Top 3 Reasons to Plant Trees in the Fall!

Top 3 Reasons to Plant Trees in the Fall!


The air is getting colder, but your garden’s soil is actually warmer now than it is in the spring. That means that with the right care, roots will happily grow right up until the ground freezes. Here are a few great reasons to start your planting in autumn:


1- Fall has its share of rainy days, which means free drinks for your garden friends.


2- Trees get a bit stressed when they’re moved or planted, and fall’s cooler air is kinder to them. Plant trees in the fall and they’ll have all of autumn to develop their root system, giving them a head start in the spring.


3- Planting and designing your landscape now will ensure a beautiful spring bloom. Rather than starting from scratch once winter finally abates and waiting for the results, you could be smiling at pretty pink blooms as the first signs of spring in your yard.


Types of Trees to Plant:


For Gorgeous Fall Colours:





If you love yellow, Ginkgo is your tree. It offers up gorgeous yellow fan-shaped leaves each fall. The umbrella-shaped ginkgo tree is also great at resisting insects and disease.


Autumn Blaze Maple:


Fall’s most famous tree offers a stunning array of red, orange and yellow leaves. The maples that make us gasp from the roadside are often huge but these beauties come in a variety of sizes, so they can work in any landscape. There is also a lovely, lacy-leaf Japanese maple for smaller spots.


Red Twig Dogwood:


This great tree has it all: clusters of pretty white blooms in the spring, plum-colored fruit that attracts birds and beautiful red leaves in the fall. Bonus: ruby red stems that continue to impress once the leaves have dropped. They are gorgeous even when peeking through the snow around your home!


For Heathy Treats:




Enterprise is a great apple tree! This bright red apple has crisp, juicy flesh and excellent flavor. It ripens in mid to late October, and offers 3-inch apples that sweeten in storage. Store them in the fridge and they’ll keep their crunch for five to six months. Other great apple tree options include Gala, Freedom, Empire, Golden Delicious and Liberty varieties.




Cherry trees produce either sweet or sour cherries. Their white blossoms bloom in the spring, followed by the pretty red cherries in the summer. For a sweeter taste, try Empire Francis, Hartland and Stella. Prefer sour? Try Balaton or Montmorency.



Plum trees prefer full sun and moist soil. They bloom in the spring and form fruit in the summer. Some tasty options include Seneca, Stanley, French Damson and Early Golden.

For Phenomenal Flowers:


Flowering Dogwood:


There is so much to love about dogwood, especially its abundance of white or pink flowers in the spring. It also offers pretty reddish-purple leaves and glossy red fruit in the fall. Its spreading, horizontal branches offer a unique look during winter months, too!



Flowering Crabapple:


A flowering crabapple has impressive blossoms that open from pink or red buds then create a stunning, fragrant pink cloud for several weeks each spring. For a full season of enjoyment, try the Asian crab apple specimens. They are most popular because their fruits are more colorful and last into the winter, providing food for grateful birds.




Best known for its lovely profusion of pink flowers in the spring, redbud also offers pretty golden heart-shaped leaves in the fall. Bonus: unlike most showy trees that love sun, redbud will grow in light shade.





This gorgeous tree flowers in the spring, produces beautiful green foliage all summer, and has a brilliant orange shade in the fall.


We can help you choose the best types of trees for your needs and create a planting design to suit your landscape. Call us today! 514-683-6644

