Landscaping can be fun, but work ‘never done’ | Living
The weather has warmed up, the birds are chirping, and in the spirit of spring you have convinced yourself (and perhaps a less willing partner) that it is time to garden.
Before you pile up the usual mulch in your front yard, however, Mo Palmer, DIY landscaping consultant and owner of Urban Digs, wants you to calmly put the shovel down and follow some helpful advice.
“Landscaping is never done – that’s possibly the nice thing about it, unless you don’t want to spend a lot of time in your yard,” she says. “Once you have the landscape in place, this is really the start of your journey.”
Ask the pros
Before making any major changes to your landscape, Palmer recommends speaking to at least a professional advisor. At Urban Digs, a consultation is a one-hour session of advice and ideas on how to modernize your property. But for homeowners who may need even more help, Palmer claims they also offer services that help with landscaping, plant selection, and even marking out on the property where to place your bedding lines and plants.
“I think homeowners should think about their exteriors the same way they think about their home,” she says. “You don’t start building a house without a plan, and that’s how you should look at landscaping. The most important first step is getting a design. “
If you are budget conscious and want to make a major change, the first thing to do is to start buying trees.
“Trees have the longest effect – they are the plant that lives the longest,” she says. “They will outlive most of us, maybe even our children, but it will take them the longest to reach maturity.”
Invest in longevity
According to Palmer, many landscaping trends are typically just old techniques coming back into vogue.
“Edible gardens are just getting trendier, and that’s an old practice,” she says.
Rather than worrying about trends, Palmer suggests investing in the areas that you will enjoy for years to come.
“I’m not someone who jumps on a train too quickly, and I recommend anyone considering something trendy that they should consider carefully,” she says.
“Sometimes you see something like, ‘Choose native plants – they’re easy,’ on a bumper sticker, but when you look at it, that’s not necessarily true. Make sure to look at a trend and see if it has stood the test of time. “
Birds and the bees
If you are interested in creating a welcoming ecosystem for living things, consider purchasing fruiting plants and trees that will attract birds and pollinators.
“So often in nursery plants, people don’t want bushes with berries or trees that bear fruit because they’re messy, but those are things that attract birds and pollinators,” says Palmer. “I would buy a book on plants aimed at the Midwest or Indiana from a respected author.
“These are so wonderful because they not only contain a list of native plants but also explain why. If you want to attract birds, you must first know what they eat and therefore you need to know specific plants that attract the caterpillars or insects that birds eat. “
And if you’re looking to improve your bird watching skills in your landscaped yard, a bird bath can’t hurt.
“I think birds should use plants for food, so I avoid birdhouses,” says Palmer.
For more information on Palmer’s business, visit Urban-Digs.com.