Summer is a great time to think about how your home looks from the outside. Upgrading your landscaping can boost curb appeal, increase your home's value, and help sell it more quickly if and when you decide to sell, but be careful! Our real estate agents warn that making the following mistakes can cost you time and money to correct the damage before you sell.
- Planting invasive species.
Be cautious about planting something you like the looks of without researching it first. Pay special attention to how it behaves in your specific zone. Plants that are controlled by climate or soil in some areas can become invasive in others if they have nothing to hold them back. Some plants do best in planters and pots, so they can't spread throughout your entire garden.
- Letting weeds spread.
Weeding might not be fun, but pulling weeds when they're small can prevent a much larger problem. As weeds grow, their roots become stronger, making them harder to pull. But even more importantly, if you let a weed go to seed, you will increase your weed problems exponentially. Instead, nix those weeds before they have a chance to grow or spread, and you'll keep your task from growing too.
- Overdoing the mulch.
It's common to surround new trees with mulch and a landscaping border to keep it all in place. While this has a neat look and can help to keep moisture in the soil, benefiting the tree's roots, be sure you aren't overdoing the mulch. Instead of adding a mound of mulch, which will pack down tightly, invite decay, and suffocate the roots, apply a loose, much thinner layer of mulch. In general, three to four inches will do the job, although you can spread up to six inches as long as you pull it away from the tree's trunk to avoid softening the root collar.
- Using too much gravel.
Xeriscaping is seen by some as a benefit in South Bend homes for sale, as it means less time and resources spent caring for the yard, but only if it's done right. Surrounding the existing landscaping with gravel is likely not to fare too well, as gravel tends to reflect and absorb heat. Xeriscaping needs to be carefully planned with the right plants and the right amount of gravel or mulch.
One common mistake people make is to fertilize too heavily, especially at the peak of the summer. Too much fertilizer in high heat can actually burn plants, plus it may have the opposite effect of what you want, causing vegetable plants to leaf out instead of focusing the energy on blooms. With perennials, it can cause the plants to produce too much new growth late in the growing season, which makes them more vulnerable come winter.
- Adding weeds and seeds to compost.
While many gardeners find that composting completes the growing cycle at home and provides a great source of natural fertilizer for their plants, you do have to be careful what you add to the compost pile or bin. Avoid throwing weeds in with the rest of the compost, as it could actually contribute to more of a weed problem in your garden later on. When adding kitchen scraps to the compost, make sure you're removing the seeds first so that you don't end up with surprise additions to your garden.
When done right, landscaping can result in a boost in your home's curb appeal and possibly even its value. For more information about getting your home ready for sale, contact us today.