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November Landscapes – That Special Touch


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Bring Your Indoors Into The Outdoors

Nora McMahon aims to make your outdoor space something special



I am always curious to see what homeowners do with the outdoor living spaces we design and install, after we’ve installed them. While what we design and create is impactful, its the personalization of the new living space that brings it all home, so to speak.

In my own case, there is a definite Texas theme going on. Lots of Texas symbols, chimes, and even the flagstone patio has a flagstone in it from each region of Texas. But most all of that came after everything was built.

The “personalization” comes down to exterior design. Some folks are versed with it while most are not. So those that are not – hire someone who is.

One such person is Nora McMahon, owner and designer of “Angel Wings and Rusty Things” exterior/interior design in Lewisville. Nora recently began her new business after spending most of her life doing exterior decor on the side. 

“It’s my passion,” she explained. “I’ve had my hands into this sort of thing for as long as I can remember, even when I was a kid. Now, it’s my profession. I really enjoy doing the exterior design, but I also do indoor design as well.”

McMahon has the ability to see things that are not there yet, and then create in reality what she sees in her imagination.

“It’s vision – thats where I come in,” she said. “People have their outdoor living spaces built, then aren’t sure what to do with it but know that they want to do something. So they call someone like me. I just see it, and I go out and get it. I go to resale shops, flea markets, craft fairs, you name it, I’ll be there looking for things that bring out what I’m trying to create.”

McMahon looks at something that was created for one particular use and sees how it can be used differently in a decorative and functional way.

“I look for old and new things,” she continued. “I’m looking for an eclectic blend of both. I see things that were meant to be one thing, but I can repurpose in another way that adds not only beauty, but character as well. Those things have a story to tell.”

“My goal is to make the indoor living space, the living room . . flow right through the back door and continue into the outdoor living space,” she added. “I want it to be that comfortable, functional and that inviting. I want it to feel just as much like home out here as it is in there (indoors).”

So how does one get started with someone like Nora McMahon in getting their outdoor living space decorated? Simply call and set up an appointment/consultation. 

McMahon will consult with you while touring the area you want addressed, finding out your vision and expectations as well as budget. From there, she will begin putting it together and communicating with the customer using the Pinterest website. And then the execution of a plan begins.

Green Thumb recently completed a project where the entire back yard (small) was turned into a deck, with two stone planters created on each side and a french drain built beneath to address a drainage issue. Pictures of this project, AFTER Nora’s exterior decor additions, can be seen in the photos above.

To get the ball rolling with your very own personal paradise, contact Nora McMahon and Angel Wings and Rusty Things, you can call her at 909-633-8015, or email her at angelwingsandrustythings@gmail.com.
Bird Houses, Bird Baths, Hummingbird Feeders

The time has come to remove your Hummingbird feeders and bring them in for the winter. We do this to avoid encouraging them to stay around any longer as any freezing temperature will kill them.

Remove the nectar from the feeder and clean it out, then store it for the winter in a dry place.

You’ll also want to remove your bird houses. This is a great time to clean them out and remove all the contents inside. You will want them to be empty when spring arrives as some birds will avoid your bird house if a nest is already present inside.

This is also a great time to make any repairs to your bird house that might be needed.

Bird baths – if your bowl is detachable, flip it upside down and put it back on the stand. This will prevent ice from forming in your bird bath when freezing temperatures happen later this month. Thats bad because if the water freezes, it could bust or crack your bath basin.

Pre-emergent application this month!

November is the month where we apply pre emergent for the last time of the season. Pre emergent applications are timed to be put down and activated by the time weed seed germination would normally begin. Given that early indicators are that this will be an early winter, I would advise going ahead with you pre emergent application as soon as possible rather than waiting later in the month.

Christmas Lighting!

This is the month when most folks begin putting up Christmas decorations. Some like to time it right after Thanksgiving. While others really just want them up before Thanksgiving. Either way, relieve yourself of the potential misery of installing exterior Christmas lights and have it professionally done.

Landscape companies, like Green Thumb, spend their fall and winters installing and then later removing Christmas lighting. We do this every winter and have trained in what to do. And much like designing a landscape, we create a lighting design after consulting with the customer prior to installing. It’s a painless, seamless process.

We also offer storage for those lights and decorations for the whole year and then simply schedule installation the following season. The first year, you buy your professional grade lights (C7, C9, minis, etc) and decor (wreaths, garland, yard art, etc) as well as pay for installation. But in following years, you only pay for installation since you already own the lights. Green Thumb customers get their ligthts stored free.

If you’re in the DFW area and would like a Christmas lighting consultation, call 972-436-2841 or email greenthumbtx@verizon.net

Mark’s monthly column, “In The Landscape,” is sponsored each month by Stagecoach Trailers.


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12 hours ago, Earl Nobis Jefferson said:

SHA, thank you for the information, Pre Emerging today.  I live south of Houston and have St Augustin Grass. What if any fertilizer do you recommend now?  I fertilized in March and in July this year.  Much appreciated 


I normally do not advise fertilizing this late in the season, but given where you live, you're fine doing it now.

For St Augustine, I recommend Fertilome's St Augustine Weed/Feed 15-0-4 (I think). That product is for Summer and Fall applications. Fertilome makes an identical product with 19-0-4 which would be your spring application.

Doing it this late, I'd cut my ratio down just a little. A cold spell combined with your fertilizer could cause fungus in your St Aug. Fungus and nitrogen and like gas and fire.


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