Categories: Landscaping | Posted: May 4, 2018 | Comments Off on What’s the best way to landscape around your new home?
A new home really isn’t finished until the landscaping is in. That’s what we think, and professionals who put a dollar value on new homes agree. One university study found landscaping can increase your property value by as much as 12.7 percent. And besides, you want to enjoy it too—it’s beautiful! Here’s how to begin:
Grass—Sod or Seed?
With sod, you’re getting instant results, it can be planted anytime during the growing season, and sod circumvents weed growth. The price tag is higher, from between $.50 and $1 per square foot, and you’re going to have fewer choices in terms of type of grass. Plan for using a lot of water to get it started, but so will seed.
What about seed? It’s cost-effective, about $0.01 per square foot (What? That is cheap!), gives you more options in terms of type of grass, but takes longer to see results, naturally. And, you’re going to have to do more in terms of managing weeds. Also, your window of opportunity is narrower; for instance, September is the best month to plant grass seed to avoid weed germination.
You need to determine a budget. One rule of thumb is to spend 10 percent of your home’s price tag on landscaping. That’s over time and doesn’t have to be all at once. Besides, if you’re doing it yourself, labor has to be considered too in terms of how much you have time to do, and when.
Create an overall design for your yard. Add in when you’re going to plant specific areas and what additional needs you might have, including wiring, irrigation, retaining walls, etc.
Trees should be one of your first investments because it takes a long time to grow a beautiful tall tree. And tree shade will affect what else you do. Identify where you want your trees, and go ahead and get those planted. Be sure to keep trees away from your home’s foundation. A good rule of thumb is this: keep the tree as far away from the home’s foundation as it will grow in height. A 15-foot-tall tree should be planted at least 15 feet away from your home’s foundation.
Next are your foundation plants. Look for types of plants that will give you year-round color and interest. Don’t forget about perennials and ornamental grasses in your plan. You’ll add seasonal flowers for color later, along with flowers in your pots on your front and back porches.
Work in sections of your yard, and don’t be afraid to plan for bigger sections. It will look a lot better to have fewer large sections than for your plantings to be chopped up in smaller groupings. And add depth, with taller plantings at the back, closer to the house, and smaller ones forward.
It’s really fun to get involved in your home’s landscaping. And once you’ve got some traction, step back and enjoy the beauty for years to come.