Best Neighborhood Garden: Making Your Garden Envy Of Neighborhood

Flowers And Plants Peeking Through White Fence
garden envy
(Image credit: jorgeantonio)

Every gardener has their own version of what constitutes a beautiful garden. If you invest effort into garden design and maintenance, your neighbors are certain to appreciate it. Creating an exceptional garden that neighbors admire is entirely within the realm of reason.

Read on for tips on how to make the best garden possible in your backyard.

How to Make the Best Garden

You want to have an impressive neighborhood garden, and there’s nothing wrong with that. Everyone will take notice if you create a well-designed, eco-friendly garden that is maintained with integrated pest management principles. A few cool toys never hurt either.

Building an enviable neighborhood garden starts with building a garden you love. The first step is to invest time learning about the garden. Find out what kind of soil you have including its pH and evaluate your yard’s sun exposure before you pull together a design.

It’s also important to figure out who is likely to spend time in the garden. The design of a garden frequented mostly by immediate family will be different from a garden used regularly for social events. Also, think through the question of maintenance: how much time or money are you willing to invest into garden care?

Making Your Garden Envy of Neighborhood

One way to unite your plantings into an admirable garden is to design around a theme. Having a garden theme bonds your backyard and also helps determine which plants to select. For example, you could create a serene Chinese garden or a formal English garden. Your theme could be quite simple as well, like repeating specific shapes or forms throughout your yard.

Keep the architecture of your home in mind as you decide on a theme. The landscape should complement your home’s style since it is, in fact, an extension of your home. If you take the question of theme seriously, it will help you determine the décor, hardscape, and plants you include.

Do you like geometric shapes or prefer the softer line of a more natural garden? Considering your preferences helps you find a unifying garden theme.

Building the Best Neighborhood Garden

As you work on garden design, think of the landscape as a set of rooms in your house. When you built your home, you planned the use and design of each room, and you should do the same thing with landscape.

Use the plants you select as well as hardscape to create different "rooms" in your landscape, then link the spaces with openings and walkways. You can create screens or barriers with plants or select low-growing plants that keep the views open.

If impressing visitors is high on your priority list, you can build in eye-catching flower arrangements with unusual planters. A claw foot tub overflowing with flowers is sure to draw attention.

For bigger budgets, creating a garden of envy might mean installing a swinging bench seating area around a barbeque or campfire or even a swinging bed. A water element such as a swimming pool or fountain can also add allure to a garden.

Perhaps the most impressive thing you can do in your enviable garden is to act in the best interests of nature by adopting integrated pest management strategies. This means that chemicals and pesticides are saved for a last resort situation and that you select native plants that require little or no irrigation or fertilizer.

Teo Spengler

Teo Spengler has been gardening for 30 years. She is a docent at the San Francisco Botanical Garden. Her passion is trees, 250 of which she has planted on her land in France.