5 Commercial Landscaping Ideas to Enhance Your Property!

5 Commercial Landscaping Ideas to Enhance Your Property!


As we head into fall, now is the time to consider landscape enhancements for your commercial property. Why wait until spring, which is the busiest season for landscaping companies, when you can put a plan in place now? A great place to start is to ruminate on ways to improve safety, sustainability and the overall experience for guests. What projects have you put on the back burner? Do you need to address plants that have outgrown their spaces, or replace tired shrubs with young natives that have low-water requirements? What about outdoor seating and walkways?
As you consider the possibilities for your landscape, ask yourself: How do people spend time outdoors on your grounds, and what could you add to make landscaped spaces more comfortable? There are so many options. We’re seeing more modern seating and a lot of work-play focused designs, such as patio spaces equipped for cooking, bocce ball courts or putting greens. These features can be added to your landscape design, for blowing off steam mid-day and staging team-building activities at the office!
So take a moment now, to tour your own property and look at the landscape as if you were the guest, employee, pedestrian, shopper or even passer-by.
Here are 4 more tips that might come in handy:
1- Update Your Signage:
Weather, especially our fabulous winters, can take a toll on even the most high-quality signage. As well, styles evolve over time and your current signage may be out of date. Crisp, modern signage that is easy to read both day and night is an asset because it guides people to your commercial property. Entry signage can definitely be spruced up with tiered landscaping. Think of hardscape elements, mixes of plant sizes and textures, as well as differing colours! These can all draw attention and attract the eye of guests, shoppers or passers-by.
2- Invite Them To Stay Awhile:
Outdoor seating is clearly a benefit for any commercial property. It can turn a landscape into a gathering space. Seating gives employees a place to take a break from work to re-energize or even meet in small groups to discuss projects. They can eat outside and enjoy nature. Outdoor spaces are proven to reduce stress and can be a great place for team building exercises. As well, seating in retail areas encourage guests to linger longer! Shoppers might be inclined to have a leisurely experience rather than simply running in and out, keeping visitors on your retail property longer.
Beyond seating, commercial property managers further enhance their grounds with walking trails and common areas. Seating is a good start but by creating a complete outdoor environment with these additional landscape features, you can increase property value, attract and retain tenants, and improve your company culture.

3- New Growth:

Plants that looked vivacious and abundant years ago can begin to look a little weary. The result is a messy looking plant bed and compromised plant health. Sometimes, the best way to tame a bed is to start from scratch, especially if the existing plants are consuming valuable maintenance time and resources. Adding new plant life to your landscape is a great way revitalize your property’s aesthetic appeal!

Alternatively, plant containers come in a range of styles and sizes. They can be a fast way to update and add color to your landscape. Plant annuals for spring, summer and fall in containers. You can even plant trees or shrubs in large containers, providing shade where it’s needed on your property.  Containers are versatile and give property owners a way to keep their landscapes relevant without investing in replanting entire beds.




4- Safety First:

Take a moment to examine your property’s landscape. Do you see uneven surfaces that could cause pedestrians to trip and fall? The roots of mature trees can grow through almost any surface. They’ll push up pavers and concrete, and even cause buckling at sidewalk joints. Weather takes a toll on even the toughest surfaces! Pavers can settle, asphalt can crack, and concrete can heave. Addressing these trip-and-fall hazards should be a priority so you can ensure the safety of people who visit your commercial property.

Another important safety aspect is lighting. Are walkways, parking lots, entrances and other pedestrian and vehicular passages well lit at night? Not only does lighting enhance safety, it also improves appearance. Beautifully designed lighting features can  entice the public to spend more time on your property and attract more clients.


Plan Ahead: 

Investing in landscape projects like seating, lighting and plants can boost property value, increase tenant occupancy rates, invite more guests, and enhance the experience people have on your property.

Now is a great time to consult with a Groupe Paramount commercial landscape professional! We can offer design ideas and suggest where you’ll get the most return on your investment. It’s best to tackle these projects before spring kicks in and everyone wants to be out enjoying the landscape. Call us today! 514-683-6644

Top 4 Reasons To Host A Bee Colony

Top 4 Reasons To Host A Bee Colony


Beekeeping is all the buzz! As a result, it’s becoming more common to see beehives on rooftops and tucked into the corners of backyards. Whether it’s to help pollinate the neighbourhood around you or to enjoy producing honey as a family, there are numerous reasons to host your very own bee colony!



