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New Hampshire Landscaping Blog

GARDENS START WITH PLANNING

If you live here, you already know that New Hampshire Gardening can be a challenge. There are so many different environments in this state! Do you live on the seacoast, in the lakes region or in the mountains? All of these different areas will have different plant hardiness zones and special conditions to be aware of before you do anything! Any good garden starts with good planning, and NH gardening is no exception!

NH Landscapers are very aware of what grows well where you live, and have designers that specialize in customizing your landscaping to your own individual tastes, needs, and site requirements, so why not give one a call? They can help you with questions, or design your landscaping for you, as well as install it with professionalism.

Have you ever attempted to do your landscaping yourself, only to end up with a hodge-podge looking mess? Have you ever tried to install a patio, only to have it heave up on you the first winter? Or did your bed just end up being boring? NH Landscapers know the tricks to good garden planning. Sometimes, however, people enjoy trying their hand at their own garden planning. If you want to work on your own plan - if for nothing more than to have it be a great communication tool to your landscape designer, then try considering these thoughts. The first thing to do is make a complete assessment of what already exists on your property, and put it to scale on graph paper ( 1/8' or 1/10' scale usually works best).

This assessment will include such things as the following:

  • The house (include windows with heights from ground, hot vents, areas of heavy snow fall from roof, etc)
  • existing trees and shrubs (which ones to keep, move, or transplant) 
  • slopes
  • views (to keep or to block)
  • prevailing winds
  • sun and shade conditions
  • wildlife visitors
  • foot traffic patterns
  • plus many other considerations.

The next thing to do is make a complete list of things that you'd like to accomplish with your finished landscape design. This list can be very long. You may not end up doing all the things on your list, but you may be surprised at how you can solve more than one thing at a time with good design.

The first diagram you make on a copy of the scaled base map should be a bubble diagram. This would include deciding on general use areas and how they connect. For example; Draw bubbles or, in other words, outline areas such as service / utility area, entry garden area, outdoor living area, recreation area, border areas, etc. Then, start your designing. Put all of the details on the paper; every plants location, layout of walks, etc. Sometimes, it helps to visualize what the design may end up looking like in real life if you put out a garden hose where the bed edge is planned, and put stakes out where the major plants will go. Try taking a photo of your house and adding what the plantings will look like in that view on a print of that photo.

Here is where the NH Landscapers that you have chosen to work with can really help you out. Your landscape designer can help you understand all the aspects of how your plan will work and help you change anything that you may not have thought about. Then, last but certainly not least, a materials list and a proposal of costs should be done so that you will know exactly what you are going to need to spend on your project. If your dream design ends up being over your budget it's better to find out at this point than later!

With all of this good planning, you will be sure to be able to accomplish the gardens of your dreams within a budget that you can afford. PLAN - PLANT - ENJOY!

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