Top 15 Landscaping Mistakes & How to Avoid Them

Landscaping is very important to the look and value of your home, but landscaping misconceptions are very common among homeowners. We’ve put together a list of the 15 most common landscaping mistakes for you to keep in mind as you plan your next landscaping project.

Mistake #1: Improper Plant Placement

All plants have certain requirements with regard to water and sunlight. When you purchase a plant from a nursery, it will come with a small tag outlining its care needs. While certain plants or flowers may look great in certain parts of your lawn or porch, the area may not provide them with the water and sunlight they need to thrive, so be sure to place plants and flowers where they will have their needs met.

Mistake #2: Planting Trees Too Deeply

When planting trees, pay attention to their roots. Certain trees need to be planted in shallow soil due to the growth pattern of their roots. If you plant some trees too deeply, they’ll die very quickly. Typically, you want to dig a hole the same size as the planter the tree came in to avoid any issues.

Mistake #3: Cutting Grass Too Low

It’s common for homeowners to cut their grass very short, believing that it will allow them mow their grass less often. Short grass can lead to an overgrowth of weeds, so only mow your lawn when necessary, and only mow it to the height appropriate for the season – no lower.

Mistake #4: Failure to Fertilize

Fertilizing your grass is the key to a healthy lawn. Ask a local landscaping expert about which fertilizer is best for your lawn, and fertilize twice per year to promote a lush, healthy appearance.

Mistake #5: Choosing the Wrong Plants

If you’re decorating a specific area of your lawn, be sure to choose plants and flowers which can survive in the area. This goes back to the needs of the plant with regard to water and sunlight – if you have a shady area, pick shade-loving plants, and if you’re working on a sunny area, choose plants which like sunlight.

Mistake #6: Forgetting About Wildlife

Depending on where you live, wildlife in your area may have a taste for certain plants in your garden. Garden pests and insects are commonly found eating and destroying plants in private gardens; try to choose plants which do not appeal to wildlife in your area.

Mistake #7: Not Planning for the Future

Plants grow at different rates, and some grow to very large sizes you may not expect. Look up the details of your plant choices before solidifying your landscaping plans, and understand exactly how much room the plants will have to grow once they are planted.

Mistake #8: Poor Pruning

Pruning is crucial to the health of your plants, but it can also mean their death when done poorly. Always prune during the best time of year for your chosen plants, and prune carefully – if you do not have experience pruning, contact an expert to learn more about the process.

Mistake #9: Improper Watering

It’s very common for homeowners to over-water their lawns and gardens. Your lawn only requires about an inch of water per week, so water your lawn accordingly.

Mistake #10: Forgetting About Functionality

If your lawn or garden is a place where family and friends will come to gather, you’ll want to make sure you keep your landscaping functional. Don’t plant anything that may get in the way of guests enjoying your company – plan out what you’d like to do in your garden and do your landscaping accordingly.

Mistake #11: Too Much Repetition

You don’t want to place too many of the same plant in your garden, or you’ll risk ruining its appearance. Find a good balance between a number of different plants to add color, texture, and variety to your landscape.

Mistake #12: Letting Your Garden Get Out of Hand

Gardens and landscapes require maintenance, which you should plan for when you choose your plants. Keep up with garden maintenance to keep your landscape looking healthy and beautiful.

Mistake #13: Ignoring the Change of Seasons

Depending on where you live, the seasons may cause drastic changes in the weather. Pay attention to your area’s seasonal changes in order to choose plants which will survive both the cold and hot parts of the year. If you’re looking for year-round color, you’ll need to keep this in mind as well as you choose plants for your garden.

Mistake #14: Forgetting Exterior Lighting

Exterior lighting is an excellent way to bring life to your landscape during the evening, and it serves a functional purpose as well. Solar exterior lights can be found at a low cost, and they’re an excellent option to light your lawn effectively and on a budget.

Mistake #15: Neglecting Your Front Lawn

Many homeowners focus on the appearance of their backyard, and as a result neglect the yard which faces the street. Your front yard leaves a first impression with guests and passersby, so it shouldn’t be forgotten when you do your landscaping. Make room in your budget to improve the curb appeal of your home – it’ll pay off in appearance and in added value to your home.

Landscaping can be a very fun and fulfilling process with excellent rewards, but it’s important that it be done right. Poor landscaping can lead to unnecessary expenses, so it’s always best to do your research before beginning your next outdoor project.