A front yard is the grassy portion of land between the front of your house and the street. The main dominant utilitarian features of the front yard include a recreation area and decorative features. You have to landscape your front yard for display. Some of the common features in the front lawn include yard shrines, garden gnomes. The primary focus of this article is front yard landscaping ideas.
How to Prepare a Front Yard for Landscaping before Introducing New Plants
The preparation process is imperative if you wish to have a successful front yard landscaping project. First, you need to do an evaluation and make an inventory of the permanent structures of your front yard and map how you will place them. You also have to remove any weeds, dead plant life, rubbish, and debris from your lawn. Some of this matter includes vegetable and food waste, woody materials, fallen leaves, unnecessary rocks, household and hazardous waste, animal waste and plastic materials among others. You also need to remove all weeds from your front lawn before planting.
Make sure you prune any plant that will remain as part of the lawn. The pruning tool and technique varies depending on the condition and type of the tree. Pruning will allow enough sunlight to get to the ground for your new plants. You should also remove any infected plants before planting your grass to avoid transmission of diseases. You could also consult a professional to treat the plants if you don’t want to eradicate them.
Remove all hardscape or soft scape features that don’t fit in your landscaping project. Soft scape features comprise of vegetation such as trees, plants, and bushes. On the contrary, hard scape features comprise of retaining walls, foundations, and paving. Make sure you consult a professional while removing hardscape features if you don’t have the required experience and knowledge.
You can also use a sod cutter to remove old grass and roots. It’s advisable to till the depth of your yard to approximately 8 inches deep. After tilling and removing all rocks, use a yard roller to smooth your lawn. If you have to use irrigation in your landscaping project, make sure you determine the water pressure of your home. Let your irrigation line to fit your water service by finding out the water service flow. It will assist you to determine the areas that your irrigation system will cover.
How to Prepare the Drainage of the Front Yard
Poor drainage cannot support a healthy and green lawn. The yard should only retain the water that your yard requires. One thing you need to look at is whether water sits in your lawn for several hours or days after rainfall. You cannot maw over very wet areas and it may also cause a leakage in your basement.
If landscaping around your causes a basin of water, you can solve the problem by extending the down spout. It’s paramount to know the source of the water before you begin to dig trenches of taking any drastic actions to solve this problem. Some of the drainage problems may require very simple solutions. The solutions may vary from one case to another and that’s why you need a drainage plan. All you need to ensure is that your front yard has proper drainage.
Establish the Order of Your Front Yard
You can give your front yard some order by limiting the number of species of trees, shrubs, and flowering plants. Do not target more than ten perennial species; one or two types of trees and two to three different types of shrubs.
It is very tempting to purchases new plants that catch your eyes but you should limit this temptation when it comes to the front yard. Your landscape will hold together well when you use fewer plant species. There is no need to appear as if you have several different small gardens that dot the yard. Make sure you plant the like species I groups and repeat it in the entire garden.
Aim at planting beds that are big enough to accommodate the mix of plants you desire. The best bet is to plant beds that span at least half the width of your house. You can also keep the bed in a pleasing scale with your house by clearing any beds that extends from your home to the roadway or sidewalk. Filled with shrubs and anchored by a tree, the large beds should not be labor intensive. In fact, you may find them requiring less maintenance than other lawns.
Make Sure the Front Yard Flows
Make sure you repeat the textures and forms of the plants to unify the plantings. You can direct visitors to your front yard by planting bold and blooming perennials near the road walk or sideways. Repeat the planting along the entry walkway, close to halfway between your house and the roadway, and also close to the house.
Try to Frame Your Door
You can make your front door to be a focal point and steer design lines towards that direction. The greatest way to lead the eye to the front door is through the walkway. Try and create a walkway that is at least 4 feet and easy to identify for it to frame the front door. Curving walkways are very pleasing and offer the visitors a joy to traverse. However, you should keep your door way in view as you meander the paths.
Grass Type and Weather Conditions
The success of your landscaping project also depends on the type of grass you grow in your lawn. As a general guide, you need to grow warm season grass in southern areas and cool season varieties in northern areas. You can grow both types of grass in the transition areas as long as you provide them with proper care.
Creeping grass varieties such as Bermuda, Bluegrass, and most warm season grass types spread by below or above ground runners. Most of these creeping types are prone to thatch. Bunch grasses like ryegrass and fescue spread from the crown of the crop. You can ensure that the grass survives and you protect the crown by mowing high.
You cannot plant a front yard without putting into consideration the prevailing weather condition. The first step should be to identify the best type of grass. Some of the cold season grasses include Bent grass, Blue grass, Perennial Rye grass, Fine Fescue, and Tall Fescue. Warm season grass includes Bahia, Bermuda, Centipede, St. Augustine, and Zoysia. You can use a grass selector to determine the best species to grow in your region.
Plan for the Interests of the Entire Year
Take note of the quite garden months of February, January, November, and December while designing the landscape of your front yard. Most visitors will knock your door during these holiday filled months because they find themselves in righteous bloom shows during the summer.
Use ever green shrubs and trees to add texture and form throughout the year. Plant a few breeders and continuously developing dwarf and small trees retain their compact nature for some period with minimal pruning requirements. Shrubs and trees that produce wildlife food is another great source that may interest you during the winter. This will allow you to enjoy a vibrant show as birds come in to crabapple your trees and dine on those colorful fruits.
Lawn plants like any other crops require enough nutrients. As you prepare the yard, it’s advisable to include enough compost in the soil. Such decomposing organic materials add a lot of nutrients to your ground. However, you can also use synthetic and lawn fertilizers to prevent invasive pests and weeds, strengthen roots, and promote lush growth.
You can find several types of lawn fertilizers in the marketplace. Most of them consist of three major nutrients which include potassium, phosphorus, and nitrogen. Nitrogen plays a critical role in the leafy growth of the plants. However, applying too much can lead to excessive growth of the leaves, discoloration and yard burn.
The most common lawn fertilizers include liquid forms and granule, which come in organic and synthetic blends. You can also make a choice between slow and fast release fertilizers and blends that have pre-emergent controls to fight weeds and crab grass. Use a broadcast spreader to apply granule fertilizer. You need a device that you can pull and push around the yard as you distribute fertilizer evenly within the yard. It’s advisable to use a spreader because concentrating a lot of fertilizer in one place can kill the grass.
It is paramount to meet all the watering needs of your yard in the most effective way. You need to understand the best watering schedules and times. Water is essential to lawns but too little or too much can harm them. You can set up the right conditions for diseases by running the sprinkler throughout the night. In addition, light watering may cause your plants to grow shallow roots which expose your lawn to a lot of trouble during hot conditions. You have to supply your grass with enough water depending with the prevailing climatic conditions.
There are tips you can use to control these pests before you apply pesticides. First, most of them like hiding in tall grass. Make sure you trim the grass to the required level. Most of these pests prefer a moist environment and hence you need to avoid over watering the yard. Keeping your yard clean will also keep away some pests. You can also welcome predators to your yard by keeping the grass short.