15 Easy Landscaping Tips to Add
Appeal and Value to Your Home
Perhaps because people are innately drawn to nature, or because we’re all driven on some level by aesthetics, creating a beautiful landscape around your home is one of the most beneficial things you can do to up its value.
Landscaping can increase your property value by 7 percent to 14 percent, and make it sell five to six weeks faster!
Improved landscaping can increase your property value by 7 percent to 14 percent, according to the American Nursery & Landscape Association. Meanwhile, if you’re looking to sell your home, landscaping can get your home sold five to six weeks faster than homes without it (a definite plus in today’s housing slump).
What’s more, landscaping does not have to be a huge investment. There are a number of simple tricks that can add major curb appeal to your home — without breaking the bank. The end result is a relatively low investment for a high return — not only in market value of your home but also in the joy you’ll get from beautifying your property.
15 Simple Landscaping Tips for Your Home
Now’s the perfect time to get your yard in shape, so set aside a few weekends, use the tips below, and you’ll be on your way to a beautifully landscaped yard that you can be proud of.
- Make a plan. Draw your yard on a piece of paper, then plot out what should go where. This will help you to get a mental picture of the finished yard, and ensure that you have space for everything. Remember, complete landscaping could take years to complete, so having a plan will keep you on track.
- Choose plants for all seasons. As you choose plants, pick some that will flower in the spring, summer and fall, along with varieties that will be attractive in the winter, so you’ll always have some visual interest, no matter what the season.
- Use perennials and annuals. Choose perennials that you know you’re going to love for the long haul (these will come back each year). Annuals can be a bit more daring and trendy, because they only last for one season. Further, perennials only bloom for a certain period, so adding in some annuals gives you more color for the summer.
- Think about color. You’ll want to add some splashes of color throughout your landscape. Choose some brightly colored perennials that will return year after year, and also choose different colored bushes, flowering bushes and trees (even plants and trees with just foliage come in a wide range of colors).
- Add depth. When planting flowerbeds, choose taller varieties for the back, shorter for the front and add a medium level in between. You can also plant a circular area this way, putting the tallest plants in the middle and working your way out.
- Trim your trees and bushes. Give your trees and shrubs regular “hair cuts” to keep them neatly shaped and well-manicured. (Think about the shape you want ahead of time, such as round, cone-shaped, square or more natural.) Along these lines, you should also keep your lawn neatly mowed.
- Add privacy and function. If you have neighbors close by, you can use evergreens and trees to create privacy and block views of other houses/unsightly areas. Evergreens also make excellent wind barriers, if you live in a particularly windy area. Meanwhile, if you want a shaded area or a canopy overhead, planting a large tree will be ideal (but should be avoided if you want to keep the area sunny and open).
- Cover unsightly areas. If there is an area in your yard that you don’t like (such as a gas meter or utility box), use bushes, perennials or small trees to hide it.
- Edge the beds. Edging the spots where your grass meets flowerbeds, mulch or gardens adds visual appeal. Use a clean straight line, or install a small decorative fence or stone lining to define the space.
- Watch your budget. Full-grown trees and plants are expensive, but you can greatly cut down your costs by buying smaller varieties (plants grow faster than you think) or looking for sales. Trees and other big-ticket items can even be purchased in the fall, when they’re likely to be discounted (and it’s not too late to plant them in the fall).
- Create “rooms.” If you’re working with a large, undefined space, adding “walls” to create separate spaces can add a lot of appeal. Do this by using hedges, trees, flowerbeds and arbors to act as barriers (and don’t forget to add a few pathways to connect them).
Remember, your home’s landscape is a work in progress. It will be completed in phases and you can always make new additions.
- Use groundcover. Groundcover is an excellent choice for covering large spaces or adding interest in between trees and bushes. It comes in many different colors and varieties, plus, it’s low maintenance and will keep weeds away.
- Keep in style with your house/local region. Your landscape should coordinate with your home (so if you live in a Cape Cod Style home you shouldn’t surround it with cactuses). Meanwhile, not every plant will thrive in every region, so choosing some native plants ensures that your landscape will thrive and blend in with your local environment.
- Keep maintenance in mind. If you know you don’t want to spend a lot of time maintaining your yard, choose low-maintenance bushes, trees and perennials, and leave the intricate flowerbeds, extensive annuals, rock gardens and ponds to those who live to garden.
- Plan your yard from all perspectives. The view of your home from the street is important, but so is your backyard and your view from inside the house. Keep all visual perspectives in mind as you plan your landscape.