Timothy Dahl of Lifehacker says “A well-maintained Yard boosts property value, puts you in the good graces of your neighbors, and even prevents a break-in.” I ought to know. I had a neighbor who fastidiously maintained his lawn. If your lawn looked a little ragged or hadn’t been mowed in a while, he would come to your door and talk to you about mowing or edging it. He did it nicely, but instead of being the fashion police, he made himself the lawn police. He died a young man with a lovely lawn.
There are a number of ways to improve your lawn and good landscaping can add up to 28% to overall home value, says landscape economist John Harris. Even taking your landscaping from “good” to “excellent,” regarding design, condition, and placement can add 6% to 7% to a home’s value, according to a Clemson University study of homes in Greenville, S.C.
But don’t landscape just to sell your house. You won’t get your money back, says Sandy MacCuish, a California appraiser. Rather, landscape for your enjoyment, while admiring it from your wicker sofa in the sunroom.
A Well-Maintained Yard
The first thing people notice is the lawn. Is it mowed and edged and the sidewalk swept when done? Mowing the lawn is like pruning. You should mow regularly and only remove about a third off the top. Don’t bag the clippings, but let them stay on the lawn that way the clippings return nutrients back and make the lawn thicker. Our gardener disagrees. He prefers the clean look. He rakes the clippings and re-mows. He said he can always apply fertilizer. Water frequently. It is a lot easier to water and keep it green than trying to rejuvenate a brown and dried out lawn. Plus, the lawn suffers trauma.
How Do You Maintain a Yard?
Trim your hedges. If you do the trimming, use power shears. They can be electric or gas powered. Start on the sides and work up and down. Do the top last. You can get a long bar on the power shears, but they can be heavy and awkward.
Tend to your flowerbeds. First, rake out the dried leaves then get rid of the weeds. You can either pull them or spade up the beds. You run the risk of disturbing any bulbs in the ground if you use a spade. It’s best to pull the weeds and lay at least three inches of mulch that smothers the weeds or makes them easy to pull them in the future.
Have the trees pruned once a year. Pruning tends to open up the tree allowing good airflow. It also removes dead or broken branches that can get disease and spread that disease to the rest of the tree. Your trees will love you for the attention and will be much stronger.
Now, I have not seen any lawn mowers in hazmat suits, but experts recommend using eye protection, ear protection, gloves and even protective clothing. I really like eye protection especially working around plants. I have avoided serious eye injury.
Maintain Outdoor Furniture
Finally, look at your outdoor wicker furniture. It may need cleaning. A hose works great, but for tougher stains use some mild soap and water. If the cushions and umbrella look faded, you might investigate the new fabrics that are sun and weather resistant. Remember, to make things look fresh; colorful seat cushions give the furniture some pop.
A well-maintained yard boosts property value, but in an age concerned with self-esteem, nothing boosts your own self-esteem than a good looking yard that draws admiring glances.