Do Patios Need Retaining Walls?

Do Patios Need Retaining Walls?

What’s the best way to keep your patio from sliding into the ocean? The answer, of course, is a retaining wall. But before you go out to design and install patio—or any other type of wall—make sure you’re getting one that will actually do the job.


What is a retaining wall?

A retaining wall is a structure built to hold back the soil. Retaining walls are commonly used in gardens and yards, but they can also be found in parks or other large open spaces. A retaining wall can be made of many different materials, including concrete, brick, stone, and wood.

Retaining walls are also known as earthen barriers (or earthworks). They’re often used to define space within a garden or yard by creating boundaries between different land areas with varying height levels.

A porch can leverage the design and install patio solution if there are concerns about soil movement near the structural hardscape.


When do you need a retaining wall?

Retaining walls are necessary for several reasons. First, they keep the soil from eroding away as you use your patio.

Second, they prevent water from flowing over the edges and down into your yard or garden. Retaining walls also keep the patio level and stable, preventing it from cracking apart if it were to sink or shift without them.

Finally, retaining walls prevent roots from growing into your patio structure and weakening its integrity—this is especially important if you live in an area with trees nearby!


When can you get away without a retaining wall?

Luckily, there are a few instances where you don’t need to build a retaining wall. If your patio is on flat ground, you can get away with not making one.

Also, if your patio is located on a hillside and the grade of the slope is less than 3 percent (that’s three feet for every hundred), then you shouldn’t have any issues with building your own retaining wall when you design and install patio structures.


Do retainer walls require maintenance?

Yes, they do. Retaining walls are made of concrete and other materials that must be maintained. They also have plants on them which require regular maintenance.

The retaining wall itself needs to be cleaned monthly or so with a pressure washer or other cleaning device if it is too dirty, but no maintenance is required beyond this unless there is some damage visible—in which case the wall should be repaired as soon as possible by a professional retaining wall contractor.


Where to get help

A retaining wall is usually an attractive and practical addition to any design and install patio situation, but it isn’t always necessary. Depending on the slope of your yard, you may be able to construct a simple paver or flagstone patio without the need for a retaining wall.

The best way to know what kind of retaining wall you’ll need is to contact our design and install patio team at Elite Development Group. We have years of experience constructing bespoke retaining walls for all kinds of landscaping and hardscaping needs.

Creative and Professional Outdoor Living, Kitchens, & Fireplaces

Creative and Professional Outdoor Living, Kitchens, & Fireplaces

Are you a foodie? Are you an outdoor enthusiast? Do you like to entertain friends and family at home? If so, then it’s time to take your love of cooking and entertaining outdoors with a new kitchen, fireplace, or outdoor renovation project. Our team can help design, build, and install the hardscaping and landscaping elements that your family or business will love.

Versatile Outdoor Kitchens

Outdoor kitchens are a great way to make the most of your outdoor space. Whether you’re looking for an industrial look or something more elegant and traditional, we have the experts at Elite Development to help you design your perfect outdoor kitchen.

Our team will help you choose the suitable materials for your project and make sure that everything is installed correctly, so you can enjoy cooking outside all year long.

We will carefully go over every aspect of your outdoor kitchen, from layout to countertops and appliances. We’ll even connect you with some local contractors who specialize in custom stonework and other specialty construction projects to fit your personal style and unique environment.

Welcoming Outdoor Fireplaces

Outdoor fireplaces are a great way to keep warm in the winter. They can also be built into your existing home or added as an outdoor renovation. You can choose from various styles ranging from traditional to modern and everything in between, to maintain your home’s décor and feel.

It’s essential to find out if there are any local regulations about building an outdoor fireplace before getting started on this project. That’s why our team will provide the paperwork and documentation with a clear layout of the build that ensures all ordinances are being followed.

Elevate Your Outdoor Living

Outdoor living spaces are becoming increasingly popular. As we learn more about the benefits of spending time outside, many homeowners are incorporating outdoor kitchens, fireplaces, and other recreational enhancements into their homes to enhance their quality of life.

Indoor-outdoor living is a great way to increase your home’s value by providing an alternative space for entertaining guests or just relaxing. At Elite Development, we have spent years successfully completing outdoor renovation projects that span everything from installing drainage for your home to complex, full-scale landscaping that transforms your backyard into a hidden oasis. We Have the Skills You Need for a Beautiful Outdoor Renovation

We have been in business for many years, and our clients know that we are committed to customer satisfaction. We are licensed and insured. Our goal is to make sure you get the best product at a reasonable price with the most accurate estimate possible.

