Help me landscape my front yard

vclintonApril 8, 2013

Looking for suggestions to improve our curb appeal. The knock out rose bushes will be removed.

Looking for suggestions on how to improve the landscaping.


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It would be helpful if from the same position you took photos angled toward left and right sides and added those pictures. Landscaping is not in isolation of what's happening around/outside of the property.

What is strange and not really attractive are the two arches made of siding. To my thinking, the paint scheme is also lacking. Together these architectural details/finishes bring the house down a couple of notches (or more) to what it could otherwise be. They are things I'd change before planting anything. Consider whether you are open to such changes.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2013 at 10:00AM
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The strange and attractive is my home and many like it in the subdivision. Thanks for slamming my house.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2013 at 9:40AM
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That happens here, vc - not so much now that the forums are slowing down and variety in responses is at a premium. But a simple request for landscaping advice brings out the architect and "let's rebuild the OP's home" in some responders.

Maybe what some - who've never experienced such things - people overlook is the idea that many subdivisions/planned communities are built according to an inviolate plan... right down to the exterior paint colors. I've dealt with HOAs in my former life and have gone through hoops with something as simple as a front door repaint.

My advice, just as a homeowner, would be to keep it simple. Resist any temptation to lean a trellis somewhere or have roses, clematis, or anything, clingy viney climbing up the arch supports. Also resist ringing the mail box.

Relegate the KnockOuts to the backyard and find something a bit more substantial for against the brick and under the window. The Missouri Botanical Garden is a terrific resource and has a wonderful website/plant finder.

I'd plant a row of low growing shrubs in front of the porch. Screw in a hook and hang a planter from the center of the right arch for anything like bright trailing petunias, or a sweet potato vine, big fern, etc. etc.

Lastly, a small ornamental tree - a Japanese Maple for instance, planted in the lawn well off center on the right side. Others might say it would be a mowing/maintenance annoyance, but I say something nice might be worth a bit of extra effort.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2013 at 10:33AM
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vclinton - I don't think it was meant in a mean way, but trying to point out that the house could be made to look more attractive and if you don't want honest feedback then maybe this forum isn't for you as I don't think people here are rude, but rather very direct and honest.

When I post I do so to be able to get new ideas and things pointed out to me that I hadn't thought about. I do agree that the house could be made to look more attractive.It is not a very common style in many parts of the country so those seeing it may be biased based on that.

The more you see something the more normal it seems to you and you stop seeing it as unusual or in other cases unattractive. Often when new trends show up a few adopt and others find it unattractive and then it takes a few years and the more people see it the more it appeals to them.

You also mentioned in this thread that many in your neighborhood had removed the arches so I'm sure others didn't find them the most attractive elements either.

If you like them and want to keep them then it is helpful to say so in the post. Some may still comment, but others will try to help you work with the elements you do like.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2013 at 10:33AM
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vclinton, you might be one of those people referred to by others as "touchy" ... the kind of person one can't really be honest with because they'll find a reason to get offended. I wouldn't really call it "slamming" your house when you state, "Looking for suggestions to improve our curb appeal." ...? Apparently you forgot to add, "... as long as you don't include any constructive criticism of the way things look now." I don't know how you can think "Consider whether you're open to such changes" is a hostile comment.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2013 at 11:10AM
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Thank you lyfia and duluthinbloomz4. Your comments make sense.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2013 at 10:08PM
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melle_sacto(Z9/Sunset 14 CA)

I really like the mock-up that gmp3 posted in your other thread. If the arches stay, at least paint them and the rest of the house a color that won't contrast with the brick. I think that will create a sense of balance and unity that is lacking at the moment.

I like the front bed mock-up, too, how it draws the eye across the home and yard. If you need some shade, a tree would be nice too. I'm thinking between the double windows and the single window.

It looks like you have what they call a hellstrip ;-) I'd take out the grass and put in a tough, low-maintenance groundcover.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2013 at 11:15PM
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If it were my place, I'd use lots of potted plants on the front porch to add splashes of colors and greens. Decorating a porch with potted plants is quick and, if you don't like the results, easily changed. On the brick side I'd use shrubs or evergreens.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2013 at 4:33AM
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