October 28, 2016

Sloping Yard Solutions

Having a sloping yard is difficult to maintain and hard to work with. Often you have soil erosion and water runoffs that can be damaging to your outdoor living space. Not to mention the lack of natural beauty presented by your unmanaged inclined yard.

Couple of ways one can work on beautifying a sloping yard and resolving the main issues it poses: Function and Esthetics.

1.  The first option is to introduce deep-rooted plants, trees and shrubs to the area. Learning which plant varieties to use is very important to ensure that your choices will thrive on the hillside.  Always use a variety of plants and stay away from a uniform look to create a more natural, eye-catching garden:
    • Ground covers are great for low height gardens. Choose the ones that tend to grow along the length of the stems to form a carpet like effect or those that produce several stems from the root and tend to be climbers.
    • Prairie plants, ornamental grasses and ground cover rose shrubs make a great choice for slopes.
    •  Wild flowers cover an inclined terrain with colorful plants that bloom at various times of the year.

Always consult with your local horticulturist to research the best selection for the climate in which you are planting and the area you are working on.

While planting will bring natural beauty, access to the hill may still pose a problem. A safe and easy access is important to make to help you maintain your plants. That is why this second option may be a more viable solution:

2. This option while maybe a bit more costly will provide a permanent solution for the problems created by a sloping yard. Converting the hillside into terraces by building retaining walls softens the slope, creates in-wall planters that are more leveled and easier to garden, retain the soil to stop erosion issues and water drainage. Adding stairs will provide an easier access to the hill. With more leveled areas to plant, the choices of plants increases to include any shrubs, plants and trees that are suited for the climate and soil type.

Terraced retaining walls combined with the right choice of plants, trees and shrubs is a guaranteed cure for any hillside. 

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