I remember when I first moved to Florida, looking at the landscaping and thinking it was all so new… the grass looked different than I was accustomed to, the planting different, the soil different… I didn’t know where to start. One thing most of us can agree on is that we like a beautiful yard… but how to get (and maintain) one can be a tougher equation. Certainly, outsourcing the entire job is one option. However, some people find lawn work to be a great outlet.
For those that wish to actively engage in their landscaping (or those that just want to know enough to watch over others doing it), here are some tips:
UPFRONT PLANNING: Take the time to develop a plan for the space. What do you want it to look like? How do you want the space separated/partitioned if at all?
LOOK AROUND: Drive by some homes that have plants that you like. Take pictures and stop by your local nursery to ask about the plants (type, upkeep/maintenance, size potential, soil compatibility, hardiness, disease prone, drought resistant, etc).
COST: Work up a tentative plan on what plantings (and any labor) would cost of initial install but also for ongoing maintenance. Some plants require more care and oversight.
OUTLOOK: Sometimes what looks good initially takes on a life of it’s own after it has grown. That cute little bush may look like a beast in a year. Make sure that you are considering the ultimate size of plantings in your spacing and layout.
HOA/COUNTY REQUIREMENTS: Be sure to inquire about any local guidelines that are in place and must be adhered to. You would hate to have to remove something after it is planted. Many communities have an architecture committee that would need to review the landscaping plans before any significant modifications.
Here are some additional thoughts to help you with your planning:
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