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Welcome and Introduction

Welcome to my blog. Straight to the point – why should you spend some time with this? Because you may just learn something! What I intend to write about is my personal (and I hope unique) perspective on what I call “natural” landscaping. I do not plan on lecturing on the reasons why one should go about their landscape in this or any other particular manner. It seems to me that most people come to their own conclusions about this based on many influences in their own lives. What I do plan on writing about will be notes and reflections on the reality, both good and “challenging”, of landscaping with an emphasis on environmental awareness. I also plan on including a healthy dose of helpful suggestions; from me and from other sources. So, no better place to start this than with an idea of my definition of natural landscaping.

I think of natural landscaping as working with nature and natural processes in your own process of creating, managing and maintaining a landscape. Going with the flow of how natural systems function on their own as opposed to fighting against it. I know this may sound rather esoteric and vague, but I believe that this definition does cut to the heart of it. As a society most of us have been conditioned to a very different take on how to create, manage and maintain our own landscapes and as a result this can be challenging to grasp at first. However, over time and with some personal experience this all begins to make sense. Trust me. This perspective on landscaping can definitely encompass a wide swath of ideas, topics and philosophies. To name just a few:

  • Regionally appropriate and often naturalistic design aesthetics
  • Wildlife friendliness
  • Plant community based planting design
  • Dominance of native plants
  • Reduced / eliminated use of chemicals and fossil fuels
  • On-site water infiltration

I could go on, but I suspect my point is made. In fact, I believe that each person, family, home and property should have their own definition and expression of natural landscaping. A small city lot on a busy corner will most certainly have a very different landscape “plan” as compared to a rural homestead on several acres. A heavily wooded lot on a dry hillside will have different priorities than a treeless lot in a new development built on a low-lying field.

What’s key to this definition of natural landscaping is that it’s a path, a mindset, and ultimately a shift in thinking and expectation. It can really help to set things in motion with a thoughtful start (i.e. design), but it’s plenty to simply adopt some of the philosophies and gently steer in the appropriate direction. I hope to help you in your own steering by way of these writings.

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