Do It Yourself (Here) - Hire a Pro ( Look Below)
It's a good idea to come up with a master plan -- on paper -- for your landscape. The plan doesn't have to be to-scale, but it will give you an overall picture, and assure that your beds, borders, and projects all work together.
Use mason's line when laying out garden beds. It won't stretch like regular string.
When planting flowers, choose a color theme, just as you would when decorating your home. Pink and blue with yellow and white accents is a popular scheme. Or try one of the following: blue and white with touches of silver foliage, all yellow with a few orange flowers, or all white -- especially pretty for viewing at dusk.
Trees and shrubs add beauty and drama to the landscape. They're the giants of your yard, adding height, color, and cooling shade. The wide variety of trees and shrubs now available is a treat. Choose from foliage in an infinite number of greens as well as yellows, purples, and interesting variegations. And with today's smaller landscapes, there are more small trees available than ever. Choose from trees that range from as little as 6 feet to 15 feet or more. And it's always wise to look for trees and shrubs that serve more than one purpose. A tree planted primarily for summer shade can also provide springtime flowers. In summer, it can also provide fruit or nuts, which are appreciated by people and wildlife alike.
Want ideas on the best trees for your area? Take an afternoon stroll at your local arboretum, where you'll see hundreds of trees in their mature state. If possible, visit in spring and autumn to see flowers and fall foliage.
Hire A Professional?
Planning the Design
It is a good idea to have a professional landscaper come to your home and give you advice before you begin your landscaping project. If you are new to the area that you live in and do not know of anyone with a good reputation in the landscaping field, you can call a garden center or nursery in the area and ask their advice as to who they would recommend.
A professional landscaper can go over the features of your property and give you suggestions in terms of layout and help you to come up with a well-planned, custom made, professional design that you can enjoy for many years to come. It is a good idea to get the opinion of several professionals and the different costs that are involved.
What are your primary objectives? What is the the full potential of your property? Are you interested in deck or a swimming pool ? How much space do you have to work with ? How much money do you want to invest in your landscape ? These are a few of the questions you should answer before you begin.
The more research done at the beginning, the less problematic the experience will be and the more prepared you will be to help you avoid costly mistakes.
Making sure you plant the right plants in the proper place will insure success and reduce maintenance time. It's best to pick only plants, trees and shrubs that are appropriate for your region and climate. That is one of the areas where the expertise of a professional can be of great assistance.
When evaluating your landscape, it's a good idea to consider whether some area of your lawn could be replaced with evergreen ground covers or other fillers. Foundation plantings and flower or planting beds can effectively reduce mowing time.
Plants have specific needs as to sun and shade, acidic or alkaline soil, etc. You need to understand the needs of the plants and shrubs before you plant them and understand where they will do well otherwise they will not thrive and you will find yourself having to replant over and over. Once you learn the best areas to plant, you will want to vary the size, texture and color of your plants and shrubs.
Enhancing Your Landscape
Your landscaping should reflect the architectural style of your house. There are many ways to enhance your landscape from an investment, aesthetic and practical point of view.
Landscapes should have balance and proportion. Unless you have decided to create a formal design, it is best to have more curved lines than straight lines. Curved lines that integrate with the lawn makes mowing easier. You should consider using plants that offer color and ornamental interest year round by striking a good balance between deciduous and evergreen varieties.
Enhancing the value of your property in a way that appeals to others is also important as you may be interested in selling your home in the future so keep that in mind in the planning stages. The best design is a polished, professional quality design that reflects good taste. Conservative styles generally have the widest appeal....
Landscapes that are well maintained appreciate in value as they grow. One way to insure a well-tended appearance is to install a low maintenance landscape.
Beauty is important to landscape design. Your landscape should be integrated in such a way that it is comfortable, convenient and easy to care for. Functional, well-planned landscapes can be beautiful without being elaborate.
Plan Carefully and Enjoy Your Beautiful New Landscape Design!