When the summertime heat becomes very harsh, we instinctively head for the shade. Let’s consider some smart landscaping Medford Oregon tips, shall we.
If your overheated house could scoot underneath a huge shade tree to cool off, it would possibly join you.
The next best thing: give your home its shade. Planting the right trees in the proper places helps cool your home in the summertime but still lets the winter sunlight through for warmth.
Strategically placed a row of conifers keeps the biting winter wind from slamming into your home. The result? Lower energy bills for you. Shrubs, vines, and groundcovers do their part, too.
The U.S. Department of Energy provides a few cases that show energy-efficient landscaping saves you money on your home energy bills:
A Closer Look At Smart Landscaping
Let’s look at how the notion of smart landscaping can cut a home’s energy usage by providing summer shade, winter warmth, and protective fences.
All About Shade
Shade keeps the sunlight from striking down on your roof and flowing through your windows, so your air conditioner doesn’t have to work as hard to cool things off.
You want to take advantage of the sunlight’s intensity during the winter, so plant deciduous trees on the south and west facing surfaces of your home. In summer, their leafy canopy will shade your house, serving to keep it cooler. In the winter, the naked branches will let the sunlight’s warmth through.
Plant a 6- to 8-foot deciduous tree near your home, and it will shade your windows during the first year. Depending on the species and the house, it will shade the roof in 5 to 10 years.
Plant trees with crowns lower to the ground on the west part of your home if you wish to shade your home from the more moderate afternoon sunlight.
Cut The Chill
Those deciduous trees that shaded your house all summer will shed their leaves and let the hot sun in during the winter.
A word about evergreens: don’t plant them on the icy side of your home. The sun moves lower on the southern horizon in winter. Evergreens will stop any winter sun.
Instead, plant an evergreen windbreak on the north and northwest of your home to stop cold winter winds.
A point made by the Arbor Day Foundation: the finest protection from wind occurs when the windbreak is merely the distance of one or two tree heights from home.
Bushes, Groundcover, And Vines
Trees aren’t the sole landscape element that can reduce your electricity bills.
Shrubs and groundcover plants shade the ground and sidewalk around your home. This reduces heat emission and moderates the air before it passes your home’s walls and windows.
Shrubs planted adjacent to the home will fill in and shade walls and windows within a few years.
Use a huge bush or row of thickets to conceal a veranda or entrance. Plant a hedge to shade a pavement.
Control sun through just a window or two by growing annual vines on an arbor to envelop or even protect the window. Plant a deciduous vine, such as a mild autumn clematis or morning glory. The vine’s leaves will create filtered shade during the summertime but give light during winter.
A Couple Words About Air Conditioning
Besides shading your home and preventing wind, both deciduous and evergreen trees save energy in summertime by moderating the air — a pure air conditioning.
This cooling takes place as water evaporates from the leaf surfaces, much as our skin is cooled when we sweat.
And in situations where this question comes up next time you’re a contestant on Peril, this process is called evapotranspiration.
Speaking of air conditioning, your home’s air conditioner should be shielded from mid-morning through the evening. (Another good reason to have trees around.)
Prune branches to provide at least several feet of clearance around the air conditioning equipment to improve airflow. Don’t plant shrubs too near your air conditioner as they can reduce airflow and cooling performance.
The experts at Medford Landscaping Pros can assist you in planning a smart landscape design and help you benefit from all the energy savings trees and plants provide. Read this blog post about landscaping at Medford Landscaping Pros.