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Curb Appeal



For most homeowners, curb appeal begins with beautiful landscaping. But just as important is the preservation of the natural ecosystem around us. With the use of native plant species in yards and gardens, homeowners can integrate the two goals, to great success.


Shasta DaisyNative species of plants occur naturally, without human introduction or intervention. Over time, they have built up physical and biological characteristics specific to regional elements – things like climate, soil type, moisture, and other local plants, animals and insects. They are hardy, environmentally friendly, and help to restore regional landscapes that may be compromised in rapidly developing areas. In short, they are perfectly adapted to their home.

When landscaping with native plants, the best research is simply looking around to get an idea of what grows near your home naturally and beautifully. In the Asheville area, it’s easy to maximize your success by matching the right plants with the right site conditions. To do this, assess the type of light and amount of moisture your planting site receives throughout the day, as well as throughout each growing season. The direction your garden faces, the amount of horizontal and vertical working space you have, and your altitude also figure prominently in native landscaping success. Having your soil pH tested is helpful, and will indicate whether the soil needs to be amended.


Butterfly bushFrom wispy wildflowers to low-growing groundcovers, native options in the Asheville area are diverse enough to suit any weekend landscaper’s tastes.

A lot of native planting depends on your landscaping goals:

·      Looking to provide a lush wildlife habitat? Start by creating layers: Plant low-growing plants and shrubs under taller ones, and create an environment where birds can nest and feed.

·      For a punch of color that attracts an array of pollinators, nothing beats wildflowers. Popular in the Asheville area and surrounding region, and targeted to specific seasons, are eastern bluestar, butterfly weed and cardinal flower.

·      For a natural way to stem erosion and minimize maintenance, groundcovers are the way to go. Some popular Western N.C. natives include the multi-season showstopper partridgeberry (white flowers in the spring, red berries in the fall); and green and gold, perfect for populating a rock garden.

·      Ferns and tall grasses provide the ideal habitat for a range of songbirds, butterflies and small animals. Shade garden favorites include cinnamon and Christmas ferns. Grasses are a low-maintenance option, with cloud-like switchgrass and year-round little bluestem popular picks.

AzaleaAsheville is replete with local nurseries well-versed in all aspects of native landscaping. In addition, there are local educational resources galore to get you started on your way to an ecosystem-supporting yard. For more information and guidance on regional native landscaping, visit the following:

Asheville Botanical Gardens

N.C. State University’s “Urban Landscaping With Native Plants” 

N.C. Native Plant Society 

Bee City USA 

And if you’re looking for the perfect house to go with that native-populated yard, please contact Mike Figura at  or call him anytime at (828) 337-8190.


Curb Appeal: 4 Ways to Beautify Before Selling



Curb Appeal Color Selling Adding Color Can Lead Buyers to Your Door

Spring is a time of renewal and fresh starts.  If you are considering selling your house this year, spring is also the time to renew your home's facade and make it fresh for prospective buyers.   As inventory creeps up and listings are hitting the market, there are ways that you can utilize the color pallette to enhance your curb appeal.  Check out these 4 ways to harness the potential of the color wheel!


1. Freshen up the paint.


For an investment of around $40-$70, the cost of a gallon of no VOC paint, you can enliven key areas of your exterior that are likely to make lasting first impressions.  A lipstick red or patriot blue coat of paint on your front door can create a welcoming yet lively entrance for prospective buyers.  Repainting existing trim or deck rails also demonstrates a commitment to home maintenance that buyers appreciate.



  1. Touch up the yard.



Winter leaves your yard dull, lifeless and littered with plant debris.  Get the most of the first spring rains by laying down grass seed and straw to bring the green back to life.  Provide contrast to the green by spreading a thick layer of fresh, dark mulch.  For a pop of spring color, plants that can be planted in early spring for late spring color in the southeast include pansies, primrose, and colorful evergreen ornamental grasses. Curb appeal selling color



  1. Accessorize with colorful outdoor living accents.



Draw attention to the leisure opportunities in your yard with colorful accent pieces.  A hammock in a vibrant color that is made of durable fabric can highlight the house's atmosphere of relaxation.  Similarly, colorful adirondack chairs placed in a well-landscaped corner of the yard create a peaceful retreat that potential buyers will notice.




  1. Highlight the fixtures that make your house feel homey.




By adding large, colorful or shiny house numbers near your front door, you will make your home's address memorable to potential buyers.  Similarly, a mailbox is often the first structural detail that a homebuyer may notice when pulling up to your curb.  With a clean, colorful and distinctive mailbox  set in a tidy landscaped bed, you can begin to demonstrate the charm that your home has to offer.



For more information on real estate in Asheville, please contact Mike Figura at  or call him anytime at (828) 337-8190.



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