What is a “Low Maintenance Landscape”

Written by Brent Lucas – Landscape Manager

The “low maintenance landscape” is a request that we receive frequently. There are many considerations when designing a low maintenance landscape for a client. Our approach to the design process has always been very systematic and begins with a comprehensive discussion with our client as to what they desire to see in their future landscape. Along with the request that the finish product generally require minimal maintenance, many times we hear our clients speak about the specific importance of the overall aesthetic appeal (color, form, focal points etc.), ease of weed control, lack of required pruning and the ease of seasonal clean-up. With all these requests under consideration, the designer can now get to work on a viable low maintenance design solution.

In many cases the most important aspect to our clients is the overall aesthetic appeal of the final product. On numerous occasions customers have made concessions within their maintenance goals to maximize the aesthetic appeal of the design. In an attempt to balance both, our designers carefully select slow growing plant material with specific forms that balance aesthetics with long term growth potential.

Nobody enjoys pulling weeds and when it comes to the request for a lower maintenance landscape this is certainly a top concern. Proper bed preparation is where this process begins. A thorough discussion with a landscape professional on how to responsibly use herbicide throughout the season is vital in reducing weed related maintenance. For homeowners wanting to minimize the use of herbicide, a worthwhile design consideration would be the use of decorative stone mulches coupled with landscape fabric.

Lastly, pruning and seasonal cleanup are areas where customers are trying to minimize effort. With a skilled designer helping navigate your plant choices, these are areas where your time in the garden can be cut to the bare minimum with proper plant selection. This is one of the areas where compromises sometimes need to be made. Considerations on how much seasonal flower color clients desire coupled with the amount of time owners are willing to wait before their landscape looks “full” will certainly affect how a designer balances the request for minimal pruning and seasonal cleanup as the two are inversely proportional.

Balancing each of these requests to achieve a desired design solution is a challenge we take seriously at Cumberland Valley Tree Service Landscaping. Our team strives to deliver not only from that initial design concept but for years to come with responsible landscape preservation.