Top 5 Tips to Maximize Your Entry Garden

Entry gardens are a reflection of the home’s inhabitants and the first “welcome” guests receive as they approach our homes.

Front yard landscaping also serves a functional purpose in directing visitors to the front door. The following tips will help you create an inviting entrance to your home.

Download an Entry Garden Plan PDF

1. Make a Striking First Impression

The “first impression” is what designers call the first glimpse of your landscape as guests approach by either driving or walking up the street. Depending on the orientation of your house, the first impression may be a seldom-used corner of the landscape or your front door. Use this first glimpse to provide a taste of what’s to come with a street-side bed of flowers or lush mailbox planting. If the first glimpse is of your front door make a statement by accenting the entryway with bold color and lush plantings.

2. Sidewalk Connections

Extend an invitation to enter the garden by creating strong connections to streets and sidewalks. Think portals and paths. A portal is an entrance, such as an arbor, gate or simple opening between plantings. Paths should be wide enough to accommodate two people walking side-by-side and lead guests to the front door.

Where fences are involved or required (such as for dogs), use an open style that permits views into the yard. A well-designed fence can be functional without making the home feel isolated from the neighborhood – as frequently demonstrated by the classic white picket fence.

3. Alluring Aroma

Plant a welcoming bouquet of fragrant flowers to greet guests along your entry walk. Don’t forget the path you take to your own front door. The pleasing aroma of flowering plants will help you shed the worries of the day as you transition from work to home. Try a planting of Evergreen Stella™ Daylily, whose soft perfume will linger spring to fall as the plant blooms again and again. Or stir up memories of grandma’s garden with the old-fashioned fragrance of ScentAmazing™ Gardenia.

4. A Place to Visit

Like the grand porches of old, front-yard seating says to passersby, “come sit for a spell.” If you don’t have a porch, create a small patio or simply set Adirondack chairs out in the lawn. Front yard seating is a perfect place to engage neighbors or simply watch the world go by. Add a bird feeder or fountain and you might never make it through the front door.

5. Night Lighting

Thoughtful landscape lighting provides safe passage at night while accenting the home and garden. Soft illumination is the key to an inviting entrance. Pay close attention to safety by keeping doorways, stairs and paths well lit. Use landscape lights to accent trees, sculptures and other features. Avoid the mistake of over-lighting the landscape – a little light goes a long way. Incorporate multiple light sources that use low-wattage bulbs to create ambiance and eliminate glare.