Tree Care Services of Vancouver, WA and Portland, OR

5 Best Trees to Plant in Washington

By AK Timber

Washington has a bit of a tricky climate when it comes to growing trees. Between the wind, the water, and the problems that can sometimes arise with trees, many people are a bit reluctant to plant their own trees. Instead, they rely on the trees that are already in place or they just accept the fact that they don’t have trees and move on – but it doesn’t have to be that way. Trees are gorgeous additions to our yards, adding pops of color, scents, and texture that you can’t get anywhere else.

These trees also don’t have a lot of maintenance requirements or “special attention” for them to grow. Instead, you just have to let them be, do some pruning, and maybe water them from time to time if we are going through a particularly dry patch. Other than that, you can just enjoy the beauty and freshness that comes with them:

5. Douglas Fir

A group of Douglas Fir trees.

Credit: Tom Appel

  • Requires little water in Washington’s climate
  • Grows very quickly
  • Can be grown in full sun or part shade

Conifers grow extremely well within the Washington climate. While many people think of Douglas Fir as a tree that you’d only see around the holiday season, they can be extremely beautiful and bring that delicious scent to your yard year round. Some families will even plant Douglas Fir seedlings and then watch them grow to the perfect size for a Christmas tree so that they can cut it down.

According to Arbor Day, “the Douglas Fir grows to a height of 40–70′ and a spread of 12–20′ at maturity.” They will live for a long time, however, so once you plant them, you will have a tree for life if you don’t cut them down for Christmas.

4. Japanese Red Pine

A group of Japanese Red Pines at full height.

Credit: Shizhao

  • Requires little watering once it has been established
  • Grows extremely quickly
  • Prefers to grow in full sun

You might also find that the Japanese Red Pine will grow extremely well in your yard. These trees are great for people who want extremely large trees that grow quickly at first and then taper off – they’ll reach heights of 100 feet. According to the University of Connecticut, these trees can actually look like they are fake or plastic because they are so beautiful and so symmetrical with very little work.

Still, don’t expect to see ornamental flowers like some people expect – you’ll get beautiful leaves and very little debris from this one. Every two years or so, you can expect the cones to drop, so there will be some cleaning.

3. English Laurel

The flowers on an English Laurel tree.

Credit: Karduelis

  • Requires watering
  • Grows quickly when planted in warmer seasons
  • Prefers full sun

If you are looking for privacy shrubs or just something that can be manicured to look absolutely perfect, the English Laurel is a great shrub choice for the Washington area. It has dense branches and beautiful green leaves that withstand some drought, though are better looking and easier to maintain when watered. The tiny flowers have a sweet fragrance that carries in the wind. If you live on the water, these are the choice shrubs because they withstand salt water.

According to Washington State University, they grow extremely well in groups, making them perfect for screens or separation. Note that these will require some pruning in order to get the best physical appearance.

2. Empress Tree

Mid-sized Empress Tree.

Credit: Jean-Pol GRANDMONT

  • Requires occasional watering, especially in drier times
  • Extremely fast growth rate
  • Grows well in partial shade or sun

Empress trees are a unique strain of trees that have been carefully cultivated over the years to be one of the most beautiful trees in the world. Growing 10 to 20 feet per year according to Home Guides, they top out at 50 feet within the first decade. The reason many people love this unique tree is because the leaves grow to 2-3 feet in size.

Note that they do have an extremely large root system, so it is best for yards that have more expansive space. You don’t want to grow them too near the road or sidewalks or the root system can come up and ruin them. Still, if you have the space it is absolutely worth it.

1. Weeping Willow

  • Grows better near water or when watered
    Willow Tree growing near lake.

    Credit: Bruce Marlin

  • In right conditions, grows quickly
  • Requires sun or partial shade to grow

One of the most dramatic and beautiful trees to grow in Washington, the Weeping Willow has been a favorite for so many people over the years. In many areas, a Willow tree will provide food for rabbits, beavers, and big game such as deer. The yellow flowers it produces are absolutely gorgeous and do extremely well when pressed or dried. Note that this tree is more of a “spreader” than it is a grower – it will often take up 40″ of space in a yard, according to the National Arbor Day Foundation.

If you have very little luck with growing trees, consider a Weeping Willow because it is very difficult for it to go wrong. Kids love Weeping Willows as well because they are fun to play in and hide around – just be careful – we all remember getting hit with one of those branches.

At the end of the day, Washington’s climate makes it a great location for tree lovers to try new trees, cultivate brand new types of trees, and even work with trees that harder to grow. For the common person, however, you can plant any of the above trees without having to worry too much about maintenance or keeping up with the debris clean up. One thing to note is that in order to get the most out of your trees, you should have them inspected regularly, trimmed when necessary, and treated for any diseases or pests. If you think your trees aren’t growing as they could, or you want them to look better, give AK Timber Service a call at

If you think your trees aren’t growing as they could, or you want them to look better, give AK Timber Service a call at (360) 635-1076. Our team of professionals can help you with everything from tree planting to cabling, from tree removal to brush and land clearing to make room for your next beautiful plant.

Header photo courtesy of Tom Britt on Flickr!

Best Vancouver Tax Preparers

By AK Timber

Right after we finish celebrating the New Year, there is a tenseness that sneaks up on us like a nightmare: tax season. For many people, it is something that we push off until the very last minute. We don’t want to have to pull everything together, sit in waiting rooms for hours, and then get asked questions that we don’t really know the answers to – and we are afraid of what might happen if we give the wrong answers.

Getting your taxes prepared can be extremely tiring and stressful if you don’t go to the right place. However, we are lucky in Vancouver that we have some of the best tax preparers in the state. Here are some of our favorites:

1. Linda’s Tax Service

Credit: Linda's

Credit: Linda’s

Linda’s Tax Service is one of the favorite tax preparation companies in Vancouver, and it is clear why when you read reviews of her services. Linda has brought together a team of tax preparers who are extensively trained and understand even the most intricate tax laws. They’ve been in business since 1997, and many of their clients have been returning since that first year.

This team is more than capable of providing several different kinds of tax services, “including personal and business taxes, bookkeeping, payroll, quarterly reports, business set up, past year taxes, all state tax returns, offer in compromise, enrolled agent, and notary public services.”

If you need help with individual taxes, business taxes, or starting a new business, this is a great team to consider.

2. Northwest Accounting & Tax Service

When you use Northwest Accounting and Tax services, you are using the expertise of 30 years with your small

Credit: Applied

Credit: Applied

business. They focus in on helping people who have small or mid-size businesses. They understand that those tax returns can be the most difficult to understand, so they set aside extra time to help you plan out your entire year so that next year, taxes won’t be as difficult.

You can also utilize their skills throughout the rest of the year when you have questions about financial needs.

Of course, this team will also help you with your individual taxes with the same determination, efficiency, and professionalism. As an added bonus, the first half hour is always free.

3. RD Tax

Credit: RD Tax

Credit: RD Tax

RD Tax, a WA EA firm, provides tax planning and prep for families and individuals in the Portland and Vancouver areas that have special needs related to investors, real estate transactions, and estates and trusts. Customer service and satisfaction are the biggest priorities for this company. No matter what time of the year it is, you can contact them for help or use the resources on their website.

