Creating the Perfect Garden

Planting a garden is a good move if you want to ramp up curb appeal, have fresh vegetables, or enjoy your landscape. More buyers want move-in-ready houses, meaning they don’t want to have to plant a garden themselves.

Many people today are turning to home gardening as a means of acquiring fresh produce in the summer months.

  • Like all things in real estate, it’s all about location! For example, tomatoes need rich soil with plenty of sunshine, and will die in a shaded or soggy spot. Vegetables should be near the house for easy picking.
  • Make sure that you get a heavy duty shovel that will stand up to roots and stems. Get tips and suggestions from a gardening expert to make sure you have all the quality tools for your particular yard.
  • Dig out a spade-deep layer of dirt, place it on a tarp and remove any roots, stems, or rocks. Loosen the next layer of soil and return the top layer along with compost and topsoil. Save time and labor by smothering the grass with cardboard before topping with compost and topsoil. Don’t skip on the compost because your plants will need the organic material for nutrients.
  • Get rid of weeds right away. Irrigate only when necessary and fertilize using an organic product according to label instructions.



Flower gardens positively affect the overall appeal and potential selling price of a home.

  • Start seeds in trays, pots or coir pots by using a seedling mixture. Place in a sunny spot and transplant as soon as the seedlings developed sturdy stems. Nursery-grown plants give you instant gratification, but the short time between purchase and planting is crucial. Take the plants straight home and water them.
  • Annuals only last a year, while perennials will keep coming back. Evergreen shrubs or ornamental grasses can provide structure and year-round interest. For a lot of ground cover, select spreading plants. Don’t forget to plan for the final height of the plant.
  • Follow the guidelines on the seed packet or plant tag. It may not seem like they need that much space, but the root system will need lots of room to grow. Always place transplants so that the soil is level where it meets the plant.
  • It may be tempting to purchase cheaper, plastic edging, but you get what you pay for. Brick, concrete or stone dug into a small trench is the best solution for longevity and easier mowing, trimming and maintenance.

It’s a lot of work to create a garden, but if you do it right the first time, gardening will only get easier. It will also add value and curb appeal to your home.

Helen Oliveri is a 13-year real estate professional who loves our community: helping clients achieve their real estate goals is her priority. She is the managing broker of the newly opened Keller Williams Realty Partners, home of The Helen Oliveri Team in Hawthorn Woods, where she also resides. Feel free to visit the new office in Cherry Hill Plaza at 101 W. Gilmer Road. Find more information online at HelenOliveri.com or call 847.967.0022.