foundation-plantings-1There are a thousand ideas for designing front landscapes, but there are a few things that I try to follow when I am designing a front foundation.

Basics of front foundation planting.

  • Make sure there is a good evergreen basis. When you choose evergreen over deciduous you oftentimes give up the big pops of color. But I look at that green basis as the steady structure that sticks with you even when the winter sets in
  • Neatnik. Make it neat and orderly. Shoot for something that can be kept under control. Keep the major perennial and annual gardens in your living spaces, around your patios and throughout your yard–but limit it around the front. Perennials require maintenance to keep looking at their best. You want your front yard to be easy to keep up.
  • Groups. Onesies and twosies make a front bed look sloppy unless they are specimens.
  • Balance. That means something different to every person–but for me, balance means if you have a garage on the left side off setting the center of the house, try out a flowering tree or evergreen on the opposite corner to counter the weight. It means if the house is symmetrical, don’t fight it: keep a base that is symmetrical on both sides of the house and play with variety in the second layer.
  • Layer. Flat is not interesting. Make sure the plants at the back are going to grow taller than the middle row which will grow taller than the front row.
  • Have a plan. Avoid going to the nursery and filling your cart up with a wide variety of plants. Impluse costs a lot more in the long run with poor choices and insufficient quantity for impact.