According to their website, they have a “total of 112 years of experience in tax preparation. All staff members are required to attend continuing education throughout the year and as Enrolled Agents, Ralph and LaVeta must maintain at least 24 hours a year.”

Even more importantly, if they make a mistake, they are willing to take on those extra costs and correct everything to the furthest extents they can.

4. The Bearded CPA

One of the most uniquely named tax preparation companies in the United States, The Bearded CPA is better known

Credit: Bearded CPA

Credit: Bearded CPA

as Roy, a Certified Public Accountant from Vancouver, WA. He has a treasure trove of links and information on his website about taxes, including some great topics that you should take the time to peruse if you can.

He works with personal tax clients to help minimize their tax burden and get the highest possible amount back on their tax returns.

For those who need other help, he also helps owners of small businesses with their financial systems and will even help you generate wealth through your business. If you need help with bookkeeping, payroll, or other startup details, he can help you there as well.

5. Oleary Tax Service

Credit: Oleary

Credit: Oleary

Oleary Tax Service is a firm that is committed to helping clients not only get their taxes completed and get the highest possible returns, but to help them understand why and how their taxes work the way that they do. Even better, they will help you prepare for life events.

This is a team that is “committed to continuing education and research, as well as striving to be on the forefront of changes in legislation and implementation of tax law at the Federal and state levels.”

If you are looking for a firm to build a relationship with, a team that will help you through all aspects of life, then you can trust in Oleary. They will work with you through all of the major life events that you encounter, from having children to retiring.

6. Shields Tax & CPA

Credit: Shields

Credit: Shields

At Shields Tax & CPA, they know that one of the worst things in life is getting a letter from the IRS about your taxes. They will work with you if you do get one, helping you understand where you went wrong and working out a system so that you can get back on track. Even better, they will provide you with excellent service on your individual taxes.

Of course, they also offer tax preparation to sole proprietors, corporations, partnerships, estates, and trusts. They can help you with accounting and bookkeeping services, payroll solutions, and help streamline start-up and ongoing business processes.

Once unique service they offer is to work with retired people to help with financial planning and taxes.

If you have some time, make sure to look on their website and read through some of the reviews, they are absolutely fantastic.

7. Allied Accounting

At Allied Accounting, they understand that tax time is extremely stressful and time-consuming. This is why they

Credit: Allied

Credit: Allied

ensure that they schedule appointments so that you have plenty of time – they won’t rush you through anything. If you have questions, they are more than willing to work with you and answer your questions to the fullest extent.

Work with the Allied Accounting team on your federal, state, and local taxes for individuals, corporations, partnerships, and businesses of all sizes. They can also help you with IRS letters, amended tax returns, tax planning, and any tax law updates.

Nothing here is done in a rush – everything is meticulously checked and sent in so that you get the most on your return.

Put Your Tax Return to Work with AK Timber Services

With spring right around the corner and everything already starting to bud, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that we are already looking at tree health. Winter is extremely hard on trees, even new ones. If you think you have trees that didn’t make it through the winter or you have tree limbs that are coming just a little too close to your home, give us a call now. We can schedule an appointment and give you a free estimate.

Even if you just want to have the peace of mind that your trees are stable, we offer risk assessment services so that we can double check them, look for signs of danger, and even repair some of that damage.

Give us a call today to schedule your appointment so that you can get a jumpstart on the season.

Header photo courtesy of on Flickr!

Vancouver Florists For a Beautiful Valentine’s Day

By AK Timber

When it comes to Valentine’s Day, you have a lot of chances to be romantic and create a day that your beloved will never forget. In Vancouver, there are quite a few stores and shops that will allow you to give back to the community while still getting unique and beautiful gifts. The traditional gift to give to a loved one of any kind (spouse, child, parent, friend, etc.), is flowers. However, there is a lot to be researched when it comes to the florist that you choose.

Do they use fresh flowers? Where do they get the flowers from? How long do they take? Does the florist do anything out of the ordinary? What kinds of flowers are available? Do they have stuffed animals? How long do the bouquets live?

The best place to start is with some of these local florists:

1. Awesome Flowers

Keeping in line with the name, Awesome Flowers does some amazing floral arranging that will leave you in awe.

Credit: Awesome Flowers

Credit: Awesome Flowers

They focus on making arrangements that are traditional with a little bit of extra flare. This might mean that they do something unique with the greenery or they cut the flowers in a new and exciting way. It is a good way for someone who wants an arrangement that is a little different to experiment and try something new.

The team at Awesome Flowers is extremely nice and will work with you to get what you want. You can help them create something or look through their wide catalogue for something that you like. They use a lot of the traditional colors in their Valentine’s Day arrangements, but make sure to ask about some of their other floral options.

2. Heaven Scent

Credit: Heaven Scent

Credit: Heaven Scent

If you need roses, flowers, or plants in the Vancouver, WA area, another option is the hilariously named Heaven Scent. Of course, their bouquets all smell absolutely beautiful and are created with that in mind. Along with appearance, one of the best reasons to get a bouquet is to fill a room with the scent of flowers that lingers long after the bouquet is gone. The staff works with you to get a bouquet that does just that.

This team is comprised of some of the leader florists in the area who work to get your bouquet just right. Whether you want something that is a little more traditional and elegant, they have that. If you want something that is fun and funky, they have that as well.

They have online ordering as well that is safe and reliable.

3. Coventry Gardens

If you aren’t looking for only flowers for your Valentine’s Day celebration in Vancouver, WA, or you aren’t looking for

Credit: Coventry

Credit: Coventry

flowers at all, Coventry Gardens is a fantastic local company that creates gift baskets, bags, and bouquets that all include something extra. From specialty teas that will keep you warm for the rest of the season to fun British snacks, they have it all.

According to their website, “All orders are handled with special care, creativity and a bit of European Flair.”

Since 1980, Coventry Gardens of London gives you a taste of British culture without having to go to London. Thanks to this flair, many of their arrangements look and feel different from other companies. They have more modern styles in some of their arrangements and a more traditional style in others. If you want a wide variety, this is a place to start.

4. Luepke Florist

Credit: Luepke

Credit: Luepke

Since 1909, the team at Luepke Florists have been creating some of the most romantic and beautiful floral arrangements that you can find anywhere. They use precise qualifications to choose their flowers, ensuring that your bouquet will last for a long time and will stay gorgeous no matter what you want to do with them – they dry absolutely beautifully.

According to their website, “Luepke Flowers & Finds is a proud member of Real Local Florists and the Vancouver Downtown Association. We also are heavily involved in the Vancouver community and donate to Hough Foundation and SHARE.”

If you aren’t looking for Valentine’s Day and you just want to get flowers, they even have a “Flower Happy Hour” that offers all of their cut flowers for half off. This will allow you to create your own bouquet that will be special and unique – though maybe not as grand as these.

5. Fine Flowers

Handmade arrangements with love and care are easy to spot. They are the ones that have precision cut stems, perfect

Credit: Fine Flowers

Credit: Fine Flowers

blossoms, and just the right amount of greenery and filler. At Fine Flowers, each and every arrangment is beautiful and handmade.

According to their website, “You can trust our skilled florists to arrange a beautiful bouquet for your special occasion, or even create a gorgeous one-of-a-kind arrangement just for you.”

