In­spir­ing land­scap­ing ideas

Lesotho Times - - Property -

BE­FORE de­sign­ing and cre­at­ing your gar­den, it is rec­om­mended that home­own­ers un­der­take a short plan­ning pro­cess to clar­ify their re­quire­ments and gather ideas.

Try not to skip this step, even if you feel you know what it is you want, as there may be ideas that you have not con­sid­ered be­fore.

Good prepa­ra­tion is the key to a great gar­den, so if you’re go­ing to spend time and money on it, then take some time to plan it.

Glenice Ebe­des from Grounded land­scap­ing shares some tips…

En­ter­tain­ment and braai­ing If you want to in­vite fam­ily and guests over for a braai, then you’ll need to de­cide whether you want to buy a mo­bile braai (that can be rolled into place when needed), or whether you want a cus­tom-built braai.

Cus­tom-built braais fit seam­lessly into your gar­den de­sign, while mo­bile braais give you the flex­i­bil­ity to move them around as and when needed.

Chil­dren’s play ar­eas If you have young chil­dren, con­sider build­ing a play area with sand pits and ar­ti­fi­cial lawns. You could even in­clude play­ground ob­jects like jun­gle gyms and rock­ing horses.

For safety rea­sons, you should al­ways use playpen sand be­neath the play­ground ob­jects, and leave a space of 1.5m-plus be­tween the ob­jects and any hard land­scap­ing el­e­ments such as paving and pots.

Swim­ming area There are many op­tions when it comes to adding a pool to your gar­den. New ecofriendly op­tions called eco-pools are pop­u­lar, as they serve as a com­bi­na­tion pool and nat­u­ral wa­ter fea­ture, and re­quire less main­te­nance.

A swim­ming pool is a sep­a­rate ser­vice to land­scap­ing, and home­own­ers should choose their pre­ferred pool sup­plier and pool lo­ca­tion be­fore mov­ing on to the de­sign of the gar­den.

If you are still in the pro­cess of build­ing your home, then you will likely al­ready have the pool drawn up in your ar­chi­tec­tural plans.

Once your pool has been placed and in­stalled, the ad­di­tional work on your gar­den can be­gin. Just re­mem­ber to ask your pool in­staller where the pip­ing is, so you don’t find your­self rup­tur­ing pool pipes while in­stalling your gar­den.

Read­ing and in­ti­mate mo­ments If you’d like to use your gar­den for read­ing or ro­man­tic, in­ti­mate mo­ments, you’ll most likely want to in­cor­po­rate benches and seat­ing ar­eas in your gar­den.

Search your lo­cal sup­pli­ers, DIY stores or out­door fur­ni­ture stores etc., for benches and seat­ing that ap­peals to you.

You could also build a cus­tom-made out­door seat­ing area, with a built-in braai. If you are go­ing to use your gar­den for re­lax­ation and read­ing, you might want to in­clude a wa­ter fea­ture, which adds the sound of flow­ing wa­ter to your out­door ex­pe­ri­ence. This will help to drown out ex­tra­ne­ous noise from the sur­round­ing neigh­bour­hood.

A space for pets If you own pets, then you should take their needs into con­sid­er­a­tion and in­clude some pet-friendly el­e­ments.

Con­sider us­ing lawn or a hardy ground cover around the ken­nel in­stead of plac­ing your pets di­rectly onto paving. Soft land­scap­ing ma­te­ri­als will also help re­duce the tem­per­a­ture of th­ese ar­eas, es­pe­cially in sum­mer.

At­tract­ing wildlife It’s won­der­ful to know that your gar­den is a wildlife haven for birds, an­i­mals and in­sects. If you live near a re­serve or park, then hav­ing an indige­nous gar­den will help at­tract the wildlife liv­ing nearby.

Per­haps the most im­por­tant de­sign ele- ment to at­tract­ing wildlife is to en­sure you in­clude as many indige­nous plants as pos­si­ble. Ide­ally, the plants you choose should be indige­nous to the area, not just indige­nous to the coun­try.

If you use plants that sim­u­late your sur­round­ing en­vi­ron­ment, then you will likely at­tract indige­nous in­sects, which in turn will at­tract nat­u­ral preda­tors such as other in­sects and birds. Es­sen­tially, you will be cre­at­ing a haven that all th­ese species ‘recog­nise’, as well as ex­tend­ing the nat­u­ral ‘green-belt’ of your area.

So if at­tract­ing lo­cal wildlife is your goal, make sure you in­clude as many indige­nous species as you can in your de­sign. Other im­por­tant de­sign fea­tures for at­tract­ing wildlife in­clude bird baths or ponds, bird feed­ers and bug ho­tels’.

Wed­ding venue If you plan to hold a wed­ding in your gar­den some­time in the fu­ture, then you might want to in­clude fea­tures like a gazebo or wa­ter fea­tures, and space for seat­ing your guests, prefer­ably be­neath the shade of some indige­nous trees.

Per­haps you will only in­stall the gazebo at a later date, in which case, take into con­sid­er­a­tion a pos­si­ble lo­ca­tion, and then con­sider plant­ing trees or pos­si­bly paving that area with qual­ity pavers. Re­mem­ber that a gazebo can be used year round, so con­sider in­clud­ing out­door fur­ni­ture so that you can use it ev­ery day and not just once-off.

Sport­ing ac­tiv­i­ties If you have a sports-ori­ented fam­ily, then pro­vide suf­fi­cient space for sport­ing ac­tiv­i­ties.

A large area of lawn can be used for all man­ner of sports, from foot­ball to cricket, putting to chip­ping and kids’ games.

Home­own­ers who own a large prop­erty may want to in­clude a ten­nis court or miniten­nis court in their back­yard.

— Prop­erty24

If you have young chil­dren, con­sider build­ing a play area.

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