The next time you are considering expanding your living space with a premium outdoor renovation, give our expert team at Elite Development a call. We look forward to building a unique space for you to entertain or relax in all year round.

How Often Should You Mow Your Lawn?

How Often Should You Mow Your Lawn?

The majority of time spent on lawn care is from mowing. By cutting your grass at the precise height, you not only make your home more eye-appealing but also help support growth.

The frequency with which you mow your lawn is determined by a number of variables. These include rainfall amounts, soil type, grass type, fertilizer application, and how much time you have to finish the job. Here are some overall best mowing timings for your lawn to get you started.

Types of Turf 

Turf is a term for all of the living plants in your lawn, which are usually gathered together as a single entity. Turf grows at various rates depending on grass type, weather, and amount of shade.

Cool-season grasses 

When it comes to grasses, cool-season grasses develop fast in the spring and fall seasons and must be cut more often when rainfall amounts are greater. Mowing on the high side of your grass type’s optimal height early in the season may assist with broadleaf weed control.

Warm-season grasses 

Warm-season grasses thrive in the south and southwestern United States, with hot summers and mild winters. Zoysia, St. Augustine, Bermuda, and Buffalo grasses flourish during the summer heat but do not survive as long as cool-season grasses when it is cold outside. These grasses will need to be cut more often when it rains frequently as it does in many areas of the country.

Shade grasses 

Since grasses rely heavily on sunlight, it is more difficult to get them to grow in shady areas. At most garden supply stores you can find shade-grown lawn mixtures, but even still it is difficult to keep a shaded lawn looking neat and tidy because germination depends largely on the amount of light exposure. Another option might be worth considering would be raising your blade when you mow and doing so less often.

New lawn 

When you’re growing a new lawn, make sure to keep it mowed at the same time as an established lawn. Once your new grass has reached its optimal height, feel free to begin trimming; however, if you cut too soon, the young leaves might get damaged.

Ready to improve your landscaping this season? At Elite Development Group, our team of lawn maintenance pros can test your soil, recommend the right fertilizer for your type of grass, and apply it for you when the time is right. Contact us to learn more about it and the other quality services we offer.

Got Pets? Here Are the Best Plants to Use in Your Garden

Got Pets? Here Are the Best Plants to Use in Your Garden

Not all animals are equally harmed by poisonous or noxious plants. A day lily, for example, may not harm a dog; however, a curious cat might suffer from vomiting, renal failure, or even death if they consume the typical garden plant.

There are several non-toxic beautiful floral species that you can plant in your yard and house without fear.


Zinnias should be on your no-nonsense list of hard-performing annual flowers. You may feel confident that zinnias won’t harm your pets. Zinnias can also help you minimize mildew issues by providing them with enough sunshine and room to spread out.

African Violet

African violets have been a popular houseplant for ages, and new cultivars will give you a reason to rediscover their advantages. Plants with ruffled flowers and picotee blooms prefer the same temperatures as we do. The fuzzy leaves don’t include any toxic chemicals that can harm cats or dogs.

Peruvian Lily

Many lily species are challenging to grow for cat owners. The non-toxic Peruvian lily, on the other hand, is a great choice for both cats and dogs. This flower may be utilized in professional floral arrangements since it remains vivid and long-lasting.

Areca Palm

If your cat is tempted to swat and bite the ornamental leaves of an areca palm, you won’t have to worry about stomach upset spoiling your pet’s evening. The butterfly plant (also known as the Madagascar palm) is native to Madagascar and thrives in warm temperatures and high humidity. They don’t require a lot of water or light, but the areca palm does an excellent job purifying the air.


When it comes to persistent plant-eaters, some experts believe that the best solution is to select a plant that has been developed to be eaten. The pungent hot leaves and flowers of nasturtiums will not entice most dogs, but if they care to try them, they will get a nutritional bonus in the form of vitamins A and C. Nasturtiums thrive in full sun on good soil with spring and early summer temperatures between 65 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit.

At Elite Development Group, our team of lawn maintenance pros can help you find the best plants and flowers that will also keep your pets safe. Contact us to learn more about it and the other quality services we offer.

Stay Away From These 5 Landscaping Mistakes

Stay Away From These 5 Landscaping Mistakes

Are you interested in creating and growing a garden but don’t know where to begin? It’s frequently a good idea to learn what not to do first! Here are five landscaping blunders you should avoid:

Avoid Ground Covers That Can Overrun Your Yard

Ground covers are low-growing plants that are meant to cover ground in your garden that is currently covered by weeds. Many homeowners, for example, have discovered after the fact that English ivy has a propensity to spread rapidly. Ground covers that thrive in shade are among the most dangerous offenders.