The team takes  a lot of care in creating arrangements that reflect their artistry. This company teams with Teleflora to ensure that you can order your flowers online and personalize them there. If you don’t have a lot of time, this is extremely convenient.

6. Garside Florist

Credit: Garside

Credit: Garside

The team at Garside Florist have been voted the “Best Florist” in the area for the last seven years. This is because they work to go above your expectations with amazing arrangements and bouquets that are unique, bright, and smell great. They are located in Vancouver, WA but serve the entire Clark County area, including Portland, OR. For a team that has been working for 65 years, some of their experimentation and out of the box ideas are to be commended.

This local florist gets deliveries every day of new, fresh flowers. They also carry locally grown Roses, Stargazers, Asiatic lilies, Tulips, Dahlias, Peonies and assorted greenery. Other than flowers, they have a nice selection of plants, European gardens, plush, candy and cards. 

7. Clark County Floral

If you are looking for arrangements that are absolutely breathtaking and will steal the heart of the person you love,

Credit: Clark County Florist

Credit: Clark County Florist

consider heading to Clark Country Floral. This locally owned and operated store provides excellence in all of their floral arrangements. You don’t have to worry about getting a flower that is past peak or already starting to wilt – that won’t happen here. Their customer reviews are some of the most stellar on the internet. This is because they believe in customer service that doesn’t stop until you are satisfied.

While they do specialize in weddings and events in Vancouver, WA, they also create floral arrangements and bouquets for all other special holidays and events as well. They will work with you until you get the arrangement you have been looking for – bells and whistles or something that is a bit more understated.

8. The Flower Express

Credit: The Flower Express

Credit: The Flower Express

If you are looking for floral arrangements in Vancouver, WA that are a little more unique and fun, then you might want to consider going to The Flower Express. They create shapes and thematic arrangements that will fit just about anyone on your gift list. People love to get arrangements that go a little outside of the typical.

This shop does work with 1-800-flowers to take orders online. This means tht you will be able to see the arrangements before you order, allowing you to make an informed decision. It also helps with personalizing the size of your arrangement. If you don’t want to order online, you can go to their retail location to make your own arrangement or talk to a designer.

Watch Your Love Grow with AK Timber Services

If you want to give your love something that may last as long as your love does, consider going with a different type of plant: a tree. Trees show that you are making a commitment to your loved one and you can watch it grow and prosper like your life and family does.

At AK Timber Services, we can help you pick out a type of tree that will work in your yard. We will discuss your needs, the proper positioning of the tree in your yard, and your visual expectations of the tree. From there, we will help you plant it perfectly so that it has the best chance to succeed.

After that, we can help you will all regular tree maintenance.

Header photo courtesy of Sheila Sund on Flickr!

Where to Get Your Heater Inspected in Vancouver

By AK Timber

Many of us have been there before – you wake up in the middle of the night and your toes are numb, your nose is frigid, and your significant other has all of the covers. It takes you a minute to realize that this type of cold isn’t the normal cold you feel. You listen closely and realize that your worst fears are true: something happened to your heating system and your entire house feels like an icebox.

Of course, it probably also happened when there is a snowstorm outside and the roads are so icy that you can’t go anywhere to warm up. To top it all off, your power might also be out or the internet could be down.

In moments like these, you’ll wish that you had the phone number of someone who could help. Now that you know it is a possibility, take a look at these local Vancouver HVAC and heating companies to see who you want to help you:

1. Smart Choice Heating & Cooling, Inc.

Credit: Smart Choice

Credit: Smart Choice

Smart Choice Heating & Cooling, Inc. is a family owned business that provides trustworthy HVAC services to Vancouver, WA. Their team is comprised of highly skilled technicians with superior products and a dedication to excellence. They keep their business small because they want to deliver personalized attention to every customer.

Their heating (and cooling) work includes repairs, installation, and service.

In particular, they specialize in the “design/installation, replacement, repair, and maintenance of heating and cooling systems.”

If you are looking for something to be more energy efficient and green, they can also help you there. They will provide you the information you need to make an informed decision about what to do for your family.

2. Tri-Tech Heating and Cooling

Since heating pumps are one of the preferred methods of heating in the Pacific Northwest, you might want to write

Credit: Tri-Tech Heat

Credit: Tri-Tech Heat

down the number of a company that specializes in them for repairs, installations, and replacement. One of those companies is definitely Tri-Tech Heating and Cooling.

If you don’t know about heat pumps, the team can also educate you on the different ways they can help your home, allowing you to make an informed decision.

No matter what you decide, everyone on the team is NATE certified and can provide professional installation and maintenance to many different kinds of heating systems. In addition, they will be able to troubleshoot any problems with you and the team quickly and efficiently, heating your home up again.

3. MetFab Heating

Credit: MetFab

Credit: MetFab

For residential or commercial heating, another company to consider is MetFab Heating and Cooling, based out of Clark County. They work closely with you to ensure that your climate-controlled environment is extremely comfortable and works properly.

Utilize their heating, cooking, HVAC maintenance, or repair services for highly trained technicians that won’t only complete the work, they will guarantee it. They are the number one dealer of ductless heat pumps in the area, and when you see their work it is easy to see why.

Their motto is “a different you can feel,” and it is for a great reason. Make sure to put their phone number into your phone so that you can reach out to their skilled team if you run into any problems.

4. Dan’s Top Notch Heating

There are a variety of steps you can take to cut your heating expenses, and one of those is to call up Dan’s Top Notch

Credit: Dan's Top Notch

Credit: Dan’s Top Notch

Heating. Heating and cooling equipment is touchy and dangerous, and you shouldn’t try to take care of the system by yourself. Instead, call up professionals that know what they are doing.

The team at Dan’s Top Notch will schedule annual maintenance checks with you to ensure that your system is running. In this, they will clean your system and check for any problems. They can also install high-efficiency heating systems that will keep your monthly costs low.  If you haven’t had your heating system zoned, definitely give them a call to see the difference.

5. All Seasons Heating and Cooling

Credit: All Seasons

Credit: All Seasons

All Seasons Heating and Cooling is truly a company that will work with you during all seasons. Currently, they service and repair almost all makes and models of furnaces, heat pumps, and other air quality equipment. They have worked with the community in the Vancouver, WA area for almost 26 years, keeping thousands of families warm and comfortable.

They work with systems old and new: gas, electric, or oil. Each member of their team is fully NATE certified and have been tested on different systems and methods for HVAC installation and service.

If you have an emergency, they will be there for you at any time of the day.

6. BlairCo Heating

Credit: Blairco

Credit: BlairCo

BlairCo Heating and Air Conditioning delivers some of the highest rated customer service in the Portland metro area. As a Carrier Factory Authorized dealer and a NW Natural Service Solutions Certified Dealer for over 25 years, they have quite the track record of success.

Their technicians have passed all of the “nationally recognized testing programs developed and supported by all segments of the heating, ventilation and air-conditioning industry.” In fact, they are so practiced that they have handled over 5,000 service calls a year, repairing all brands and types of equipment.

They too offer 24-hour on call response, 7 days a week and 365 days a year.

7. Miller’s Heating and Air Conditioning

Credit: Miller's

Credit: Miller’s

Furnace repairs can be complicated and confusing, depending on what you need to have done. Not only for you, but for the company as well. The team at Miller’s Heating and Air Conditioning workings with you and together to get the best possible solution so that your system works more efficiently and lasts for a long time.

