There are two important questions to ask yourself before drawing a landscaping plan. The answers to these questions will have a dramatic impact on the outcome of your plan. If done correctly, the plan will reflect the answers and the installed project will meet the desired landscape criterias.
Question 1 - Why is the area being landscaped / what is hoped to be accomplished?
Possible Answer A - I am fixing up my property to sell.
Suggestion - Use fewer but larger plants. Fewer plants means lower cost; larger plants means more immediate impact to help the sell.
Possible Answer B - I would like some privacy when I am sitting out on my deck.
Suggestion - If you want year-round privacy use evergreens. If not, use deciduous plants; they typically grow faster and have more color.
Possible Answer C - I would like to have a patio in my backyard.
Suggestion - Determine how many people will typically be using the patio. What size is the patio table? Is there a grill or other outdoor furniture to be used? The answers will determine the size of the patio.
The above "Possible Answers" are just a few examples of the information needed before the start of a landscape plan. It's all about thinking it through.
It's not only a landscape plan, it is the landscape game plan.
Remember to project six months, a year, five years or more down the road so that the plan will reflect the desired outcome.
Question 2 - What is the maximum dollar amount to be spent on the landscaping project?
Make sure to nail down this question before you start your design. The plan needs to reflect the budget.
Bottom Line - Don't start a landscaping plan without knowing the answers to the above two questions. Be sure the criterias and the budget are strongly reflected in the plan.