Liquid Gold

The honey! Not only does it sweeten your tea, taste delicious on toast, and add flavor to pretty much anything, it also has plenty of health benefits. Honey contains vitamins, enzymes, antioxidants, and amino acids. It’s well known for it antimicrobial/antifungal properties and honey produced right next to where you live can even help with seasonal allergies! Most store-bought brands have been pasteurized, which eliminates the honey’s positive qualities. An urban beehive can generate approximately 10 kg of honey per year, so there will be plenty to share with friends and neighbours.



Pollinate Your Community

Did you know that without bees, global fruit, vegetable, and nut crops would yield about half of their current amounts? Some food species (such as almonds) would not exist at all! With bee populations on the decline, there couldn’t be a more perfect time to do your part for the ecosystem by incorporating a hive into your landscape design. Starting your own bee colony can seem like a daunting task but you don’t have to do it alone! We are working with the incredibly knowledgeable team at Alvéole. They have supplied us with our first hive and are teaching is the ins and outs of maintaining it. Alvéole can install a hive on your rooftop, your balcony or in in your backyard. They will provide you with check-ups, to ensure your hive is running smoothly, and will handle the extraction of your honey at their honey house. Bees are most attracted to purple, yellow and blue flowers, so adding some colourful plantings to your yard will help your hive thrive! Lavender is a lovely choice, both for pollinators and property owners, alike.



Good For The Garden

Raising your own bee colony is one of the best things you can do for your garden! Honey bees will pollinate your plants and increase your yields. Some of our favorite plants need the help of these wonderful little pollinators! If you grow flowers, cucumbers, berries or fruit trees, bees will dramatically increase your harvest.



None Of Your Beeswax

Beeswax is the best! It has dozens of uses around the home and you can even incorporate it into your beauty routine. Beeswax contains vitamin A, which is one of the best vitamins for your skin. It’s perfect for homemade lip balms, lotions, soaps and hair-styling products! When applied to the skin, beeswax forms a protective barrier that helps protect it from environmental assaults, while also holding in moisture and reducing dryness. You can also use the wax to make your own furniture polish, waterproof your shoes, wax your sewing thread, coat your kitchen pans so they don’t stick to food, and seal yard tools so they don’t rust. You can even use beeswax to make your own candles! While many commercial candles emit toxic chemicals, beeswax burns cleaner for longer and produces a lovely smell.


Fun fact: honey bees must consume 8.5 pounds of honey to make one pound of beeswax, which they use to make the honeycomb in their hive. Honeycomb holds the bees’ honey in small hexagon-shaped buckets and that shape is no accident! Since it takes so much food to create a small amount of wax, bees tapped into their mathematical genius to come up with the most efficient way to use it. The hexagon shape allows them to use the least amount of wax to store the most amount of honey. Pretty smart little insects, if you ask us!


Photos courtesy of Alvéole

6 Unique Poolscape Features!

6 Unique Poolscape Features!

So you’ve taken the plunge! You’ve decided to add a pool to your landscape and now comes the fun part – choosing the design features for your new, blue oasis! Whether your vision is contemporary elegance or you are looking to create a luscious tropical paradise, Groupe Paramount can help to bring your ideas to life.
Pick Your Style
There are so many ways to let your creativity show! Choose from a traditional, free-form, contemporary or natural design style and then customize with design touches that make your pool uniquely you. Add custom sun ledges, swim-up bars or negative edges that produce the visual effect of water with no boundary. The options are endless!
Choose Your Furniture
Selecting your exterior seating is one of the most important decisions of your pool area design. The right outdoor decor can make any pool area more luxurious! We can help you take inspiration from your interior decor or choose pieces that compliment the design aspects of your new poolscape. 
Pick Your Poolscape
Set the stage for a dynamic poolscape with a custom decking and paver design that we can design! Add a contemporary sun ledge with gorgeous (and durable!) ipe wood, choose from concrete pavers or slabs, or create a secluded haven by adding a feature privacy wall.
Let It Flow
A water feature can increase the sense of calm and tranquility that your oasis provides, as well as adding to the visual aesthetic of your new swimming space. Water features can be designed with natural rock, artificial rock, block or stone structures. They can be integrated into the poolscape or as a part of the construction of the pool itself.
Let It Glow
Lighting is everything, whether it’s part of your interior or exterior design! Pool lights can create varying aesthetic effects, depending on the design and colour. From warmer toned yellows, oranges or reds to relaxing greens or blues. Not only will the right lighting enhance the beauty of your poolscape but will also provide safety by aiding visibility underwater, near steps, on pool ledges and seating areas.
Last But Not Least…Warm It Up
A custom spa or Jacuzzi is a great addition to any swimming space. They add value to your property and the relaxation benefits are incredible! They also keep your poolscape functional throughout the colder months and are a great way to warm up, polar bear club style, in your very own backyard!
Top 4 Ways To Warm Up Your Yard!

