Good landscaping can add to the value of a home. Poor landscaping, or the wrong types of plants, can kill a yard or make it look a lot less inviting, possibly causing the home’s value to drop.
Here are some landscaping mistakes to avoid as a homeowner:
Choosing Invasive Plants
Plants such as bamboo can be difficult to control and can quickly grow and overrun a yard. Invasive plants can overtake other plants and become harmful, as well.
Some drought-tolerant grasses—such as Mexican feather grass, fountain grass and pampas grass—can be too dry, becoming fire hazards.
A design on paper should be the start to any landscaping project so that you understand how much space you have. Measure the area twice.
It’s good to know what size foliage can fit in certain areas without overcrowding. For example, flowers should go in small spaces, not large shrubs. Taller plants look best in the back of an area with smaller plants in front.
Not Reading the Plant Tag
Most plants will have a tag that tells you how to care for the plant and how big it will get, among other things. Be sure to have enough space for the plants you’re buying.
Choking Trees and Plants
Putting soil and mulch around a tree can sound like a good idea, but this can lead to choking them by not allowing air to get to the root system.
Don’t plant trees too deeply or pile too much soil on top, and don’t over pack the topsoil with mulch, as it can suffocate a tree.
Too Much Gravel
Drought-tolerant landscaping can save you water and money, but those plants could die if you use too much gravel.
Gravel saves water, but it reflects heat toward nearby plants and also absorbs heat that can bake the roots of plants. Gravel can also get mixed into the underlying soil, making it hard to absorb rainwater. This can lead to hard, dry soil, making future planting difficult.
Artificial Grass Installation Problems
Artificial grass can be a great way to save on water, upkeep and other costs, while still having a lawn that looks close to real. Improper installation, however, can cut down on its lifespan or cause it to fall apart early.
Installing fake grass yourself isn’t impossible, but can be difficult. You may want to hire an expert.
A sub-base is important. Install it three inches below the finished grade as a way to prevent soil expansion from water, which could create an uneven surface on the artificial grass.