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Landscaping Schedules

This guide to the understanding the correct order to install your landscaping should help you understand the landscaping process better. Understanding the landscaping process, when to install specific landscaping components and why they need to be installed in a certain order is very important. Follow this schedule when installing your landscaping project.

Have a look at our Landscape Design page to learn how to create your own landscape design


1) Call before you dig
It is very important to have all of your utilities marked before you begin your landscaping project. Don't count on any utility line being out of the way unless you know for sure by having them marked. Stay within 1 meter when digging. Call the number below to have your utilities marked usually within 3 days. Chinook Landscaping Calgary contacts all utility companies on the customer’s behalf and has utilities clearly marked before starting any project.


2) Rough grading of the property
Rough grading of the property is typically done with a bobcat and may have already been completed by your builder if you are in a newly constructed home. The rough grading helps you identify slopes, contours, and drainage areas. During this process you can remove large boulders and rocks within the first foot of soil, to allow for a good growing base for trees and shrubs. This grading stage is very important, and should not be partially done. Leaving it not completely finished will make for a messy landscape project. Make sure to get the grading right throughout the entire property before moving on to the other landscaping components.


3 ) Installation of a fence on the perimeter of the property.
Your fence defines the perimeter of your landscaping and your property. Before you install your fence make sure you have identified the correct location of your property line by using your Real Property Report or by utilizing property line locating company. A locating company will mark the exact location of your property so there are no future property line issues with your neighbor. You will want to install the majority of your fence early on in your landscaping and leave a backyard panel out for access to a back alley or if you don’t have an alley leave a front yard panel out for access to the front street. This access will be very helpful to you or your landscaper when bringing in large equipment and materials. Do not leave the majority of your fence work until last as the post hole work, foot traffic etc will cause damage to your existing landscaping.


4) Installation of large caliper trees
Many people are not aware that large caliper trees can weigh as much or more than 1000 lbs. Most large trees have to be moved onto the property by bobcat or crane. You should not risk damaging your completed paving stones, retaining walls or other landscaping by bringing the large trees after your landscaping is completed. As well, the material resulting from the excavation for the tree is substantial and needs to be hauled out or used in another area on your property. Plan ahead and install these trees near the beginning of your landscaping to ensure a smooth installation. Visit our idea gallery for photos of trees and shrubs that grow well in Calgary. You can also visit our Tree and shrub care page to learn how to care for your new trees.

5) Excavation for ponds, paving stones and retaining walls
Now is the time to excavate for the larger landscaping projects like ponds, paving stones, and retaining walls. Excavations for these components can yield a surprising amount of material from your property, so you will need to decide where to put it or haul it out.
A small paving stone patio of 200 square feet diameter and 8 inches deep creates 5 cubic yards of material. Don't think 5 cubic yards is much? Well, that will fill a large tandem dump trailer, or 40 wheelbarrows! If you need extra fill for low spots around your property or under your deck etc, you can get rid of a lot of the material. The rest will have to be hauled out.

6) Installation of deck foundations
Mark and dig deck piles pour concrete.

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7) Crush Gravel base installed for paving stones and retaining walls.
Install and compact/tamp the gravel base for your stone work, allow an area for your gravel pile with access to the exterior of your property. If you are installing underground sprinklers make sure to run pvc sleeves underneath paving stones, by placing the pvc pipe in gravel.

8)Installation of paving stones and retaining walls
Bring in stone material for paving stones and retaining walls. Make sure to have the pallets of stone delivered and placed as close to where you are installing as possible, to save time and energy. Click here to learn more about paving stones Calgary.

9) Install underground sprinklers
At this point, you will need to trench you sprinklers lines install your lines, and attach you spray heads and/or rotors to the lines. Set your sprinkler heads a few inches higher than the existing loam level and adjust them to the correct height later on in your project.

10) Build deck area
This step can be completed a little earlier on in the process if you like. It is important to have the deck construction completed before you complete any pavers that border the deck or sod that butts up against the deck.

11) Create shrub beds and plant smaller trees, shrubs, perennials, and annuals.
Now is the time to install smaller planting materials, including shrubs, perennials and annuals. You should plant your plants slightly higher than the soil level to allow for fabric and landscaping topping. The most important part about the planting process is to dig a hole larger than the pot for the plant and fill with good quality soil. Also, pack the soil firmly around the root to help retain moisture and keep the roots protected during winter. Visit our tree and shrub photo pages to see trees and shrubs that grow well in Calgary.

12) Installation of landscape fabric and landscape topping
Installing landscaping fabric or weed barrier then landscape topping such as cedar mulch, rundle rock, or bark mulch. To learn more about landscape topping options visit our landscape toppings page . You can also look at edging for your garden beds by checking out our edging options page.

13) Installation of screened loam and laying of sod.
Be sure to have your pallets of sod placed as close to your sodding area as possible. Assuming the rough grade was already completed from step 2 you can now install the final finish layer of screened loam, and lay the sod for your new lawn. Be sure to roll the loam and compact it properly before laying the sod. To learn about caring for your new sod check our Sod Calgary page for information on watering your new sod and fertilizer applications.

14) Completion of fence
Now that your finished with the majority of your landscape work you can install the fence panel or gate that you left out at the beginning of your proejct.

You can visit landscaping Calgary for more information

To discuss your landscaping project or to arrange a no cost estimate/consultation call Chinook landscaping in Calgary at 403-452-8552

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