Spring is the best time to reassess your landscaping plan. Is there unused space in your yard? Do you wish your property didn’t require as much maintenance every weekend? If so, don’t let another beautiful Chattanooga season go by. It’s time to make a landscaping master plan.
Step 1: Take inventory
First, walk around your property. Note how your house sits on the lot, where your garage, tool shed, deck, pool or other structure is and what plants you have. Think about what you’ll need in order to enjoy your yard. Is it more trees for shade, more grass to play in, a flower or herb garden for cutting, or just reworking an area that takes too much time to maintain? Once you know what you want, it’s time to start thinking about the plants you’ll need.
Step 2: Select the right plants
A healthy, lush and vibrant lawn or garden starts with your choice of plants. Choose trees, flowers, shrubs and other plants that are native to or grow well in East Tennessee and North Georgia. Consult with a landscaper or visit your local garden center, arboretum or botanical garden for advice and ideas.
Step 3: Get to know your yard
Take note of the areas around your property that get full sun versus shade and the areas of excessive moisture from rain versus higher, dry areas. Plan accordingly. For example, plan a nice sitting area in the shade and the children’s play area in a dry area. In addition, take a sample of the dirt in your yard to a county extension agent or garden center and ask them to determine the pH and chemical composition of your soil. Your soil’s characteristics will have a significant impact on what you will be able to grow successfully.
Step 4: Add shape and texture
Two key elements of a beautiful garden are shape and texture. Think of your landscape as a photograph or painting framed by plants. Larger trees and plants belong in the back of your yard, medium-sized shrubs and flowers go in the middle of the visual field and short, smaller plants go in the front. To give shape to your garden, select a variety of plants with different shapes and sizes.
To find a skilled landscape architect, visit the Home Builders Association of Greater Chattanooga at www.HBAGC.net.