What you really need to know about landscaping Imagine having someone paint a portrait of your house and yard. What would you want it to look like? What kind of shape and color would you like to see? It's much cheaper and easier to make your yard reflect that vision than it is to accomplish the same with your house.
You could have landscaping that looks like something out of a magazine in no time if you've got the means and you've got the motivation. Perhaps the idea of a lush and overgrown backyard paradise really appeals to you, a place where you want to bring friends and family to enjoy a sunny day. Or maybe you want a place that centers you when you walk through it, like a zen garden with a koi pond and fountains.
However you'd like to see your yard, it can be yours in exchange for the cost of the materials, some time, and some hard work. If it's in your budget to hire a professional landscape design company, you've got access to a wealth of knowledge and experience that can help you nail down exactly what you want from your yard, while saving you as much time and effort as you're willing to pay for. Things to keep in mind during DIY landscaping projects If you do plan on grabbing a shovel and turning your own sweat into equity, there's a few things to keep in mind through every step of the process.
First, always plan ahead. The more of the finished product you can picture in your head, the easier of a time you'll have getting there. Figure out what kind of plants or landscaping features you want and where to put them that they'll all complement each other. The internet is a fantastic source for landscaping ideas. You can browse picture galleries of thousands of projects, save what really stands out to you, and then put them together in a way that reflects you and what you want your home to look like.
Second, be aware of the effect that time will have on your project. Trees will grow and spread, and so will their root systems. Planting too close to your house can cause branches to scrape against the side, necessitating some trimming to avoid the risk of damage to windows, siding, or roofing on an especially windy day. Roots that spread too far can creep under things like concrete and paving stones, causing cracking and uneven surfaces. If you don't plant a tree deep enough, or the type of tree is known for being shallow-rooted, the roots can grow above the surface, which both looks unsightly and can be a tripping hazard or cause damage to a lawnmower.
If your project involves dirt or sand used as a base for something like a patio or rock feature, make sure you pack it down and level it as much as you can. Dirt and sand that hasn't been properly packed will settle over time. This can cause piles of rock to fall over, patio stones to become uneven, and damage to concrete slabs. Finally, consider how much maintenance you're going to want to be doing.
A yard filled with colorful flowers and immaculately trimmed hedges is a treat for the eye, but if that's what you want, be prepared to put in the time it takes to maintain it. Think about how much time you want to spend cutting the lawn, watering plants, and trimming trees. If you're up to the task, the rewards will be apparent to you every time you step out of your house. If you prefer the zero-maintenance approach, stone has a very appealing look for water features and patio spaces that leave you with very little grass to mow.