Landscaping 101

Outdoor areas are often the last to receive design attention, but they shouldn’t be: What surrounds your home is just as important as what’s in it. Whether it’s a manicured front lawn, stone paver pathway or intricate garden design, these spaces benefit from the same attention to detail as any bathroom or kitchen. Well-designed landscaping ideas can complement your home’s architecture and design, and the right plants, flowers and shrubbery can greatly enhance your curb appeal by adding color, texture and even fragrance to your yard. From a real estate perspective, the curb appeal invites the potential buyer into the home. A drab , negative, or boring exterior can trigger a decision to simply drive past the home.

Before starting your garden remodel, survey your space and browse landscape ideas to figure out how best to fill it. If you love working outdoors, a large rose garden (like mine) or vegetable garden is the perfect way to use your space. On the other hand, kids might enjoy a large yard, along with a playground, swing set or pool. Think about what your family would use the most, as well as what would help boost your resale value in the long run. Thorny or poisonous shrubs must be avoided in a family setting. In the end, be sure to consider your front and back yard as separate entities; after all, they usually serve two very different purposes. 

What should I add to my front yard?

When landscaping your front yard, think about curb appeal above all else. This space is your chance to make a great first impression, so it should be inspiring, well thought out and consistent with the style of your home. A flower garden is a great option, but if maintenance is an issue, you can simplify the process by opting for low-maintenance succulents, bushes or hedges instead. If you don’t have a green thumb, stick with grass and use a gravel pathway, water feature, wood fence or stone wall for variation. 

What should I add to my backyard or garden?

The backyard is for entertaining and playtime, so incorporate seating, dining areas, play spaces and sunny relaxation spots. A vegetable garden or rose garden is a common yard staple, especially if you add an interesting element like a pergola, arbor, raised bed, border, walkway or fence. You can even add fun accessories like birdbaths and feeders to aid with bird-watching. For the ultimate party house, incorporate a pool and patio or deck with a fire pit, outdoor fireplace, barbecue and outdoor kitchen. Please review my previous postings on these topics. If you’re an active, sports-loving family, add a basketball court, volleyball court, or croquet. And don’t forget about outdoor furniture! A bench in a garden makes a great reading or meditation spot, while a weatherproof chaise lounge, sofa and chair are nice for taking in those sunny days.

In conclusion

Keep plants & shrubs a few week away from the structure. Root systems and moisture from water can negatively impact the foundation and structure. Consult with your local gardening center.

There are various types & strategies for irrigation. Whether you decide to install above ground hoses, below ground PVC piping, hand-water, or a combination, make certain provide enough water and don’t over-do it. Too much water can be as bad as not enough. Irrigation, itself, is a topic for another day.

About me

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