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If your home is lacking the outdoors environment and “curb appeal” you want, it’s time to start thinking about an expert approach to landscaping.  If the prospect of landscaping seems daunting, follow these steps:

  1. Assess the Situation

Whether your home has existing landscaping that you want to improve or you are developing your landscape from scratch, you will want to start by assessing the situation.  You might start by studying the exterior of your home and thinking about features you want to highlight or conceal.  Consider what will work in your region, based on climate and rainfall.  Also identify if there are any plants to avoid (such as water thirsty plants in a drought prone area or certain flowering plants for allergy sufferers).

  1. Design a Layout

Once you assess the situation, you are ready to make your landscaping plan.  You might use drawings to develop your perfect layout.  Consider any special landscaping needs you have (for example, if you need a large open space for children to play or if you want an area devoted to a vegetable garden).  Think about the space you have, being careful to maintain paths, sidewalks and street clearance.  If your home is part of a homeowner’s association, they may also have certain requirements to meet. 

  1. Start with Hardscapes

As you design your layout, you may install paths, firepits, fences, or other hardscape features.  These components help define your overall landscape.  Sometimes they are important to the functioning of a landscape, such as helping to physically and visually define spaces or shifting the water flow during rain, while reducing soil erosion.  As you implement your design, you will want to install your hardscape features first, knowing these are permanent pieces that will last for years to come.

  1. Next add Softscapes

Once your hardscape features are solidly in place, you can add softscapes.  Your softscape components will include grass, plants, trees, and flowers.  In most landscapes, you will want a variety of these items.  Place larger items nearer to your home and smaller items at the front of the yard.  This layout is practical for sight lines and it looks more visually appealing.  You will want to select plants that will thrive in your climate.  Choose a variety of colors and textures for more appeal.

  1. Maintain and Improve

Once you have your landscape in place, it will require some maintenance.  You may have selected plants that die out and need to be re-planted each year.  As you live with your landscape, you may find some features that you want to change and improve over time.  One of the best things about landscaping is, it is much easier to make changes and improvements to the outdoors than to the interior of your home.  You can do a bit more each season to continue making it just what you want.

If, after reading through these steps, the process of landscaping your home sounds too daunting, consider consulting with a professional landscaping service.  A professional landscape designer works with you to develop the perfect plan to meet your needs while also helping to coordinate a team to professionally complete the work.  Working with a professional landscape designer can help you achieve the outdoor space you’ve always wanted for the ideal yard and the perfect ‘curb appeal’.