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So you know that you want to do something different, or even start from scratch, in regards to that green space surrounding your home, but that’s about as far as you’ve gotten when it comes to understanding and planning the whole “landscape” idea.

Perfect Plants is here to help (and help out your not-so-green thumb). This blog post is going to answer three of the most widely asked questions by landscape novices (or pros in the making, whichever you prefer) like you when it comes to beginning a landscape project.

Q: So, what exactly does landscape entail?

A: To “landscape” means to make improvements to your home or property’s grounds. This can be anything from installing new sod to giving your outside property a complete makeover with new trees, flowers, privacy walls and a pond. Pretty much everything that is outside of your home itself can be considered your home’s landscape.

Q: Is landscaping my property worth the hassle?

A: Simply put—yes! Not only can the landscape of your home provide you with aesthetic enjoyment and pride, but it can also raise the real estate value of your home. That’s right—landscaping your property can actually put money in your pocket in the long run. According to many studies, curb appeal enhances your real estate’s value by at least 15%.
And even if that doesn’t seem realistic, think of it this way: if you were out house hunting, would you stop and look at the house with a drab front yard and little to no color or life, or a front yard teeming with bursts of color, aesthetic appeal and elegant charm?

Q: Okay, fine. I’ll do some landscape work. Do I need to hire a professional? And if so, what’s the best method to go about selecting a professional who will make my money—and time—worth it?

A: Hiring a professional is always a good idea if you are inexperienced in the world of landscape. To begin with, using a pro will ensure that you avoid any mistakes or problems that could potentially decrease your property’s value when all is said and done. Also, professional landscapers have been around the block a time or two, and tend to have a good idea about what it is you need and want. To find the right pro for your landscape project, here are a few things you should consider and/or do:

1. Know the difference between the different sectors of landscape work: Landscaping, softscaping, hardscaping and maintenance. Not every landscaper will be experienced in all four, so be sure you know which type(s) of work you want done before seeking out a professional. Also keep in mind that a landscaper who does have knowledge and experience in all areas of landscaping will most likely be able to ensure you get the most out of your exterior renovation.

2. Write out everything that you plan to have done in your landscape project. Do you want the entire landscape redone? Do you prefer low maintenance plants and trees? What is your overall budget for the project? Writing down any and every detail you can think of will tremendously help when it comes to selecting the appropriate professional for you.

3. A good, professional landscaper will have the following:
—The answers to questions such as what type of soil, sun exposure and climate/environmental conditions that your particular property has, what plants work best with it, as well as an explanation for the best maintenance programs for your landscape.
—A licensed and insured company.
—The ability to see your landscape dream and bring it to life to the best of his or her ability, or work with you if any of your own ideas aren’t possible or reasonable for your particular circumstances.
—A clearly defined work proposal/contract that specifies all plants/trees to be installed, types of materials being used (if any), and any other detail pertaining to the work that he or she will do for your landscape.

We will regularly post a handful of widely asked landscape/gardening/anything related to all things green questions, so if you have a question that wasn’t answered this time, just leave a comment on this post and we will be sure to either answer you directly or include it in our next Q & A blog post!

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