Do you ever dream about what your yard could look like some day? As you look through garden catalogs filled with beautiful trees, shrubs, flowers and pictures of beautifully landscaped yards–complete with ponds and garden sculptures–the choices seem endless. Before ordering hundreds of plants or giving up because you cannot decide what you really want, here are a few things to consider.
A common issue in landscaping is creating a peaceful, private environment. While fencing can provide immediate privacy, consider a buffer strip of shrubbery between your yard and the one next door. Many shrubs will grow quickly–within a couple of years–and act as a screen while providing habitat for a variety of birds. Consider planting native shrubs because they are usually well adapted to local conditions and may provide the best habitat for local wildlife.
Other considerations: whether the plants have special characteristics such as flowers or fruits, how large they will eventually become, and how much maintenance they require to remain healthy and in scale with your yard. Check with us for recommended species.
If you do not want to spend your weekends maintaining a yard, turn part of it into a wildflower garden. If you want a more maintained yard, consider ground covers instead of grass and use mulch to control weeds in foundation plantings and flower beds.
When selecting plants, make sure they are adapted to your area. Consider both the minimum and maximum temperatures, amount of moisture, amount of sunlight, and soil characteristics. Ask yourself: Do you want an annual that will need replanting every year or a perennial that comes up year after year? Do you want cut flowers for inside your home or to give to friends?
Consider native plants. They are usually better adapted to local conditions and need little maintenance. Be cautious about introducing exotic species such as purple loosestrife that will become invasive and is prohibited in many states.
Above all, choose what you like. There is an enormous variety of plants that will provide food and shelter to a wide variety of wildlife. With a little planning, you and the local wildlife can both enjoy the yard of your dreams. Call us – we’re here to help you design and maintain your dream yard!