Avoid Rushing Into Using Mulch

Mulch is a simple and efficient approach to enhancing the appearance of your garden. However, if you make mistakes when selecting mulch or using it in your yard, there can be severe ramifications, from causing plant injury to necessitating additional work. When used around a variety of plants, a poor choice for use among them might be ideal for others, and tiny pebbles in mulch may be deadly.

Avoid Pruning Until The Recommended Date 

When it comes to using their pruning shears outside and “keeping up” with their bushes, many backyard gardeners consider themselves meticulous. They next wonder, “Why didn’t my flowering quince blossom this year?” It’s conceivable that the time you trimmed it has something to do with it. Make an effort to figure out when to trim shrubs properly.

Avoid Only Thinking About One Season

Shrubs are often used to embellish driveways, as they can complement your home. It’s critical to keep in mind that seasonal changes must be considered at all times. Next February, a suitable planting for May might become a blunder owing to weather conditions or other factors. With just a little effort, a shrub planted too close to the road may be damaged by a snow plow.

Avoid Trying To Do It Yourself

Always be sure to correctly assess your abilities before beginning any hardscaping projects. Discretion is important, and it’s sometimes best to call in the experts. If your entire landscape needs an update and you don’t have the skills or motivation to do it yourself, you may want to consider hiring expert help.

Landscape edging is an easy way to make your lawn look crisp, finished, and well-taken care of! At Elite Development Group, we make it easy with upscale monthly maintenance services for your home and garden. Contact us today and let the professionals keep your landscaping looking great all year round!

Build An Outdoor Waterfall for Your Home This Season

Build An Outdoor Waterfall for Your Home This Season

The form of the waterfall and the pool into which it falls are two elements to consider when designing an outdoor waterfall. You’ll use a pump in your pond to keep water flowing from the pond to your waterfall’s peak, where it will plunge back into the pond.

Waterfalls may be found in a range of shapes and sizes, and they provide an ideal focal point. When choosing design options, the most significant consideration is how to make the waterfall tall enough.

If you don’t already have a GFCI (ground fault circuit interrupter) outlet near your pond and waterfall, install one before digging. To make sure that the excavation for an outdoor waterfall and pond does not interfere with any underground utility wires, contact the Dig Safe phone number.

Building Your Waterfall

Dig the Pond 

Remove debris from the area where your liner will be installed. Turn the pond liner upside-down, where you want it to be and draw a circle around it to make shoveling easier.

Using a carpenter’s level, make sure the depth and diameter of your waterfall pond’s hole are comparable to those for your preformed liner. Place the preformed liner in the hole for the waterfall pond. Check to see if it’s flat by laying a carpenter’s level on top of it (front to back, as well as left to right).

Build the Waterfall 

One of your two structures will be completed when the pond is finished. It’s time to shift your attention to a more fascinating structure: the waterfall design. And that means revisiting the pebbles you’ll be using.

The most significant rocks are the spillway rocks, which are those directly above the water’s entry point. They should be as smooth as possible, with sharp, square edges. Such edges allow water to flow more smoothly.

After laying your first course of rocks in the front, cover them with a sheet of black plastic that is 4 feet long and 3 feet wide. The plastic serves the same purpose: namely, to catch more water than the rocks alone could and funnel it into the pond.

Lay the Rocks and Work With the Tubing 

Thread the tubes through the rocks. When constructing rock walls, it’s typical to stagger the seams. Because these will be tiny rock walls, this is not a structural concern, of course. However, if only for the sake of appearance, try to staggered them.

Over the first row of rocks in the front, place a large flat rock across them all. Because this rock’s function is to provide an overhang, it’s an important element in your cascade design. It will serve as a shelf for you to set your initial spillway stone so that the spillway stone extends farther out into the pond.

Place one or more capstones over the end of the tubing and bend it downward toward the pond. The waterfall’s spout, in other words, will find refuge here. As you size up the end of the tubing that will become the spout on the surface of the second spillway rock, you may now better determine its location. Again, pull to lengthen or shorten your tube as needed.

Fill the Pond 

You’ve now completed the pond’s water preparation. Using the pump’s power cable, test the pump’s flow and look for any leaks. Before you know it, you’ll have to make a lot of modifications. The objective is to keep the waterfall as close on to the middle of the pond as possible, allowing you on both sides of your natural rock waterfall while minimizing splash loss.

Not ready to take on a task this big? Call on specialists who can assist you! Our experts at Elite Development Group have the knowledge to make your yard a showroom for all of New Jersey! Contact us today and learn how you can help you!