They will talk you through repairs or replacements, giving you an honest read on the situation.

The team at Miller’s is completely licensed and insured. They have been trained to the highest standards, providing the Vancouver area with high-quality repairs and installations. If you want to be impressed, check out some of their reviews on various sources online.

Keep Our Number Too

Your heat breaking isn’t the only thing that you have to worry about. With high winds, ice, and snow falling at heavy rates, your trees also pose a problem. From fallen limbs to completely toppled trees, it can make quite a mess. Whatever you do, do not go out and try to handle the situation yourself, especially if power lines have been compromised.

Our team of professionally trained tree experts will work with you to get the situation cleared up as quickly as possible. Still, the same thing can happen with us as could happen with the HVAC companies, so copy down our numbers:  (360) 635-1076 for the office or (971) 404-7624 for our mobile.

Header photo courtesy of Rising Damp on Flickr!


Christmas Light Installations You Have to See in Vancouver

By AK Timber

Every year, Christmas lights displays in Vancouver get bigger and better than they’ve ever been before – and this year is no different. Each lights display is unique and features thousands of bulbs and strands that add just a little bit more magic to the season.

From traditional displays to fanciful ones that highlight popular culture and the year behind us, you’ll find whatever you are looking for without having to travel too far.

Not every city is so lucky, so it is important that we take advantage of the opportunities we’ve been given here. When you are looking to add a little sparkle and shine to your holiday season, check out these local destinations:

1. St. Paul’s Hospital Lights of Hope

Credit: St. Paul

Credit: St. Paul

St. Paul’s Hospital Lights of Hope is a tradition within the community that was eliminated for a little while, but so many people loved it that they had to bring it back. There are over 100,000 light bulbs at this event that span a whopping amount of distance so that people aren’t crowded together.

Even better, this event is a charity campaign that helps promote the hospital and all of its endeavors. The lighting display will be up throughout December and will be open to the public.

They’ve raised millions of dollars and continue to do amazing work.

2. Northwest Window Washing

If the items on this list make you want to get your own Christmas decorations out, but it seems like too much of a

Credit: Northwest Window

Credit: Northwest Window

hassle, consider calling up Northwest Window Washing. This team of professional installers will outfit your home with as many Christmas lights as you want – from just a few strands to enough to make your yard the next great Christmas display.

Working with commercial and private properties, they will talk you through their process and decide what type of design you really want to work with. From there, they do the rest! They are the ones that test each strand of lights, climb the ladder, and ensure that the lines are straight. If lights aren’t your thing, they also have “garland, wreath, trees, topiaries, bows, ornamentals and more.”

3. The Lights of Christmas, Stanwood

Credit: The Lights of Christmas

Credit: The Lights of Christmas

With over one million Christmas lights, The Lights of Christmas in Stanwood, WA is one of the largest displays in the area and it continues to grow. This year, the spectacle will spread out over 15 acres, plenty of room for children and adults to wander around.

The even combines the lights with seasonal food, holiday shopping, children’s activities, live entertainment, and a community environment. If you are looking for something a little longer, there are even some overnight options.

There are different activities throughout the holiday season, so you might even be able to make it back a few times to experience all this place has to offer. Make sure to check out the calendar on their website to find the best activities.

4.  Christmas Ship Festival

The 2nd Annual Christmas Ship Festival parade of boats will take place this year, adding to the already special

Credit: Argosy Cruises

Credit: Argosy Cruises

tradition of Christmas lights on the water. This is a unique experience that will allow you to take in the lights from on the boat and off.

According to the website, going onto the ships offers a great experience: “Every year, the Argosy Christmas Ship sails to different Puget Sound waterfront communities, around 65 in total. Choirs on board give 20-minute performances to these communities, all broadcast via our state-of-the-art speaker system. On shore, thousands of people gather around roaring bonfires anticipating the arrival of the Christmas Ship.”

For those on the shore, you’ll get to see over 65 different ships that have been fully decked out in their Christmas finest.

5.  Garden D’Lights, Bellevue

Credit: Garden D’Lights

Credit: Garden D’Lights

The Garden D’Lights installation in Bellevue focuses on some of the most beautiful parts of our lives. The colors used throughout this display are bright and vivid, yet they  still make you think of Christmas. With over half a million lights that transform the Bellevue Botanical Garden, you are able to forget your cares for a while and just give yourself over to the magic of the season.

While the botanical garden will be a favorite with adults, there are also quite a few activities for children, so don’t be afraid to bring them.

Even if you have been to this display before, make sure to come back because it is always changing.

6. WildLights, Woodland Park Zoo, Seattle

If you are up for a little bit of travel, nothing beats the WildLights, Woodland Park Zoo, Seattle, which combines the

Credit: Woodland Park

Credit: Woodland Park

Christmas spirit with the magic of the zoo. The displays take on a unique feeling because they do center around animals and the zoo. You’ll see cheetahs and lions in towering lights displays next to a beautifully decorated Christmas tree.

Even better, there are live reindeer and chances to bring your dog to meet Santa.

For those with children, or those that are young at heart, the indoor snowball fight is one of the most unique features on the list.

7. Christmas Lights Vancouver

Customized Christmas displays are a great way to put your entire family into the Christmas mood. However, you

Credit: Christmas Lights Vancouver

Credit: Christmas Lights Vancouver

probably don’t have all the time in the world to put together displays like some of the ones on this list. If you’d like to replicate that magic, you should consider reaching out to Christmas Lights Vancouver.

Their team will create a display for you that is unique and special, weaving together technology and classic Christmas design in a way you’ve never seen before. If you have an idea, they will take it and run with it. If you don’t have any ideas, they will walk you through a planning process where you can get what you want.

Brace Yourself – Winter is Coming

This year, the weather is predicted to be particularly tough in Vancouver. While it might mean that we get to see a white Christmas, it could also mean that your trees are in for an incredibly rough year. Make sure you are prepared for the season ahead by giving us a call and asking about our cabling and bracing services.

Cabling and bracing your trees gives them structural support that they sometimes lose due to infestations and bad weather. If you don’t want to lose your tree this year, but you know that it is going to need some help, give us a call. Our team will offer up a free estimate for how much it will cost to save your tree this year.

Header photo courtesy of RisforRndm on Flickr!


7 Places to Buy a Christmas Tree in Vancouver, WA

By AK Timber

Weather is unpredictable, especially in the Vancouver area. You never know when something is going to happen that will prevent you from getting your chores or To Do List done. Last year, a family wasn’t able to get a Christmas tree because they waited too long and the bad weather prevented them from getting the kind of tree they wanted. Do not be the person that has to settle for the Charlie Brown Christmas Tree. Instead, start shopping early. When you got a Christmas Tree farm where you can cut down your own tree, it will last the entire season.

Take a look at some of the farms that offer this service:

1. Farrell Farms

Credit: Farrell

Credit: Farrell

If you are looking for a little bit of family fun while you are selecting your Christmas tree, consider going to Farrell Farms. This 150 acre Christmas Tree Farm has the country atmosphere along with some of the most beautiful Noble, Nordman, or Grand Fir Christmas trees. All of the trees here are meticulously groomed and cared for, ensuring that whichever one you pick, you will have a tree that lasts a long time.

