Question: How can I lay out my landscape beds so they look really good?

Answer: They need to be in scale with the size of your house. If you’re going to plant in curvilinear beds, use a supple garden hose on a warm, sunny day. You can move the hose until you get just the configuration you want. Don’t let them be too “busy,” however. Long, sweeping curves are the most useful. Let them be broader at the corners, and flare them out as they approach the sidewalk. Try to equalize them visually on the two sides of your walk. In other words, if one bed is longer, let it also be narrower. To put it in other terms, the beds should appear to have roughly the same visual square-footage. Spray the new beds with an appropriate herbicide, and allow it a week or two to kill the existing vegetation, then start your soil preparation.

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