Featured Project: Preserving a Piece of Michigan’s Natural History

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Ancient Beech

For the past seven years, we at Pizzo & Associates, Ltd. have been proud to steward a special piece of land along the Galien River in Three Oaks, Michigan. The homeowners purchased approximately 30 acres as a vacation property and built a home, pool, and pool house for family getaways. They chose the site for its proximity to the Chicago metro area and the beautiful site on the river. Read More…

Fantastic Native Ferns

Northern Maidenhair Fern
Northern Maidenhair Fern

One of the loveliest woodland plants is the fern. We have almost 20 species native to Illinois and we’re very excited to offer these this spring. Ferns add a particular grace to shade gardens or woodland areas and blend well with wildflowers and sedges. Our ferns are still growing, but will be ready in a few weeks for pick up or delivery.

Northern Maidenhair Fern (Adiantum pedatum)

One of the loveliest of the native ferns, Northern Maidenhair Fern can reach up to two feet high and wide. Its wiry black stems allow the foliage to almost float, providing a delicate texture for the shade. This fern prefers moist, rich soils and is deer resistant. Read More…

Nectar Plants for Fall Pollinators

Swamp Milkweed
Swamp Milkweed

A recent study has demonstrated that late-season nectar plants are key to migrating butterflies and pollinators. You can enjoy blossoms through October by adding some of these beauties to your yard or natural area. Tough, tolerant, and lovely, try one for a burst of late summer and autumn flowers.

 

Swamp Milkweed (Asclepias incarnata)

A terrific rain garden plant, Swamp Milkweed prefers full sun sites that have wet to average soils. Reaching about two to four feet high, it blooms beginning in July and August with rosy pink clusters of upright fragrant flowers. Forming colonies when conditions are right, it is a host plant for Monarch butterflies. Other pollinators find it attractive, including the occasional Ruby-throated Hummingbird.  Read More…

Purple Prairie Favorites

Agastache scrophulariaefoliarevPurple, the color of royalty, graces our prairies throughout the season. There are many purple-flowering plants native to the Chicago area that can add richness to your landscape or natural area. We’ve chosen to highlight a mix of the common and unusual for your sunny spot. All of these species attract and support pollinators.

Agastache scrophulariifolia or Purple Giant Hyssop

Purple Giant Hyssop is a large clumping perennial in the mint family with square stems and pale lavender flower spikes from July until fall. Reaching about six feet high, this hyssop prefers prairie and savanna situations with moist soils, although it will readily adapt to average and dry areas. Its long-blooming flowers are extremely popular with bees and butterflies. Read More…

Planting for Pollinators

07-17-07 016The monarch butterflies are making their way north and we’ve already spotted Red Admirals, Commas, Mourning Cloaks, and lots of moths, bees, flies, and wasps. The prairie is buzzing! If you’re interested in attracting beautiful butterflies and important beneficial insects, now is the time to make plans and order plants.

Planting for pollinators means that you’ll need plants for caterpillars and larvae as well as for adults. To welcome insects there are a few things to consider. Read More…

Solutions for Algae Control

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Algae are a problem on many ponds in our area. It is caused by excessive nutrients, specifically nitrogen and phosphorous, in the water. These are commonly found in fertilizers used on lawns and agricultural crops. When it rains, they run off of lawns and fields and into the stormwater management system, ending up in your ponds.

How do you fix an algae problem? At The Pizzo Group, we take a multi-tiered approach. If you have an area that collects water in rain events, a bioswale or rain garden could be the ideal solution. Creating a beautiful perennial garden of wildflowers treats the stormwater before it enters the pond. Native plants adapted to these conditions will absorb excess water and damaging nutrients, plus add flowers and habitat for pollinators.

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Milkweeds for Monarchs

Monarch on butterflyweed
Monarch on butterflyweed

Are you ready to welcome butterflies? Monarch populations are doing a bit better, but they could still use a boost. Try planting milkweed this year and be rewarded with monarchs and more. Their showy flower clusters also attract moths, skippers, bees, and beneficial wasps. Set your landscape to buzzing with milkweed! Read More…

Spring Is for Seeding

seedingSpring can be a good time to sow native seed for prairies, savannas, and woodlands. If you’re looking for a cost-effective solution to establishing native landscaping or natural areas, installing seed is an option. Mild spring temperatures, abundant rainfall, and longer days mean that plants can germinate well. Read More…

Problems – Solved!

Nantucket CoveHow do your natural areas look this spring? Are they meeting your goals? We at The Pizzo Group manage hundreds of natural spaces and we can solve your problems.

  • Beauty – We execute sound practices that produce beautiful and functional natural areas and sustainable landscapes. We are the most-awarded contractor in the Midwest because our projects excel in performance.
  • Prescribed Fire (Controlled Burn) – We are the industry expert at safe and effective prescribed fire. This is one of the tools in our toolbox that creates beautiful natural spaces.
  • Erosion – Our thorough planning and experienced installation and management solutions will resolve your erosion problems.
  • Water Quality – A healthy, native plant community will solve water quality issues.
  • Pollinators and Butterflies – Everything we do for our clients creates pollinator and butterfly habitat.

 

Call 815-495-2300 or email us at info@pizzo.info to get your customized solution today.

Green Infrastructure: Ensuring Success with Native Plants

A successful native bioswale
A successful native bioswale

An increasingly important approach to water quality improvement, green infrastructure projects such as rain gardens, bioswales, and retention basins, are successful when they function properly and are aesthetically pleasing. Let our expert landscape architects and ecologists at ecology + vision, llc help you enhance your project with curated plant lists, detailed specifications and measurable performance criteria. Together, we can create a beautiful, high functioning project that will last for years to come. Read More…

Featured Project: Madison Club

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Madison Club in Burr Ridge decided at the beginning that natural areas would be an important element to the development. Built on 30 acres of oak-hickory savanna and wetland, home sites are all within reach of an abundance of native plants and habitats. Natural corridors run through the development, creating a storm water system to prevent flooding and ease pressure on the municipal system. Read More…