to do a wood facade? Our house was originally wood but they covered it with ugly fake brick.

Garden Design and Maintenance April 27, 2013 at 1:56 pm

Cobble Stones (antique, salvaged) for sale in South Slope

I’ve got about 150 cobble stones in my South Slope yard that I’d sell for $1 a piece, or 50 cent each if you take them all.  Likely salavaged from the streets of NYC.  Pls reply to nickhanlon@gmail.com if interested.  

Garden Design and Maintenance April 17, 2013 at 9:51 am

Fixing Tree Roots Causing Sidewalk Cracks

So the city has put a Lien on our Bay Ridge property because we have minor sidewalk cracks which have developed because the roots of our beautiful Callery Pear Tree have grown TOO LARGE.
 
Now, I dont want to simply “chop-out” the roots and pour a new sidewalk, as Im afraid the de-rooting will kill or damage the tree.
 
Anyone know the best solution to removing the tree roots correctly– To prevent the problem from growing again? Perhaps removing the violating roots and treating the freshly cut rootends with something BEFORE pouring concrete?
 

Garden Design and Maintenance April 10, 2013 at 2:11 pm

We need a lawn doctor

We are having trouble with our backyard lawn. We got sod installed two years ago and by now I would describe the lawn as more than 50% dead. We are not sure if this is due to bad soil, too little/much sun, too much/too little water, bad sod and so on.
Anybody out there in the lawn doctor business to come out to Park Slope, take look and give us some advice? There must be businesses out there for this.
 

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