For many homeowners, the last item on the to-do list before putting their houses on the market is sprucing up their garden.
The best thing you can do is plan ahead and begin freshening up your landscaping this winter. There are many steps you can take this winter that help make your spring garden a standout.
“If homeowners want to sell in March or April they need get rocking and rolling on some of this stuff,” said Andrew Anderson, owner of The Urban Farmer in Long Beach. Anderson specializes in both vegetable gardens and drought-tolerant landscaping.
Although January is well into the winter growing season, Anderson said homeowners can use this time to prepare bare vegetable beds for planting summer crops by March 1. To restore nitrogen in the soil, Anderson recommends a combination of composted chicken and steer manure, Epson salt, and Sphagnum moss, commonly known as peat moss.
For sellers who can’t wait until after the first quarter, he recommends planting herbs and lettuce to give your vegetable beds a fast-growing crop that looks fresh.
“They’ll even be able to eat lettuces soon and have them grow back by the time they’re ready to go on the market,” Anderson said. Need help planning your vegetable garden? Generally, he’ll charge between $100 and $500 to design and replant a vegetable garden.
If your lawn is brown or has missing patches, you may want to remove it and install drought-tolerant landscaping. Installing succulent or native plants will not only save the future owner a ton on water and maintenance but also remove the hassle of trying to bring grass back to life. Winter is a perfect time of year to this because cooler temperatures allows these plants to establish themselves.
Generally, he charges between $500 and $2,000 for a drought tolerant landscape redesign, depending on the plants used and square footage.
The good news for Long Beach homeowners is that they may be able to fund their new water-friendly yard with the city’s Lawn to Garden Turf Replacement program. Long Beach offers $2.50 per square foot for up to 1,500 sq. ft. of front yard and parkway that is replaced with drought tolerant landscaping.
The city also offers free designs and ideas, photos, plant lists, and free classes.