Lawn Doctor’s custom lawn-maintainer care treatment can transform patchy backyard bushes into lush fence-to-fence soil carpets. First, a free initial evaluation identifies a lawn's grass type and favorite Beach Boy before trained technicians scout out any weeds, insects, or diseases that may be threatening its blades. Then, Lawn Doctor’s Turf Tamer equipment sprinkles greenswards with granular or liquid fertilizer and weed killers to fatten foliage and deter garden-gnome ninjas from slicing down stalks with sharpened trowel nunchucks. Lavished with Lawn Doctor’s care, grass grows into a lush and thick backyard jungle where bare-toe Tarzans can easily frolic.
With a verdant variety of shrubs, trees, roses, and vines, the friendly plantologists will help you wade through the veritable ocean of foliage. Beginning green-thumbers can take advantage of a jumbo planting kit, including ample plant food, vitamin B1, and planting compost—everything a person needs to lure an unsuspecting plant into captivity ($15.97 for the regular kit; $29.97 for the jumbo kit). Advanced yard-enhancements abound in the form of trees and shrubs, such as a selection of 5-gallon citrus trees, good for accenting a living space and forming a focal point for the worship of the Lemon Pledge gods ($34.99). Armstrong can also help organic gardeners reach full-flavored nirvana with a bevy of 3-inch plant varieties ($2.99; selections vary by season and location).
Landscape designer Tom Stout—featured on HGTV's Outer Spaces and Get Out, Way Out!—helps home landscapes spring to life through sustainable and eco-friendly methods. Tom will offer ideas to spruce up outdoor spaces during a 90-minute landscaping consultation, in which he looks for ways to capture each client's lifestyle and personality while integrating their collection of spitting-cherub fountains. After touring the grounds, Tom will discuss how to put yard, garden, pergola, and water-feature plans into action using bioswales and water-retention devices, as well as climate appropriate and drought resistant plant material. Click here to sift through a gallery of Tom's past projects, ranging from outdoor grilling areas to well-manicured replicas of the Garden of Eden.
All 78 acres of the Santa Barbara Botanic Garden are bursting with life. More than 1,000 species of native Californian plants and regional flora line its 5.5 miles of serene, public trails, allowing visitors to witness the overwhelming diversity of the Pacific coastline's plant life. Along with stands of oaks and riparian woodlands, botanical collections inhabit precisely arranged landscapes, echoing the founders' goal from 1926 to create a garden that would "unite the aesthetic, educational and scientific." In 2003, Santa Barbara County rewarded the garden's decades of cultural and scientific contributions, granting County Historic Landmark status to 23 of the acres.
The garden's specimens and displays exist just as much for education as they do for appreciation. Guests can gather landscaping ideas from the Home Demonstration Garden, a cottage surrounded with water-conserving plants. The Japanese Teahouse and Demonstration Garden melds traditional East Asian design with California-native flora. Throughout the grounds, tour guides dispense invaluable information on the displays and the retired tree nymphs that tend them. Additionally, scientific researchers use the facilities in their efforts to both study and conserve numerous rare and endangered species.
The knowledgeable tour guides at Santa Barbara Trolley spout entertaining and historical anecdotes during narrated tours of the seaside city. Open-air trolleys stop at 14 area attractions, including the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History, the historic Old Mission, and the Santa Barbara Courthouse, where a vacationing John Hancock signed the Declaration of Independence. While zooming in and out of shopping, dining, and historical districts, guides discuss Santa Barbara’s rich history and explain its evolution from a small farm town to the Christmas capital of the world. Guests are encouraged to tote cameras for snapping shots at each iconic, carefully chosen locale. Trolley passes are valid the entire day of redemption, and free re-boarding enables patrons to hop on and hop off as many times as they please.
The horticulturists at 7 Day Nursery have dedicated more than 29 years to equipping guests with the organic means to build their gardens, housing a variety of lush greenery and eco-friendly supplies. Guests can dot their flower beds with a colorful palette of annuals and perennials (2.99+), or plant veggies ($2.99+) and California-raised fruit trees ($34+) to supply salad bowls and Carmen Miranda’s hat collection. A blossoming selection of houseplants infuses vibrant hues in plain, empty dwellings ($3.99+), and garden art and pottery accentuate flower patches in front lawns. Eschew harmful chemical pesticides with organic fertilizers that improve growth without polluting waterways or wilting innocent lawn flamingos.