The area around your house can be transformed into a beautiful garden no matter how disordered it might look right now. Begin by thinking in terms of a general plan. Put aside your thoughts about color combinations and other specifics until last.
On a map of your property, indicate existing trees and natural characteristics like slopes and areas where the soil is best so you can make the most of them in locating other features.
When you have decided on the best location for each in relation to the house and exposure to sun and wind, indicate the areas where plantings will tie the units together. You will soon see where trees are needed for shade and where shrubs will give you privacy and enclosure.
When the general plan is complete, you will be ready for more detailed planning. Consider the texture, form and color of various plants as you work out individual gardens and other plantings. You'll need to consider the placement of your paths, utility areas as well as the type and variety of trees and plants. For example, you need to place your vegetable garden in a sunny area, so you wouldn't place it near your shady path.
For more information on home garden planning, see
Home Garden Plan