It’s the start of the New Year, so it’s a great time to start a new landscape design. Creating a landscape wish list is a great first step in this process.
Over the next several months, I will be showing you each step in the process of creating a new landscape design using my own home as an example.
You are invited to follow along at home and design or redesign your own yard.
While I won’t cover every detail (you think these posts are long now!), I will give you resources and suggestions along the way that should help.
Brainstorm your landscape wish list
Lets first take a look at step number one, deciding what you want from your landscape.
The easiest way to do this is to go to a quite space, take a piece of paper out and start writing down everything you think you might want out of your landscape. Don’t worry if it’s realistic or if you have conflicting goals, just write them all down.
For example, here is the list I came up with in no particular order. You may notice some of them conflict with each other, that’s OK at this point.
- Frame the view of the lake
- Naturalize my rip rap shoreline
- Create a North woods cabin feel
- Create privacy from the street
- Attract birds and butterflies
- Help cool the house in the Summer
- Help keep the house warm in the Winter
- Eliminate any invasive plants
- Replace most of the grass with low maintenance plantings/surfaces
- Vegetable garden
- Fruit trees
- Build soil health
- Use mostly native plants
- Capture water from the roof to water plants
- Water access for Kayaks and fishing
- Area of grass for dog
- Invoke the feeling of nature
- Look great in all seasons
- Use plants that don’t require any supplemental watering
- Improve the drainage around the foundation of the house
- Widen the walk to the front door
- Sequester carbon
- Japanese Garden style?
To trigger more ideas, you might want to take a look at my post, What do you really want?
In that post, I wrote about some of the possibilities your landscape can fulfill that you might not have thought about.
Get others input
You should also ask other members of your family to write their own lists. Then you can put them all together into one master list. Remember we are not judging the feasibility of the ideas yet, were just getting them down on paper.
Here is some of the things my family had on their landscape wish lists:
- Keep the waterfall in front yard
- Wow view from street
- Hot tub
- Wow from the Lake view
- Purple color
- Easier lake access
- Level/replace front walk
- Fruit trees incl peach and cherry
- Make boat door accessible
- Remove cedar planking from side of house
- kitchen/herb garden
- Multiple textures
- Attract Butterflies and other wildlife
- Replace Lava rock
- Remove Chi robbing mulberry in front of entrance (I personally wonder what it did with all that Chi?)
- A rocky path to the water
- Stone (and real) Squirrels
- A Squirrel house (with nuts)
If you must, resort to a checklist
If you are still at a loss for ideas of your own, here are some of the standard things people seem to put in their landscapes.
- Dry Raked Japanese Garden
Pull it all together
Now that you have your master list, it’s time to prioritize them into different categories. To start, first go through the list with your family and cross off any of the items that your really don’t care if your have or not.
Then go through the shortened list and highlight the ones that are really important to you or another member of your family.
You now have some ideas and features that you can build into your landscape design.
Next time, we will put our landscape wish list aside and begin the base map. This will start laying out the foundation that will eventually lead to a design that matches your site as well as you and your family’s desires.