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7 Common Landscaping Mistakes to Avoid

A well designed and methodically installed and maintained landscape can bring charm to your home’s exterior and turn it into an oasis where you can relax with your friends on weekends. Spending some time in a peaceful garden every day is a great way to tame stress and maintain normal blood pressure. A beautiful garden can also provide food and shelter for animals, supporting the local ecosystem.



Unfortunately, landscaping mistakes are very easy to make. A landscaping mistake, no matter how minor it may seem, can affect the aesthetic appeal and functionality of your landscape and you may end up spending hundreds, even thousands of dollars to remedy the mistake. Here are some common landscaping mistakes every homeowner should watch out for. If you are in need of a landscaper in Santa Rosa, Gardenworks has you covered.

1. Planting too Close to the House

Planting trees and shrubs too near to your home can prove to be a grave mistake. As trees grow, their branches might come into contact with roofing materials, eventually damaging them. Similarly, the expanding roots of shrubs positioned close to the house can threaten the foundation's stability. Moreover, trees and shrubs placed too close to your home make it much easier for pests such as spiders and rodents to get inside! Place trees 15 to 20 feet away from your home. While smaller trees can be planted a bit nearer, within 15 feet, it's advisable to place larger trees at least 20 feet away from a house. Small shrubs should be planted at least two feet away from the foundation of a home. Place medium-sized shrubs at least three feet away from your home and tall shrubs at least four to five feet from your property.

2. Not Researching Plants, Flowers and Trees

This is one of the most common landscaping mistakes homeowners make. Homeowners should remember that not every plant is adapted to the local climate. The wrong plants for your yard can die within a few days after being planted and you may end up with a garden full of dead plants. Consult your local extension service about the right plants, trees, and shrubs for your garden. When in doubt, read the tags on plants before buying them to find out if they are suited to your area. Take the time to understand maintenance requirements. Consider natives as they are adapted to the local climate and need less water and fewer pesticide treatments to survive and thrive.

3. Failing to Consider a Yard’s Function

By ignoring how your family, guests, pets, and potential future buyers might utilize your yard you are setting yourself up for failure. If you fail to consider your yard’s functionality, you may end up planting a flowerbed in the kids' play area or shrubs where your gazebo should go. To avoid this mistake, compile a list of all the ways in which you and your family currently use the landscape as well as how you intend to use it upon the completion of your landscaping project. Ensure you consider the needs of everyone, including your pets. If your list contains especially distinct features that aren't easily removable, think about how they might influence future buyers' use of the yard. Such considerations could impact your property's sale potential in the future.

4. Failing to Consider Maintenance Requirements

Every homeowner should make regular landscaping maintenance a top priority. Periodic maintenance protects your plants and trees from diseases and keeps your landscape looking at its best all year round. The choices you make during landscape design and installation phases will influence the time and resources you'll invest in your yard's upkeep in the future. If, for example, you choose natives for your garden, you will spend less time maintaining them. Exotics, on the other hand, will require significantly more maintenance and frequent watering. Similarly, a natural grass lawn will require more work and water than an artificial grass lawn. A landscaper in Santa Rosa can help you make informed decisions during the landscape designing and installation phases. They can advise you on the right plants for your yard and ideal design features. The right plants for your yard can make maintenance a breeze, so you spend more time appreciating your garden and less time maintaining it.

5. Not Accounting for Wildlife

When planning a landscape design, it's important to account for the local wildlife. Come up with strategies to protect your yard from undesired wildlife and think about ways to attract beneficial wildlife to it. Be careful to avoid destroying bird habitats or blocking bird trails. Incorporate landscape features such as ponds and bird baths into your landscape design to attract birds and other pollinators to your yard. If there are too many deer in your area, consider planting bitter-tasting flowers in your yard. Once deer taste them, they are likely to stop visiting your property. To keep wild rabbits out, shelter your garden bed with a small fence.

6. Overreliance on Chemicals

Many newbie gardeners assume that routinely applying pesticides is essential to keep pests away and ensure healthy plant growth. Excess use of fertilizers can lead to environmental pollution and adverse health effects. If you fertilize your lawn too frequently, both pests as well as beneficial insects such as bees may perish. Consider natural alternatives such as manure, tree leaves, and bone meal to synthetic fertilizers.

7. Ignoring the Importance of an Erosion Control Plan

Many properties feature areas with gentle to steep inclines. If your home is situated on a slope, consider building a retaining wall or a drainage channel to prevent soil erosion. Add best plants for erosion control to the areas in your yard that are susceptible to erosion. If you are creating a new landscape, grade before installing landscape features. Develop and implement a solid erosion control plan that focuses on keeping your topsoil intact during natural events that cause erosion. Gardenworks is a reputable contractor with a team of landscapers serving Santa Rosa. Whether you want to create a new landscape or improve the design of an existing one, we can help. To make an appointment with a landscaping expert, call 707-857-2050.

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