Gardening Articles: Landscaping :: Yard & Garden Planning

Avoid the Top Ten Landscape Mistakes

by Susan Littlefield


Good landscaping can add beauty and value to your home grounds and make them easier to care for. Poorly done landscaping not only can cost you a lot of wasted dollars and effort, it can create an unappealing and hard to maintain yard and garden.

How to get things off to a good start? Avoid the "Top 10 Landscape Mistakes" and you'll be on your way to healthy, attractive plantings. Compiled by Paul Pugliese of the University of Georgia Cooperative Extension Service, this list of landscape "no-nos" contains good advice, no matter where in the country you garden.

For example, mistake number one is leaving burlap, ropes, or wire cages on the rootballs of newly planted trees or shrubs. The root restriction they can cause may result in "pot-bound" plant in the ground or a girdling root slowly killing a tree years after it goes in the ground. Number five on the list is one of the most common mistakes -- not taking into account the mature height and spread of a tree or shrub and placing it where it doesn't have sufficient room to develop. Or how about piling up mulch "volcanoes" around tree trunks, which can lead to rot, or applying too much fertilizer, which can harm plants, contribute to water pollution, and waste money?

Pugliese doesn't just tell you what not to do; he also gives suggestions for correct landscaping practices. Don't plant too deep; instead look for the root flare on the trunk and set the plant so the flare is level or slightly above grade.

To read about all of the top ten landscaping mistakes, go to Georgia Faces.

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