America's Most Desperate Landscape 2010: Landscape Tips for Weekly Winner No. 1

The first weekly winner is Arlene Nappi of Port Richey, Florida. Jason Cameron shares 5 tips that will take this landscape out of the desperate column.

Related To:

  1. Front Yards

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Tip No. 1: Install groundcover. With all the tree roots, grass is a lost cause. Remove any grass with a straight-edged spade; you won't need a sod cutter. Select plants that don't require much water. One good option: dwarf jasmine (Trachelospermum asiaticum).

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Tip No. 2: Ditch the red mulch. Replace it with dark brown hardwood mulch or pine chips. This will create a more natural look and a sharper, cleaner contrast to the rest of the landscape.

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Tip No. 3: Lower your under-window plantings. When you have plants in a high-profile spot, keep them under control. Prune the flowering shrubs to slightly below the windows. Elsewhere along the foundation, prune existing plants to a tidier shape or, if they're not doing well, replace.

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Tip No. 4: Create a focal point. Place a large flower pot in the landscape bed to the right of the door, and plant with colorful annuals or tropical plants like bromeliads.

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Tip No. 5: Redirect the lighting. Replace the landscape lighting with spot lighting that focuses on the door and a few favorite trees.

As a weekly winner, Arlene receives a $100 prize to spend on GardenFun.com.

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Arlene Nappis right front yard

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