You are also able to purchase wreaths and beautiful greenery to bring the joy of a Christmas Tree into other areas of your home.

While you are selecting your tree you can drink cider or hot chocolate while enjoying a candy cane by the campfire.

2. Larwick’s Christmas Tree Farm

The Larwick U-cut Christmas Tree Farm has been a favorite since 1990, when 500 Douglas Fir seedlings were

Credit: Larwick

Credit: Larwick

planted. Now they sell a beautiful assortment of over 18,000 Douglas-Fir, Fraser, Noble, and Nordmann trees. Their 20-acre farm is a Christmas Wonderland for families of all sizes, with beautiful decorations, a Santa Gift Shop, and even visits from the man in red.

The trees are selected by you, though the staff will give you guidance over which trees will be the best pick.

On the coldest days, you can get a sweet treat and a hot drink while your tree is shaken and baled. Parents also love the tree stands, wreaths, and garland that you can buy on site. it is a great way to ensure that all of your Christmas decorations are cohesive.

3. Fischer’s U-Cut Christmas Trees

Credit: Fischer's

Credit: Fischer’s

The trees at Fischer’s U-Cut Christmas Tree Farm are absolutely gorgeous, especially if you are looking for a Turkish Fir tree in Vancouver, WA. They also sell absolutely beautiful Nobles and Grand Fir trees too. Each tree is hand tended to so you know that they are the highest quality. Any trees that don’t meet their standards are used for the various crafting classes they have or for wreaths and garland, which you can also purchase. Even the stumps are used for firewood.

Make sure to give yourself plenty of time because you are going to need it to look at everything they have to offer. Consider signing up for one of their classes as well, especially the ones where you can make your own decorations.

4. Lone Cedar Tree Farm

Noble fir trees are really some of the biggest stars in the Christmas tree world. They are full, lush, green, and

Credit: Lone Cedar

Credit: Lone Cedar

extremely fragrant. Not only that but they tend to stay alive a lot longer than other types of trees.

For the family that is looking for an experience, but maybe not one that lasts all day, the Lone Cedar Tree Farm has Christmas trees that will match any style. Trees range from small (4 feet) to larger (12 feet and over).

It’s really simple: you park in their parking lot, find the tree you want, cut it down (or have someone cut it down for you), shake and bale the tree, and get on your way. They’ll even help you load your tree.

If it gets too cold out there, make sure to take some time to warm your hands by the fire.

5. Tree Wisemans

Credit: Tree Wisemans

Credit: Tree Wisemans

If you are looking for a tree that is large and ready to be decorated with hundreds of decorations and yards of garland, then you might want to head over to Tree Wisemans. They specialize in growing trees that are taller, some even going up to 15 or 16 feet. These trees are specially taken care of so that they are healthy and ready for cutting – they aren’t the “freaks” that grew a little bit taller than the rest. Choose from Douglas-Fir, Fraser, Grand, and Noble.

Services to their trees include flocking, fire retarding, and baling. They will also help you attach the tree to your car.

People love to come here because of cleanliness and the friendliness of the staff that really brings in the Christmas season. Espresso and hot chocolate on weekends are available on weekends.

6. Thortons’ Treeland

For kids, there is no place better than Thortons’ Treeland. Not only do they get to select a Christmas tree, but they

Credit: Thortons'

Credit: Thortons’

also get to partake in a petting zoo, walk around an old barn, listen to Christmas music, take a hay ride, and go shopping in a hand crafted gift shop. For them, there is no place better to be, even if they have to be bundled up.

Choose from Douglas Fir, Fraser Fir, Grand Fir, and Noble Fir.

Parents love Thortons’ because everything is clean, there is no mud, and the trees are fantastic. Their trees range from short to extremely tall, so everyone can find something here. There is even a small number of layered nobles. As an added bonus, there is even a Christmas tree stand called the “Marriage Saving Tree Stand” which helps make that process easier.

7. LA Center Farms

Credit: LA Center

Credit: LA Center

If you are interested in starting a tradition, consider going to one of the most scenic Christmas tree farms in all of Vancouver, LA Center Christmas Tree Farm. They have a family-friendly atmosphere with just a little bit of Christmas mischief hidden amongst the soaring trees. With over 70-acres, you are sure to find something that you’ll love.

You get to cut down your own tree here, choosing one from among thousands of Douglas, Grand, and Noble Fir. Once you’ve selected your tree, they will shake and bale it. For children, hot cocoa and cartoons will keep them occupied.

Make sure to check on their website for a coupon.

AK Timber Keeps You In Line For The Rest of The Year

Your trees are important, all of them. When you are thinking about your Christmas tree, don’t forget about your live trees. When the temperature turns cold, your trees aren’t given the chance to thrive. We can help you situate your soil and prepare for the cold season. Even better, we can help you make it so that your trees won’t experience too much damage during the winter season.

Whether this means we need to trim them so that they don’t fall on a wire or we need to treat them for an infestation of something trying to get warm this winter, you need to take care of your trees. Give us a call and we will be able to give you a free estimate for our work.

Header photo courtesy of Frank Weber on Flickr!

8 Scary Things to Get Checked Before Winter

By AK Timber

You can feel it in the air, especially in the mornings, that winter is just around the corner. When the weather gets colder, you start to have a new set of problems. Last month we talked about things that you could do during the fall to get ready but you might not want to do by yourself. This month, we are going to highlight the things that you really should have a professional take a look at.

These are things that require someone with training and experience to take care of, no matter how severe or easy the fix is. Taking care of some things on this list will make your life a lot easier if the winter, even if we don’t necessarily expect to get weather that is too awful.

Take a look and decide what you need to get taken care of before the cold hits:

1. Your Chimney by Matchbox Chimney Sweep

Credit: Matchbox

Credit: Matchbox

Throughout the winter, your chimney will start to develop accumulation on the inside that can be bothersome at best and downright dangerous at worst. You have to get your chimney cleaned properly, both the inside and outside, before you burn. This is a time-consuming job if it hasn’t been done in a few years, and it takes a practiced hand to do so without ruining anything.

At Matchbox Chimney Sweep, they have equipment for chimneys large and small, including “a RoVac vacuum system, with HEPA filtration, to ensure that our work is done in a clean and professional manner.” They will also look out for the integrity of your chimney. If they think you need repairs, they will point you in the right direction.

2. Your Car by Ron’s Automotive

Winter months mean that your car needs to be performing at its absolute best or you might not be safe when

Credit: Ron's Automotive

Credit: Ron’s Automotive

traveling. Ice, snow, and even debris left on the road can become increasingly dangerous as the temperatures drop, especially if you drive at night.

The team at Ron’s Automotive will work with you to prepare your car for the season. They know that getting your car fixed and tuned-up isn’t always the best. Still, the knowledgeable and friendly staff makes it a lot easier to deal with. They also provide vehicle shuttle services and have snacks while you wait.

If you do find yourself in an accident, give them a call for their 24-hour towing services.

3. Your Plumbing by All County Plumbing

Credit: All County

Credit: All County

This next idea is incredibly important if you like to leave the Vancouver area and go somewhere warmer during the cold months. We’ve all seen it happen to other people and we don’t think it could happen to us – but it happens a lot more frequently than you’d think. Plumbing breaks more often during the winter months because of freezing water that expands.

