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Make a Landscape Idea Book

by Kristin Marino, All About Lawns Columnist

Landscape Scrapbook
Family Landscaping

From my window, right now, I can see six-foot-high piles of snow. My kids are finally in school after five or six snow days in a row. My favorite landscape and gardening center is closed due to the roof collapsing from too much snow. What a fine time to start formulating a landscaping plan for the spring.

No doubt, you have at least a glimmer of landscaping ideas formulating in your noggin. If you're like me, you have been pushing those ideas aside and shopping for snow blowers. This is no time for denial.

Remember how much fun you had as a kid making scrapbooks? Maybe you even had a diary where you wrote your ideas and dreams. It's time for you to make a landscaping and gardening scrapbook/diary. You'll need some magazines, scissors, paper, glue, sketchbook, and a head full of landscaping plans.
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  • Eliminate patches
  • Less weeds
  • Make it thicker
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Landscape Idea Books: Step-by-Step Plans

  1. Your subscription to that gardening and landscaping magazine is still coming in. Seed and gardening catalogs are no doubt starting to trickle in, too. Grab a cup of coffee, some scissors, and a comfy spot, and get to cutting. Now is not the time to censor any of your landscaping ideas. If you like it, even if it's an English garden and you live in Phoenix, cut it out.
  2. No doubt there are common themes running through the pictures you chose to cut out. How do these relate to your landscaping ideas? If they don't relate at all to your landscaping ideas, that's important to think about, too.
  3. Grab a glue stick and your sketchbook. Glue the pictures that you chose on a page with enough room to write next to each picture.
  4. Grab a pencil and write down your feelings as you look at your landscaping and gardening pictures. Maybe you like the color of a hybrid rose, but you know from experience you can't grow hybrid roses in your soil. No worries. Write down something to remind you of what you were thinking when you cut out the picture. "Love the pink color, reminds me of Bazooka Bubble Gum, look for an azalea in this color for the corner of the yard"
  5. Take some pictures of your backyard and put them in your landscape scrapbook. Or, if you are artistically inclined, make some sketches. How do your landscape ideas and dreams fit into the reality of your backyard? You might not be able to turn your Phoenix Xeriscape into an English Garden, but this exercise will help you see how you can incorporate your landscaping and gardening ideas into a real landscaping plan.

Most Importantly, Bring Your Book...

As you start selecting seeds and plants from your gardening catalogs and landscaping center, keep your landscape idea book close by. You know now what you truly want your landscape to look like and you will no longer buy something that, while nice, doesn't quite end up looking quite like you envisioned.

About the Author
Kristin Marino has been a homeowner for ten years and really does have the greenest lawn in her neighborhood. Kristin holds a bachelor degree in English from the University of Nevada.

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