Landscape design is typically done in winter and spring. That makes it difficult to determine which plants in your current landscape should be kept, moved, or removed and replaced. Images of your landscape now can provide you and your designer with guidelines for planning changes during a snowy winter.
Summer is a good time to take photos of your entire landscape. All plants have leaves and many are in bloom at this time. The photos will show your landscape designer, and remind you, how the landscape looks in season. Take plenty of photos, including close-ups of specimen plants and those flowering, cover shots of each planting bed and long shots from different angles for an overview of the whole property.
It would also be nice to identify each plant. The simplest way is to sketch each planting bed and draw a circle for each plant and print the common and the scientific name inside the plant or in the margin with a line connecting the name with the plant. If you don’t know the names, you can select one of our landscape designers for your project now and they can do the photography and plant identification.
The thought of having to draw a sketch frightens many people. With digital cameras and photo manipulation, you can actually turn this into a fun project. Hopefully, you’ve saved the nursery tags for each plant. Photograph the plants and take a close-up of the tag and, using your photo manipulation program, put the tag shots into the plant photo as an inset.
Even if you aren’t planning to renovate your landscape in the near future, photographing and identifying all the plants is a good idea. You never know when our unpredictable weather will turn ugly and unleash a damaging storm upon us. Should that happen, you’ll have documentation for your insurance and casualty loss claims.
Your landscape contributes to the overall value of your home, and each plant has a value of its own, as well as contributing to the overall property value. The value of annuals, perennials and shrubs is based on replacement cost. Lawn value is based on the cost of repair or replacement. Large trees, however, can’t be replaced. Their value has to be determined by a certified arborist using one of several valuation methods. The bottom line is determined by how much damage to the landscape, as well as the house and other structures, reduces the total value of the property.
Keeping a photographic inventory of the plants in your landscape, and updating it as the plants grow or your plant palette changes, can be a great resource when needed. But it can also be a fun summer project when the dog days of summer make your green thumb itch.