Top 4 Ways To Warm Up Your Yard!

You can make your summer days last long into the night with the addition of a fire feature to your patio, deck or backyard. In fact, there are so many events and activities that you can still do outdoors throughout the spring or fall when you have a cozy place to gather. Not only will these gorgeous features provide a beautiful aesthetic, they also provide warmth on colder nights!

Outdoor Fireplaces

A fireplace is a gorgeous focal feature for your backyard that provides not only warmth but also lighting.  It can be modeled to complement your home’s design and embellishing the space with outdoor seating and a table will give the impression of an added room to your house.

Fire Pits

Fire pits have become one of the most popular types of backyard fire features because of their portability, low cost, and ease of use. Generally positioned at the center of the patio area, they offer a great place to hang out with friends and family. Traditionally designed low to the ground, they can be built or bought in any shape or size and in a variety of materials. Wood-burning types are popular, but fire pits that are fueled by propane or gas are a greener choice and better for air quality.

Outdoor Grills and Kitchens

One of our favourite ways to warm up your yard — cooking!  A grill, brick pizza oven, or other outdoor cooking appliance will quickly heat up things. Plus, the delicious aromas of food cooking will make your guests want to hang out on the patio. Your grill can be standalone, by the pool or integrated into a larger outdoor kitchen for backyard parties!

Fire Tables

Outdoor gas fire tables add a warm, cozy glow to any outdoor space and can be a great focal point for your patio. These exceptional conversation tables will be the center of all of your backyard events, perfect for gathering friends and family around for a cozy meal or a fireside chat.


5 Landscaping Tips – What To Consider Before You Begin!

You’ve finally decided it’s time to revamp your back yard, front yard or maybe even both. Maybe you’re thinking of adding a pool or you have an old pool that is in need of an upgrade? Whether you are interested in completely redesigning your landscape or simply making a few changes there are some important factors to consider before you start your project. Meeting with a professional landscape designer, pool designer or landscape architect  is the best place to start. Here are 5 things that you should know before you go into that meeting that will help the designers design your dream environment!

Who Will Be Using It

Start by thinking about who might be using the space that you’re designing. Do you have young children or is it primarily an adult retreat/oasis? Are there pets to consider when planting/designing? Creating a list of all family members, their ages, and the outdoor hobbies they may have can be extremely helpful to your designer when planning your new landscape.

What They’ll Be Doing

What activities will the space be designed for? Will you be using the space for cooking, relaxing, reading, or gardening? Perhaps you plan to entertain large groups of friends and family or are you more focused on recreational experiences such as swimming, basketball or games of touch football? How you plan to use the space outside your home is an important factor to consider.

When our clients have young children, we always look to conserve some of the grass area for play space. As fencing around a pool is a provincial requirement, we try to ensure kids have access to the play area of the yard without having to first access the pool area. As well, when designing a pool, creating  a “beach” is often a fun upgrade with younger children!


What aesthetic appeal calls to you? Modern? Contemporary? How do you want your landscape to look? A good place to start is by considering your interior design and then trying to create unity with the exterior. Try to compliment the lines and styles of your home’s architecture to bring into your yard. This can guide which hardscapes, structures, decor and plantings you might like to select. Are you someone who prefers neat, geometric shapes and structures or do you prefer softer lines with a more natural feel to your space? Perhaps you want your yard to include only specific colours. Your landscape is an extension of your home and these questions can help to unify your unique design style!

