New Home Landscaping
by David Abbott
(Calgary, Alberta, Canada)
This article is from a company that deals with house settling and new home landscaping.
Here in Calgary, Alberta, Canada we do a lot of landscaping for new construction. One of the biggest questions we get is when should new home owners go ahead and start building their landscape
. There is a very important factor that you must consider when deciding when to install your landscape and that is sub-surface settling.
That's right, sub surface settling meaning settling of soil below the surface. Why is this important? When you build a new home you have to start by building a foundation. Building a foundation means you have to rip up the earth with excavators then pour the concrete for the foundation. This means that the soil around the foundation will become unsettled or loose until it settles again. This soil that sat for many years, was at one time rock hard, but now it has been fluffed up and is no longer compacted.
When you put your landscape on top of this soft sub-surface soil, even if the surface is packed, you can have the entire area sink. We have seen landscapes worth tens of thousands of dollars sink 2 feet due to house settling.
Beautiful brick patios, fences and fence posts, 600 pound trees etc., etc...all sunk, leaving the owner to remove the new home landscaping and start over again. What a waste of time and money !
We tell new homeowners to wait at least 1 full year after there home is built to build their new home landscaping to allow for house settling. In that time you can soak the area within 6 feet of the foundation all around the house. Take a garden hose and thoroughly soak the area on a weekly basis, then sit back and watch it sink. After the settling you will have to add more soil to bring the area back up to level.
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"Susan, what a pleasure it was to work with you. You made me feel like I was your only client - responding late at night and always so quickly! Your design is amazing and we only hope we can do justice to it when we plant . You have such fantastic ideas and you are so open to suggestions and changes. Loved working with you - now if you could only come to Canada and plant it !!! "