The mail order nursery companies certainly have done their marketing research! Extravagently colored catalogs arrive during the darkest, coldest months of the year, tantalizing us with promises of warm weather and beautiful gardens.
The phrase ‘impulse purchase’ was likely coined by the marketing department of one of these companies. In my travels through the yards of landscape customers over the years, I have seen countless examples of plants (or other landscape features) that the owner “just had to have” – often to the detriment of the unity of their landscape.
Resist the temptation to order the “new and improved” shrub, or “best tasting” vegetable seed until you have thoroughly evaluated plans for your new or renovated gardens.
Create an entire plan first, based on sound design principles, before you invest in the individual elements of your landscape. A primary goal of design is to create a unified, cohesive landscape, which in turn creates harmony for owners and visitors. Impulse purchases most often produce the opposite effect.
Take advantage of the offer at the newsletter linked above, or conduct your own research on landscape design and planning. You’ll find a wealth of good ideas online and at your local library.
Remember to Plan Twice, Plant Once.