Existing Issues/Attributes

There may be areas of your current landscape that you already know you want to change. Every person has differing tastes! You might hate a row of evergreen trees that blocks a particular view from your house but your designer might love the way they accentuate a part of your landscape. Unless you let us know, they might not get changed in the design. Create a list to work from during your consultation with your landscape designer so that you are sure to mention all areas that you want addressed. As well, it can also be beneficial to create a list of existing attributes that you would like to focus on and accentuate in the design!

Master Plan

When beginning a large landscaping project, it can be tempting to address it in steps or phases, particularly where cost is concerned. While this can work well, it is still wise to first begin with an all-encompassing master plan and then breaking it in phases. The planning costs is usually almost identical and can ensure that your property design doesn’t appear piecemeal. This will help to put you on the path to creating a beautiful, cohesive and thriving landscape.


Top 5 Landscaping Trends for 2017!

Mother nature may have just graced us with a huge helping of winter weather, but spring IS just around the corner – we promise! With renewed enthusiasm for the outdoors, Montreal’s homeowners are embracing thoughtful design, stylish plantings and smart technology to enhance their landscapes as extensions of their homes. As you start planning your landscaping projects for the warmer days ahead, take a peek at some of the top trends in landscape design for 2017 and get inspired!

Bringing Hygge Outside

Homeowners have become more interested in holistic landscapes that promote well-being. The Danish concept of coziness (Hygge) has recently become very popular in interior design and this year, you’ll be seeing more and more of it incorporated into backyard landscape designs. Spaces accentuated with outdoor fireplaces, quaint patios, and cozy gathering places are all going to be sought-after this year pictured above.

Design it Green!

“Greenery” was selected by Pantone, a leading provider of color systems, as its Color of the Year for 2017. Instead of going the conventional route of colourful flowers, using different textures and shades of greenery, such as a formal hedge of green velvet boxwood, a border of green lilyturf and dense ivy-covered trellises, can create quite the impact.

Mixing of Materials

More landscapes in 2017 will feature an integration of several forms of materials. From pebble paths leading to paving stone patios, to wooden decks adorned with iron gates, stylish pairings of different hardscapes can create an elegant approach to landscaping. Some of the most popular exotic woods are Ipe, Teak and Red Cedar. Take a look at this Ipe designed pool area (pictured above)! This is a wood that can be oiled for a rich array of brown shades or it can be left to grey out, which requires almost no maintenance and has a more organic aesthetic/texture.

Full Outdoor kitchens

Hosting a summer party is so much easier when you simply bring the kitchen outside! It can be be cumbersome to carry food from the house to the patio, especially when entertaining a larger group of guests. For this reason, more homeowners are loving the latest high-tech outdoor kitchens and the conveniences they provide. Grills, ovens, sinks, fridges and more! Well beyond the basic BBQ stations and dining sets, they can also be equipped with the latest technology, such as next generation outdoor sound systems with in ground sub-woofers, mobile app-controlled LED lighting and ovens integrated with Wi-Fi.

Pollinator Attracting Plants

Did you know that bees pollinate up to a 5km radius of their hive and that consuming honey from the bees that pollinate in your neighbourhood can provide you with a resistance to seasonal pollen allergies? Without bees, global fruit, vegetable, and nut crops would yield about half of their current amounts while some food species (such as almonds) would not exist at all. There couldn’t be a more perfect time to do your part for the ecosystem and incorporate plantings into your landscape design that will attract pollinators! Bees are most attracted to purple, yellow and blue flowers. Lavender is a lovely choice, both for pollinators and property owners, alike. At Groupe Paramount, we are taking it a step further by adding a bee hive to the mix. The lovely people at Alveole have supplied us with our hive and are teaching us the ins and outs of maintaining it. We’ll soon be adding 10,000 new employees to our team!