Thursday, February 13, 2014

Landscape Design...Less is More!

Have you ever driven through a residential neighborhood and wondered why some landscapes are really appealing and why others confuse you?  One reason might be that people are trying to do too much with their design.  I used to be into complex designs, but it was so hard even having had 3 years of College education in this field.  I remember designing our first homes front yard design.  I wanted it to be a big showcase for what I could do.  I bought tons of different plants, literally took out half of the existing grass, and started what would become a very "high maintenance" garden. 
        The fact was, our front yard already looked quite nice.  The grass was nice and green, we had two nice flowerbeds, and a nice beautiful Honey locust tree as the focal point.  Looking back, I really didn't need to add much to the existing design except for beefing up the existing flowerbeds a little.
This is really key with front yard landscapes.
        Going with the "form follows function" rule of thumb, front yard design is really more about creating a nice simple landscape that accentuates your home.  The backyard is where you will end up having more "outdoor rooms."  This is where you will have more elements in your design.  For the front yard, just keep it simple.  Keep your flowerbeds around the foundation of your home.  Add another small flowerbed with a nice tree that is in proportion with your house.  You don't want a Poplar in front of a 1 story home, or a huge Maple.  Stick to a 25' or smaller tree. 
       Make sure you don't choose too many plants.  Too many plants will only confuse things.  I prefer to stick to no more than 7 different plants for the front yard design.  One to three trees at most
,  a couple of your favorite bushes, a few different type of flowers, and then a nice focal piece. 
         I promise if you do this, your landscape will look nice and clean, won't be confusing, will be easy to maintain, and most importantly will add to the appeal of your home!  Keep it Simple!

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