The landscape and garden around your home are important to the value of your property, adds aesthetic appeal, and make your time outdoors more enjoyable. Given all the benefits of having a well-maintained garden and landscaping, it is essential to know how to care for your plants, shrubs, and trees.
If you are installing landscaping or a garden for the first time, the most critical decision is how much time, and energy are you willing to invest? Do you want something simple, hardy, and easy to maintain? Or, are you a seasoned gardener who wants a lavish garden? Once you determine how much time you want to invest, decide on what plants best suit your needs. Take into account your soil, climate, and the time it will take your landscape to mature.
If you bought a home with established an established landscape, or a home garden, then you may want to know the best way to maintain what you already have. The first step is to walk around your property with a notebook and write down every type of tree, shrub, and plant you have. If you can’t identify them, take a picture. You can use Google reverse image search to identify the plant or tree. Take notes of any immediate maintenance that needs to be done. Are there sick or dead growths? Those need to be removed as soon as possible. Diseases can spread rapidly among plants and shrubs, so remove any diseased plants as quickly as possible.
If you plan to do any new planting, know what time of year is best in your region. The early spring, after the last frost, is generally the best time to plant any new shrubs or trees. Garden plants vary by region and zone, so research what you want to plant. Now that you have an idea of what you have or want to have let’s discuss the best way to maintain your home garden and landscape.
- Consider simplifying your home garden and landscaping by using flower beds and borders with similar plants. You can use differences in color in various areas to add visual appeal. Using the same or similar plants make maintenance more straightforward as the plants should all require the same care.
- When adding any new planting, make sure you leave enough room for mature growth. It is easy to overcrowd your space when not accounting for how a plant or shrub will look when it reaches maturity.
- Consider putting in an irrigation system. There are low-cost options available, and they can save you time and money, especially if you are away frequently and have to pay someone to water your garden. If you do water by hand, be careful to not over-water. Watering is usually required no more than once or twice a week. Avoid watering the leaves and plant heads. Gently spray water into the soil around the stem and roots of the plant.
- Densely planted beds will discourage weed growth, as does the use of mulch. Weeding on a weekly basis will keep the task easy. You will catch any weed growths before they have time to proliferate.
- If you have an outdoor patio or entertainment area, consider planting lavender. It is an easy maintenance plant that comes back year after year. The aroma is pleasing and relaxing, and, most importantly, it acts as a natural insect repellant.
- If low maintenance is essential to you, consider crushed stone beds. They require almost no maintenance and add visual interest to your yard.
- To winter-proof, your lawn, remove all leaves from the ground in the fall. Leaves decompose and can damage your grass, leaving an unattractive mess.
- Prune shrubs and trees in the early spring. Do not over prune. Let your shrubs develop into their natural shape to cut down the amount of time you spend pruning. For the rest of the season, only prune unruly shoots or dead limbs.
- Consider mulch around all your borders, trees and shrubs. Mulch is attractive, has a pleasing smell, prevents weed growth, and helps plants maintain their moisture balance. Mulch is an inexpensive way to make things look tied together.
The above list provides easy ways to help keep the landscape and garden of your home healthy and attractive. The goal of plants and trees in your outdoor space is to add to your enjoyment of your home. Keep this in mind when deciding what to plant. In addition to aesthetics, you want to make sure your design and ideas match the time investment you want to make. You might also want to consider that well-done, but easy to maintain landscaping adds to the resale value of your home.