Adding a touch of beauty to any outdoor home setting can seem simple. Depending on the scope of the project, it may be a simple renovation handled in a couple of hours, or a major task requiring outside help.

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Whatever the situation, we can all agree that adding beauty to our gardens and lawns improves the curb appeal of any property, adds benefit to enjoying the great outdoors and can improve property values. There are countless home improvement and landscaping projects that any homeowner can consider, but which ones are must-haves when enhancing the quality of your ornamental garden?

Today, let’s look at five of them and show you how easy it can be to get the job done.

Terraced Gardens

All too often, homeowners fail to take proper use of their potentially-viable gardening areas. In particular, hills are often overlooked as a prime source for ornamental beauty, due to a variety of issues. Another reason is the logistical challenges (check out Architectural Landscape Design for an idea of how professional landscapers tackle these challenges).

However, terraced gardening is one exceptional use of uneven terrain that can maximize your garden’s square footage and provide better results than level areas. Terraced gardening helps ensure all plants are properly watered and drained, leading to faster growth. It can also be great for sprucing up banks, ditches and other areas where some beauty is definitely necessary.

Square Foot Gardening

Maximizing the use of your horizontal gardening space isn’t easy, but one simple landscaping trick can help: square foot gardening.

With this strategy, you break your garden into single square foot areas; there are tools available online to help you properly plan this landscaping endeavor. Whether you opt for a permanent grid system or use a ruler to measure, square foot gardening is great in conjunction with other landscaping efforts (such as drainage/irrigation channels) to improve gardening performance.

Raised Beds

When we think of gardening, we tend to imagine stationary beds and features. Why should this always be the case?

With a raised bed, you can create growing areas that are both elevated and/or mobile. While many raised beds are simply lifted for better access and controlled growing conditions, there are other mobile raised bed options that allow for frames to be attached to wheels, giving you the option of moving each bed depending on the lighting and growing conditions. This is a must-consider feature for any ornamental garden.

Vertical Planting

Especially useful for those who don’t have a lot of space in which to garden, vertical planting brings a whole new dimension – literally – into gardening.

With your green thumb liberated from two-dimensional space, you can construct a variety of growing mediums that rise up rather than out. Some options include affixing planters to the side of the house and constructing frames out of low-cost materials that allow plants to be grown on multiple sides (great for light control).

Enhance with Shrubbery

Even if you prefer flowering varieties of plants for your ornamental garden, you can really improve the look and feel of the area – not to mention the entire yard – by using a combination of shrubs for a fuller appearance.

From bamboo and castor oil plants to butterfly bushes and cotoneaster, these shrubs and bushes will accentuate your garden rather than dominate it – and can be used for landscaping throughout the entire yard as well.

Changing the landscape of your garden area – whether it be temporary or permanent – is a common aspiration for many. If you’re ready to improve how your ornamental gardens look and feel, then consider the advice given here and act quickly in time for this year’s growing season.


Contributed by: Brent Szotak expert landscaper and foremost expert in ornamental gardens