Front Yard Landscape

Sep 2 18:53 2011 John Greyling Print This Article

Did you know that a well thought-out front yard landscape is worth more in terms of value of your house than a kitchen or bathroom remodeling?

Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-priority:99; mso-style-qformat:yes; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:10.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman",Guest Posting"serif";} This should be a compelling reason to start today on a comprehensive plan to fix what’s wrong in your yard. Here are five top things to do that are inexpensive, relatively easy, and will improve the look of your property overnight.

  • Clean up the mess. Call in rubble remover and get rid of all the junk. Rake and de-thatch the lawn. Sweep the walks and driveway. Wash the windows. Fix or replace rattling windows and doors. Apply varnish to window frames to brighten them up. Sweep the roof. Clean the gutters. Paint the trim of the house if you can’t afford to do the whole house. If you have pets, pick up the dog poop once or twice a day.
  • Invest in detailing. Get a hose reel if you don’t already have one so that the water hose is not always tangled up in a heap in the yard. Replace the water spigot with a nice shiny one. Buy a nice address marker to hang on the house. Replace the old mailbox with one that is large and sturdy enough.
  • Take a good look at the front door. Does it need to be varnished? Do you need a peephole so you can check first before you open the door? Clean the glass portions of the door. Clean the porch. Add a doorbell or an attractive door knocker. Find a season-appropriate wreathe to hang on the door. Polish brass fittings once a week. Buy a new welcome doormat in an attractive style. Put some clay pots with geraniums and impatiens a short distance from the door to make the entryway attractive. If that isn’t viable, perhaps a hanging fern is more suitable.
  • After you have done all this, your front yard landscape will look much better, and you might not even want to continue. Still, continue the process and analyze the bones or permanent structures in the yard, meaning the trees, larger shrubs, driveway that would be left if everything was stripped away. Stone or brick walls and well-placed trees can add 5% to the value of your house. Trees and large shrubs are also a buffer against noise. All plants should visually lead the visitor to the front door. Incorporate some landscape lighting, which should be subtle and inviting and not look like an airport runway.
  • Finally, there are the plants. Keep in mind that the main function of your front yard landscape is to frame the house and guide people to the door in a pleasing way. You can choose formal or informal, or go with a natural or wildlife landscape, but beware that these are not always the most well kept looking gardens around unless done really well. With a big yard, English style gardens are wonderful. Don’t forget perennials and bulbs in your plan as many are low-maintenance and provide excellent color and form year after year.

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