Gardening in the Garden City, a feature of the Senior's Review: Managing Your Gardens December 2007, January 2008 issue - written by Vito M. Pirri.
I suggest taking before pictures of your garden beds in early December. Then visualize what you would like to accomplish for early spring. Creativity and Imagination are two very important skills used in developing a spring garden, adding to your home’s curb appeal.
A quality landscaper will be able to understand your vision and should have the ability to create your visions. Your landscaper should also offer other suggestions to enhance your vision. He or she is skilled in all aspects of horticulture, such as planning the garden beds, to include trees, shrubs, bushes, roses, annuals, perennials, grasses or ground cover.
Your gardener can be very helpful in choosing what plants to locate in different garden beds, and know what plants would flourish in sun and shade, spring, summer and fall. Your colors should contrast the exterior look of your homestead adding great curb appeal to your property.
A good gardener will ask a lot of questions, and be a very conscientious listener, to give you what you like in plants and design. He or she will share the pride you have in your home’s outdoor living space. Ornamental grasses add much texture to a winter garden.
I would recommend that you source books on annuals, perennials, cedars and evergreens, ornamental trees, shrubs and bushes. Books on different types of roses you would like incorporated into your garden beds should also be reviewed at this time. You will be amazed what you will find today on the Internet.
Consider low maintenance gardens this coming spring. Mound gardens with adequate soil, landscape fabric and shredded or chip mulch (red, black or natural). Pea gravel, cocoa beans or stone may also be used.
In your spring planning, consider having garden beds edged with stone, brick, blocks or pressure treated timber boarders, or having sprinkler systems installed. Installing a walkway or a pressure treated or composite deck will add curb appeal and value to your home.
You may want to plan for low maintenance vinyl siding or vinyl fencing to be installed at your home in the early spring. Flowering Cabbage makes great fall and winter decorations. They can be mixed with English Ivy, Vinca Vine, or evergreen boughs for a pretty mixed container. In your garden beds, planting a holly bush, red twig dogwood, winterberry, burning bush or false bamboo will give you a wonderful colorful winter garden. By visualizing now, you will have a clear idea as to what your finished garden will look like in the spring. Don’t wait till spring to plan, you may feel rushed or disappointed at not being able to accomplish your vision..
Winter planters and holiday urns can also be added to your front entrance of your home for great Curb Appeal. Winter planters can be very colorful taking you through the holiday season and the winter months. Dwarf Alberta spruce, holy bushes, and English boxwood are very attractive plants that can be used in large container planters. Other materials for your holiday urns can be evergreen branches and fresh holly branches. You will get inundated with new products arriving at your garden center and you may get confused. Having a plan and a vision will help avoid havoc in accomplishing your new spring garden. An experienced gardener understands and respects the homeowner’s plants, perennials and trees. Many homeowners are equally attached to their garden, as they are to their children or pets. Your Landscaper should recommend contacts for all the trades spoken about in this article, to help make your outdoor space maintenance free and give you great curb appeal.