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Landscaping for Dummies

Proper preparation of your property prior to sale is called “staging.” While my partner, Susan, who is a Certified Home Staging Specialist, can help you with interior staging, the outside is perhaps even more important than the inside of a home. After all, it is that first impression that is all-important to a buyer.

Just as clutter on the interior of a home can sabotage a house tour, a yard full of debris, children’s toys and bikes, yard maintenance equipment, a lawn that needs to be mowed or is covered with leaves can be an immediate turnoff. Also, a garage full of junk, leaving no room for the cars, can add to the general disheveled appearance of the property.

Landscapers often put plant material close together so that it looks good “today,” and do not allow enough room for growth. When your older plantings start to obscure construction details or to block views from your home … even darken the interior… it’s time to get out the pruners and cut them back to below window sill levels.

How about weeds? If you have them, you can pull or use an herbicide spray. There are many safe alternatives on the market for this purpose. Mulching is also important. It not only helps retain moisture but it improves the soil and looks great! Buying pine bark mulch by the truckload is an investment but, in the long run, it is by far the most economical for large areas. Have the hauler dump it uphill if you have a sloping property… your back will thank you. Pine needles are an excellent mulch for acid-loving plants such as rhododendron. For large or steep areas consider low maintenance ground covers such as myrtle, pachysandra and carpet bugle.

With a background in landscape design, I’ve had many opportunities to offer recommendations, to help my clients select appropriate professionals and to offer design ideas. It’s part of what I do and I would love to help you with your landscaping needs.


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