Landscaping When Selling Your Home in Ypsilanti, MI
If you're getting ready to sell your home, spending some time on the yard can affect how much money you get for your home and how long it takes to sell it. It is said that potential home buyers know if they like the house or not before they've even stepped inside. Fortunately, you can get your yard sale ready without spending a fortune.
Skip the plantings
Plants can be expensive. Their price tags add up quickly and when first planted are not all that impressive. Save that money to buy plants for your new home. That way you'll be able to watch the plants mature and reap the full benefit of your purchase.
What should be focused on
- Weed the beds
Weeding costs nothing in materials and can make a huge difference in how a property looks. Furthermore, when someone buys a house, they already have plenty of work to do. The thought of spending their free time pulling weeds in the garden can be off putting.
- Fresh Mulch
Spreading new mulch does cost some money in materials but typically goes quickly and is well worth it. Right after mulch is spread, it looks great. The color starts to fade eventually but right after it has been spread is a good time to have an open house.
- Focus on the entrance
If both the front and back yard need to be cleaned up and you have pick one, focus on the front. Make sure the walk from their car to the front door is free of any eyesores. This will set their mood and influence what they think when they enter the house. The back yard is often an afterthought.
Be creative and do what you can with what you've got. You can make your yard presentable and your home sale ready without doing a landscaping overhaul. Save your landscaping budget and big ideas for the landscape at your next home.
Ornamental grasses add variety and a natural feel to landscapes. They can be used in groups or as specimens that will catch the eye through the winter. Most grasses are happy without supplemental water and only need to be cut back once a year in the spring. There are many types of ornamental grasses but a few stand above the rest because of their appearance and hardiness in Michigan's climate.
1. Feather Reed Grass (Calamagrostis)
Feather Reed Grass has two qualities that set it apart from the rest on this list. The first is that it is a cool season grass. This means it puts almost all of its growth on during the spring once temperatures reach the 50's. Many of the other grasses don't get much size until around June or July. This means Feather Reed Grass compliments later blooming flowers like Black Eyed Susans and Autumn Joy Sedum nicely. The second is that that Feather Reed Grass has stiff , upright stalks unlike the cascading appearance of Fountain and Silver Grass. This appearance works well in certain situations where other grasses might appear too busy.
2. Fountain Grass (Pennisetum)
Fountain Grasses are known for large, showy seed heads. Many varieties are on the shorter side, although larger varieties do exist. Dwarf Fountain Grasses such as "Hameln" and "Little Bunny"are great for adding flare to gardens with space restrictions. Fountain Grasses also do well in low water conditions.
3. Switch Grass (Panicum)
Native to Michigan, along with much of the rest of the Midwest and Central United States, Switch Grass is great for naturalization. It has a wild look but does a good job of staying in neat clumps that don't grow out of hand. It's a medium sized grass growing 3 - 4 ft. tall. It's a good option for native gardens and tough areas like next to heavily salted pavement. Two popular varieties are "Shenandoah", which has a reddish tint and "Heavy Metal" which has a bluish tint.
4. Silver Grass (Miscanthus)
Silver Grass makes a statement! Most large grasses you see in Michigan are likely Silver Grass. Many varieties grow to be around 6 ft. tall but there are types of Miscanthus that get up to 12 ft. tall. Silver Grass is beautiful and a great option for larger landscapes. It also works well as an alternative option for hedges. Unfortunately, Silver Grass takes more care than some other types of grass. Since the plants tend to be bigger, there is more to clean up in the spring. Miscanthus also spreads horizontally through rhizomes. This means the plants can become overwhelmingly wide if not occasionally cut back.
5. Little Bluestem (Schizachyrium)
Little Bluestem is another great option for naturalization projects. It grows naturally in most of the U.S. It's a little shorter than Switch Grass. It also has a different color and texture. Little Bluestem can be used in place of Switch Grass or along side it to create a prairie feel.
It's January and although there are no flowers, there are still many beautiful examples of landscapes that are interesting year round. When choosing plants, it's easy to get caught up in showy pictures of flowering plants that don't depict the visuals you'll get for the majority of the year. Almost any landscape can benefit from the presence of flowers but time should be taken to consider all 4 seasons. This will ensure that there isn't a burst of interest in the spring leaving the rest of the year drab and boring.
Michigan summers can be hot. Most people don't want to have to do a lot of yard work in August. After the spring growth spurt, hedges can become unruly so should be used sparingly. Drought like conditions are not uncommon. Certain plants, especially non-native perennials, can need lots of water. This can be a pain without an irrigation system. Shade trees can make a yard much more enjoyable during the hottest part of the year by adding some much needed shade to parts of the yard that are used the most.
Many plants have interesting fall foliage but some more than others. Japanese Maple "Blood Good", burning bushes and staghorn sumac are some examples of plants that turn a vivid red color that can brighten up the landscape. Sugar maples, viburnums, oakleaf hydrangea, and smoke bush also have interesting colors that range from yellow to purple. When choosing trees for summer shade, remember that more trees means more leaves to clean up in October.
Winter is when evergreens shine. They're often the only color around come February. Many of them look great topped with fresh snow as well. Evergreen shrubs work well against foundations to add texture between homes and the ground once perennials have died back and deciduous plants have lost their leaves. There are options like junipers and birds nest spruce that need very little pruning compared to yews and box woods. Some shrubs like holly and barberries get bright red berries that look nice while simultaneously providing food for birds. Ornamental grasses, red twigged dogwoods and birch trees are also favorites for providing winter interest.
While a landscape design shouldn't fixate on spring time, it wouldn't be the same without some colors and smells to signify the end of winter. Many of the earliest bloomers grow from bulbs like tulips, daffodils, and grape hyacinth that have to be planted in the fall. Some of the most impressive displays of flowers come from ornamental trees like crab apples and cherry trees. Many shrubs also have spring flowers, such as viburnums, which can also have incredible smells.
It's good to go through each season and make sure there is something that will stand out throughout the year. Planning before the landscape project can create a more attractive, functional and hassle free landscape that can be enjoyed for years to come.