2 Landscaping Temptations That Could Cause Trouble Later

Posted on: 5 May 2015

When you buy your first home, you might be excited about getting outside, rolling up your sleeves, and landscaping your own yard. After buying a few new trees and carefully selecting flowers, you might be more concerned about visual appeal than you are about the safety of your home. Unfortunately, giving in to these two landscaping temptations could cause trouble later:

1: Surrounding Your Home With Flowerbeds

Nobody likes the look of a boring, gray home foundation, so why not cover it up with a few nice bushes or some attractive flowers? Although surrounding your property with stunning flowerbeds might seem like a great idea, that simple addition could cause trouble in the long run. Here are a few issues you might encounter, should you decide to put flowerbeds right against your house:

  • Water: After you fill your flowerbeds with colorful flowers and interesting shrubs, you will need to water them regularly to keep everything alive. Unfortunately, in your attempt to hydrate those plants, you might also be pouring water right against your home's foundation. Over time, water can make its way inside, causing damaging house floods or prompting mold growth.
  • Mulch: To add a little contrast between your grass and those flowerbeds, you might be tempted to fill them to the brim with red or black mulch. Unfortunately, because mulch consists of wood chips and other organic materials, it can make it easier for pests like termites to find their way into your home. To avoid problems, experts recommend keeping mulch 8-12 inches away from the side of your home. 

To fend off trouble, keep mulch levels to a minimum and consider planting plants that don't require much water. For example, you could plant some tall, hardy grasses that would disguise that cement without requiring loads of moisture. In addition to protecting your foundation, slow-growing, resilient plants might also require less maintenance.

2: Planting Trees Close To Your House

Who doesn't like the look of tree-lined streets and shady arbors? To frame your property and to add a little height to your landscaping, you might be tempted to plant trees close to your house. Unfortunately, this mistake could cause these problems:

  • Falling Branches: As trees grow, their branches might extend over your home. However, if you ever experience extreme weather, those heavy branches could break away and fall onto your property—which could cause serious damage or injure your family members.
  • Underground Issues: Powerful tree roots can punch their way through vital utility lines or even into your home's foundation. If you plant trees too close, you might end up with indoor water problems or failed electrical systems. Also, once tree roots have snaked their way through underground structures, they are much more difficult to remove.
  • Property Line Disputes: If you have a small lot, planting trees on your property could cause trouble with your neighbors down the road. Once that tree grows and starts to hang over someone else's property, falling debris like seedpods, pine needles, or rogue branches could become your neighbor's problem too.

To stay on the safe side, experts recommend planting trees far away from your house. Try to plant small trees, which would only grow up to 30 feet tall, about 8-10 feet away from your house. Large trees, which could grow over 70 feet high, need to be planted at least 20 feet away from your property. Although it might seem like a hassle to move those trees to the outskirts of your lot, it could save you from a world of heartache later.    

Being familiar with poor landscaping decisions and knowing how to avoid them might help you to protect your home, your family, and your free time. For the best results, consult with an experienced landscaper as you make your plans for your yard. 


Constructing and Filling Raised Garden Beds

Hi there, I am Kirk Blathers. I would like to share my knowledge about raised garden beds, so I created this website. My raised garden beds house tons of bulbs that push up out of the ground as soon as the warm weather arrives. Alongside the beds, I have a few tubs full of fresh herbs and vegetables that climb the trellises. I would love to share the information I've gathered about created raised bed frames from scratch. Some people have used actual bed frames while others created the beds out of wood materials. I will also discuss soil, seed, and fertilizer selection for each bed size and type. I hope that the information I share will help you create a beautiful set of raised beds for your yard. Thanks.