Each year Garden Design Magazine comes out with their top ten list of landscape trends for the upcoming year. Over the next few weeks we will be highlighting a different trend. Next up? Notable first impressions.
Creating a noticeable first impression upon arriving at your home is an important way to say “Welcome!” Most people are familiar with the term “curb appeal” at this point. For those unfamiliar the term refers to the general attractiveness of your home when viewed from the street. Curb appeal is important as it shows your property is contributing to your community. It also increases the value of your home.
What many do not realize is that increasing your curb appeal does not have to break the bank. Assessing which areas are weak and what areas are strong is your first step in creating a great first impression. From there you can upgrade as your budget allows. During landscape consultations we take a look at your foundation plantings. Do some plants need removed and replaced? Can other be saved with a little trimming and maintenance? We always try to salvage what we can and often to do not to remove all the plants in a foundation planting. We may even be able to reuse things by dividing or transplanting.
Some curb appeal items can be a matter or safety. Are your shrubs getting too big or close to power lines? Is a heaved or cracked sidewalk creating a trip hazard? Start with fixing what you HAVE to, then move on to fixing what you WANT to. Some easy updates that can make any front entry more charming include lighting, adding more color and complimenting the architecture of your home. Let’s start with lighting.
Photo credit: PK.Photography on Visualhunt.com / CC BY-NC-ND
Adding lighting to the front of your home is visually pleasing, but can be a safety issue as well. You want to be sure that walkways and porches are well lit so that guests coming to your home can see well as they approach. By adding some lighting along your pathway you visually direct visitors to the front door. There are many solar and traditional lighting options available to meet any budget. Try to incorporate the lighting in a way that highlights certain features such as notable plantings or transitions in the ground plane. Remember to avoid creating the “runway” effect of lights all in a row that mimics lights on a runway. Designers like to include lights that enhance ambiance and create a safe environment while avoiding the look of a lighted arrow pointing directly at your door.
Adding more color is a fun way to give a little personality to your landscape. By picking perennials and annuals in a simple color scheme you can add a little pop to your front yard. Try picking no more than 2-3 colors and incorporating them in different ways. How about a nice container at the top of your front stairs that coordinates with the perennials in your landscaping. For example – if you love the Salvia in your front island maybe add a little purple to your entry container. This way that bit of color is picked up in different ways. Try to avoid a riot of 100 different colors in the front yard. Keep things simple and welcoming, but feel free to go wild in more personal spaces such as the backyard or deck.
Photo credit: Katrinitsa on Visualhunt.com / CC BY-NC-SA
Our last suggestion is to compliment the architecture of your home with your foundation plantings. A simple rule of thumb is look at the home – keep shrubs below the height of windows and go for more height on the corners of your home. Try for symmetry as it keeps things looking balanced. Frame the front entry to create a focal point.
Need additional help? We love to meet clients and discuss ways to up their “curb appeal”. Call for a consultation today!
For a full list of the trends visit: https://www.gardendesign.com/trends/2019.html