Where to Find Landscaping Plants and Why They Are Important

Landscaping plants form the basis of any landscaping project and are very important. Selecting the proper plants can make a yard truly stunning or be a complete headache if not properly chosen. Plants can also have a specific purpose instead of simply being decorative and can be used as focal points, for erosion control, shade and screening. You need to get proper plants to avoid having to replant your garden fresh every single spring. You should think how much time you can take care of your yard every week, and depending on this, choose plants with little or higher maintenance.

It is very common for individuals to choose the wrong plants for their landscaping projects. You should try to have some basic landscaping information before purchasing plants. You should always have a plan before purchasing plants and be prepared in advance. You should completely design and decide what plants you want to incorporate into your design before visiting a nursery. This will also allow you to make sure you stay within your budget.

Beside mistakes with choosing the wrong plants, individuals also frequently do not pay attention to zoning, in that certain plants grow better in recommended zones and climates. You should pay attention to what zones are listed on for each plant. The tags on plants will provide enough information for you to make an informed choice. You should have this information before you go plant shopping in order to make sure you can use the plants you desire.

Finding Landscaping Plants

There are many different places in which you can purchase landscaping plants. The first place you should visit is your local landscaping center or gardening store. If they do not have the plants you want in stock then they may be able to tell you where you can obtain them. You will most likely need to stop at a few different stores but no matter how long it takes you will be happy you purchased the plants you want.

You can also purchase plants on the Internet. The Internet offers speedy searching and the ability to browse from your own home. Internet stores will also provide a lot of information on landscaping plants besides the ability to purchase them. In fact online plant stores can be a great place to obtain plant information. You can also see about getting any questions answered as their support staff will be very knowledgeable, as they will respond to your question in about a day.

Low Voltage Landscape Lighting

Landscape lighting is a rising trend for most home owners wanting to illuminate their homes at night time. Landscape lighting is better described as painting with light and is about beautifying all that is natural or man made in a landscaped setting around the home. It is no longer a luxury item for the average to up market neighborhood. Landscape lighting is most effective when used in limited, subtle ways. If designed correctly it can be an extension of your home decor and can extend the use of outdoor spaces to the home while providing safety, atmosphere and space definition. It can also be most effective is hiding unwanted features such as trash cans or compost bins. Lighting is used to bring trees and scrubs to life at night and extenuate features around your home that are not visible or obvious during the day time. If used correctly low level lighting can be used to illuminate pathways and stairs for safety and security. Lighting allows you to enjoy your garden and exterior amenities of your home even after the sun has set.

Security

Landscape lighting is one of the best security systems you can install. Lighting can be used as a deterrent to residential crime. Correct proportions of landscape lighting surrounding your home, has been shown to minimize crimes by as much as fifty percent. Lighting has two great uses to aid in the security of your home. The lighting can intimidate possible intruders to avoid trespassing on to your property. Should this fail, the illuminated areas will also make it possible for you or your neighbor’s to see any intruders as they trespass.

Safety

Typically low voltage lighting systems are used for landscape lighting around the home. The preferred light fittings used to create most lighting designs, are low voltage, weather resistant fixtures. The low voltage used reduces the risk of electrocution if live wiring or terminals are touched. Also if power supply transformers are used to reduce the voltage, then they also isolate the low voltage system from the mains voltage which increases safety.

Not just the Garden

Although lighting brings your garden and exterior amenities to life at night time, facade or feature lighting to the exterior of your home should also be considered. If the landscaping has been done correctly it should compliment the house properly during the day. Why not extend the landscape lighting to the exterior surfaces of the home as well.

Narrow beamed lighting that highlights sharp features and wide angled flood lighting to pick up flat surfaces are preferred. These two simple methods create pools of light and shadows that will transform a house that may be uninteresting during the day, and make it come to life at night.

