The Log Cabin

Friday, August 6, 2010

Log Cabin Landscaping - The Cabin Perimeter

When deciding what to plant around the perimeter of your log cabin, first determine the size of the landscaping you want to plant. Second, similar to trees and groundcover, research which plants will grow well in your property’s habitat and fit your desired size. Besides online and nursery research, you can also walk around your local area and locate plants that are appealing to you. Take pictures and find out their names.

There are two reasons for not planting large plants and bushes around the immediate perimeter of a log cabin. The number one reason is to ensure that your logs have room to breath and access to airflow, thus deterring lengthy exposure to damaging moisture and the advent of mold and mildew. There should be a three to five foot distance between the plants and the log wall. You will need to allow for growth when determining the proper planting distance. You will need lots of room

The second reason is my own personal preference. I love the natural look of the logs. That’s why I’ll be building a log cabin. I don’t want to block the visual beauty of the logs, especially on the front. I once bought a house that had an attractive stone covered front that was mostly blocked from view by the evergreen trees that had been allowed to grow unchecked. I eventually cut down the trees and replaced them with smaller plants in order to uncover and showcase the stone.

The only exception to this rule could be on the rear sides of my log cabin. Due to the property slope there will be considerable exposed cement basement wall. I do have the option of covering the wall with log or stone siding. If not, I can plant some evergreens that will eventually hide the cement.

So in the front, I will be planting some shrubs whose height can be controlled by annual trimming. I once planted a row of Korean boxwoods on the side of my house in Connecticut. They filled in nicely and ended up about three feet high. I have determined that these plants will do well in the mountains of Georgia. I will also plant some perennial and/or annual flowering plants in front of the boxwoods for some color contrast.  A boxwood hedge (that needs a trim) is shown above.

When deciding what to plant, keep in mind that plants are sun or shade loving and so place them accordingly. Also, you should slope the ground around the perimeter to ensure that water will drain away from the log cabin wall.

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