Top 10 Landscaping Tips You Need to Know

Landscaping is more than a nice-to-have—it’s a must-have for any homeowner looking to boost curb appeal and increase property value. A well-designed landscape can transform a property’s overall look and make your home more inviting, relaxing, and enjoyable to live in.

This blog post will serve as your go-to guide for all things landscaping. We’ll dive into the key factors that influence successful landscape design and then provide you with our top 10 landscaping tips that will make your yard the envy of the neighborhood.

So, whether you’re a seasoned gardener or just starting out, these tips will help you create a beautiful, functional outdoor space that you’ll love coming home to.

What to Consider in Your Landscape Design?

Prior to starting any landscape design project, you should conduct a thorough site assessment. You need to understand the existing conditions of your yard before you start selecting plants and planning layouts. What type of soil do you have? In what condition is your lawn? Is your site sloped or level? Are there trees on the property, and how are they situated? How much sun and shade does each area get throughout the day?

Answering these questions will give you important insights into what plants will thrive and how to best structure your outdoor space.

But it’s not just about the practicalities—the best landscapes feel like an extension of the homeowner’s personal taste. So, your landscape design should reflect your personal style and preferences.

Do you love the lush, tropical look or prefer a more minimalist, modern aesthetic? Are you a fan of vibrant colors or a more monochromatic palette?

Top 10 Landscaping Tips You Need to Know

Form Follows Function

Functionality is also a key factor in any landscape design. How do you want to use your outdoor space? Is it a place for relaxation, with a cozy seating area and water feature? Maybe it’s a space for entertaining, with a patio and fire pit for gatherings. Or perhaps you need a combination of both, with areas dedicated to different uses.

Defining the purpose of your landscaping project will help guide your design decisions. It will also help you determine how much time and money you want to spend on the project. So, with this information in mind, let’s dig into our top 10 landscaping tips for creating a beautiful, functional, low-maintenance landscape.

Form Follows Function

Top 10 Landscaping Tips

1. Start With a Plan

It might seem tempting to just start planting, but taking the time to create a detailed landscape design plan will save you a lot of time and frustration in the long run. Sketch out your space, decide on the placement of key features like paths, patios, and water features, and then select plants that complement your vision.

Creating a plan will serve as a roadmap for your landscaping project, keeping you focused and on track. This will also help you stay within your budget and avoid costly mistakes. Few things are more frustrating than realizing you’ve made a mistake halfway through a project and having to tear up a section of your lawn to fix it. There’s something to be said for the old carpenter’s adage: measure twice, cut once.

Start With a Plan

2. Choose the Right Plants

The success of your landscape depends on selecting plants that are well-suited to your site’s conditions and your personal preferences. Do some research on different types of plants, paying attention to their sunlight, soil, and water needs.

Look for drought-tolerant options if water conservation is a concern. When creating your garden beds, choose plants that are suited to your region and climate. You can find a list of plants suited to different climates here.

If you’re looking at new plants for your garden, it’s probably best to select flowers, shrubs, and trees that won’t significantly increase the amount of yard work required or the amount of mulch and water necessary to maintain the landscape.

Consider using a mix of evergreens, perennials, and annuals for year-round interest and color. Remember, the key to a low-maintenance landscape is choosing plants that will thrive with minimal effort from you.

Choose the Right Plants

3. Focus on a Focal Point

Every great landscape design has at least one central feature that draws the eye and adds visual interest. This could be a stunning tree, a unique sculpture, or a vibrant flower bed. Decide what will be the foundation or “star” of your yard and design the rest of your space around it. A focal point gives your landscape a sense of purpose and draws people in.

Focus on a Focal Point

4. Don’t Forget the Soil

Healthy plants start with healthy soil. Before you start planting, take some time to amend your soil. Work in compost to improve drainage, aeration, and nutrient availability. The better the quality of your soil, the healthier and more resilient your plants will be. Good soil promotes strong root systems, which in turn leads to sturdier plants that are better able to withstand pests and diseases.

Don't Forget the Soil

5. Water Wisely

Overwatering is one of the most common mistakes in landscaping. While plants do need water to survive, too much can lead to root rot and other problems. Install a drip irrigation system to deliver water directly to the roots, where it’s most needed.

Consider using rain barrels or other methods to collect and reuse rainwater. This will allow you to use less water, reduce your water bill, and help the environment.

