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Planning Your Landscape on Paper

 

If you are longing for spring to burst forth, winter is the time to put your planting plans on paper

Winters are long and rough for the gardening enthusiast who only wants to get back outdoors and plant, plant, plant. If you are getting impatient for the new season to begin, there is plenty you can do indoors to gear up.

You can begin with a sheet of paper and colored pencils. It helps to create your home's footprint (the perimeter) to scale, but it isn't totally necessary. A sheet of graph paper is ideal; you can even create your own on the computer. Mark off sidewalks, driveways, existing flowerbeds, and trees. For trees, be sure to make space for the drip line. There's more. You need to draw off the water meter, cable box, and any underground utilities that you have on the property as well. Don't forget to mark the windows and doorways on your home's perimeter. When you're adding blooms and bushes, you want to be sure these views are unobstructed.

Once the drawings are complete, make several copies. Have them enlarged and they'll be much easier to use and visualize. Now, it is relatively easy to use all the catalogs you've collected and begin filling in with flowers and greenery. Use the colored pencils to get a feel for different combinations. What you won't be able to include in your birds-eye drawing, however, is the range of heights needed within each grouping.

When you have decided on one or two options, you'll be ready to shop armed with your drawings. These will help you make better decisions when selecting different blooms. Even better: next year, you'll have a plan in place that is all ready to start fresh.

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