More planting advice

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by peeklandscaping, Aug 28, 2013.

  1. AGLA

    AGLA LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,742

    It is always a matter of taste, but there are also things that we do that can affect the overall look of the house. In another thread he posted other pictures. There you can see that this is a side entrance garage. The rest of the face of the house is back further when you look at it from the street. You are already fighting the fact that the garage is more prominent than the house. Second, there are more trees to the left making more shade at the main part of the house. That means more light hits the garage and makes it visually advance even more. It makes curb appeal a little more difficult than many other situations.

    If you stick a tree, even a top grafted weeping cherry in the center it will mimic the peak of the roof which will make the garage even more dominant than it already is. It is like wearing a big pointed hat and having someone sit in front of you and point at it.

    That is the problem from the street. The other problem is the approach on foot. Everyone has to go from the driveway, then along the side of the garage without even seeing the front door until you get to the corner. On the one side of the walk you have a big garage very close to the walk (maybe a 5' bed). On the other you have a sloped lawn going downhill. It is not the most comfortable walkway situation just based on that. If you stick a tree in the narrow bed along that walk, it will be even less comfortable because it makes you feel like you should move out farther, but you can't. Probably why the homeowners want to yank that ornamental grass.

    I'd put a medium sized shrub in the middle, maybe even a triangle of three, and infill the voids with some smaller fillers. I'd leave the Albertas. The most important thing is to make that walkway comfortable and keep the pedestrian focused on getting to the corner and seeing the rest of the house. You don't want to make them stop and look at this bed. You just want something pleasant for them to pass by. The goal is to get them past this space.

    Yes, that is one person's opinion. Hopefully the explanation will get others to think about why they recommend what they recommend. If they explain their reasoning, we can all learn from it whether we agree or not.
  2. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 10,081

    Your point is valid, but for the overall view of the house I would move out into the yard with some real landscaping rather than try to create any special effect at the foundation... For me the idea of more boring evergreens are not going to do that much for a badly laid out lot...
    Good job of explaining yourself though and I agree that discussion of design helps everyone to think things through a little better... :)
  3. AGLA

    AGLA LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,742

    I agree that a few boring evergreens are not going to overcome a poorly sited house. If they are only going to have Peek Landscape replace the ornamental grass and add a few things to the empty bed out in the lawn, all he can do is work within those limitations. If he can't do enough to correct it, he has to make sure that he does nothing to make it worse.

    It would be helpful for Peek to take a picture from the street so we could see the overall look of the house and garage. One looking down the walk from the front of the garage wouldn't hurt either. Those are two vantage points from which this landscape is experienced.
  4. CuttingEdgeLandscapes

    CuttingEdgeLandscapes LawnSite Member
    Posts: 95

    i'd go with a tree form quickfire hydrangdea with liriope and heuchera mixed in a half moon underneath. the hydrangea will bring a subtle contrast to the arborvitaes on either side and allow your eye to hover for a minute before moving on down the rest of the bed in either direction.

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