Sage Landscapes warranties all craftsmanship and construction performed by us. We perform all work to industry standards and adhere to a high standard of craftsmanship and quality. This warranty includes paver bases, hardscaping structural integrity, and industry standard installation practices. Some situations, e.g. a chipped or cracked paver that occurs after we leave the project, are not warrantied, but we are always happy to discuss options to resolve or repair these issues.
While we ensure high quality workmanship in landscape construction projects, it’s important to keep in mind the natural weathering that occurs for many of our choice materials. Cultured stone is a human-made concrete product, and therefore can show weathering over time, such as colors fading in direct sunlight or salts coming to the surface of the material where they are visible. Concrete pavers are susceptible to the same processes. Cedar, while rot-resistant, will dry out and take on a silvery color with time. These changes are part of the natural weathering process and can add nuanced charm to an outdoor living space. We are happy to recommend options that the homeowner can take to slow the weathering process of their new landscape materials; for example, staining or oiling cedar, or sealing concrete pavers, can keep things looking new for longer.
Hardscaping: Cultured Stone, Pavers, etc.
Cultured stone will weather over time. Areas exposed to natural sunlight and the elements will weather more quickly than projects constructed under a covered structure, i.e. a covered pergola. Efflorescence, or the accumulation of visible salts on the material surface, occurs naturally over time. Each cultured stone blend will have its own sensitivity to sunlight, cleaning products, and pressure washing; therefore, it is important to consult the manufacturer about care for your specific product. We source all of our cultured stone through Mutual Materials. There are several products on the market for cleaning cultured stone, but we defer to Mutual Materials’ recommendation of Efflo Off Cleaner from SEK Surebond. They suggest using a plastic pump sprayer to apply the cleaning solution rather than a pressure washer.
Mutual Materials’ website lists the following steps for homeowners to clean their cultured stone:
1. Test: Always test product on a small area (or sample hardscape) first and allow 24-hour dry time to determine ease of application and desired results.
2. Pre-wet: Lightly pre-wet (flash-cool) the pavement surface (do not soak). If plant material is nearby, protect and/or keep wet during detergent application.
3. Pre-mix Efflo Off: Pre-mix Efflo Off at a ratio of 4-parts water to 1-part detergent.
4. Apply Efflo Off: Apply Efflo Off (diluted to 4:1 ratio) to the pavement surface to be cleaned. You can do this with a 1-gallon or 2-gallon plastic pump sprayer. Ensure to overlap each spray stroke to achieve full even coverage.
5. Allow Efflo Off to dwell: Allow product to dwell for 5 to 8 minutes, being careful to not allow the product to dry on the pavement surface. If liquid begins to dry on the surface, then re-apply to keep surface wet.
6. Agitate: While the detergent is dwelling on the pavement, lightly agitate the detergent on the pavement surface with a push broom.
7. DO NOT RINSE
8. Re-apply Efflo Off: Once again, apply Efflo Off (diluted to 4:1 ratio) to the pavement surface. Allow product to dwell again for 2 to 4 minutes. This melts away any remaining residue/efflorescence.
9. Rinse: Rinse with garden hose-end sprayer. Use long, even strokes that overlap each other.
10. Allow to dry: Allow pavement to dry for 24 hours then inspect treatment. Repeat steps 1–8 as necessary, to achieve desired result.
Like cultured stone products, concrete pavers may show salt efflorescence with time. This is not a structural issue, but a natural weathering/ageing process with these materials. This can go away with time, but some may wish to remove manually with a concrete paver cleaner. Belgard, one of the product manufacturers we source pavers from, recommends waiting at least 90 days between installation and applying any cleaning product to the pavers. Sealing pavers is not necessary but some prefer to do so for the glossy finish and to help prevent stains. If you are sealing your pavers, do remove any efflorescence before sealing, as the sealant may trap efflorescence on the surface.
Pressure washers can remove stains and efflorescence, but it is important to pay attention to the pressure, as too much can erode the pavers. We typically use pavers from either Mutual Materials, Willamette Graystone, or Belgard; if you have questions about the specific pavers used in your project, please contact us and we can provide resources specific to your concrete products.
Natural woods: Natural woods are prone to checking and warping over time, but typically have lifespans of upwards of 20 years. For natural wood products, we warranty the craftsmanship for 1 year. Stain, sealants, and paints can extend the lifespan of natural woods and even slow down the natural movement of the piece over the years. In general, the larger body the wood, the longer it will resist rot. We select appropriate woods based on the project application, typically meaning rot resistant woods such as cedar, juniper, black locust, ipe, etc. for exterior projects and pressure treated woods for ground contact application to increase the longevity of our projects.
Composite woods: Composite decking, fencing, and screens may fade over time. Some manufacturers have products and instructional videos about removing scratches and reviving color. Some of these techniques involve using a heat gun to soften the material over a scratch to remove it. Sage Landscapes uses appropriate fasteners and joist spacing to support a composite material and warranties all craftsmanship for 1 year.
Some brands are more prone to fading and warping than others and should be chosen carefully based on the application. Fascia boards, especially for decking products need extra care as the thinner material is more prone to warping than the larger deck boards. We recommend gluing and using the manufacturer provided fasteners to face screw the fascia to resist these warping forces.
Low voltage lighting: Exterior low voltage lighting comes from the manufacturer in waterproof housings for exterior use and can have bulb longevities of 10-15 years for LED’s on low voltage circuits. If there is a problem with these housings, the manufacturer may offer a warranty depending on the supplier. If there is a problem with the wire connection installed by Sage Landscapes, we provide a warranty for 1 year. Wires cut by homeowners or chewed by rodents would incur a service charge to repair.
Low Voltage Transformers: Low voltage transformers reduce standard outlets to lower voltages for safely running wires through the landscape. We do not warranty transformers but the manufacturer may. The most common problem that may occur in the 5-10 first years with your timer is the photo-cell loses sensitivity. These photo-cells are a pretty universal product that can be replaced by simply plugging a new one into your transformer. The smallest transformers for single zone lighting have integrated photo-cells, and can be replaced as a unit by plugging the new one in.
Plants and Sod
Plants: Plants are warrantied for thirty days after planting. We cannot warranty plants beyond that time frame, as pests and disease are unpredictable in many areas, and improper watering can cause plant decline. We are always happy to answer plant care questions, so please reach out to us if you have any concerns.
Sod: We usually install rhizomatous tall fescue unless otherwise noted. This sod is highly durable, lush, and resilient, and usually resists damage from pests and diseases. If you do not have an irrigation system to keep your sod watered, you will absolutely need to hand water the sod daily while the roots establish.