MN Landscaping Mistakes to Avoid

And you planning a landscaping project this summer?  For any homeowner in the Minneapolis or St. Paul MN area interested in having landscape design and installation done, avoiding the mistakes of past landscape professionals and do-it-yourselfers is crucial.  With this post we hope to familiarize you with common mistakes made in the realm of landscaping as well as effective ways to avoid having them show up on your property. 

  • 08aug06c3a14Lack of unity
  • Needless purchases
  • Mistakes with plant size
  • Going too exotic

Lack of unity is defined as a design that does not create a harmonious combination of  objects. This can often happen when care is not taken to match the style of the main building with the design of elements in the year.  Lack of unity also occurs when there is on coherent connection or style between the various features.  For example, if your pool area is a natural, rustic ‘swimming hole’ design, a high-tech steel and concrete outdoor kitchen would be out of place.  Creating better unity can be done by using the same materials for all areas of the property. When done properly, the entire landscape is unified by smooth transitions in style.

If you are engaging in the landscaping process without a plan, the result can be many unexpected costs due to purchases of items that end up not getting used.  Also, additional costs may occur when things have to be re-done, such as a water or electric line having to be moved.  These needless costs can add up. The best way to avoid this problem is to make a drawing of the location and give yourself an advance idea of which items will be needed and which will not be.  Better to go a little light on your purchases – you call always add things later.

Make sure the plants and shrubs you purchase will fit in their intended areas even when they have reached their full expected size.  Putting in plants without taking into account their mature size can similarly be a big problem. Part of your advance planning should include an understanding of how large the plants will later grow to become.  Most nursery-purchased plants and shrubs come with a tag to indicate whether they will spread and how large they will get.

Incorporating exotic plants as part of landscape design is one of the top trends for 2014.  The use of exotic plants can be wonderful addition to your garden, but too many exotic plants can complicate your garden’s needs. It’s a good idea to have a plan in place regarding the precise care of each plant you choose to implement.   This is especially important if you’ve got very limited time for landscape maintenance.  Exotic plants require much more care than native species, and they often have to be brought indoors when the weather turns cool.  Here’s a previous post that touches on the care of exotic plants as well as other recent trends in gardening.

At Architectural Landscape Design, our training and experience will help you avoid these and many other mistakes related to landscape design.  We delight in helping homeowners around the Twin Cities turn their unique landscape visions into reality, and we’ll work to incorporate your ideas or make more feasible suggestions.  Call us for a free design consultation today! 952.292.7717.  We are a licensed MN landscape design and installation contractor.