Lee Valley Tools    Gardening Newsletter
   Vol. 8, Issue 2
   February 2013
 
   Gardens With Curb Appeal
 
 
Appealing façadeAppealing façade
An appealing façade can increase your property's value. (Marcel Regimbald photo)
 
Not long ago, front-yard landscaping usually consisted of a thin skirt of evergreen trees hiding unsightly foundation walls. Nowadays, it's not uncommon for gardeners to create front-yard "lifestyle spaces", complete with furniture, yard ornaments and a diversity of plant material.

There are a few precautions to heed before designing your front-yard garden. First, find out exactly how much of your property frontage the municipality lays claim to. If you plant outside your property lines without the necessary municipal approvals, you may be forced to remove the material and restore the area to its original state. This can be costly and also poses the problem of where to relocate the plants. You should also confirm your property's underground utility services sites. Finally, it's important to know and adhere to any construction bylaws regarding walkways, landings, etc.

Another consideration is the balance between privacy and security. Enclosing your front yard with plantings that completely screen it from the street provides privacy, but it hinders interaction with neighbors, prevents passersby from admiring your home's façade and may even create convenient hiding places for vandals and thieves. An unencumbered open area next to the front wall of your house enables access for maintenance chores. If you live in a four-season climate, ensure you have an open storage area where you can stockpile snow and where the melted water can drain away. (Remember, the snow may contain salt, which is damaging to plants and turf.)
 
 
             
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