Large home with nice colorful front yard landscaping

5 Planning Tips to Improve Your Yard Landscaping at Lake of the Ozarks

What would you like to have in your dream yard landscaping plan? Would you love to have a pool? Or maybe a waterfall and a small creek? Maybe it’s just a nice raised flower bed you desire. Whatever you want to have in your yard, simple landscaping strategies can get you there. Read on for the advice you need to create a yard that makes you smile!

If you are not a master landscaper, consider hiring a company to help you. Many times do-it-yourself homeowners think that they will save money by not hiring a professional landscape company. However, the opposite might actually be true.

An experienced landscaper can determine the best genus and species of plants and seeds to use. Likewise, they will know the exact chemicals, treatments, and care that your lawn and garden needs, resulting in less work and sometimes, a reduced cost. The same is true when it comes to landscape construction of hardscape features like paver patios and retaining walls. Even walkways can prove more challenging than some expect.

Discover Your Growing Zone

So, if you plan to landscape your yard, be sure to do a good amount of research on the best types of plants for your area. Some grasses grow better in warmer regions, while others can survive a tough winter with ease. Most grass seed bags will provide information on what growing zone or climate is best for their seed. The same can be true for various bushes and trees.

Plant hardiness growing zone map
USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map (USA)

Sketch Out a Plan

Make sure you plan thoroughly while you’re thinking through your front yard landscaping ideas. It is a great idea to sketch out your landscaping design when it’s still a plan, so you can have a good mental idea of what it is going to look like.

1. Diagram Existing or New Features

Most people find it helpful to begin with diagraming the existing structures or natural features of your property. Decide whether you’ll want any hardscape landscaping or construction done, such as brick or stone walkways, patios, retaining walls, etc.

2. Plan Creatively for Greenery Softscape

Then make notes of the trees, plants, flowers, shrubs, etc. that you plan on using to improve your yard landscape. It’s typically a good idea to start with larger plants like your ornamental trees and work down to smaller plants and flowers. Consider whether raised flower beds could be implemented, as well as accent features or areas like boulders or rock gardens. 

It’s popular to use plants and flowers with mulch to soften hard areas like the edges of patios, edging rocks along paths, and large outcropping stone. Some people like to soften the corners of their property in this way as well. This is the time to evaluate where you want to use straight lines vs. curvature in your landscape design.

Another important consideration is whether you will want to install a sprinkler system. If so, this is the time to do it. If it’s not a budget problem for you, the benefits of a smart irrigation system can do wonders for your lawn and gardens.

3. Use Color Contrast in your Landscaping

Use contrast to bring interest and pizzazz to your landscape design. For instance, try to plant items that are very different from each other in color, form and texture. Look at a color wheel, select the colors that are opposite each other and then pair plantings of those colors together. In doing so, this variety will give a much more colorful and interesting look to your flower beds and your overall landscape.

4. Think about multi-seasonal beauty.

Homeowners are often disappointed when winter sets in and their home’s landscape looks dull and colorless. Why not create a multi-seasonal garden to make the most of your yard landscaping endeavors? You can research and choose many different plants and flowers that thrive in your region and bloom during different seasons. You might also consider planting unusual trees, evergreens, or shrubs with winter berries as a way to make your yard stand out.

Consider what color your leaves and plants will be in the fall. What about splashes of color in the early spring? You can strategically plan for blossoming flowers throughout the entire growing season. This will provide a nice upgrade in your home’s overall appearance year-round.

5. Budget for your Landscape Plan

To help pay for your project, you could divide it into different stages. You will only have to pay for one stage at a time. If landscaping is a hobby for you, taking your time is important since creating the landscape is often more fun than maintaining it on a regular basis.

Lawn and Landscape Maintenance

Trim your bushes and hedges regularly. If you trim a hedge or a bush when it is just starting to become overgrown, it will be a quick and easy process. If you wait until the bush is completely overgrown, sometimes these kinds of projects can take several hours. Regular maintenance is the easiest way to keep your landscaping looking great.

More homeowners are opting for low-maintenance front yard landscaping, which makes a great deal of sense for many of our Lake of the Ozarks properties. Given the natural geographical features of our area we’re strong proponents of utilizing creative front yard landscaping ideas with rocks.

Low maintenance xeriscape yard with boulders, gravel, and indigenous plants
A xeriscape yard with naturally indigenous plants provides an excellent low-maintenance alternative to mowing and lawn care at Lake of the Ozarks.

Talk with a Professional

It can be an excellent idea to talk to a pro before you start working on your landscape. You might not need a landscape designer or architect to draft your whole project, but often for a low price, a consultation that lasts about an hour can be well worth the money. And even more so if it prevents you from making costly mistakes later on.

Everyone loves different things, from the sound of running water to watching squirrels play in the yard. That means that everyone also needs to draft different plans to meet their landscaping needs. However, all of the tips in this article can benefit anyone who wants to make a change. Keep these ideas in mind, as you make your dreamscape a reality!