If something were to happen, call All County Plumbing and they will help you take care of it. Their team is well qualified to handle jobs of any size and their expertise makes solving the problem easier.

However, if you can stop the problem before it starts, that would be even better. Getting routine maintenance to problematic pipes or just an inspection to see if there are any problems is in your best interests. Give All County a call today to take advantage of their amazing team.

4. Your Wiring by Compass Electrician

While terrible storms are rare, there have been times when people lost their electric during a pretty severe storm

Credit: Compass

Credit: Compass

during the winter months. When this happens, you can lose your lights, your refrigerator, and your clocks. If you don’t have a generator, it is bad news. Even worse, once you lose your electric and it comes back, it can reveal problems that were previously hidden.

Compass Electric LLC is a local electrical contractor that does extremely efficient work. Their team is fully trained and insured in the newest and best ways to handle jobs of any size. Everyone is extremely friendly, walking and talking you through some of the problems that might have emerged and telling you how to avoid them, if possible.

They can also do installation work if you think the time is now for something new and fun.

5. Your Gutters by Right Way Gutters

Credit: Right Way Gutters

Credit: Right Way Gutters

All throughout the year, debris hangs around inside your gutters. Thanks to the beautiful weather we have here, people do tend to take care of their gutters. Still, sometimes people forget that sitting water can develop during the winter months when things start to freeze up, and that sitting water can spell big trouble.

Right Way Gutters is a local business that will clean and repair your gutters for you. Their team is adept at spotting damage and fixing it before it can get too bad. Typically these are minor repairs like bending, warping, or lose installation points. They can also install gutters in different colors and finishes if yours a looking a little worse for the wear.

Make sure to ask them about how your roof looks as well, or you might need the next company…

6. Your Roof by Legit Roofing

If you have something unfortunate happen with your home during this season, you are going to want to get a new


Credit: Legit Roofing

roof as soon as possible. A poor roof or a poorly insulated roof can really bring up your heating bills and allow your house to have that “damp” feeling that no one likes.

Legit Roofing, which is located in Vancouver, is a full-service roofing company that many people have gotten stellar results from. They are committed to their job, working around problems and continuing tirelessly until everything is as you had hoped.

According to their website: “Each Legit Roofing project is custom-designed to meet our clients’ individual needs, and all of our materials and products are of the highest quality. Our employees are all trained in a wide variety of roofing applications and safety standards. When you need roofing services, look no further than Legit Roofing.”

7. Your Furnace by Dan’s Top Notch

Your furnace is pretty much the star of the winter season. It helps to keep the chill out of your home, making it a safe

Credit: Dan's Top Notch

Credit: Dan’s Top Notch

haven away from the elements. That is part of what makes this season so cheerful. Unfortunately, many people don’t think about testing out their heater until that chill is already in the air. This season, stay ahead of the curve and check sooner. Even better, get maintenance to ensure that it works at its best.

Dan’s Top Notch Heating is a local business that does impressive work. They have annual maintenance packages that will have your HVAC system working like new again. If they spot problems, it will probably be a money-saver in the long run because they can fix it now instead of when it gets worse. Everyone on the team is extremely nice and, more importantly, educated in all the tricks and techniques that they need to be.

8. Your Trees by AK Timber Services

Credit: AK

Credit: AK

Trees are beautiful but dangerous things, especially when ice and snow starts to fall. Unfortunately, there are too many instances of “everything would have been okay but that tree fell and things got really bad.” Fortunately, there are some steps you can take to prevent something like that from happening.

The first is that you can get an inspection by a certified and insured team, like the one at AK Timber Services. Then, you can have the problem areas fixed. It is that simple. Sometimes our team won’t find any problems. Sometimes it will be something simple and easy like a limb hanging too close to wires or a dead limb that should be removed. Sometimes it isn’t as easy, like an entire tree that needs to come down. Still, our team is equipped to handle any and all of that.

Emergency Tree Service in Vancouver, WA

Even if you don’t heed our warnings and get your trees checked in the fall, we will still be there for you. After a storm, you might need help with emergency clean up or emergency tree removal. Instead of stressing over trying to figure it all out yourself, reach out to our team and we will help you – we are only a call away.

Header photo courtesy of Taz on Flickr!

Preparing for Fall: 8 Companies for the Best Fall in Vancouver

By AK Timber

Fall creeps in quietly – so quietly that at times, you don’t even notice it is coming until you have to pull out a sweater or the leaves start to fall. In Vancouver, we can have some wild weather around this season, which only adds to the stress. When September rolls around, that means that it is time for school to start, practices to begin, work to amp up, holiday shopping to start, and your time gets shorter and shorter.

It doesn’t have to be that way. You don’t have to be stressed in fall – you can have fun and make memories that will last a lifetime. These companies will help you:

1. Vancouver Pumpkin Patch

Credit: Vancouver Patch

Credit: Vancouver Patch

Nothing says autumn like carving a pumpkin – whether it is a success or a failure. At Vancouver Pumpkin Patch, kids of any age will be able to search for the best pumpkins around. This could take hours because there is quite a selection of pumpkins from very small to very, very large.

You can really get into the holiday spirit with the hay pyramid, hay tunnel, and hay maze and other fun activities that will get your kids moving. For those who aren’t as adventurous, there is usually a costume party and storytime sessions.

Finally, there are tons of fresh and new options each year, so be sure to pay attention to the latest releases on their website. Last year, it was an 835-pound pumpkin.

2. All Fixes Handyman

It seems like anything that could go wrong with your yard happens during the late summer and early fall. This is

Credit: All Fixes Handyman

Credit: All Fixes Handyman

partly because it gets such a beating from children and visitors throughout the summer. It is also because of the change in temperature that causes expansion. Still, it can be difficult to keep up with everything that you need to do. That’s where All Fixes Handyman comes into play – they can help you with just about everything, including “hanging walls, shade covers, bridges, trellises, arbors, benches, outdoor rooms, patios, fire pits, sculptures, ponds, dry streams, waterfalls, pergolas, fire pits, fencing, edging, picnic areas, and fountains.”

If you have a problem that you needs to be corrected, run it by All Fixes Handyman.

3. Mike and Dad’s Hauling

Credit: Mike and Dad's

Credit: Mike and Dad’s

Why you should trust Mike and Dad’s Hauling is expressly stated on their website: “Since 1989, Mike and Dad’s Hauling has served Vancouver. We pride ourselves on our impeccable reputation which we have built one customer at a time.” They don’t just talk the talk, either – they walk the walk.

Mike and Dad’s works with both commercial and residential properties to haul off junk and garbage that you have sitting around your yard. Whether you are doing a lot of yard work or cleaning out your kid’s room after he goes off to college, you probably have a lot of junk sitting around. While the air is cold,  get rid of it!

Give Mike and Dad’s Hauling a call and they will give you an estimate and a timeline.

4. Means Nursery

Credit: Means

Credit: Means

Means Nursery is a great place to go if you are looking to add a little bit of fall color to your yard. From the muted orange shades to the dusty reds, you’ll be able to find something great here. The nursery is known for having a wide selection in terms of sizes and colors. They also keep everything natural and they know their plants – which is extremely important.

