Landscape Help Choosing Plants

david_47January 17, 2011

I recently pulled out a very large tree which hid most of the area I am now seeking a remake of. I am looking for a design (plant ideas) that will not obstruct the view from inside and will also match the ranch style home and cause the eye to flow to the front door.

Being a novice, I'm unsure where to start. I read on textures, flow, etc.. but need more specific assistance.

Any suggestions to the type of plants I should consider? Other things I'm not considering?

Link to pictures of the area are posted

Here is a link that might be useful: Project Area in Pictures

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missingtheobvious(Blue Ridge 7a)

You're at a terrible disadvantage in that your front door isn't visible from the driveway. However, the corner window attracts the eye strongly, and the curve of the front walk -- echoed by the raised bed's stone border -- leads directly to the front door. Ideally the landscaping should do the same.

So I'd plant something bold and bright along the entire wall of the raised bed, not much taller than the stone border. (I'd remove the gold shrubs next to the garage.)

In the back corner of the bed, I'd put something large that looks good but doesn't hog visitors' attention. (What's in the back corner of the raised bed? Gas meter? Does anyone need to get back there?)

Between the bright border planting and the tall corner shrub, I'd put something mid-height, no taller than the bottom of the window. Like the corner shrub, this shouldn't attract more attention than the bright border planting.

I strongly recommend you paint the front door, ideally a bright -- or at least light -- color. I love the color of your house, but I haven't any idea what color the door should be. Not white. Peach, apricot, salmon, light oak, some sort of pink? My color sense isn't good enough. Take a large color photo to the paint chip display. Talk to a good decorator. One of the forums on the sister site has a reputation for giving great color advice -- I think it's this one:
http://ths.gardenweb.com/forums/decor/

It would be a good idea to select colors in the landscaping and decoration to echo the new front door color. (Flower, foliage, or berry color; a piece of wall art hanging next to the garage door; a fountain or birdbath in the middle of the lawn; etc.)

If you really can't see changing the door color, consider adding a bright seasonal wreath on the door.

Whether or not you change the door color, put a brightly-colored tall pot/urn/planter somewhere to the right of the front door. Not back under the overhang where people can't see it, but out in front of the porch. The exact location depends on the width of the walkway; you might prefer to put it in the bed immediately to the right of the walkway. If you paint the front door, the pot should be the same color or a related shade. Plant it with something tallish with bold foliage, but not wide enough to impede traffic.

For those who will make plant suggestions, it would help to know which direction the house faces. Also your USDA and/or Sunset climate zones, if you know them, or where you're located in California.
Find your USDA zone: http://www.garden.org/zipzone/index.php
Sunset zones: http://www.sunset.com/garden/climate-zones/

    Bookmark   January 17, 2011 at 4:35PM
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ideasshare(z6)

You could add some evergreen bush,dogwood,bonsai tree,rock

    Bookmark   January 17, 2011 at 5:12PM
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frankielynnsie(7B)

I agree that the door needs to stand out, it just fades into the house. Something in the large blank wall area beside the big window--a hanging, or a taller flowering specimen plant. I would start with a clean slate in all of the beds in front of the house. The box looking shrubs on the small window side would need to be dug out and match styles with whatever you put into the curved bed. After the immediate area around the house if finished looking then you can add to other parts of your yard. I think the area has great potential to be beautiful and engaging to visitors as they walk to your front door.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2011 at 7:10PM
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