THE DESIRE for a more relaxed, informal and healthy
living style is resulting in a growing awareness of the
importance of landscaping to a home.
WHEN you buy a new house or make the decision to improve
your old one, you should be, of course, concerned with
every foot of ground that goes with it, for modern
living and modern gardening can make every square foot
of your property usable and desirable.
These days, new methods of grading, fencing, soil
improvement and terracing make even sloping, hilly lots,
previously undesirable, now attractive and choice.
Modern chemistry has brought new ways to add nutrients
to the soil and has provided weapons against the
traditional enemies of the garden: insects and disease.
Hardier bulbs and seeds make gardens more successful and
wonderfully vivid. Hybrids have lengthened the list of
flowering trees and shrubs, creating new specimens for
every color and design scheme, and for every type of
house and garden.
New equipment and materials speed the time-consuming
garden tasks. New ways of living bring us into the
outdoors, and comfortable lawn furnishings make a small
suburban back yard as luxuriously enjoyable as was
previously possible only on a large estate.
Today's house is often much more a part of the outdoors
than was yesterday's with large picture windows, glass
walls, glassed-in sun-porches and terraces. These all
combine to make the garden a part of the house and
consequently, the view becomes that much more important.
A beautiful garden, a luxuriant lawn and healthy
blossoming trees all add as much to the interior of your
home as your draperies or wallpaper and the effort and
time you spend on your lawn and garden will repay you in
every way, indoors as well as out.
You will be governed by many of the principles you
employ in decorating your home when you plan your
grounds. Texture, color, proportion, line, harmony and
function ó are terms that apply to landscaping as well
as decorating. And if you have large grounds you will
benefit from careful planning just as much as someone
with a smaller lot.
Although garden books are filled with formal plans for
perfect gardens and grounds, you will want to consider
not the perfect garden in itself, but the one plan that
will be perfect for your particular situation. Analyze
your familyís needs and habits; and then design your
landscaping to best satisfy itís preferences, desires
Hold a family council and talk over what you want to do.
Make a list of the things the family wants, such as a
playhouse, rock garden, barbecue, tool house, drying
yard, fences, badminton court, better lounging
facilities, etc. Draw a plan of your property in a
fairly large scale, about 1/4 inch to the foot.
Unless you are fortunate and have spacious grounds, you
probably won't be able to work everything into your
program. And of course, you will be governed by
questions of cost and available space, but with
intelligent planning, you can do things gradually. You
can plan your garden so that it never looks bare and yet
is roomy enough for any additions you plan on making in
In addition, some projects will serve more than one
function. For example, if you need a driveway and have
young children, a blacktop that can be used for
basketball and roller skating will serve a double
purpose, and easily justify the cost.
Or a fence that blocks out an unpleasant view can also
act as a wind break and a handsome background for a
lounge area. A retaining wall can double as a rock
garden when planted with hardy dwarf shrubs, as well as
other rock-garden species.
Ultimately, landscaping, if intelligently planned and
properly executed will not only add to the comfort of
your home and improve its appearance it will also
increase the value of your home.