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Old 12-09-2009, 03:41 PM   #1
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Any suggestions for next spring?


One thing I really want to do is some landscaping around my house. I don't quite have the imagination for it though so any suggestions?








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Old 12-09-2009, 04:44 PM   #2
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Any suggestions for next spring?


First, could you orient us as to north, south, etc.?

As for your question, what do you want to accomplish, or what do you like? Do you want shrubs, flowers? Do you like to garden or do you want it low maintenance?

And- what is your budget?

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Old 12-12-2009, 02:24 AM   #3
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I would get the property scaled and on to graph paper or into a free program for such things so you can visualize it that way. Over the winter, I would also hit your library and spend some time flipping through books to see if ideas come to you from the examples in them. A basic gardening book showing what plants will grow in your area would be a good investment too. As suggested, definitely establish a budget for this early on so you know how to phase expenditures.
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Old 01-21-2010, 05:00 AM   #4
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Any suggestions for next spring?


Some nice manicured, low level hedges would look good. They are easy to maintain especially for those with a large garden like yours. They corden off areas so you can have different themes throughout the garden etc. I got mine from http://www.hopesgrovenurseries.co.uk .
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Old 01-21-2010, 08:08 AM   #5
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Any suggestions for next spring?


Quote:
Originally Posted by jenhopes View Post
Some nice manicured, low level hedges would look good. They are easy to maintain especially for those with a large garden like yours. They corden off areas so you can have different themes throughout the garden etc. I got mine from http://www.hopesgrovenurseries.co.uk .

Are you affiliated with the site? I see hope is both part of your screen name and also in the website name. If so you really should disclose that in your post.
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Old 01-21-2010, 02:07 PM   #6
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Any suggestions for next spring?


Have you though of "editable landscapes"? Planting stuff you can eat? It's the new reality in gardening. I'm digging up all my ornamentals and planting fruit trees, berries, and container vegetable gardens.

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Old 01-21-2010, 03:00 PM   #7
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Any suggestions for next spring?


I would remove the soil that is touching your wooden porch and replace it with stone.
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Old 01-21-2010, 03:50 PM   #8
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Any suggestions for next spring?


Jen, a good suggestion, but I'm in Mich too and we can buy hedges right here from a couple different places. Don't have to have them shipped over from England.

(Assuming the "one-eyed wall" is on the north and faces the road.)
1) Plan the engineering first: Make sure there is good drainage(I'd advise overdoing this), main water lines/drain can be dug up, septic will be accessable by truck, etc., so you'll never have to dig plants or repair walls. Call Missdig and make sure those are known.
There is a natural depression in the front yard so a stone-lined pond could go there.

2). I like the "grand entrance" effect of a pinchpoint(not too narrow) near the road, which opens into a large yard. This can be created with walls, boulders, trees, statues, couple of rusty pickups on cinderblocks, or anything which sets off the drive.
If it's a very long drive it could be lined with ever-flowering trees(just dreaming of french chateaus here).

3). Agree with planning it on paper. Curves are good for letting the eye flow across the yard and highlighting areas. Make about 10-20 different senarios and be creative. Mabye later on you'll want to add another building or a hidden play area for kids or a pagoda.
I think a couple different "focus points" of flowerbeds looks good because you can walk through the yard and the shapes change. These should be planned from the perspective of the road and from interior views. Tall plants in back and groundcover in front and take note of the light requirements of plants.

4). Also agree with editiable landscapes. Peppermint, lavender, sage, montmorancy cherry tree(self flowering), etc. all produce food perrenially and look good.
Gardens usually do better on the south side.

I like the metal roof and huge garage, very nice. The house seems like it would be a little dark, so you might look into rebates for solar panels for lighting/winter heating.
Personally, I'd add a door, screen off that porch, and add a walk and flowerbed around it to make a gathering area for summertime afternoon reading.
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Old 01-22-2010, 06:04 AM   #9
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Any suggestions for next spring?


And why not plan on drip irrigation. Costs very little. Puts water just where you want it. Works in gallons per hour rather than gallons per minute like the end of your garden hose or conventionional sprinklers/irrigation. Also requires a fraction of the pressure needed for a sprinkler. Plants love it and develop nice, deep root systems. Since water is only where you want it, you are not supporting weeds when you water.

Love the idea of edible landscapes! I don't miss much about California but do miss fruit trees of all kinds and the herb garden I put in. Darn snails and slugs ruined any veges I ever tried but fresh oranges, lemons, limes, tangerines, apples, pears, apricots, plums, figs ...

By the way, if you are in Michigan and have some indoor space with natural light or can afford a grow light? Why not start some of your annual flowers and veges from seed now? Get some peat pots, potting soil, seeds and come April or May you will have your own home grown plants with roots out the side of the peat pots, ready to plunk in the ground! Don't waste money on the peat pellets. I have never had any luck with them. The process will help with Midwest winter depression. If you have at least younger kids, they will love seeing their own plants germinate and develop.

Glad you are thinking of mapping things on paper. Remember that you don't have to plunk stuff parallel to the house and fences and you should always plant far enough away from things to allow for the mature size of the plant/tree/shrub and to have enough space to get around it to prune and take care of it all. I was a landscape designer and not a landscape architect so needed one to sign off on my drawings at times. Mine was Japanese American and once I got used to the idea that he was moving things around on my drawings for good reason, I learned a lot.

One lesson he taught me early one. No square corners if you have lawns. Nice round corners make things so much easier and faster to mow. And minimize the lawn area. Even families with eight to fourteen kids will only play on so much of it. Not one will race to mow it in their teenage years? Lawns are the highest maintenance components of any landscape. Of course an acre of one sprawling in front of the mansion is the American dream but why? Makes no sense.

Put in nice, textured groundcovers, in place instead. You have beautiful evergreen and perrennial options in Michigan. If you get along with neighbors that have some nice, they will probably be willing to share some of theirs.

I say again. Your scaled out plan is going to make this workable for you. Do go ahead and plant some seeds for you annuals.

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