Know Your Landscaping Topography: Why cookie-cutter landscaping won’t work for Baltimore


Maryland is a state with a diverse climate and geography. This means that the landscaping needs of homeowners and businesses vary depending on the location, season, and weather conditions. Whether it’s landscaping in Columbia MD, or landscaping needs in Howard County, it’s important to explore the challenges and opportunities that Maryland’s climate and geography present. It’s only then that Baltimore property owners can create beautiful and functional outdoor spaces that suit individual needs and preferences.

Why Topology Matters?

The approach for landscaping in Howard County, Baltimore and Columbia MD differ from other parts of the region. They are all located in the coastal region of Maryland, which is part of the Atlantic Coastal Plain. This region has a humid subtropical climate, with hot and humid summers and mild winters.

The geography of the region is mostly flat and low-lying, with sandy beaches, marshes, and estuaries. The Chesapeake Bay, the largest estuary in the United States, divides the coastal region into two parts: the Eastern Shore and the Western Shore. Baltimore is situated on the Western Shore, while Columbia MD and Howard County are inland suburbs of Baltimore. Understanding this topology can help you make important Baltimore landscaping decisions when choosing a service provider.

Considerations for Coastal Climate Landscaping

At Pro Landscapes MD, we plan, design and implement customized landscaping solutions for our clients. The coastal region of Maryland has a humid subtropical climate with hot summers and mild winters. The average annual precipitation is about 40 inches, with most of it falling in the summer months.

Soil quality is also important for landscaping in Columbia, MD. The soil is generally sandy and acidic, which limits the types of plants that grow well.

Other landscaping challenges in this region are:

  • Salt spray and wind damage from storms and hurricanes
  • Flooding and erosion from heavy rainfall and storm surges
  • Saltwater intrusion and salinization of groundwater
  • Pests and diseases such as deer, rabbits, mosquitoes, ticks, fungal infections, and blights

Without considering these factors, it’s unlikely that any generic Baltimore landscaping solution will work. Cookie-cutters just won’t cut it!

Customized Solutions

Through experience and expertise, our landscaping design teams provide customized landscaping in Howard County, Columbia or any other parts of Baltimore and surrounding neighborhoods.

Some of the landscaping solutions for the coastal region are:

  • Choose salt-tolerant and drought-resistant plants that can withstand the harsh conditions, such as ornamental grasses, succulents, native perennials, shrubs, and trees
  • Use mulch, rocks, gravel, or shells to cover the soil and prevent water loss and weed growth
  • Create raised beds or berms to improve drainage and prevent flooding
  • Install irrigation systems or rain barrels to collect and conserve water
  • Use fences, hedges, trellises, or windbreaks to protect plants from wind and salt spray
  • Use natural or organic pest control methods such as companion planting, traps, repellents, or beneficial insects

Lawns are also ecological “dead space” that provide little habitat or food for wildlife and contribute to greenhouse gas emissions and nutrient runoff. To create eco-friendly yards, some possible solutions are ditching grass altogether and replacing it with native plants, wildflowers, groundcovers, or edible crops; or reducing the size of the lawn and using organic or low-maintenance grass varieties. When you partner with us, that’s the kind of customized thinking Pro Landscape MD brings to any project.

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