Do It Yourself Landscaping Tips
A house and its landscaping should be harmonious with each other.
Achieving such harmony is sometimes possible intuitively; but if you're
more serious about complementing your house with your landscaping, you
really need to take matters to the next level -- landscape design...It
is an art form.
Top 8 Tips for Do-It-Yourself Landscaping
From David Beaulieu
1) Provide Your Landscaping With Year-Round Interest
Make sure you're providing something of interest in each of the four seasons.
Landscaping for 4-season interest begins with a well researched plant-selection plan. The goal is to have flowering trees and/or shrubs throughout spring and summer, fall foliage in autumn and good structure in winter.
2) Layer Your Planting Beds
Layer your planting beds in 3 rows: a back row (facing north,
preferably) with the tallest plants, a middle row with the next tallest,
and a front row composed of your shortest plants. Use repetition, both
in the planting bed and elsewhere in your yard, to provide unity
3) Use Evergreens for Continuity
But don't forget evergreens. The deciduous specimens provide more color and
variety, while the evergreens will provide continuity and "structure"
for winter interest.
4) Use Annuals to Supplement Perennial Color
Perennial flowers are wonderful for your planting beds, but they bloom
for only so long. You may have perennials blooming in your bed in May,
then nothing until July. Incorporating annuals into a do-it-yourself
landscaping plan will "plug the gaps," giving you continuous color in
5) Incorporate Hardscape Into Your Landscape Design
Don't restrict your landscaping to plants. Include hardscape features, too. Like evergreens, they provide structure in winter, and much more than that. Walls and fences make an essential design statement, as they frame your property. I'm constantly struck by how much more "finished" the properties with fences look. Decks and arbors are other important hardscape features. Patios and decks provide transitions from indoors to outdoors.
6) Install Water Features: It's Easier Than You Think
Good landscape designs are anchored by focal points. One of the hottest
trends is to use water features as focal points. This is one trend with
"sound" reasoning behind it: water features are not only visually
appealing, but emit soothing sounds. Using pre-formed rigid plastic
liners, durable pumps, flexible tubing and cheap fountains, they're also
a lot easier to install than you think. Once you've experimented with
ponds, you may even decide to advance to the next level: simple
7) Don't Forget the Foliage!
Flowers are great, but don't forget the characteristics of a plant's
foliage. In landscape design, varying foliage textures and colors are
used to spice up the yard with diversity. Evergreen conifers, while
lacking flowers altogether, nonetheless have foliage that offers a myriad of different textures and colors. That's right, colors, too. For not all evergreens are green!
8) Make Your Life Easier With a Low-Maintenance Yard
online landscaping course
Besides giving your yard a pleasing
appearance, you must also be sensible in planning for its maintenance.
Beautiful or not, you'll resent your yard if it causes you too much
work. Unless you don't mind spending hours each weekend on upkeep,
plan your design for low maintenance.
Top 10 Tips for Low-Maintenance Landscaping
From David Beaulieu
Take these tips to heart if you're serious about low-maintenance
landscaping. Since watering and mowing the lawn consume a large chunk of
yard care time, the biggest step you can take towards low-maintenance
landscaping is reducing your watering needs and minimizing the amount of
grass you must mow.
1) Xeriscaping for Low-Maintenance Landscaping
Those who have had to mow lawns all their lives are acutely aware of
just how much work lawns are. But lawns can also be costly, as when you
have to replace one that has succumbed to drought. Don't wait for
drought to strike to reconsider the wisdom of having extensive,
labor-intensive, thirsty lawns. Instead, take preemptive action by
changing your landscape design.
2) Automatic Irrigation Systems
3) Clover as an Alternative to Grass
Clover seed used to be included in the typical lawn seed mix, being
appreciated as a ground cover with numerous attractive qualities. What
do clover lawns have over grass lawns? How about drought-tolerance,
cost-savings, environmental safety and low-maintenance landscaping?
Interested? Clover is insect-resistant, competes well with weeds and
doesn't have to be mowed often, making it a superb low-maintenance
substitute for grass.
4) Moss as an Alternative to Grass
Moss can be used as an alternative to lawn grass in shady spots, where
grass refuses to grow. Considering how often moss grows in lawn areas
problematic for grass, it readily suggests itself as just such an
5) Drought-Tolerant Perennials
A low-maintenance, water-wise, yet still attractive landscape plan for a
sunny area calls for the use of drought-tolerant perennials.
6) Deer-Resistant Ground Covers
7) Rock Gardens for Low-Maintenance Landscaping
Rock gardens typically contain drought-tolerant plants, and the rocks
themselves offer a decor that never needs to be watered or tended to in
8) Mulch: Low-Maintenance Landscaping Hero
Mulch is one of the unsung heroes of low-maintenance landscaping. It's
highly portable, malleable. If you have a problem area for which there seems to be no other solution, mulch is probably your answer -- especially if you need a quick and easy solution. An application of mulch can reduce your
watering needs significantly. Mulch also suppresses weeds, making yard
care much easier.
9) Low-Maintenance Landscaping With Dogs
If your dogs are to be allowed to run about in the yard, you'll probably
have to make adjustments to your landscaping. But the smartest
adjustments you'll make are the ones that keep low-maintenance
landscaping in mind.
10) Low-Maintenance Landscaping in Winter: Snowmelt Systems
Top 10 Mistakes to Avoid in Home Landscape Design
From David Beaulieu
1) Piecemeal Planting: Failure to Have a Plan
2) Having a Lawn Just Because "Everyone Else Does It"
3) Insufficient Fall Color in Your Home Landscape Design
4) Lack of Winter Interest in Your Home Landscape Design
5) Failure to Irrigate
6) Planting on a Hillside Prone to Erosion
7) Failure to Work With What You Have
8) Failure to Incorporate Deer-Resistant Plants in Your Home Landscape
9) You Never Get Anything Done in the Yard Because Tools Are Never Handy
10) Forgetting Functionality in Home Landscape Design