Energy efficient landscaping is the way to go
A thoughtfully designed landscape not only beautifies your property, it can also help you save energy. Well-placed plantings can cool your house in summer, warm it in winter, and save water year round. According to the Department of Energy, a landscape designed with conservation in mind saves enough energy to pay for itself in 8 years. Here are tips from the Department of Energy and Neave Landscaping to help you create a more energy-efficient landscape.
- Plant deciduous (leaf-shedding) trees on the south and west sides of your home. Their leaves will help block summer sun.
- On the west side, use trees with lower crowns to deflect the rays of the setting sun.
- A deciduous vine, such as morning glory, planted on a trellis can cool your patio or windows.
- Shrubs planted along side your home will begin cooling walls very quickly.
- Evergreens planted to the north and west of your house will help block winter winds.
- For maximum windbreak protection, plant the trees at a distance from your home of 2-5 times their mature height.
- Windbreaks create dead air space that will insulate your home in summer and winter.
- Adding a fence or wall along with the evergreens will deflect wind from your home.
- The deciduous trees you planted for summer cooling will lose leaves in winter, allowing the sun to warm your home.
- Water early in the morning to reduce water loss due to evaporation.
- Use plants suited to your local conditions.
- Group plants together that have similar watering needs.
- Install a rain barrel, where local permitting allows. Rain barrels capture water from your roof that you can use for your plants—but don’t drink it!
According to U. of Georgia extension, “best management practices” for landscape water conservation for new plantings include digging a deep-enough hole, amending the soil, applying 3-5 inches of mulch on the surface, and watering deeply.
Of course, we at Art of Stone Gardening, Georgia are available to help you design the most beautiful and efficient landscape possible. Please contact us!