Landscaping Your Home
Landscape Design By Lynn Derbyshire
It’s always a good time to add life to your outdoor living space.
Whether it’s a major project or the first of many future phases, beautifying your home requires thought, research and planning. This takes time. Think carefully about your family requirements and what you expect from the garden and how you will use it.
The hard landscaping such as the driveway, walkway and patio areas need to be considered. The overall landscape should link the hard and soft areas. Together they create harmony to give the garden a natural flow. There are both attractive and less attractive views in every landscape. Obvious faults need to be addressed using a combination of hard and soft landscaping solutions. Superior views should be enhanced whenever possible. Ask yourself: where is the entertainment area, how many people will I entertain, where will the children play, how will I achieve privacy through screening, and of course, how much maintenance am I willing to do. Once you have decided what is most important for you and your family, its time to incorporate your own personal style into the design. Whether it’s formal or informal, traditional or contemporary, your personal style will influence your selection of plants, hardscape materials and building techniques.
To create a good landscape specifically tailored to your needs, you should consider weight, balance and scale to compliment the architecture of your home and surroundings. Let the house influence the overall style of the landscape. Use details which will match your home; for example an archway over the front porch, you may wish to design a walkway to mirror or emphasis the front entrance. The material selection for the walkway should reflect the scale and balance of the entrance to create a natural setting.
The specimen plant material you select are the largest or most unique group of plants that frame your landscape year round. They may be evergreens or a unique clump form tree with exfoliating bark that provide winter interest. The form of each plant or group of plants is incorporated into the landscape to give additional weight, scale, colour and texture to the landscape. Most successful gardens include evergreens, broadleaf evergreens, conifers, deciduous trees, perennials and vines.
The growth habit of the individual plant determines if a particular plant is a specimen (one of a kind), used for mass planting, or ground cover. For example, a blue spruce could be used as screening, a maple tree for shade. Deciduous shrubs are most often used for mass planting, either grouped for weight or grouped for ground cover.
Gardens become extensions of your personality and add significantly to both the aesthetic and monetary value of your home. Landscaping is a significant investment, so careful planning is important to achieve the best result.
If you are hiring a professional, it’s always a good idea to invest some of your time viewing landscapes and gathering thoughts to decide what you like and dislike. For large scale properties, it’s wise to invest in the expertise of a Landscape Architect, especially for homes that have major grading, drainage or structural considerations. A Landscape Contractor with the credited education and experience is qualified to provide design services for mid-sized properties and the knowledge to install your dream garden from beginning to completion.
Add value to your property, hire a professional.
Gardens of Grandeur
Gardens of Grandeur
91 Berkley Rd.
Serving Cambridge, Kitchener, Waterloo, Guelph and beyond.
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