Considering a hardscaping project to enhance your Delaware home? Here are some quick tips to help you get started.
1. Choose a Theme
Focus on any theme you want, but it’s a good idea to have a style in mind that matches the exterior of your home. You also don’t want to include a random mixture of elements that make your yard look like an outdoor museum. A farm design can encompass fish ponds and wooden fences, while a more colonial style uses stone walls, gravel paths and fountains. Maybe a courtyard is more what you have in mind or a modern concept with stepping stones and sculptures.
2. 360 Degree View
Keep in mind the big picture. Even if you can’t do all the yard work at one time, develop a plan for the entire area. Otherwise, one of your elements might be in the way of a walkway or pond you’ve decided you want later on. You want a completed project that you love and that will last for years.
3. Deal With Drainage
Hardscape elements like a wall or patio can alter how water drains. By including permeable components, water still seeps down into the ground. Also, a very flat, level patio can quickly become a small swimming pool when it rains so you should slope the patio a little. Don’t forget to save that runoff in a rain barrel.
4. Measure Your Space
You can’t really get started planning your hardscaping project until you know what kind of space you’re working with. This knowledge can help you to put together a design and create a budget before starting your project
5. Professionals Know Best
When drastically changing your yard, you need to prepare the site correctly. You’ll need a level surface to build upon and you should know where the freeze line is or the depth that frost penetrates the soil. Building codes say footings must be placed below this line. To get this information, talk to an inspector at your local building authority or someone at your state landscaping association.
6. Follow Nature’s Curves
All straight lines in a yard make it look unnatural. You want to match your landscaping to the shapes of Mother Nature so not all sidewalks and paths need to be linear. Allow some of your hardscape items to bend, sweep and arc gracefully. Ninety degree angles have no place in nature.
In design, form follows function. Before you start perusing planter boxes and pavers, you need to make sure that you have considered how you want your yard to function, as well as the role that your intended usage, regional weather, and other environmental factors will play.
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