Define Use Areas
You can divide use areas into three major categories. Note: There are no distinct boundaries on these areas, and they will frequently overlap in terms of function and appearance.
- Public areas: These are usually associated with the front of your landscape. The primary function of these areas is to provide an aesthetically pleasing entrance to your home.
- Private areas: These are the areas used for recreation, family activities, and entertaining.
- Service areas: The areas are reserved for the vegetable garden, composting, pet and livestock areas, storage sheds, woodpiles, and other utilitarian functions. They can resolve multiple problems by overlapping with areas that are difficult to maintain, have limited access to water, or have poor soil.
For more discussion on identifying use areas, see this University of Missouri site.
Define Planting Areas
Plot planting zones based on water needs or plant maintenance requirements.
- Hydrozone, or group plants with similar water needs in the same areas. To conserve water, do not mix plants that have low water requirements with plants that have high water requirements.
- Reduce maintenance activities by grouping plants with similar maintenance requirements together. In general, perennials, shrubs, and trees generally require less frequent maintenance than annuals. For a detailed descriptions of low maintenance landscaping principles, see the publication Low Input Landscaping.
- Design planting areas to meet the objectives of your landscape plan. Consider the need for privacy, security, wildlife attraction, etc.