There are few things that can increase the aesthetic value of your home more than a beautifully landscaped front yard. It is also something that is indicative of the unique personality of the homeowner. It should also convey a sense of warmth to visitors and naturally guide them to the front door. While this project may not be as simple as watering your lawn, it is one that can be accomplished by most anyone with a little patience and advanced planning. And the cost of landscaping your front yard doesn’t have to be prohibitive either. In fact, a home owner can often do the landscaping on their front yard for as little as two hundred dollars.
There are nine steps that a homeowner can take to landscape their front yard in a way that is both appealing and symmetrically correct. And most of the steps are cost effective and can be easily put into place.
Step One: Frame the house and create a point of interest
One of the primary things that a homeowner can do is to plant trees and shrubbery in a way that not only frames the boundaries of the front yard but also draws attention to the most important aspect of any house, the front door. This can be done by planting trees and shrubs equally on both sides of the house to keep visitors attention drawn to the center of the property line. It also should give an instinctive route that guest can follow to lead from the street to the front door.
Step Two: Select plants, flowers and shrubs that give the front yard a year round appearance
When choosing plants, flowers or shrubbery for your front yard, you want to make sure that you make selections that provide a beautiful landscape all year long. Use trees such as evergreens that maintain their appearance year round. Don’t just use plants and shrubs that bloom in spring and look dead in the winter. You should choose plants for each particular season. That way there is always a splash of color in your front yard, no matter the season.
Step Three: Keep it neat and clean
Nothing detracts from the beauty of your yard more than overgrown grass and irregular borders. Make sure that you keep the grass watered and cut, and also make sure that you keep a properly trimmed border. For most applications, a 1/2” trim around the yard will not only enhance the beauty of the property, but will also make it “pop.”
Step Four: Tie the walkway in with the other landscape elements
The main purpose of the walkway or the driveway is to provide a safe approach to the front door for visitors. But it can also be used to tie the various elements of the yard together. There are many materials that can be used for walkways which include gravel, brick, stone, wood and concrete. The most common material used by most people is gravel, but caution should be exercised when using this option. It is very important to keep a proper edge when using this material so it doesn’t “melt” in with the front of the yard.
Step Five: Use Accent Features
Accent features include bird baths, statuary and sun dials. While these accent features can really provide an interesting focal point for a visitor’s gaze, they are often overdone by homeowners. They should be used sparsely, or not used at all. This also goes for ornamental trees such as weeping willows. One or two in a yard can create an interesting focal point, but too many put together can give the yard a chaotic feel.
For more tips on choosing the correct plants and trees for your next landscaping project, you can check out the following websites:
1. Landscaping with Native Plants. This resource gives great information for choosing plants according to your region and the wildlife in your area.
2. Arbor Day Foundation Tree Guide. The Arbor Day Foundation gives great tips for choosing trees according to their individual characteristics and the climate where you reside.
There are also several YouTube videos which can give you additional ideas for sprucing up your front yard and combining various design elements. The following is a short list:
Landscaping Ideas for a Beautiful Yard : Edging Around a Flower Bed
Landscaping Ideas for a Beautiful Yard : Landscaping & Gardening Tips