Landscaping Ideas for Texas Homes
Whether you want to admit it or not, your yard speaks volumes to everyone who notices it. A well-kept lawn with lush grass and trim hedges expresses a sense of order and tidiness, understated perhaps, but also sensible, elegant, and refined. It’s a polite conversationalist, soft-spoken and articulate. A colorful garden filled with bright blooms, on the other hand, can’t help but burst into song every now and then. Sassy, sophisticated, and opinionated, it can draw many admirers, but maintaining that alluring voice requires plenty of attention. An overgrown or neglected yard has a tendency to mutter under its breath, occasionally demanding to know “what are you looking at?” So, what does your yard say about you? If you purchased a new home from Chesmar, your front yard offered an enthusiastic “welcome!” when you moved in. That’s because it came fully landscaped and equipped with a sprinkler system. Of course, that first greeting was only the start of what will be a very long conversation. Here are some landscaping tips that can help ensure your Texas yard is always a sweet talker.
Know Your Climate
Texas is a big state, with three primary climates – continental steppe, mountain, and modified marine. This represents conditions that range from arid to semitropical. But within these broad categories, there’s a myriad of microclimates that can be quite different. Both Dallas and Houston, for instance, can be hot and humid throughout the summer, but Dallas gets on average 23 freezes during the winter, while Houston averages just 10. Having a good idea of what to expect throughout each season will allow you to choose plants that are best suited to your region. After all, you wouldn’t want to risk the heartbreak of nurturing a spectacular bed of pentas and zinnias all year only to have them wiped out after one cold night.
Know How Much Sun Your Yard Gets
If you don’t have a tree canopy overhead, you may think this is a fairly cut and dry question. Everything gets full sun. Right?
Since the sun travels across the sky throughout the day, light levels are changing slowly but constantly. You need to take into consideration the effect of shadows as they move across your yard, including those cast by your house, neighboring houses, fences, and hardscaping features such as walls and decorative rocks. The orientation of your property is also important. Morning light is better tolerated by most sun-loving plants, many of which can be scorched if overexposed. A day of observation and notetaking can create a roadmap to determine which plants will thrive in the spots you pick out for them.
Know Your Enemies
Texas yards can face daily assaults from any number of horticultural menaces that will leave your lawn looking like a battleground before you realize the scope of the problem. Some of the most common garden pests are:
- Fire ants
- Chinch bugs
Keeping an eye out for the early signs of an infestation will allow you to take swift action to eliminate the problem. For instance, a patch of dead St. Augustine grass surrounded by stunted grass or a ring of dying, yellow blades may be an indication of chinch bugs. Thankfully, for every problem, there is also one or more solutions, many of which do not require the use of pesticides or other toxic chemicals.
Know Your Friends
When it comes to ornamental plants, there’s no shortage of options for homeowners who want to create a striking outdoor centerpiece. Popular blooming perennials including:
- Pansies – Despite their delicate reputation, these plants are actually quite hardy and drought resistant.
- Snapdragons – Spikes of color that bloom from March to May, if you keep the bulbs moist throughout the hot summer, they’ll make an encore appearance in the fall.
- Plumbago – These blue bombshells will make a show of it all year long, but they have little tolerance for shade. They like to spread out, so regular trimming will be necessary to keep them in check.
- Ornamental grass – Who says flowers are the only plants that can take center stage? Ornamental grasses such as fountain grass can make a striking display in and of themselves or paired with an artistically arranged collection of boulders. Perfect for xeriscaped corners or near front entrances.
At Chesmar, we are the premier home builder in Texas. Offering a wide variety of exceptional three-, four-, and five-bedroom homes, we have a decade-long track record of success that continues to grow with every new residence we construct. Whether in Dallas, San Antonio, Houston, or Austin, our neighborhoods are setting the standard for livability, luxury, and thoughtful design. To learn more about our homes, contact one of our New Home Consultants today or visit one of our model homes. You can also check out available move-in-ready homes in all of our communities here on our website.