Installation

Low voltage landscape lighting is easy to install even if you’ve never done any electrical installations before. The easiest are prewired lighting systems. These are low voltage light fittings that come completely prewired and ready to install, with weather proof transformers, sealed connectors and pre-installed lamps. All you need to do is place each light fitting that is connected to a string of wire, where you want it, connect the transformer to the mains voltage and turn it on. It’s that simple. Separately wired low voltage light fittings and transformers should only be installed by persons that have the experience to do so. It is recommended that these installations should be carried out by a qualified electrician. Remember that during the installation it is desirable to include a timer or a daylight sensor so that the lighting is automatically switched off during daylight hours. Normally landscape lighting is added after the landscaping has been completed. With this in mind it would be a good idea to lay conduits or ducts into your garden. This would minimize any trench digging when it came time to run your low voltage wiring. Map out where you think you will want your light fittings and lay conduits or ducts to suit.

Design

Once the layout of the landscape has been established, it is very important to plan the placement of your light fittings. Lighting can focus on aspects in your landscape which are special to you, such as garden art, a water feature, or an unusual planting. Create a point of interest by highlighting a particular tree, shrub, or architectural aspect of you landscape with a flood light placed at ground level and focused upward. Combinations of light and shadow can create dramatic effects in complete contrast to the daylight scene. Lighting around pools can create a nice mirroring effect off the water or create a tropical feel. Lighting can hide obvious landscape problems while accentuating positive features. Landscape lighting design is very similar to the design of the landscape itself. Most landscape architects will include a lighting scheme with their design.

Budget

Low voltage lighting is often a do-it-yourself project and there are many options to suit your budget. Landscape lighting is also more affordable than ever coming in dozens of styles at a wide range of prices. Although it is tempting to purchase the cheaper incandescent lighting systems, in the long run the compact fluorescent options are better. Incandescent lamps will last for between 750 to 1000 hours. Halogens will last for 3500 to 5000 hours. But fluorescent lamps will last for as much as 10,000 hours. Because low voltage fluorescent light fittings have a lower power consumption than incandescent or halogens this makes them more desirable. Fluorescent light fittings also last longer than any other light fitting because they do not get as hot.

Solar Lighting

An alternative to low voltage lighting are solar lights. Solar landscape lighting stores energy captured during the day and then when it becomes dark enough, the outside lighting switches on automatically and stay on all night until they run out of battery power. A very good point is that solar lighting dose not use any wiring or external power source Unfortunately the disadvantages of solar lighting is that they give out very low levels of lighting and this gets dimmer as the night goes on.

Steep Hill Landscaping – Things You Ought to Know

Beautiful landscaping is always praiseworthy as it is an indispensable part of the interior and outdoor decoration of a housing complex. Most people show their eagerness to decorate the adjoining garden in the perfect way. Although, for those residing in hilly regions may find it a bit difficult to landscape the garden, proper arrangement/availability of tools and equipments makes it extremely easy and convenient to decorate the garden of a house on the top of the hills. If a house is situated at the foot of the hills and a man desires that his adjacent backyard of the house be as beautiful as the natural garden/forest, he must follow some basic points.

While starting the hillside landscaping project, one should check whether the walling system is in place. Basically, during rainy seasons, rain and landslide can occur in the hilly region and the rain water rolling down the slopes would dash against the house. Therefore weak walls should be reinforced and made strong. The way to the hill should be well maintained and the low height steps or slopes should be constructed or rebuilt to ensure safety and prevention from the erosion of soil.

Now the next step starts with the tree plantation. Proper care is required while planting trees on the terrace of the house and surrounding area. Junipers are really good to see and ideal for the decoration of landscape of the house on hillsides. Japanese Pachysandra plants also provide the maximum coverage to the steep steps in a way to scale up the hill. However, if the slopes or steps are low in height, one can start planting creepers like Phlox trees which act as ground coverage. Sun rays would not directly fall on the slopes, and they would be cool, thus increasing the longevity. Also, people would feel comfortable while climbing the hills.