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Flower garden planning

Planning is the key to a new garden after moving whether it is started from a barren backyard or from just sod. Doing your homework over a year's time is the best way to get started so that you can see changes in sun, pests and water conditions.

During this time browse through books and go on garden tours to get ideas for your future garden. Once you have a few ideas try sketching out a layout on graph paper, make a few drawings or use a hose to mark where plants may go. Remember, gardens are a long term project with ups and downs due to weather and water so make a commitment and enjoy the process.

Planning for outdoor living

Conceiving an outdoor living space can make your yard a welcome respite from the outside world. Locating furniture in the right place can make or break the space so take advantage of decks, porches or even shady places under a tree.

Lounging and sitting areas

Locating a few chairs and a low table on a deck or porch can make for a nice transition to the outdoors. Chairs should be larger and more comfortable in nature. If a straight back armless chair is used there is little chance that people will stay in the chair for long, so go for comfort.

Don't limit yourself to just the deck or porch. Often it is nice to get a different perspective on the landscape. Try locating a few chairs and low table in a remote part of the garden. Looking at the garden from a differing point of view can often give the effect of transporting yourself to another place.

Areas for dining

There are many opportunities for creating dining areas with your landscape. Your deck or porch can serve as a quick and easy way to get outside with new or refurbished chairs and tables. If the desire is for a romantic evening tries putting the table and chairs right on the lawn for an english feel. Do, however, make sure that the table and chairs are placed with a little distance between them and flowering shrubs or plants. Bees or other insects like these areas as well.

Outdoor kitchens have become fairly popular in today's outdoor dining circles. Installing a cook top near an outdoor structure with a roof may be an option. Also, having adequate storage for plates and napkins is a nice touch so you do not have to make repeated trips inside.

Front and entry garden design

In many front yards, Spartan comes to mind with most plantings going to the backyard. Instead, try sprucing up the front yard so you have something nice to come home to each night after work. Direction is the watchword in this regard. Highlight the driveway with a nice mailbox and some red flowers to mark the entry way. Plant some flowers along the front walk to highlight the way to your front steps. Then, try some planters on the steps to the front door.

Each of these simple elements will give you and your visitors a nice relaxing transition into your home. So, don't neglect your front yard in your new home. Try these few simple steps.