A new home in a new development is an exciting prospect. But in a neighborhood of similar home models, how does a homeowner make their house stand out?
With a little creativity and perhaps the help of a landscape designer, adding a simple garden wall to your front landscape can change the entire look of your home’s exterior.
Changing your front area is a great way to make your home unique. There are many less involved projects than a garden wall, like improving the lighting, painting the front doors a different color, or installing plantings along the walk. Weekend projects like those can help beautify your space. Adding a permanent installation like a garden wall adds to the architecture of the house. It’s a small project (garden walls are at maximum 3 feet high) with big results.
Here are 4 examples where a well-placed garden wall can do wonders.
Uneven front yards. Leveling a tiered or hilly front landscape is not necessarily the best solution to beautify the space. Levels and variation can give a powerful boost to your curb appeal. The secret is to emphasize rather than minimize the variety. A well-placed garden wall makes a slight hill into a stunner. It elevates a low dip to an eye-catcher. It adds color and texture in otherwise typical suburban swaths of grass.
Harsh lines. New home designs are wonderful, but they are heavy on straight and diagonal lines. Curved garden walls add the essential circular and arch shapes that are missing. Adding some curves to an overly linear space can soften the look and make the entrance more welcoming.
Disappearing plantings. Landscaping is a good way to individualize a home.Unfortunately, many homeowners don’t realize until it is too late that their gardening efforts aren’t resulting in effective curb appeal because the plantings disappear from view from the street. New trees (common in new,recently-cleared developments) tend to seem spindly and sparse. A garden wall changes a garden space by bringing emphasis to the plantings. With a garden wall, a lone new tree goes from looking like an afterthought to an architectural design piece. A flat, front garden transforms from an ordinary space to an extraordinary one, even with immature plantings. These “forgotten” landscape elements are emphasized with a garden wall. It’s a simple addition that delivers amazing individualized design to an otherwise anonymous space.
Recessed front doors. Having a recessed front door comes with many benefits,especially if it is under a roof. Homeowners may love the space when it comes to coming in out of the rain, but a recessed entrance can tend to get lost in the entire look of the house. Proper lighting is the first step. Recessed entrances lit properly at night can be beautiful. To counteract daytime shadows, a cleverly placed walkway and garden wall can solve the “disappearing door” phenomenon. The eye tends to trace lines from beginning to end. Catch a guest’s eye at the curb by designing a walkway leading to a garden wall edge that leads to the front door. A garden wall makes the difference between a flat surface that fades into the grass and a delineated design element. A garden wall can bring out that recessed front door in useful and beautiful ways.
Garden walls seem simple and unassuming, but they are powerful tools to use in increasing the visual interest and value of your home. Next time you pass a house with a garden wall in the front landscape, take notice of the line, shape and placement. The best designed garden walls look like they “came with the house,” but the installation was most probably a strategic post-construction decision. Take a look around your neighborhood or visit our wall galleryto get some inspiration of your own.