Homework: Lessons

While working on a recent Homework submittal, I thought of a couple of simple landscaping improvements that I see on a lot of houses. They involve issues that homeowners often get wrong but that can be fixed easily.

1. Make the foundation plants touch. Too often, bushes are planted as isolated specimens rather than a continuous, flowing hedge. A hedge provides an aesthetic base for the home’s façade to rest upon.

2. Layer the plants by height. If you have successfully created a hedge, plant a second, lower one in front of it with a line of flowers, ground cover or ornamental grasses. This second layer adds a sense of completion and sophistication.

3. The plants need to be in scale with each other. They should create a hierarchy with each other and the façade. Some of the plantings need to be bigger or bolder than the others. In other words, it’s a mistake to have individual plants too similar in size or look.

In our example, you will notice that additional plants have been added to create an informal hedge. A line of Liriope grass in front creates a second layer.


Also, notice that the corner upright evergreens are much taller than in the original, and the Knock Out roses flanking the front door add a bold, differentiating color. All three of our concepts work together to impart a more pleasing and sophisticated presentation.






Homework is penned by Paul Doerner, founding partner of The Lawrence Group. If you would like your home critiqued, contact us at 

Pictured at top: Home with improvements

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