Plants and products that conserve and collect water are a top trend in landscaping for 2012. And that’s particularly appealing here, since the Carolinas have experienced more than their fair share of drought in recent years.
Irrigation systems can be customized with rain sensors so you’re not watering needlessly. And you also might want to consider relocating your system so that you’re not watering driveways and walkways. Choosing drought-tolerant plants that aren’t big drinkers will help keep your water bill in check. These include lemon trees, succulents, palms, roses, hedges, and grasses.
Also consider less landscaping and more hardscaping – opting for gravel beds and courtyards. Add a rain barrel to collect the water you need or use recycled “grey water” from your home. And consider a small water feature instead of a pond, perhaps a beautiful glazed pot or boulder with water bubbline from the top. That will save you money and time, as ponds are water hogs and a lot of work. Hot water features in 2012 are made from natural stone, as well as copper and other metals.
Gone is the concept that your yard should be beautiful only in spring and summer. Trending now is the idea that creating seasonal interest is the way to go.
Ornamental grasses remain lovely all winter long, adding much needed green. Add plants with winter berries or plant some evergreens. Consider the color and texture of bark on various trees and shrubs and how that element can add impact.
Another trend has landscaping investment moving from back to front. Front yard gardens are increasing in popularity and increasing curb appeal, while investment in back yard spaces has even declined slightly in recent years.