January is the perfect time to plan your lawn and garden projects for the year. By beginning now, you will get a head start and have more time to enjoy throughout the year. Whether this is the year to renovate your front yard or transform your backyard into an escape for relaxing, entertainment, or family fun, now is the perfect time to plan. Whatever you intend to do, you want to begin by looking at the project and the area, considering how much area you want to renovate and as well as how much time and money you want to spend.
Start with your Dream
Don’t hesitate to begin by listing your dream options. What are you trying to create – a comfortable grown-up retreat, a play area for the kids and their friends, or a deck or patio for entertaining your friends and family? Now, think about what you like – natural wood, brick pavers, native plants, flowers, or fruit trees. As you consider your options be sure to factor you budget into the mix as well as how much maintenance you truly want to do when the project is complete.
Look at Your Property and Space
This doesn’t mean a quick glance out the window, but a walk and serious look at the space you hope to transform. Take note of the elements you like and those you don’t. Next, list the things that can stay (healthy fruit trees, a historic magnolia) and those you want to get rid of (the decrepit deck, the all-consuming ivy), as well as anything that might need to be moved to a new location (trashcans, recycling bins, storage shed). You will also want to consider wildlife in the area when choosing plants, flowers, etc.
Know Your City and Homeowner Association Requirements
Many cities, towns, and communities have rules and regulations you need to adhere to as you complete your project. You will need to know if your fence is allowed in your neighborhood or if the new deck you are planning requires a permit. Once you know the requirements, stick by them or face fines and removal of your project.
Get Your Well-thought-out Plan on Paper
Now that you have considered all the options, it is time to get your plan onto paper. By drawing out your plan (hopefully to scale) you can get a better perspective on how it all flows together – from deck to patio to play area, to garage to lawn spaces, to gardens, and to walkways. Every space should flow logically into the next space, allowing people to move freely and easily. If you want to create separate areas consider using different ground coverings, elevations, and flower or plant beds for a more aesthetically pleasing look. In this part of the planning, you may want to bring in a professional landscape service to help you get the design done well.
Examine Your Design from the Inside to the Outside
Your lawn project, large or small, should be pleasing to look at from inside your home as well as outside. Looking at the project from inside the house helps you decide if the flow is right and still works with the things you need to do daily, like getting people in and out, taking out the trash, bringing in the groceries, and so on.
Next look at your design areas in the light of day. Is the play area going to be shaded at the right time or in direct sunlight all day long? You might need to make an adjustment. Are there areas that could use a little more drama? Consider more flowers, river rocks, or maybe an arbor.
Finally, step back and look at the whole design concept. Consider how it works with your home’s look. Does your design complement your home and vice versa? You may want to make some minor changes to keep the home and lawn areas looking cohesive as well as beautiful.
Once you are ready to begin planning your lawn and garden projects, call on the team at Xtreme Landscaping to aid you in transforming your outdoor living spaces for 2018.