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front yard garden landscaping

(image: Briget Murphy)

An inviting front yard is a real estate asset. Here are some front yard landscaping ideas for you to consider for your own home.

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Is your front yard ready for a makeover? Is the grass tired? Are the evergreens trimmed down to the bare branches? Are the walkways cracked and uneven?

Now is the time to start planning a new front yard with some fresh landscaping ideas. Curb appeal is a valuable real estate asset, but you will also derive personal joy from a fresh, new space. Who knows? You may inspire the neighbors to spruce up their front yards, too!

Planning is important

A major overhaul is a big project that requires a good bit of planning. Smaller projects, such as a new flowerbed, a small water feature, or painting the front door can be more impulsive. If you want a new look while adding value to your home, it will take planning, budgeting, and hiring landscape contractors and architects.

Look at the obvious. Do the walkways, driveway, or fencing need repair or replacement? What needs to be fixed should be at the top of the list.

Once you take the necessities into consideration, get creative with cosmetics – the beauty and design of a new front yard.

front yard landscaping stone path

(image: Field Outdoor Spaces)

Consult with several professionals for ideas and estimates. Know what you can do, if you are a DIYer. Get a plan on paper, and make a budget. How will you pay for it? Is it within your price range? Will it be a good investment?

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After you get the realistic stuff out of the way, start visualizing your new front yard!

Curb appeal

The front yard is not only the first impression of a home, but it is also a beautiful thing for passersby to see. Don’t you love to see attractive yards during your travels?

A well-kept fence with an arbor that defines the entryway can be the backdrop for colorful perennials and vines. A gate can be a focal point and artistic personal expression, inviting visitors to enter.

Terrace a sloping front yard. The different levels will automatically create visual interest. Dramatic shrubs, perennials, and creeping greenery will make an even bigger impact.

Check with your town, and see if there are regulations against planting in the strip between the sidewalk and the curb. This is a wonderful spot for drought tolerant plants that need little maintenance.

front yard landscaping townhouse

(image: Center for Neighborhood Technology)

Personal joy

So now that you’ve satisfied everyone who drives by or comes over, satisfy yourself. Build a patio of stone pavers, or crusher fines. Make a seating arrangement for casual conversation, or add a table and chairs for outdoor eating. A front yard patio may encourage neighbors to stop by and visit, like the old days of rocking on the front porch!

Away from the house, plant a decorative tree that has year round visual interest. Textured leaves, unusual coloring, peeling bark, or a weeping shape will make a lovely focal point. Use much shorter shrubs and perennials in the rest of the yard to emphasize the tree.

front yard landscaping curb appeal

Install a curved walkway from the road to the house. Attractive pavers winding through a perennial or herb garden will give your guests something to enjoy on their way in or out. Alternatively, line the walkway with containers of flowering plants or evergreens.

Landscape edging

Landscape edging can be used as a visual transition from walkway to lawn. A layer of 3-5 small flagstones creates appealing height, as well as transition.

Add walkway borders of contrasting pavers. Try the same style in a different color or pattern, or use a completely different material with a similar color.

Edging can also be used around flowerbeds. Laying material, such as bricks or stones, flat, you create a space that keeps you from mowing the flowers down. It can also help keep stray grass out of the bed.

front yard landscaping garden edging

Upright edging can be a creative DIY project of upside down colored bottles, hardy bamboo stakes of different heights, pavers cut in half, or bricks half buried beneath the soil level. Edging can also be purchased at a nursery, garden center, or hardware store.

Doubling your outdoor living space

Fixing up your front yard, whether it’s simple or complex, will make it an attractive and inviting place to be. Plan on adding some seating, even if it’s just a bench on the porch. I bet people will begin to congregate there, giving you twice the space to entertain or simply hang out with family on a summer’s evening.

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Nan Fischer

Nan Fischer has been living and building green for over 35 years. Nan’s emphasis on the BuildDirect blog is about how to make your dollar stretch further, while also moving toward a more sustainable lifestyle, as well as upcoming and existing technology to help us live in an ecologically-friendly way. Nan also authors posts on the website of her seed business, sweetly seeds.