Water Wisely

6. Incorporate Hardscape Elements

Patios, decks, walkways, walls, and other hardscape features not only add functionality to your landscape but also contribute to its aesthetic appeal. These elements create defined spaces and provide places to relax, dine, or entertain. When designing your hardscape, think about the flow of movement through your yard and how these features will guide people’s interactions with and within the space.

Also, consider incorporating large, ornamental rocks, which can be a stunning addition to any landscape design. They serve as natural focal points, drawing the eye and adding a sense of depth, naturalness, and texture.

Whether used to create a rock garden, build a rock wall, or simply as standalone features, these rocks come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and colors to suit any aesthetic. Plus, they require minimal maintenance, making them an excellent low-effort, high-impact choice for busy homeowners.

Incorporate Hardscape Elements

7. Mix Textures and Heights

A successful landscape design relies on a mix of different plant types, textures, and heights to create depth and visual interest. Taller plants and trees provide structure and create a sense of depth, while shorter plants and ground covers add color and fill the space.

For year-round appeal, incorporate both evergreens and deciduous plants. Consider the different growth rates of your plants and how they will look together as they mature.

Mix Textures and Heights

8. Consider the Seasons

A well-designed landscape should provide interest and beauty throughout the year. To achieve this, we recommend planting a mix of annuals, perennials, and evergreens to ensure something blooms or looks green at all times. You can also incorporate plants with interesting foliage and textures that will still look good even when they’re not in bloom.

Important factors to consider include the different seasons and how your landscape will evolve. Will your mix of trees, shrubs, and flowers look great all year round? What will happen in the fall? Will there be something of interest in your garden during the winter? Which spring blooms will carry through to summer? Which summer blooms will survive the heat?

Select a collection of plants that offer visual interest to your yard through each of the seasons.

Consider the Seasons

9. Manage Pests and Weeds Proactively

A healthy landscape is less susceptible to pests and diseases. Start with healthy plants, good soil, and the right mix and amount of nutrients for growth and strength. Then monitor your yard regularly for signs of problems. Catching issues early allows for more effective treatment.

Use natural pest control methods like insecticidal soaps or beneficial insects whenever possible. Pull weeds by hand before they have a chance to gain a real foothold in your yard. A well-maintained landscape will require less overall intervention.

No Need to Be Weed-Weary

Keeping weeds under control is crucial for a healthy, attractive landscape. Start with preventive measures like mulching, which suppresses weed growth by blocking sunlight and preventing seeds from germinating. Add landscape fabric under the mulch to further inhibit weed development. Planting densely reduces open spaces where weeds can take root.

For mechanical weed control, regular hand-pulling is effective for small areas. Weeding tools make the task easier. Consistent maintenance prevents weeds from establishing deep roots.

If chemical control is necessary, choose selective herbicides for targeted weed elimination. Pre-emergent herbicides can be applied before weed seeds germinate to create a soil barrier, while post-emergent herbicides treat actively growing weeds without harming desirable plants.

Manage Pests and Weeds Proactively

10. Maintain your landscape

Regular care is key to a thriving landscape. Water your plants consistently but not too much. Fertilize as needed but don’t overdo it. Prune plants to promote healthy growth and maintain their desired shape and size.

Mulch around plants to conserve water, suppress weeds, and improve soil quality. Take the time to clean up debris and dead leaves regularly. With proper maintenance, your landscape will flourish and provide years of enjoyment.

Maintain your landscape

Put These 10 Tips to Use in Your Landscaping Projects

The beauty of landscaping lies in its ability to transform a yard into a personal oasis and enhance the overall appeal of a home. By following these top 10 landscaping tips, homeowners can create a thriving outdoor space that reflects their personal style and needs.
From starting with a solid plan to selecting the right plants for the local climate, every step contributes to a healthier, more vibrant landscape. Don’t underestimate the power of hardscape elements like patios and water features to elevate the functionality and aesthetic of your yard.
And remember, a beautiful landscape is about more than just pretty plants – it’s about creating a space that brings you joy and inspiration. As spring arrives, now is the perfect time to start planning your landscaping projects. Begin with a fresh perspective and these inspiring ideas, and watch as your yard comes to life.
So what are you waiting for? Get started on your landscaping journey and see the transformation for yourself!

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Put These 10 Tips to Use in Your Landscaping Projects

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Stephanie Ferner

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