If you are looking for tools to make your autumn work a little easier, they also sell tools and other goodies for yard cleanup.

5. New Leaf Pest Control

When fall comes, it is also the time where bats and other pests come out to play. One of the biggest problems for

Credit: A New Leaf

Credit: A New Leaf

people around Vancouver is mice. They come into our homes to eat our great foods and share our warmth. Another problem is bed bugs – the soft fabric of backpacks is the perfect place for them to hide.

New Leaf Pest Control helps prevent and/or fix any of these problems in a safe way. Their approach is green so that your children and pets will be safe. They are also willing to work on preventative tactics so that you can sleep easily at night.

Give them a call right away if you think you hear something or see something that shouldn’t be there – you don’t want any pests to bring friends.

6. Sunmark Seeds

Soil is an important part of the health of your trees during the colder months. If you have poor soil, your trees won’t

Credit: Sunmark

Credit: Sunmark

get the nutrition that they need. While it is still warm enough to work outside, add some new soil around your trees and plants.

Sunmark Seeds has a few different types of seeds to help with the erosion control thanks to all of the soaking rain, including EC Seed. Turf Seed helps to keep your lawn plush throughout the season, especially if you have a commercial property that you need to look its best. Wildflower seed is specially fortified for our area to give you the best results. Finally, Forage Seed helps those in the agriculture business.

They are willing to work with you on just about anything, so give them a call.

7. Velvet Acres Gardens

Credit: Velvet Acres

Credit: Velvet Acres

Fresh produce seems to get all of the credit during the summer months, but it seems to fall by the wayside once autumn comes around. At Velvet Acres Gardens, the produce is picked every day so that it is always fresh and ready to go.  Whether you want apples or squash, they will have the best selection around.

During the fall months, they have something even better – a fall festival with a gorgeous pumpkin patch. Searching through the fields for the prime pumpkin is a memory that will stay with you forever. They also sell vegetables, decorative pumpkins, gourdes, and more.  For those with a more adventurous side, there is a hay tunnel, some hay rides, and antique tractors.

8. AK Timber Services

Of course, AK Timber Services is also there to help you prepare for fall and get through the season. Our team

Credit: AK Timber

Credit: AK Timber

is licensed, bonded, and insured in both Washington & Oregon to help you with tree care – whether that means you want to get trees removed before they start to drop leaves (a popular option) or you need some limbs trimmed, we are there to help you.

Serving both residential and commercial clients, we can help you keep your trees healthy throughout any season of the year and we can even up your property value. It all starts with a phone call, so give us a call at (360) 635-1076 to have a discussion about what you need, want, and expect.

Start Winter Preparation Now

Winter is going to be here much sooner than you think, which means you need to prepare. Ugly weather and ice can really do a number to your trees, which can then affect everything else in your yard. AK Timber Services offers tree risk assessment to keep that from happening. Our team will look over each and every inch of the tree or trees in your yard to find any problem areas – and then we will suggest fixes.

If you’ve never had a tree inspection before, or if you are new to your home and aren’t sure about the health of the trees, we can help you sleep more peacefully at night.

Header photo courtesy of Valerie Hinojosa on Flickr!

7 Pool Contractors in Vancouver

By AK Timber

Having a pool used to be a luxury that few people had. Now, it is something that more and more families are getting. Our summers keep getting warmer which opens up the opportunity to go in more frequently. Pools are great family bonding tools that create an outdoor space for everyone to enjoy, no matter who they are.

You can use pools to get in shape, to have a fun volleyball game, to get some relaxation in, or to cool off at the end of the day.

Still, you really need to think about what you are doing when you get a pool. They are a huge investment and, if not installed properly, can create a huge mess. You need to find a company or contractor that knows what they are doing and has a good reputation.

Here we highlight seven Vancouver businesses that have great reputations:

1. Anderson Poolworks

Credit: Anderson Poolworks

Credit: Anderson Poolworks

Anderson Poolworks is a “licensed and bonded residential and commercial pool contractor” that works throughout the Portland and Vancouver areas. They build absolutely gorgeous pools that have all of the accessories and features that you could ever dream about. While other companies will give you a gorgeous pool, Anderson Pool Works adds diving boards, sliding boards, water features, lighting, spas, and concrete features.

The team at Anderson Poolworks will build your pool from the ground up, adding features and crafting details that are special and make it your own. If you don’t want your pool to look like anyone else’s, consider Anderson Poolworks.

2. Blue Mountain Pools

Credit: Blue Mountain Pools

Credit: Blue Mountain Pools

Blue Mountain Pools has been one of the best pool companies in the Vancouver and Portland areas for the last forty years. They specialize in building in-ground gunite swimming pools and water features. The even build pools indoors and in tough terrains. If you’ve been told you can’t get a pool, try here.

Each one is designed for the individual customer, providing them with what they want and what they need. The goal is to add beauty and value to your home with expert craftsmanship, high-quality products, and a lot of interaction. If you give them a call, they will walk you through what it is they can do, giving you a clearer picture of what your new backyard oasis will look like.

3. Pacific Northwest Pools

The expert pool construction team at Pacific Northwest Pools has had a staggering 40 years of building experience.

Credit: Pacific Northwest Pools

Credit: Pacific Northwest Pools

They build swimming pools and spas as well as remodel them, so you could do that instead of getting all new construction. Of course, they will have to come look at your pool and see what kind of shape it is in.

The team at Pacific Northwest is extremely professional. They are always on-time and in control of the situation. Your budget is extremely important to them, so they always let you know where they stand on costs.

Finally, they will educate you about your pool if you’ve never owned one before. It can be a bit daunting, but they make the whole process seem much easier.

4. Cascade Pools

Credit: Cascade

Credit: Cascade

With 65 years of experience, Cascade Pools has long-lasting pools that dot the Northwest. If someone wants something that is particularly special or unique, they tend to go to Cascade Pools for the best possible treatment. They build absolutely stunning water features and infinity pools that take the traditional pool and makes it sleeker and more beautiful. To get this result, they use the highest quality methods and materials, building something that will last a lifetime.

Not only that, but they sell a wide range of accessories and chemicals to keep your pool in working order. If you aren’t that great with chemicals, they also use Ultra Pure ozone water purification equipment.


5. Northwest Vinyl Pools

If you aren’t looking for a lot of construction or you have a smaller budget, Northwest Vinyl Pools builds above

Credit: Northwest Vinyl Pool

Credit: Northwest Vinyl Pool

ground pools that are amazing. These pools are great because they won’t break your budget, and they have come a long way. With plentiful options for outside and inside of the pool, you can get a look that matches with the rest of your yard.

An above ground pool is also a much quicker installation process. You’ll be able to have your pool in about a week, compared to the weeks and weeks it can take for in ground pools.

Still, Northwest Vinyl Pools do install on-budget in ground pools, so you don’t have to sacrifice your clean lines if you don’t want to.

6. Premier Pools and Spas

Credit: Premier Pools

Credit: Premier Pools

Premier Pools and Spas help you to get something that is extremely luxurious. The contractors have tons of experience in the designing, installation, and maintenance of many pools. They can even work to build you a pool with a fire pit, a deck, or a bar.

