Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Give your Front Yard a Face-Lift!

I have been really focused on vegetables since I started this blog (probably because I am expecting a baby and all I can think about is food!) but, I want to switch gears and talk a little bit about my truest love Garden Design!

Think about your front yard for a minute... is it a place you want to sit and hang out? Is it calm, tranquil and beautiful everywhere you look? or is it like the typical front yard, more ownership to the neighborhood and those who drive by than to you who actually own the property? I hate unusable space in a front yard- and lets face it- that's what most of us have right? The typical front yard is a sea of grass and a thin sidewalk that leads in an "L" shape from the driveway to the door. Oh, and don't forget the "kidney bean" shaped flower bed.

Here's a few tips to spruce up a front yard and make the space more usable for you and your family.

1) Widen the walkways! Two people should be able to walk side by side on your walkway to your front door- it will help people feel more comfortable and at ease when visiting you!

2) Make the front door the MAIN focal point from the street! This can be done by color, plant material placement or placement of the path that leads to your front door. Make it inviting, easy to access and your curb appeal will triple.

3) Add a bench, a screen from the street, and some trickling water. Find a place to make a nook where you can sit and enjoy your yard and not be viewed by the whole neighborhood. The water sounds are also calming and inviting to your guests. If you are lucky enough to have a mature tree, a wood swing is also a good way to make your front yard usable for kids!

4) Don't be afraid to get rid of more lawn- The domesticated world is lawn-crazy! It is actually less maintenance to take care of a well planned flower bed than turf- believe it or not. Add some paths and nice plant material that will add to texture, color and aesthetic pleasure of being outdoors!

5) Especially for the front yard you need something that smells good!! Lilacs, Lavender, Hyacinths, and Mint (only planted in a container, mint is very aggressive!) are a few of my favorites. Plant near your sitting area or near the front door. You will love it more than you now realize!

6) Plant containers, pots and flower boxes to soften look of your home! (container planting tips coming soon!, very soon! ) Open your eyes to the possibilities of having a space you can actually use in your front yard! It's a whole new world out there!

Happy Gardening!


  1. Thanks for the fun tips. Matt and I learned abot mint the hard way... left unattended, it creeped out of its container and into the yard. We have a 6-8 foot patch of mint behind our backfence now. Smells great... but I'm constantly battling to keep it from taking over.

  2. Thanks for the fun blog. Any good tips on garening with many ravenous deer in the yard? We miss you guys! Congrats on expecting a new little one.

  3. @ Sara- the only thing I have heard to work for deer is something that sounds completely crazy! We don't have that problem so I have never actually tried it- but I guess you can buy cougar urine! But, according to some people in my master gardener class it REALLY works- although it is expensive! High fences are also helpful! Hope this helps! We miss you too :)