How Green Landscaping Benefits Curb Appeal

by Rachel Lyon, Editorial Director for Direct from the Designers™

The land that your home sits on has a huge effect on its overall curb appeal. A neat and tidy yard or garden is attractive and gives a house an aesthetically pleasing foreground and/or background, but if your property is unkempt or shows signs of drought, it’s not doing you any favors. It can be difficult to maintain a beautiful lawn when the sun is harsh and water restrictions are in place, but it can be done. Consider native landscaping, or naturescaping, which works with your environment. Compared to traditional landscaping, which is high-maintenance and very costly to keep, this green alternative basically takes care of itself and you only reap the gorgeous benefits! Keep reading to learn the fundamentals of this growing movement so your home can look its best through the seasons.

USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map

Use tools like the USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map to determine which plant species are best equipped to handle your climate. Be aware that while many areas share the same zone, they can have very different growing seasons and won’t support the same plants at the same time of year.

Native Plants vs. Industrial Horticulture

If you go to a garden center anywhere around the United States, you’ll find largely the same selection of grasses and shrubs for sale. They are sold for their function as well as for their looks, but not for their ecological viability. Instead of having tailored assortments that work with our regional needs, we are faced with a blanket collection of plants that cannot universally thrive across such a geographically diverse continent. The result is that neighborhoods in desert, prairie, mountain, and coastal locations look the same—but there is absolutely no benefit for the environment or your wallet.

Native plants have evolved to flourish in their environments. They have adapted to climatic conditions and won’t require much supplemental care, if any, because they are naturally equipped to survive on the amount of water and the type of soil available in the area. Native plants also resist insects and diseases, which industrial ones often fall prey to. Why would you set yourself up for more work with irrigation, fertilizing, pest control, and tedious trimming and mowing when you could have a more unique and gorgeous yard with species that are actually meant to live there?


The landscaping of this build of House Plan 6940 creates a gorgeous picture that can be viewed from the home's gazebo. A variety of small, colorful shrubs and a cascading water element in the shade of tall trees are good for relaxing beside, and wildlife will also appreciate them!

Native Plants Promote a Healthier Environment

For many, the monetary savings are enough to start planning a native landscape, but there are all sorts of environmental advantages that should make you excited for it! This is a green choice because it won’t put extra strain on the water supply and reduces the number of pollutants introduced to runoff and the air, but it goes even further. Naturescaping promotes biodiversity and will draw visitors you’ll love to see right up to your home!

When you choose native landscaping, you’re allowing a natural ecosystem to exist on your property, and that comes with all sorts of fauna. The local insects and birds will recognize your flowers and shrubbery, so you can expect to attract bees, butterflies, songbirds, hummingbirds, and whatever else you have in the area. Your yard will provide support for populations of pollinators and dispersers, which are often threatened by development through loss of habitat, and that has good environmental implications that reach far beyond your property lines.

Cookie-cutter industrial landscaping that deprives native plants and animals of space and resources has made it a rare treat for many of us to see the natural beauty that should surround us, no matter where we choose to live. It seems counterintuitive to suggest that you should invest in native landscaping, because its cost is negligible next to traditional methods, but it does repay any effort you put in. For example, if you have a favorite type of local bird or insect, find out what plants it prefers for food and shelter and you’ll draw it in for easy viewing!


Mediterranean homes like House Plan 4238 become truly remarkable with native landscaping, whether they're built in arid or beachy places. With flourishing shrubs in courtyards and vines climbing over walls, a new home can look established in no time.

Enjoying a More Beautiful Property

At the end of the day, native landscaping is a very low-maintenance choice that will look good with minimal interference. It is a far cry from an extremely manicured lawn, but you can still put together a well-planned and executed garden if that’s your style. Plenty of homeowners who choose naturescaping take a very laissez-faire approach to it—they let the plants take their natural shapes and only take measures to reduce overgrowth. That’s one of the best things about it—these species are not like the practically cloned cultivars traditionally used, so each plant will be unique and that much more interesting.

It’s hard to believe that after all the time and energy spent choosing the perfect home with just the right style, people still default to totally plain lawns. Choosing native landscaping will make your home stand out, even if the entire neighborhood decides to embrace the change. With a wide range of species to select from and so many ways to incorporate them into your landscape design, no two homes will have the same yard! And can you imagine a better background to any outdoor living space than a flourishing garden?

If you’re interested in native plants and want to create a beautiful yard with them, find a local nursery or landscaper who can help! A knowledgeable local should be able to make suggestions and can supply seeds and shrubs that will thrive. There are numerous groups across the United States and Canada dedicated to preserving and promoting native landscaping, so you won’t feel lost in the process! To get started, use a directory like the one made available by PlantNative to find nurseries that offer native species for your area, and to learn about what those native species are, what they look like, and what they’ll attract. With just a little education, you can be well on your way to a stunning property that makes your home all the more beautiful!

Therma Tru Doors For House Plans Online