The energy crisis is a never-ending concern for many and everyone has a role to play in energy conservation even by the simplest of ways. Though many do not know it, landscape designing can also play a role in energy conservation. The following are some landscape design tips for energy saving
In order to crease an energy conserving landscape you need trees. According to King Landscape Company, the large canopy of trees provides shade for roofs and windows reducing the cost of cooling especially in hot environments. You can plant deciduous trees, which drop their leaves during autumn and winter allowing the little sunlight to penetrate so you do not spend too much on cooling as well. It is very critical to choose the right placement of the trees because they can still block 60% of sunlight even without their leaves.
Moderate growing tree varieties are sturdy and can even withstand storm damage better than fast growing variety. This is a very important quality when growing trees so close to the house. They are also resistant to insects and disease.
A windbreak zone can also control the amount of hot and cold air that ends up in your home, which greatly affects heating and cooling costs. The effective protection zone for windbreaks should be a distance of at least five to seven times the high of the tree to the house. The windbreak should extend to the ground with a high foliage density. In case you are using deciduous trees, you need to plant at least five to six rows since they shed their leaves during winter leaving more spaces for the wind to get through. Plant trees with varied heights in order to get a better coverage.
Shading using vines
In case you do not want to use trees, or if they do not provide enough shade, you can use vines instead. Vines cover walls and windows to reduce the heating factor. They also act as added insulation to make your heating and cooling appliances work more effectively. Shading vines include English Ivy and Trellises. Be careful when choosing where to plant the vines as some of them can harm wood surfaces when they are too close.
Arbors also control temperatures during hot summer months. The air passing through the arbors is cooled by evapo-transpiration on the plant leaves before reaching your windows and walls. Arbors are a cooling method that has been in use for many years.
Using absorbent and reflective materials
The type of ground cover you use on your turf can also play a role in cooling through evapo-transpiration. Ground cover offers temperatures up to fifteen degrees cooler than heat absorbent materials such as asphalt. Light colored gravel and rocks are reflective material that can also contribute to cooling. Asphalt radiates heat even at night so you should avoid too much use of absorbent material near the house. In case you do, you should shade it from direct sunlight in order to minimize the radiation effect.