Premier Pools are beautiful at all times of the year, even when they are covered, because they just take that much time to think about it. They use natural materials and lines to build something that looks like it could have just formed by itself.

With 25 years of experience, there are few companies that work with the high-tech tools and tricks that you’ll find with this company.

7. Neptune Pools

Neptune Swimming Pool Company builds swimming pools for both residential and commercial properties. It can be

Credit: Neptune

Credit: Neptune

difficult to find a company the builds commercially because there just isn’t always a market for it. Still, they will walk your business through the design, installation, and maintenance of the entire project.

If you have an in-ground pool, Neptune Pools also sells automatic covers, which will make your life a lot easier. if it storms, you have to mow the lawn, or you just want some protection from the elements, all you have to do is hit a button and you will get automatic coverage.

AK Timber Services Makes it Easy

There is nothing worse than sitting back in your pool and seeing a branch sticking out over the top, blocking the sun. Those branches can then change from annoying during the summer to potentially devastating in the fall and winter. Those leaves can weigh down the cover and push water from the pool when they fall, making a mess for the entire season and then when you open the pool.

Or, even worse, any branches over the pool when it gets colder can fall if they are weighed down by ice or snow. Those branches can rip liners, collapse fences, or just make the aesthetics of your costly investment look worse.

Don’t let your investment become a big problem – give AK Timber Services a call today.

Header photo courtesy of SurFeRGiRL30 on Flickr!

9 Pond Companies in Vancouver

By AK Timber

Your yard is your playground, your little slice of heaven, and your peace of mind. Whether you use your backyard for fun and parties or you go out there to just escape the rest of the world, you have a right to create a space that you can truly feel at peace in, there is something that can add to that overall appeal. Ponds are a great addition to any backyard because you can personalize them as you see fit. They can be as crazy and over the top as you want them to be or they can be modernized and sleek for a completely different feel.

No matter what approach you want to take, your pond needs to be installed properly and with skilled hands. If you want to go with a company that is reliable, which you should, you need to work with some of the local favorites. Try one of these:

1. Tranquility Ponds

Credit: Tranquility Ponds

Credit: Tranquility Ponds

Tranquility Ponds is a full-service pond contractor that works on everything from pond installation to pond maintenance so that you don’t have to worry about any problems popping up as you go. This company in particular creates some absolutely gorgeous natural looking ponds that fit in with many different yards.

Their ponds can be large or small and made to fit into your yard. They are great at coming up with solutions for problematic areas that are too steep, too rocky, or just don’t work for ponds. Not only that, but they can do it quickly and efficiently.

2. Watershed Pond Supplies

If you already have a pond installed, then you probably want to get accessories to make it look its best. Watershed

Credit: Watershed Pond Supply

Credit: Watershed Pond Supply

Pond Supplies is one of the best options in the Vancouver area because they go above and beyond. Not only do they only stock the best supplies, but they tell you how and where to use them. They won’t try to sell you something if it doesn’t work, and if you have any problems, they will work with you to solve the problem.

Even if you only need a few plants or some stones, Watershed Pond Supplies is worth the trip. You’ll likely see some things to give you ideas to really make your pond your own.

3. Pond Doctor

Credit: Pond Doctor

Credit: Pond Doctor

With over 15 years of experience, Pond Doctor is a “mobile consulting and water garden contracting company providing customized planning and maintenance services.” They work with everything related to ponds in order to give you a full experience. Not only will they install ponds, they will add fish and plants in order to pull it together.

They will also work with ponds that have already been installed but need a little bit of help. From fixing the filtration system to working to restore order if things go wrong, they will be there to help you. Even if you didn’t get the pond from them, they are willing to help you out.

Even if you didn’t get the pond from them, they are willing to help you out.


4. Waterscene

Credit: Waterscene

Credit: Waterscene

Working with both commercial and residential properties, Waterscene builds absolutely stunning ponds of all sizes,

shapes, and depths. They will take your vision and make it a reality, listening to your needs and making realistic promises.

From ponds to water gardens, they will install just about anything you want. They even specialize in pondless waterfalls which are a great compromise for people who want a water element in their yards but don’t want to add the danger of a pond. This makes it a good idea for people who have pets or young children.

5. All Fixes Handyman

Credit: All Fixes Handyman

Credit: All Fixes Handyman

We’ve highlight All Fixes Handyman before, but really, there is no reason not to do it again when they work on absolutely gorgeous ponds. While most often they are known for some of their other hardscaping working, their ponds are absolutely gorgeous. If your pond is going to be part of a bigger yard plan, why not go with a company that does it all?

Whether you are looking for one small thing to make your yard better or you are looking for a complete renovation that just happens to include a pond, All Fixes Handyman might just be the way to go.


6. Portland Pond Cleaning

Credit: Portland Pond Cleaning

Credit: Portland Pond Cleaning

Fountains, waterfalls, stone, cement, vinyl, and whatever else you can imagine has one big problem: they get dirty.

Pond water can get filled with algae, outside elements can put debris into the water, and animals can use your pond as a bathtub. Over time, no matter how great your pond is, it will get dirty. Portland Pond Cleaning can help you get your pond back to normal.

From cleaning out individual lines so that your fountains are strong again to making it safe for your fish. From one time cleanings to fall cleanings to routine maintenance, Portland Pond Cleaning will get you back on track.

7. Northwest Landscape and Pond Supply

Credit: Northwest Supply

Credit: Northwest Supply

If you’d like to build your own pond, which isn’t recommended unless you know what you are doing, or you want to add some special elements on your own, there is one great place to go: Northwest Landscape and Pond Supply. They have everything from decorative stone to put around the outside of your pond to weather safe statuary and lights that will add interest to the pond.

If you don’t have a big enough budget to get something that is as unique as some of the other ponds on this list, this could be a compromise. Get something a little basic and add your own touches for half the price.

8. Cambie Water Gardens


Credit: Cambie

A water garden is slightly different than a pond. Instead of focusing on the water and the movement of the water, it focuses on the plants. Cambie Water Gardens makes absolutely gorgeous water gardens that bring color, interest, texture, scent, and even animals into your pond. From lily pads to moss, they carefully select the best plants for the Vancouver area.

They can also help you add plants to a pond you already have if you want to add some interest. Not only that, but they will build on to a pond you already have so that you can have your water garden and pond together.

9. SheerWater Pond Supply

Credit: SheerWater

Credit: SheerWater

SheerWater Pond Supply is one of the best resources for fish supplies in the entire area. If you decide to get a koi pond or another type of fish pond, you will start to understand that fish are also an investment. You’ll pay for the best fish (don’t just go to a pet store) and you’ll want to keep everything in order to keep them alive. You will also fall in love with these fish.

Make sure to give yourself plenty of time to walk around at SheerWater because you are going to need it.

AK Timber Services is a Pond’s Best Friend

Before you get a pond, you might have to do some land clearing. Whether this means you want to cut down a tree or two, you need to get a stump removed, or you just need to cut back on some branches, you are going to need help. AK Timber Services will help you to get that land cleared quickly so that you can get your pond.

After your pond has been installed, you may have gathered that keeping it clean is sometimes difficult. We can help to remove the branches or trees that are creating a problem for you – especially in fall.

Give us a call today and we will give you a free estimate.

Header photo is courtesy of F. D. Richards on Flickr!