Every neighborhood has that one yard. You know the one – beautiful lawn, a variety of trees and flower-beds bursting with color from spring until fall. How do they do it? What do they know that you don’t? While, indeed, some people seem to be born with a green thumb, the truth is anyone can have a beautifully landscaped yard with a little study and a lot of patience.
Here are some basics to get you started:
Know your soils: The ground beneath your feet is your yard’s source of nutrition. If it’s too high or too low in key nutrients or the pH factor is off-balance, your plants could suffer. Consider regular soil testing. Soil make-up is also important. Some plants will grow better in clay (which dominates this region), while others require well-drained, loamy soils.
Find your lawn’s water need: It’s no secret, most home-owners use too much water in their yard. Slow the Flow offers a free water-check program to evaluate your lawn’s actual water needs and help you set a schedule that’s both productive and water-efficient.
Control the pests: From grubs to voles, invaders in your lawn and garden can be the your yard’s downfall if not kept at bay. There many eco-friendly options available to protect your yard from a pest take-over.
Know your climate zone: Picture this – you fall in love with the “perfect” plant. You bring it home and plant it only to find that after a long-cold winter it has died. Not every plant is cut out to survive in our climate. Understand our climate zone (zone 7) will help you choose perennials that can weather the tough conditions and add beauty to your yard year-after-year.
Group plants by water needs: Some plants have high water needs while others can grow without any additional moisture. Placing plants with high water needs next to ones with low intake makes your job harder than necessary. There are a large variety of beautiful plants available with very low, low or moderate water needs. You can have the yard you’ve always dreamed of while still protecting our valuable resources. Visit the Conservation Garden Park to learn more.
Plan for color: If you want blossoms throughout the growing season, you need to plan ahead. Some plants flower in the spring, while others are summer or fall bloomers. Intermix a variety of these plants for color from spring through fall.
It’s a year-round job, but with a little planning and dedication, yours can be “that” lawn on the block!