Installing hardscaping in your yard can be a great way to reduce maintenance. But the main problem with hardscaping is that it looks too...well, too hard. As a solution, folks sometimes mix plants and hardscaping together -- the plants will take the "rough edges," if you will, off of the hardscaping. You can find all sorts of examples of this "marriage made in the yard," including:
- Window boxes that soften the harsh lines of patios
- Container gardens and container-grown trees used on decks (picture)
- A grass strip left to run up the center of a driveway
- Ground covers used as fillers in between the stepping stones
But one of the most complete integrations of hardscaping and plants comes when we nestle a patio into a landscape in such a way that it doesn't stick out like a sore thumb. Could you use some help in this regard? Read my article on patio landscaping for some ideas.
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Photo ©2010 David Beaulieu, Landscaping Guide (licensed to About, Inc.)