Front yards are the most underutilized space on our properties. While the backyard is often the private retreat for family and friends, front yards have a unique social component. Front yards are great spaces for raingardens. A well-designed raingarden can be a great “main attraction” with sitting spaces, paths and plantings organized around it. Using a shortgrass as the main plant component can create a low-maintenance meadow that is beautiful and has high wildlife value. This will be a great stopping over point for birds, bees and butterflies. This type of planting works great for slopes – a feature of many front yards.
We like to get away from a row of plants along the front of the house – what we call a “front foundation planting.” Instead we like to layer plants that offer multiple seasons of interest. A little two-chair gravel area can be a landing pad to enjoy the front yard, or a well-chosen sculpture can offer just the right personal touch to this space where people first see and enter your home.