Often DYI homeowners buy some shrubs for around the house without much of a plan or thought about spacing, winter appearance, and/or what it will look like in 8-10 years( avg. length of home ownership) when they’re ready to move. Below are just a few important techniques to improve the over all success of your long term investment in landscaping your home or business.
Overcrowding happens, too often…
In the selection of plants for a landscape bed, check the width and height that any given shrub/tree will get (in ten or twenty years) and leave adequate space between plants, from side of house, and along walks to allow for that growth. It may look sparse at first but in 5 to 8 years you will be glad you didn’t over plant. One can fill in the spaces with colorful annuals.
Soften or hide undesirable features
Certain architectural features of a house need to be softened. This can be done with the use of landscape plants. For example: a tall 25 ft. corner of the house will really be softened by planting an upright evergreen on that corner. A cantilevered bay window with large hollow space under it or a dark dead space under a deck can be softened by planting a group of low evergreens wrapped around the window or deck to block the view of dead space.
Blocking Window-NO NO
Avoid blocking windows by choosing dwarf varieties of shrubs that only grow to windowsill at their mature height; or ones that can easily be pruned to keep plants at or just below the window. Remember, as stated in overcrowding section allow space for growth of plant between back of shrub and side of building.
– In deep landscape beds, where there is 2 or 3 layers of plants, place lowest in front then taller shrubs behind.
– Mix and space out your chosen evergreens in the beds, so in the winter months you will have some greenery spread out, not just in one area.
– When using plants as a visual or privacy screen, it looks more natural and works quicker if you have the room to stagger or zig-zag the planting pattern instead of a straight line planting. It may take one or two more plants for the same length of space but will give a more pleasing effect.
– Add seasonal color with annuals, perennials and bulbs. If planted deep enough, follow bulbs with annuals in same area.
In summary, forethought and planning of your landscaping can really pay off down the line. Avoiding the overgrown look, choosing the right plants for the right spots to soften, hide or accent the property’s features, and to not block the view.
When in doubt call or visit us at Longfellow’s Garden Center, open 7 days a week. Click here for more information on our services.