The vertical plane, or walls, in your landscape can be made of plants or manufactured materials. A wall may be connected to a floor and a ceiling of some sort to create an outdoor room, which I discuss in "Using Sustainable Hardscape Features to Build an Outdoor Room," later in this chapter. Walls don't have to be restricted to the outer boundaries of your property. Use interior walls to create outdoor rooms and break the space into interesting subspaces.
Use walls or fences to block views of neighbors or to create an enclosed courtyard or walled garden. For complete privacy, make your enclosure solid and at least 6 feet high.
Solid enclosures change the microclimate. They create shade on one side and sun on the other, block or channel winds, and sometimes absorb or reflect heat. When handled properly, these characteristics can be desirable, but if you aren't aware of the changes you'll be creating, you could end up with trouble.
Keeping people and animals in or out of your property requires sturdy barriers. The most sustainable of these barriers are thorny or otherwise impenetrable shrubs. However, small or determined interlopers can still make their way through these barriers. For complete security, choose a solid masonry or adobe wall, or consider chain-link fencing made of recyclable steel. This section introduces the types of walls and fences that you can incorporate into your hardscape. Chapter 14 provides some pointers on building sustainable walls.
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How would you like to save a ton of money and increase the value of your home by as much as thirty percent! If your homes landscape is designed properly it will be a source of enjoyment for your entire family, it will enhance your community and add to the resale value of your property. Landscape design involves much more than placing trees, shrubs and other plants on the property. It is an art which deals with conscious arrangement or organization of outdoor space for human satisfaction and enjoyment.