Landscaping Tips to Use This Summer

by James SheaJune 26, 2018

The Irish poet and philosopher John O’Donohue once said, “The human soul is hungry for beauty; we seek it everywhere – in landscape, music, art, clothes, furniture, gardening, companionship, love, religion, and in ourselves. No one would desire not to be beautiful. When we experience the beautiful, there is a sense of homecoming.”

For many homeowners, beauty and landscaping are synonymous. A home isn’t beautiful until the weeds are pulled, flowers are planted and pathways installed. The process can be challenging, however, landscaping a property can feel like molding an unformed piece of clay into a piece of artwork.

You might ask yourself, where do I start? What will the final product look like? What is the most economical use of my finances? How much do I want to do myself?


Plan for the Long Run

Landscaping your home needs to be thought of in terms of years and not just a few weeks. You can start by envisioning the overall project, but break it down into manageable tasks. You are living in the home for a long period of time. You don’t have to entirely rework the landscaping immediately. You want to approach the work from smaller projects. That way, you don’t get overwhelmed by the overall plan. A couple of small projects over an entire season can transform the landscaping of your home.

Design the Landscape to Work for You

When designing your home’s landscape, you should think about its desired uses. Do you need a play space for kids? Do you want a garden? Do you need space for a storage shed? These are all simple questions that you need to ask yourself. The space should be functional for you and your family. It’s not supposed to become an arboretum. It’s the place where you live.

Expand Choices by Shopping Online

Your plant choices extend beyond the neighborhood garden center. The Internet has numerous websites that sell specialty plants and seeds. You can find a seed catalog with dozen varieties of sunflower seeds online, rather the one or two choices locally. Great Garden Plants, Annie’s Annuals, Burpee, and Territorial Seed Company are a few examples. You have so many grasses, perennials and annuals to choose from with these companies. They allow you to add some uniqueness to your landscaping.

Look at the Sun Patterns

You need to know where the sun rises and sets on your property when designing the landscaping for your property. You will discover what areas of the property get the most sun and what sections are covered in shade during the majority of the day. You don’t want to put a sun-loving plant in a section of the property that gets no sun. It’s easy. You just need to walk around the property every couple of hours on a sunny day. You document what areas are sunny and what areas are shady.

Important Points can be Connected with Walkways

Landscaping is a series of smaller sections throughout the property. You can connect trees, flowerbeds and other features with walkways. The walkways act as an easy pathway through the landscaping and are a visual cue for your eyes to follow. They guide you and others through the various landscaped elements on the property. Plus, walkways are an important feature in the design. They make it easier to navigate the property.

Front Yard Landscaping

Combine Annuals and Perennials

Shrubs and flowers grow in different ways. Some grow for one season and have to be replanted each year. Others continued to grow each year and flower annually. It’s a good idea to have both annuals and perennials in your landscape design. That way you have a variety of looks and feels throughout the property.

Plan for All Seasons

Flowers and shrubs don’t just bloom in the spring. Many bloom in the fall and winter. You should add plants to your landscaping that give your home some color throughout the year. You don’t want the property to look dreary when so many wonderful plants bloom in the fall season and late winter.

Add a Feature that Creates Height

You don’t need to landscape the property on a single, flat plane. You can add contours to the landscape for effect. You might consider a tree or shrub on top of a berm. It adds contrast to the landscape, but it also draws attention to the plant. You can also think about raised beds and other features that add texture and definition to the landscaping.

Water is Your Friend

A simple water feature can be a nice addition to the property. You don’t have to add a giant waterfall. A small fountain in a garden or a little pond in the corner of the property are great ways to incorporate water into your landscaping. It can even be as simple as a small lily pond in a terracotta plant container. You don’t have to go overboard. You just want to add some interesting features and contrast to the landscaping.

Illuminate Focal Points and Walkways

Nighttime is a totally different experience. You have the opportunity to illuminate and accent particular areas of the landscaping at night. You need to make sure that walkways are illuminated so people can walk through the property at night safely, but you also can add lighting that draws people’s attention to certain points of your home’s landscaping. It might be a flower garden or a rock wall. It’s a great way to enhance the experience.

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About The Author
James Shea
James Shea is an award-winning journalist and author. He owns Media Lab, a content marketing and search engine optimization company is Richmond, Virginia.