Just because the ground is covered in snow and the temperatures continue to hover in the 20’s does not mean you cannot start spring landscape planning. In fact, now is the perfect time to turn your attention to any landscape projects you might want to undertake for several reasons:
- Major projects require a fair bit of lead time to find and meet with a landscape architect to develop a plan.
- Once you have finalized the details, you will need to secure any necessary permits. In this area those often include approvals from the homeowners association which can take weeks depending on how often the committee meets.
- If your project includes stonework or significant prep/construction prior to planting, you can start on that work as soon as the snow melts and the ground softens up a bit. Getting a head start on the structural work will ensure that you have plenty of time to get the new plants in the ground before the warmer, dryer weather rolls in.
Even if you possess a green thumb and plan to do the work yourself, the cold winter weekends (possibly with fewer kids’ sports to occupy your time?) present the ideal opportunity to get ready. As a starting point, take a walk around your neighborhood to see whose garden looks good even in the dead of winter. This could give you some ideas as to perennials and shrubs you might want to include in your plans to make sure your house has year-round curb appeal. You can also get a good view of walkways or other structures you might want to include in your plan.
Once you have some initial ideas, you can set up your computer in front of the fire and use one of the many landscape design apps that are now available to plan your dream garden. Apps such as iScape, Landscaper’s Companion, Patio Tip, Landscape Design Ideas and Eden Garden Design, to name a few, help with plant lists, garden and patio design ideas and the creation of plans using photos of your home.
For the really serious gardener, now is also the time to get in those last minute seed orders for your spring planting. Before you know it, the temperatures will start creeping up into the 50’s and, dare we dream, even the 60’s, and you will be all set to get to work.