Monday, May 9, 2011

Landscaping for Landlords: Bullet Proof Plants

One of the best ways to reduce vacancy and increase curb appeal of a rental is to plant flowers.  However, the problem with many flowers is that planting them is an annual time consuming affair.  My wife and I planted annuals at our rentals...once.  Then it simply became too much of a chore.  This has become particularly true since the number of rentals we care for has increased over the years.  To work around this problem we explored planting perennial flowers (ones that come back year after year) and have been very glad we did.

So you can beautify your rental property and benefit from happier tenants, here are a few plants that we have found to be bullet proof for landlords:

The Iris

The iris is a hardy and drought resistant flower.  The top photo is a siberian blue iris that we acquired several years ago.  Since we planted them they have multiplied prolifically.  We took the bulbs from the growth and spread them to many of the rentals that we own.  Our tenants love them.  They come in a variety of sizes and colors.  The top photo is a short variety that flowers in April or early May.  The lower photo is a larger variety that flowers in late June.

The Tulip

 The tulip is one of my favorite flowers.  It requires no maintenance whatsoever.  Spring snow melt provides the water that they need.  They come in an infinite variety and they have proven to be a tenant favorite.

Grape Hyacinth


You may not remember the name but you will definitely remember the plant when you see it.  It is also a vigorous grower. It grows about 8 inches tall.  It is great for filling planter boxes and other contained spaces.  WARNING: it will spread to your lawn if you aren't careful with placement.  However, the lawn mower makes quick work if it gets out of hand.
The Dandelion

 Finally, for the ultimately lazy landlord, you can always rely on nature's tried and true champion.

Fall is typically the best time to purchase and plant these if you want flowers the following Spring.  Other varieties that are attractive and require little maintenance are daffodils and day lilies.  The bottom line is that spending a small amount of money on flowers will go a long way to keeping happy tenants. 

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